Terrorist Attacks on America

August 17, 2008

Terrorism, WMD, and Emergency Preparedness

The terrorist attacks on the United States did not employ weapons of mass destruction (WMD), usually defined as nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons, but the scale of destruction and loss of life was indeed massive. Will terrorists try to acquire and use WMD? CNS studies of WMD terrorism have examined this issue in depth, and address the following questions:


See: Background Report

Will terrorists try to use WMD? How can we assess the threat?

See: Assessing the Threat of WMD Terrorism

Did Bin Laden try to acquire materials for a nuclear weapon?

See: WMD Terrorism and Osama Bin Laden

What are the motivations for terrorist use of WMD?

See: the Introduction to Toxic Terror: Assessing Terrorist Use of Chemical and Biological Weapons, edited by Jonathan Tucker.

Why did the terrorists attack the World Trade Center?

Were chemical weapons used in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center?
See: John Parachini’s chapter, “The World Trade Center Bombers (1993)” from Toxic Terror

How should the United States assess the WMD terrorism threat and allocate its resources?

See: Combating Terrorism: Assessing Threats, Risk Management, and Establishing Priorities

What is the United States spending to defend itself against terrorism?

See: Federal Funding to Combat Terrorism

Assessing the Risk of Chemical and Biological Weapons Proliferation to Terrorists

See: The Full Report, Jean Pascal Zanders, Nonproliferation Review, Fall 1999.

Terrorist Group Profiles

In light of the US focus on Afghanistan and the Taliban in connection with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, CNS has developed profiles of selected terrorist organizations operating in Afghanistan.

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