O The New York Times publica hoje uma lista de possíveis ataques terroristas. O relatório criado pelo Department of Homeland Security prevê alguns cenários de tragédia e oferece estimativas de vítimas e das consequências económicas causadas por cada um dos supostos ataques.
O documento é conhecido apenas por National Planning Scenarios e baseia-se em mera especulação. Segundo fontes oficiais, citadas pelo NYT, o departamento nem sequer queria tornar o relatório público, também para evitar algum alarmismo. A verdade é que ele (ou parte dele) acabou por ser publicado no site do governo Havaiano e o NYT também já deu duas páginas ao assunto. Há sempre alguma janela aberta para o mundo.
Uma vez que o NYT tem notícias reservadas a utilizadores registados, deixo aqui algumas partes do artigo.
They include blowing up a chlorine tank, killing 17,500 people and injuring more than 100,000; spreading pneumonic plague in the bathrooms of an airport, sports arena and train station, killing 2,500 and sickening 8,000 worldwide; and infecting cattle with foot-and-mouth disease at several sites, costing hundreds of millions of dollars in losses. Specific locations are not named because the events could unfold in many major metropolitan or rural areas, the document says.
By identifying possible attacks and specifying what government agencies should do to prevent, respond to and recover from them, Homeland Security is trying for the first time to define what "prepared" means, officials said.
President Bush requested the list of priorities 15 months ago to address a widespread criticism of Homeland Security from members of Congress and antiterrorism experts that it was wasting money by spreading it out instead of focusing on areas or targets at greatest risk. Critics also have faulted the agency for not having a detailed plan on how to eliminate or reduce vulnerabilities.
Planners included the threats they considered the most plausible or devastating, and that represented a range of the calamities that communities might need to prepare for, said Marc Short, a department spokesman. "Each scenario generally reflects suspected terrorist capabilities and known tradecraft," the document says.
No terrorist groups are identified in the documents. Instead, those responsible for the various hypothetical attacks are called Universal Adversary.
The most devastating of the possible attacks - as measured by loss of life and economic impact - would be a nuclear bomb, the explosion of a liquid chlorine tank and an aerosol anthrax attack.
The authors of the reports have tried to make each possible attack as realistic as possible, providing details on how terrorists would obtain deadly chemicals, for example, and what equipment they would be likely to use to distribute it. But the document makes clear that "the Federal Bureau of Investigation is unaware of any credible intelligence that indicates that such an attack is being planned."