How hospital equipment allows terrorists to easily make dirty bombs that could irradiate entire cities
08/07/2017 // Robert Jonathan // Views

When ISIS took control of the northern Iraqi city of Mosul in 2014, it apparently had the makings of a devastating dirty bomb at its fingertips.

Cobalt-60 is a common element in medical radiotherapy equipment used in cancer treatment. For about three years after ISIS overran the city, wary U.S. intelligence agencies were aware that two caches of  potentially dangerous cobalt-60 were in storage on a Mosul college campus in machines that were estimated to be 30 years old.

Officials notified Iraqi military commanders about the threat, as their army battled ISIS block-by-block for control of the city for the past year or so.

A dirty bomb is an explosive device laced with radioactive material. According to the Daily Sheeple, had the terrorist army weaponized the cobalt-60, all bets would have been off.

The isotope emits gamma rays at high intensity, making it effective in radiotherapy cancer treatments, however its high radioactivity also makes it perfect for a “dirty bomb,” or a weapon that uses conventional explosives to disperse radioactive materials across a targeted area, making it uninhabitable.

Fortunately, Iraqi forces recaptured Mosul and secured the cobalt-60 stockpile, which was still untouched in the storage room. Authorities still haven't figured out exactly why the ISIS fighters never sought to access the substance. One theory holds that it was too dangerous to extract the cobalt core from the machines without a risk of exposure to a lethal dose of radiation.

In this instance, Iraq, if not the entire world, seems to have lucked out. (Related: Read more about the the threat from weapons of this kind at

The difficulty is that machines containing cobalt-60 are in use all over the world by hospitals, clinics, universities and other institutions engaged in cancer treatment, medical research and the like, making the misuse of the substance a global threat.

The Washington Post noted:

"Similar equipment exists in hundreds of cities around the world, some of them in conflict zones."

Efforts are underway, however, to transition to new technologies that are less prone to terrorist exploitation. Whether cancer patients should submit themselves to radiation therapy, in any case, is another matter entirely.

Cobalt-60 loses some  of its potency over time, but the Mosul machines could have easily delivered a kill shot of radiation at close range, the Post added.

Homeland security officials have long been concerned about the possibility of terrorists smuggling a dirty bomb into America and detonating it in a major American city, the Post noted.

Leaders of the Islamic State and al-Qaeda are known to have sought materials for a dirty bomb, a threat that has added urgency to efforts by U.S. agencies and private groups to improve security for machines with heavy concentrations of cobalt-60, or other radioactive elements...

Sources include:

Take Action:
Support Natural News by linking to this article from your website.
Permalink to this article:
Embed article link:
Reprinting this article:
Non-commercial use is permitted with credit to (including a clickable link).
Please contact us for more information.
Free Email Alerts
Get independent news alerts on natural cures, food lab tests, cannabis medicine, science, robotics, drones, privacy and more.
App Store
Android App
eTrust Pro Certified

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2022 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

This site uses cookies
Natural News uses cookies to improve your experience on our site. By using this site, you agree to our privacy policy.
Learn More
Get 100% real, uncensored news delivered straight to your inbox
You can unsubscribe at any time. Your email privacy is completely protected.