Comments Posted By Rick Moran
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As for releasing the scientists, we released the German A-bomb scientists within months of the end of the war. They promptly found work in Russia and the US.

As for the two women, what possible danger were they? Saddam is in jail and no one in Iraq is going to ask them to reconstitute the WMD program. Why not release them?

Their release has no bearing on whether or not Syria has any of Iraq's WMD.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 26.01.2006 @ 17:02

#35 John:

First of all, I hope I put enough qualifiers in their to show that the information is highly speculative. The undeniable fact is that these reports have been coming out for nearly 3 years - and not from tin foil hatters. The Prime Minister of Israel? I'd say that's a pretty good source.

That said, I agree it is not logical nor likely. But something was moved to Syria in the weeks leading up to the invasion. Wouldn't you want to know what it was?

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 26.01.2006 @ 16:59



Rob was referring to the original attribution. After he pointed out my mistake, I changed it.


My main concern is accountability. The accumulation of executiver power may be necessary to keep us safe - I don't know. But taken in their totality, the threat to civil liberties as a result of Administration policies it seems to me comes not from design but from an excess of good intentions. Taken individually, no action taken by Bush is illegal or unconstitutional. Taken together, the empowerment of a largely unaccountable national security apparatus is troubling.

Got to stop reading Kos...everytime I go there I almost turn into a liberal :)

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 26.01.2006 @ 05:12



I know how you feel. And don't worry, you've got company. There are millions of us who feel the same way.

As for printing everything,I don't know about your printer but on mine if I right click and highlight everything I want to print, and then set the printer control,the printer will do the rest.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 26.01.2006 @ 05:21


Thanks for the correction - I'll fix it right away.

As for the succession of Logan, I put that down to more sloppiness by the writers in not tying up loose ends at the end of last season. It's been 18 months and if Keeler recovered enough to take over, it's pretty obvious he would have already.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 24.01.2006 @ 09:43



Thanks for the additional info. My metric conversion table gives me about 144 lbs for 65 Kg's.

Of course, the polonium (or cadmium is another neutron tamper used) has to be set a precise distance from the mass and then brought in closer proximity in order to bombard it with the neutron bath. That kind of design takes many months of testing in order to come up with the proper distances.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 24.01.2006 @ 23:28


My figure of 125-150 comes from this site:

The minimum amount to start a chain reaction as described above is known as SuperCritical Mass. The actual mass needed to facilitate this chain reaction depends upon the purity of the material, but for pure U-235, it is 110 pounds (50 kilograms), but no Uranium is never quite pure, so in reality more will be needed.

That jogged my memory from the Rhodes book where he stated that the Hiroshima bomb used 150 lbs of U-235. I trust Lewis' number since he's an expert and I'm not but it could be that something as crude as the "gun design" may need more - I don't know.

Basically, the gun design as a just barely subcritical mass of U-235 at one end of a long barrel and a "plug" of U-235 at the other end. Fire the plug down the barrel and when it comes into contact with the larger mass, it goes critical and sets off the device.

As I said, very crude but still a pretty big bang. And that design may indeed require a larger amount of HEU.


You are correct about the implosion device using Plutonium. That design is technologically beyond Iran for the forseeable future as it requires shaped charges being set off around a sphere of Plutonium with extremely precise timing - microseconds apart as I recall - because the Plutonium must be "squeezed" from a ball the size of a cantelope to one the size of an orange. Any mistakes and all you get is a fizzle.

There are other ways to get HEU to supercriticality like bombarding the mass with neutrons from some neutron rich source (usually polonium) but these designs are technically beyond all but the most sophisticated nuclear program.

The real worry is that Iran will get its hands on a supply of U-235 from North Korea or Pakistan (China would be nuts to give the mullahs anything). As I tried to point out, those countries are barely making enough U-235 for their own programs to contemplate letting the precious material be sold to anyone else. That's not to say it won't happen or hasn't happened already. It's just not likely.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 22.01.2006 @ 16:54



That is a generalized criticism of this site which more often than not offers pretty balanced commentary. It's just that when the left shows itself to be totally clueless, I can't help myself.

BTW - I've also blogged about plenty of Republican cluelessness here too - read the archives.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 24.01.2006 @ 14:06


I wonder what the point was in announcing to all that he would no longer be a visitor?

Reminds me of a 13 year old drama queen...

Oh well. I guess that knocks my Sitemeter daily average down to 2118. A few more like that and I'll have less than...2100.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 21.01.2006 @ 14:47


The spent fuel is analysed by the provider country and IAEA, compared with reactor logs, etc. Any such activity to get plutonium is easily detected.

This presupposes Iran would follow IAEA protocols although admittedly, it would be difficult to get around them. This however, is a paperwork matter and could be dragged out for months - such as Saddam did with the reactor at Al-Tuwaitha. UNSCOM was constantly having to cite the Iraqi's for being behind in their reports regarding the 500 tons of yellowcake being stored there. What was probably bureaucratic incompetence was seen as a deliberate attempt to avoid their responsibilities.

That said, since the Iranians have two heavy water "research" reactors - one of them as I said run by the military - there would be little to prevent them from playing a little switcheroo with the fuel rods. From what I understand, the Argentine's tried something similar a few years ago and the only reason it was caught was due to a blabby employee.

I will not be surprised if we do very little to stop the Iranians from getting the bomb. But I suspect that we will work very hard from here on out to bring down the regime and try and replace it with a more secular and hopefully democratic state. At this point, it's just about all we can do.

BTW - you should get your own site if you don't have one already. You give great rants.

Comment Posted By Rick Moran On 20.01.2006 @ 19:13

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