• New antiterror technology tool uses human logic

    A new interactive image-based software can be used on touch-screen table-top displays and other large-screen systems better to manage the huge amounts of data collected in connection with alleged terrorist plots

  • DARPA looking to equip MRAPs with autonomous guns to engage enemy

    DARPA’s Counter Rocket-Propelled Grenade and Shooter System with Highly Accurate Immediate Responses, or CROSSHAIRS, project will engage enemy soldiers autonomously, or remotely operated, while simultaneously shooting rockets out of the air

  • Pakistan installs radiology scanner in Islamabad

    There are more than 160 points of entry into Islamabad but four main entry points for goods carrying vehicles; the Pakistani government buys radiation detectors from China to prevent terrorists from smuggling a nuclear or dirty bomb into the city; worries about the health effects of the strong radiation the scanner emit

  • Maersk Alabama fend off pirates

    The Maersk Alabama was seized by Somali pirates in April and its captain taken hostage (he was later released by U.S. Navy commandos); last week, Somali pirates try to hijack it for the second time — but this time the ship used evasive maneuvers, Long-Range Acoustic Devices (LRADs), and small arms fire were among the tactics used to fend off the attackers

  • Illinois officials say holding Gitmo inmates would be economic boost

    The Obama administration is considering the Thomson Correctional Center on Monday, located 150 miles west of Chicago, as home for some detainees from Guantanamo Bay; Illinois officials say the move could provide up to 2,000 jobs and up to $1 billion in federal money to the area

  • The costs of piracy mount

    Shipping companies report only a fraction of the actual cases of piracy for fear of their ships being impounded for long periods or because they simply do not want to pay the resultant higher insurance premium; the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) puts losses from piracy in 2008 alone at some €13 billion

  • U.S. vetoed Israeli attack on ship carrying arms for Hezbollah

    The Israeli Navy captured a ship heading toward Syria with weapons for Hezbollah; the manifest said the ship was carrying “parts for bulldozers,” but containers on the ship were found to contain more than 500 tons of weapons — thousands of medium-range 107- and 122-millimeter rockets, armor-piercing artillery, hand grenades, and ammunition for Kalashnikov rifles; the haul included more than 3,000 rockets, which is the equivalent of about 10 percent of Hezbollah rocket arsenal

  • JASON says computer models cannot predict terrorist events

    Pentagon advisory panel concludes that extreme terrorist events such as the 9/11 attacks cannot be predicted by computer models because the data re too sparse; “it is simply not possible to validate (evaluate) predictive models of rare events that have not occurred, and unvalidated models cannot be relied upon”

  • Afghan insurgents have found ways to destroy MRAPs

    The Pentagon has spent more than $26.8 billion to develop and build three versions of the largest Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected vehicles, or MRAPs, totaling some 16,000 vehicles, mostly for the Army and Marine Corps; another $5.4 billion is being spent to produce 5,244 M-ATVs, the smaller version that U.S. defense officials contend offers as much protection as the large models do, but is more maneuverable and better suited to Afghanistan’s dirt tracks and narrow mountain roads; insurgents in Afghanistan have found ways to cripple, and even destroy, the vehicle

  • Iraqis use "magic wand" at checkpoints to detect explosives; U.S. officer: this is "laughable"

    The Iraqi government has spent tens of millions of U.S. aid dollars to buy thousands of “magic wands” which are supposed to detect explosives at checkpoints; one American officer says the device works “on the same principle as a Ouija board”; another officer says that to believe the claims of the British company which is selling the device, and of the Iraqi authorities that swear by it, “would be laughable” — except that people are dying as a result; “[the company and Iraqi government have] crossed an insupportable line into moral depravity” he says

  • Gait-recognition biometric technology to help soldiers manning checkpoints

    SET Corporation is developing a technology which directs low-power radar beams at people — who can be 50 yards or more away; early research indicates that this method could one day be augmented with video-analysis software that spots bombers by discerning subtle differences in gait that occur when people carry heavy objects

  • Black-market cigarettes could fund terrorism, RCMP fear

    Canadian authorities worry that the booming black market trade in cigarettes could be used to finance terrorism; many Indian reservations are used as bases for the illicit trade

  • How credible -- and serious -- is the cyber threat the U.S. faces?

    New report examines recent cyber attacks on South Korea and asks whether whether the attacks constituted an act of war and whether they could have been the work of a terrorist group; the answer is no on both counts; the U.S. dependence on digital technology makes it somewhat more vulnerable to cyber attacks than other nations,

  • Israel says it will continue to listen-in on Hezbollah communication

    Hezbollah has its own communication network in Lebanon, separate and independent from the government’s sanctioned carrier networks; Israel says that bugging the organization’s network does not amount to a violation of Lebanon’s sovereignty

  • How prepared is the U.S. for a bioterror attack?

    The current U.S. bioterror detection program: A federally funded, locally run program with an $80 million annual budget, deploying a network of vacuum pumps that draw surrounding air through filters, sniffing for signs of biological agents