CBRNE Particles – American Jihadists, Joint Nuclear Weapon Drills, Next Gen 911

Topics in this issue include joint nuclear weapon drills with Japan; next generation 911; CBRN robotics; Americans joining ISIS and more.

Reactor Operators: What it Takes to Do This Important Job

The NRC issues two types of licenses to control room personnel qualified to operate a commercial nuclear power plant facility – i.e., the nuclear reactor. These are reactor operators (ROs), responsible for manipulating the controls of nuclear reactors, and senior reactor operators (SROs), who direct the licensed activities of ROs. NRC Blog >>

Congress Likely to Back War Chest to Fight ISIS

Congress will likely pass the White House’s separate war-funding request to battle Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria despite some lawmakers’ concerns over strategy, an analyst said. The Obama administration requested $5.6 billion to conduct military operations against the extremist group known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Most of the money would go to the Defense Department. DoD Buzz >>

Four Workers Killed in Gas Leak at Texas Chemical Plant

Four Texas workers died and a fifth was hospitalized Saturday morning after a hazardous gas leak at a DuPont chemical plant east of Houston. The workers were overcome during a response to a gas leak, reported to be methyl mercaptan. A team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board will investigate the incident. NY Times >>

US, Japan Conduct Joint Nuclear, Chemical Weapons Drills

U.S. forces and Japan’s Nuclear Biological Chemical Weapons Defense Unit participated in the joint land drill early last week. About the same time, the USS Germantown joined the amphibious exercises to practice techniques and tactics, military leaders said. >>

CF-18s Hit ISIS IED-Making Facility

Four CF-18s struck an ISIS warehouse used for manufacturing improvised explosive devices in the third bombing strike of Canada’s mission in Iraq, the Canadian Department of National Defence says. CTV News >>

Balkans Conduct Joint Military Training Against Extremists

Balkan militaries are increasingly conducting joint training to better deal with insurgents and extremist organizations such as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The Centre for Training and Peace Operations in Sarajevo ties in regional militaries’ efforts to address security threats and advance tactics in anti-insurgent operations. >>

WHO Plans to Speed Development of Ebola Rapid Test

Quicker and simpler diagnostic tests for Ebola could go a long way in helping break chains of disease transmission in West Africa’s outbreak region, the WHO said today, as it unveiled two new initiatives to expedite their development. The efforts, similar to those under way to test and deliver an Ebola vaccine, will hopefully compress the development of a rapid test in months instead of years. CIDRAP >>

Number of Deaths Caused By Terrorism in 2013 Increased 61% Over 2012

Terrorism in 2013 was dominated by four organizations: ISIS, Boko Haram, al Qaeda, and the Taliban — collectively responsible for 66 percent of all fatalities from terrorism. More than 80 percent of the deaths from terrorist incidents in 2013 were recorded in just five countries: Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, and Syria. HSNW >>

CBRN Robotics: Unmanned Recon and Decon Systems Needed

Hard, physical data always beats a predictive model. But a full area recon takes a lot of soldiers, a lot of time, a lot of equipment, and exposes them to CBRN hazards. Robotic systems could be dispatched to do area recons and reduce the number of soldiers involved, the amount of equipment exposed, and conduct the task in less time. Cisero Magazine >>

Next-Generation 911 Is a Game-Changer

Next-generation 911 (NG911) arguably is the most important technological advancement in public safety communications since mobile radios first were implemented in emergency response vehicles nearly a century ago. The implementation of NG911 technology will require a wholesale change in the way that emergency calls are processed and administered. Emergency Management >>

US Report: China’s Nukes Getting Bigger and Better

The report, issued Nov. 19, by the US China Economic and Security Review Commission, states China will pose a threat to all US military forces, bases and assets in the Western Pacific within the next 10 years. Beijing also calculates its space warfare capabilities will enhance its strategic deterrent as well as allow China to coerce the US and others “into not interfering with China militarily.” Defense News >>

North Korea Responds to UN with Nuclear Test Threat

North Korea has threatened to conduct a nuclear test in response to a United Nations move towards a probe into the country’s human rights violations. Its foreign ministry on Thursday accused the United States of orchestrating a recent UN resolution calling for the investigation. North Korea previously conducted nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and 2013. BBC News >>

RAND Study Assesses Threat Posed by Americans Joining Jihadist Fronts Abroad

Only about 100 Americans have left their homeland to join jihadist terrorist groups fighting in Syria and Iraq, including the Islamic State, according to a new RAND Corporation analysis. Although it is difficult to pin down the exact numbers, U.S. counterterrorism officials believe that those fighters pose a clear and present danger to American security. HSNW >>

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