Nuclear Backpack Device Captured by Israelis

JERUSALEM, ISRAEL, October 20, 2001 (Web Today)—Israeli security forces captured a so-called "dirty bomb" last month as it was being smuggled into Israel from the West Bank.

A published report from United Press International quoted U.S. government officials as confirming that the terrorist carrying the radiological weapon was a follower of Islamic terrorist Osama bin Laden.

While not as large or powerful as a nuclear suitcase bomb, the backpack varieties could still spread dangerous amounts of radioactive contamination around the area of detonation. Not a nuclear weapon, per se, the backpack devices, built by the former Soviet Union, wrapped layers of radioactive material around a traditional explosive core.

The UPI account also claims bin Laden had acquired one or two of the missing Soviet suitcase bombs but a CIA source said such devices could not be made to explode without possession of top-secret codes known only to authorities in Moscow.

You can check out the story for yourself at UPI.


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