CBRNE Particles – Agroterrorism Threats, Fort Carson EOD Training, U.S. Landmine Legacy

Topics in this issue include inspections in Syria for chlorine gas attacks, nuclear forensic experts, JPEO-CBD support contract, Ebola vaccine trials begin.

Ebola: New Vaccine Trial Begins

Johnson and Johnson said it hoped to begin a larger Phase 2 trial in Africa and Europe within three months and then to have the vaccine available for use in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone by the middle of 2015. BBC News >>

Chemical Inspectors Highly Confident Chlorine Gas was Used Against Syrian Villages

Chemical weapons investigators concluded “with a high degree of confidence” that chlorine gas was used as a weapon against three opposition-controlled villages in Syria last year, affecting between 350 and 500 people and killing 13, according to a report obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press. CTV Canada >>

Fort Carson EOD Troops Train for Expeditionary Fight

Nine EOD teams and the headquarters element from the 748th EOD Company supported the 3-4th ABCT during its decisive action training rotation at the U.S. Army’s premier desert combat training center. 20th CBRNE Command >>

U.S. Says There’s More Proof Syria Used Chemical Arms

The 117-page report by a fact-finding mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) includes eyewitness accounts of helicopters dropping barrel bombs with toxic chemicals. The findings are consistent with two previous reports by the mission but offer much more detail. Newsweek >>

Kansas Approves Additional Funds for Biodefense Facility

The state of Kansas has agreed to authorize an additional $231 million in bonds to help finance the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility under construction near Manhattan. The bond agreement is contingent on the federal government agreeing the state won’t have to pay any more for the project. Global Biodefense >>

What a Homeland Security Shutdown Would Look Like

After President Obama’s executive order deferring deportation for millions of undocumented immigrants, Republicans crafted a counterattack, one they hoped would eventually force Obama to the bargaining table: a spending package that would fund the Homeland Security Department through only Feb. 27. Defense One >>

The Right Approach to Radiological Protection

There is certainly nothing wrong with the basic tenets of radiological protection, but their application without heed to non-radiological hazards can lead seriously astray, writes Jack Valentin, an independent radiological protection consultant. World Nuclear News >>

Army Releases Long-Awaited Rifleman RFP

The request for proposals will move the Army closer to Full Rate Production for the radio, which is part of the Handheld, Manpack and Small-form Fit (HMS) program. The Army has already purchased 21,379 Rifleman radios under low-rate initial production (LRIP) which are being utilized in operations in Afghanistan. C4ISR & Networks >>

Northwestern U Students Report on U.S. Landmine Legacy

Despite a $3.2 billion U.S. effort to clear unexploded ordnance, assist victims, and wipe out aging munitions stockpiles that dates back to 1993, civilians are still dying and the “deadly debris” is inflicting incalculable damage on communities, regions and entire countries, the investigation found. HSNW >>

Modernizing Nuclear Arsenals: Whether and How

Between 2014 and 2023, the United States expects to spend $355 billion to modernize its nuclear arsenal. In subsequent decades, even higher expenditures are envisioned. But Washington is far from alone in modernizing its nuclear weapons. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists >>

Nuclear Forensic Experts Prepare for the Worst and Hope to Deter It

Radioactive fallout from a weapon would provide importance clues, as might a suspected smuggler’s fingernails or hair. Atomic analysis of chemical traces left in the human body from exposure to different environments might show that a suspect spent time in Kabul, Afghanistan; Tehran; or Pyongyang, North Korea. LA Times >>

Support Contract for JPEO Chemical and Biological Defense

The U.S. Army issued an updated draft Request for Proposals (RFP) for Joint Enterprise-Contracted Logistics and Services Support (JE-CLaSS) in support of the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense (JPEO-CBD). Global Biodefense >>

Agroterrorism is a Major Threat to America: Experts

The economic effects of a successful attack on the U.S. food supply would be devastating, as agriculture accounts for roughly 13 percent of the country’s gross annual domestic product. An introduction of deadly pathogens into U.S. livestock, poultry, or crops would not only result in a disease outbreak, but would disrupt the global food industry and drive up food prices. HSNW >>

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