Russia Missing
100 Nuclear Bombs
Submitted by Wes Thomas
By Chip Tatum
Four months ago I posted an article to the BlackOps Reporter in which a prominent German Intelligence Officer passed on information concerning the movement of Weapons Grade Plutonium into the United States. In that article entitled "McVeigh Guilty...What A Surprise", the Foreign Intelligence Officer warned of mishandling of Soviet Nuclear Weapons and Components. What we must remember is the statement made by this Ex-BND Officer. "Terrorism has no only has purpose!"
Russia Missing 100 Nuclear Bombs September 5, 1997 Associated Press
WASHINGTON - Russia's military has lost track of 100 suitcase-sized nuclear bombs, the nation's former national security chief has told American lawmakers, who expressed alarm to the Clinton administration.
But U.S. and Russian officials discount the claims by retired Gen. Alexander Lebed, the ousted one-time foe of President Boris Yeltsin.
"We don't have any evidence to support what (Lebed) said and responsible Russian officials have specifically denied it," a White House official said Thursday. "We have no credible information any nuclear weapon, suitcase or not, has even been available on the black market."(Sounds like a Clinton/Reno Spin to me)
The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed, however, that the Russian military has such portable nuclear bombs, which security experts describe as the "perfect terrorist weapon" in the wrong hands.
Lebed described the devices as Special Atomic Demolition Munitions that are designed for sabotage behind enemy lines - blowing up bridges or command centers, for example. The 1-kiloton nuclear bombs, which weigh 60-100 pounds and can fit into a suitcase or backpack, can kill 50,000-100,000 people and devastate a portion of a city, according to Lebed.
In May, Lebed told a congressional delegation led by Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., that as Yeltsin's top defense expert last year he discovered the Russian military couldn't account for 48 of 132 of suitcase bombs.
In going public, Lebed upped the total of missing suitcase bombs to 100 out of 250 in an interview with CBS's "60 Minutes."
"I don't know their location," Lebed told CBS in a program scheduled to air Sunday. "I don't know whether they have been destroyed or whether they are stored or whether they've been sold or stolen. I don't know."
Lebed added that when he told Yeltsin, "I did not see any reaction" and the Russian military didn't institute an inventory check.
Former Defense Minister Igor Rodionov told CBS he "never had any information, a single report" that the suitcase bombs were stolen.
Deputy Defense Minister Andrei Kokoshin, who met with the congressional delegation after Lebed, also assured lawmakers no nuclear weapons were missing. Last week, Yeltsin named Kokoshin head of the powerful Defense Council as he shook up his cabinet to institute military reforms.
Last October, Yeltsin fired Lebed amid charges the former paratrooper was trying to form a private army. Yeltsin had appointed Lebed his security chief after the general withdrew from challenging the president for re-election.
Rep. Weldon, who concedes Lebed may have an ax to grind, said he believes that at the very least the Russian government's control has grown lax over its nuclear stockpile since the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
"The potential for very sophisticated nuclear technology and weapons to get into the hands of Third World nations and other groups is very real, and it's something I don't think the administration follows up on," Weldon said in an interview. "The Russian government doesn't have control."
In April, Defense Secretary William Cohen said the United States relies on Russian assurances - and not independent checks - that Moscow has full control over its nuclear weapons.
"We don't know the exact nature of the command and control that's in place," Cohen told reporters. "We have been assured by the highest officials that they have very strict controls over their systems."
In August, Weldon, who is a Russian expert and sits on the House National Security Committee, wrote letters to CIA Director George Tenet and National Security Adviser Sandy Berger, expressing his concerns about Lebed's allegations about the security of Russia's nuclear weapons.
"I was particularly alarmed by his disclosure that he is unable to account for many nuclear weapons," Weldon wrote, detailing the charges.
Weldon also met with Energy Secretary Federico Pena in July before the Cabinet secretary went to Moscow and the congressman urged Pena to bring the matter up again with Russia military officials.
The DOE didn't respond immediately to requests for comment on what Pena discussed in Moscow.
Jay Stewart, the director of foreign intelligence operations for the DOE from 1990 through 1994, said the U.S. government and international community have much reason for concern regarding Russia's nuclear program.
"It's my belief that the Russian Ministry of Defense itself doesn't know where all the tactical nuclear weapons are and cannot account for them," Stewart said in an interview. "If these suitcase devices have fallen out of national government hands, the question becomes where are they, who had them and what are their intentions. In the former Soviet Union everything is for sale."
By The Associated Press
I urge you to read the other articles which I have posted on the BlackOps Reporter...they too have purpose. "This Is Lawrence Kansas...Is Anybody There?"

Email Homepage