[ RadSafe ] Fwd: x-ray "WMD"

Chris Alston achris1999 at gmail.com
Thu Sep 3 11:30:28 CDT 2015


I first would ask my colleagues in the NYPD, if they could charge a suspect
with armed robbery, if he were to have used a fake gun, and make it stick.
You could use the answer to that question to scale up to the level of harm
these guys intended, seems to me.  Wouldn't it be fine if the overwhelming
majority of terrorists were as incompetent as this duo?

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: KARAM, PHILIP <PHILIP.KARAM at nypd.org>
Date: Thu, Sep 3, 2015 at 9:40 AM
Subject: [ RadSafe ] x-ray "WMD"
To: "The International Radiation Protection (Health Physics) Mailing List (
radsafe at health.phys.iit.edu)" <radsafe at health.phys.iit.edu>
So here's the question...I think we discussed this last year when these
bozos were first arrested. Is it a crime to plan to build something with
the intent of causing large numbers of casualties, when the device itself
just won't work? Don't get me wrong - these folks sound as though they are
better off in prison than on the streets, and when this scheme failed they
might well have tried something lower-tech that would have worked.
I know that people are arrested all the time for making "bombs" with inert
materials provided by their FBI "mentors" but at least we know that bombs
correctly constructed with the correct materials can, indeed, kill people.
But as near as I can tell, this x-ray device would probably not have harmed
anybody due to power requirements, the time requirements for delivering a
high dose, and the inverse square law. To me, this sounds like arresting
someone in possession of a magic wand who's trying to learn the right spell
to kill people - there's no doubt about the evil intent, but is stupidity
and lack of education really criminal?

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