RESOURCES: Where the WMD Really Are

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Science  07 Jul 2006:
Vol. 313, Issue 5783, pp. 23
DOI: 10.1126/science.313.5783.23c

With North Korea possibly preparing to test a long-range ballistic missile and the continuing international impasse over Iran's nuclear program, up-to-date information on weapons of mass destruction (WMD) is as hot as a sample of U-235. This database* hosted by the nonprofit Nuclear Threat Initiative of Washington, D.C., evaluates WMD arsenals country by country. Accounts summarize experts' assessments of the chemical, nuclear, biological, and missile capabilities of 26 nations, from India to the United States. Entries often relate the history of the country's work on the weapons and provide maps of missile sites and other key facilities. The NIS Nuclear Trafficking Abstracts Database addresses another fear about WMD: that terrorists will get their hands on them. Drawing on press stories and government reports, the site records attempts to smuggle nuclear material from the countries of the former Soviet Union.

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