by WorldTribune Staff, January 7, 2020
The recently-passed 2020 National Defense Authorization Act includes President Donald Trump’s executive order to assess the risks of a man-made or natural electromagnetic pulse (EMP) hit on the United States.
The U.S. military has led the EMP threat assessment so far as some top Pentagon officials have expressed concerns that Russia, North Korea, China, and Iran are working on nuclear EMP weapons that, when detonated above the United States, could knock out the electric grid for up to a year.
The 2020 defense bill gives the National Guard nine months to inform Congress on what states have as far as plans to respond to an EMP event and what the Guard will do “with particular focus on a multi-state electromagnetic pulse event.”
Related: Technologically advanced nations called most vulnerable to EMP attack, January 29, 2019
“Long met with eye-rolling, the growing threat of an EMP attack on the nation’s electric grid and military bases by Iran or other foes has suddenly gone mainstream,” Paul Bedard noted in a Jan. 6 op-ed for the Washington Examiner.
Trump has taken the EMP threat seriously, Bedard noted, “though it’s unclear if his national security team shares his concerns, especially after EMP preparation proponent John Bolton was ousted as the national security adviser.”
Also, Bedard added, “some insiders fear that a strong lobbying campaign from the electric utility industry, which does not want to spend money to upgrade its infrastructure, is working to dull the president’s executive order.”
The federal government is also worried about a natural attack from solar storms, which has happened several times before.
The defense spending bill is a huge win for Trump’s call for action, and EMP proponents hope it helps to maintain the momentum.
“These are big and very important results,” said Peter Pry, a longtime champion of EMP preparation and adviser to the White House and military. “Things are taking off. This is a significant change, in a positive way.”
Bedard noted that several states are moving to improve their preparedness for an EMP event.
Wyoming has produced its blueprint to respond to an EMP assault that could knock out electricity, water services, hospitals, ATMs, cellular phones, and even vehicles for months.
Wyoming’s plan was presented as a “living document” meant to be updated with new protection plans, said Lynn Budd, the director of the Wyoming Office of Homeland Security.
Budd noted that the likelihood of an attack is low, but to be unprepared could lead to severe consequences.
“Return to pre-event power reliability may take months or years for some customers,” Budd warned in a 92-page report shared with Bedard.
A recently declassified report from Pry warned that several U.S. enemies could join to launch a nuclear EMP attack. Pry suggested the death toll could be staggering.
“Nine of 10 Americans are dead from starvation, disease, and societal collapse. The United States of America ceases to exist,” warned Pry’s report, which was declassified by the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack.