Watching these dirty bomb drills reminds of when Bush was in Sydney just before September11. There had been US counterterrorism predictions that this would be the weekend of simultaneous al Qaeda blasts in three Adelaide cities. The probs had been at less than 10%, but when an Indian doctor strongly suspected of being in a simultaneous-attack cell was picked up a few weeks before the Bush visit, the likelihood of a dirty bomb attack in Sydney was much higher. Then the White House turned the situation into a potential calamity.
There has been little reporting in Australia of the White House leaking the Osama video, and the subsquent loss of the intel "keyhole" into al Qaeda's obelisk network. It's not surprising. The US president is in another country, inside the scenario I describe in the first paragraph, and if the command to set of a bomb had been given, the US had rendered itself unable to see it.
Bush is having a morning with the APEC leaders, and there's 4,000 protesters marching through Sydney to a park. How do the local authorities handle the situation? The corral the protetsers, a water cannon on standby, and herd them into the park, with choppers and snipers watching from on high. There was a bloke with a rubbish bin filled with sound gear who was searched three times. He wasn't a dirty bomber. What if they'd missed one? They only had 80 beds on standby. Many of those in the park were there because the police forced them to be. I didn't see any ambulances. We had the power of the White House, and twenty other intelligence networks in the city, and I believe would have had no idea what to do if a dirty bomb went off at that time.
That's why, I think, Australia is a partner in these exercises. If things had gone wrong, you wouldn't have needed to endure these simulations, as everyone would have already had tons of "field experience" Down Under.
For background information on the both, please rearead the piece and comments at the link, and remember to keep your sense of humour.
None Of This Is Real.