By JanSuzanne Krasner
It's bewildering. Pathetic. Frightening. And it seems that the mainstream media avoids talking about it for fear that Americans will panic. Well, Americans ought to be panicking -- anything to get them to bang on Congress's door and force our representatives to immediately act on the pending legislature now in Congress called the SHIELD Act -- a bill based on the previous HR 5026 -- that unanimously passed in the House of Representatives on June 9, 2010.
The disaster I am referring to is an electromagnetic pulse (EMP), which can easily be caused either by Mother Nature as a geomagnetic solar storm or by an enemy with a low-cost, short range, ship-launched missile armed with a nuclear warhead. The national consequences of an EMP destroying our electrical grid are far-reaching, with long-lasting, continent-wide crippling effects to our electricity-dependant infrastructure.
At the press conference organized by EMPactAmerica on September 23, 2011, this dangerous threat to our national security was exposed for what it truly is -- the most likely event to happen to the U.S., naturally or man-made, that has the potential to bring the country to its knees.
The National Academy of Science points out that protecting the grid against this threat is critical, and getting a bill passed is necessary to do that. An EMP, if not deflected, will shut down and paralyze our country. Just think about the role electricity plays in water, food, heating and cooling, communications, transportation, distribution, the economy and banking. Congressman Roscoe Bartlett, who made a statement on the floor of the House in support of the HR 5026, told Congress that an EMP attack would create $1-$2 trillion in damages and take four to ten years to recover. The truth is that within one year we would no longer be a sovereign nation.
The HR 5026 that passed in the House was stalled in the Senate during the lame-duck session. More recently, Congressman Trent Franks introduced the SHIELD Act, which goes beyond HR 5026 -- i.e., requiring an automated protection plan and hardware-based solution to be developed within six months. EMPactAmerica points out that Americans need to get Congress to focus on this immediately.
The EMPactAmerica conference "Standing Up to Ahmadinehad: Military and National Security Policy Experts Call on President Obama to Confront the Iranian Threat" presented the undeniable fact that the Iranian regime is prepared to use its nuclear weapons in the form of an EMP detonation in the skies 70-100 miles above "the great Satan" and to do so without attribution. A panel of ten EMP and terrorist experts spoke to an audience of concerned reporters and involved activists with the hope of stimulating awareness, discussion, and action.
The panel was extremely impressive. Opening remarks came from EMPact's president, Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, Director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum. He pointed out that "we are so vulnerable with this threat because we are unprepared." Therefore, "it is not acceptable for Iran to be allowed to build nuclear weapons."
Lt. General Thomas McInerny, retired Air Force and member of the Iran Policy Committee, advised that we must have a strategy to hold nations accountable that sponsor or allow terrorists to live in their nation and deter them from doing so. He confirmed that Iran is at the heart of most attacks through proxies like Hezbollah, Hamas, al-Qaeda, and others. "The Iranian regime likes to keep their 'fingerprints off' while spreading propaganda, money and weapons to others ready to do the killing and dying for them." Brigadier General Kenneth Chrosniak, retired, U.S. Army War College, Bronze Star recipient, added to the discussion that "we must plan for the worst-case situation, and we are not being told about the worst threat in the forefront of America."