Saturday, April 13, 2013

"A Nation Forsaken": F. Michael Maloof warns of EMP, radio frequency or flux gun weapons, and solar CME's: is there life after technology?


Author: F. Michael Maloof, with a Foreword by Dr. Peter Vincent Fry

Title: “A Nation Forsaken: EMP: The Escalating Threat of an American Catastrophe
  
Publication: 2013, WND Books, Washington, D.C.  ISNM 978-1-936488-56-8, hardcover, 161 pages, 9 Chapters.

  

The author is a former security policy analyst at the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), an office at which I might have been stationed myself when I was in the Army in 1968.  He should be credible,  Maybe he believes he wasn’t “listened to” when working for ISD.   The claims in this book are disturbing and shocking, and I have heard them for years. 
  
The book lays out an existential threat to our way of life, already encountered in the novel “One Second After” (July 20, 2012 on this blog).  In that novel, multiple high altitude nuclear blasts from missiles launched over the US from the Gulf of Mexico from a cargo ship by terrorists launch an electromagnetic pulse that instant fries the power grid for the whole country and sets it back 500 years.  In a year, 90% of the people die, and the country is vulnerable to totalitarian militias, as in the NBC television series “Revolution” (by J J Abrams), which presupposes that a “virus” can suck power out of the air and shut down the country.  That idea is scientifically preposterous, but Maloof’s book here outlines several ways that catastrophe can happen.
  
In fact, I don’t know of any other non-fiction book to this point that outlines all the threats in one brief exposition,

The first chapter outlines the least known but most probable of the terroristic threats, which do not require nuclear weapons.  That is, RF (radio frequency) devices, of varying sizes.  The smallest can disable the electronics of a single car or building and could be useful for criminals.   They have been used overseas and may have been used for some car thefts recently in Long Beach, CA.   The basic weapon is called a “flux compression generator” or “flux gun”.  Larger weapons could fry a few city blocks, maybe a whole neightorhood, and produce less damage for miles.    The author claims that such weapons are in development by terrorists and criminal organizations, and can even be built by amateurs for a few hundred dollars, with instructions on the Internet (I won’t reproduce the links).   That may be an exaggerated claim, but one week before 9/11, an article to this effect appeared in “Popular Science”.  Apparently this was based on another article in “New Scientist” in May 2001 by David Scrhiner or Schriner Engineering.  I found this article online, "Wave of Destruction", link here.  

Later in the book, Maloof notes another larger non-nuclear pulse (or microwave) generator AESA, or Active Electronically Scanned Array. 
  
On March 4, 2010 I visited the US Army Ordnance Museum in Aberdeen, MD, and wrote a posting about it, including a picture of an RF device (it may have been AESA) used in Iraq.  The device had been mentioned in a story in The Washington Times in 2009.   I also remember hearing discussions about RF weapons when I was in the Army (mainly in 1969).
  
Given the obvious danger to the public from such devices, it seems surprising that there is no public debate on regulating them, while we debate gun control, assault weapons bans, and background checks.  Piers Morgan, where are you?
  
Maloof does provide some technical discussion of how EMP from a high altitude nuclear blast works.  The pulses come in three waves, E1 through E3, and the technical difficulties in protecting equipment (as with grounding or Faraday Cages) are different from each pulse.  He also talks about how much our utilities have invested in SCADA (supervisory data acquisition and control) technology.
  
Maloof acknowledges that missile defenses may well knock out high altitude missiles (the bellicose rhetoric from North Korea sounds horribly prescient now), but might not detect lower altitude artillery from offshore ships, which could knock out smaller areas but perhaps whole cities.

Maloof provides a laundry list of terror or enemy organizations that would have a psychological motive to participate in this sort of asymmetric terror.

He also provides a chapter detailing the way coronal mass ejections from the Sun ("solar flares") work, warns that we could be “due” for a big blast in 2013 or 2014, and discusses major power failures from previous CME’s (like Quebec in 1989), and provides detailed accounts of the Carrington event in 1859. 

Maloof  has a chapter “Why Haven’t We Been Told?”  He does summarize various bills in Congress meant to shore up the power grid, and details how the problem has been known for decades, but kept behind the scenes.  An “EMP Commission” produced a report in 2008.  There have been major papers from the National Academy of Sciences and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (reviewed on this blog).  The Pentagon seems schizophrenic, willing to rely on a commercial grid that is apparently so easily targeted. A trade group, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (or NREC) has apparently sugar-coated the issue and made the industry look better prepared than it actually is.

Maloof ends his book with a survivalist’s guide.  I rather cringe at the “Doomsday Prepper” or survivalist mentality and value system, resulting in a feudal world run by warlords.  If our world suddenly collapses – and I think it could – it would have no use for someone like me.  It would be best if I died immediately. Here I would be, 69 or older, with no children. Who would want to bring children into such a world, anyway?  Well, some people would, and some people would think my comments and admissions as subversive, enticing to enemies.  I understand that – even though this sort of discussion doesn’t happen much in socially acceptable circles.  A better question would be, what happens with teens and twenty-somethings who grew up in a technology driven world, and have no skills to live in a “real one”?  Actually, the possibility of real catastrophe uinderscores the idea that social structure and compact (and even a belief in a biological future or lineage)t really is important, even if it tends to make society vulnerable to authoritarianism.

  
Actually, maybe I could back off on my negativity just a bit.  One of my screenplays   (actually it is called “Do Ask  Do Tell Manifesto” right now)has a character (based on “me”) abducted by aliens and then forced to train and live in communities with progressive levels of technology.  But of course in a post-technology world the movie could never be produced, the screenplay never read online.
At least old fashioned pianos and musical instruments would work.

Note: I bought a hardcopy of this book, not the Kindle e-book.  I'll still be able to read it in the daytime after an EMP attack from Iran or North Korea. Also, among the major politicians, why do only Newt Gingrich and Roscoe Bartlett talk about this?  Where are the major media outlets on this issue?

It's like saying, "the Earth is falling into the Sun and they just aren't telling us?"  Well, Al Gore is telling us,  It's our fault.  It's an Inconvenient Truth.  

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