Saturday, March 5, 2016

No excuses

"We have known about the hazards of EMP since the 1980's. Actually, long before then." 

When I was a young lad and recently joined the Navy, one of the first things I learned was a very simple lesson. If you screwed up, and did not have a very good reason for doing so, all you could do was "pop tall", stand at attention, and say "No excuse sir!" And that brings us back to my previous rant - our lack of preparedness for an EMP event.

Now I am going flash forward in time to the 1980's. In the Navy I had learned about the Russian order of battle. And one element was the power of the EMP. How that could decimate our forces. So in the 1980's, our military set out to counter that threat. To make sure if such an event happened, our forces could continue to fight.

My civilian job at the time was working on the militarized disk program at the now defunct Control Data Corporation. Control Data supplied a 14" storage disk to go on various military platforms. No, I am not kidding - they really did make 14" disks back in that day. Anyhow, the Pentagon wanted more "bang for the buck". They wanted Control Data to upgrade the product with a 5" disk that could do more than the 14" disk could. In a short matter of time, Control Data rolled out a new product line of 5" disk units.

And it was impressive. Control Data had numerous different varieties, depending upon the military's application. Here are a sampling and what they were called:

  • CADS - Commercial Advanced Disk System - used for office type settings.
  • RADS - Ruggedized Advanced Disk System - used for applications which required something more stout than office purposes.
  • MADS - Militarized Advanced Disk System - very ruggedized. For use on the battleground - on land, sea or air.
  • HADS - Hardened Advanced Disk System - for use in space or equipment which needed to be survivable in the event of an EMP strike.
My point in bringing this up is simple. First, we have known about the hazards of EMP since the 1980's. Actually, long before then. Since we first started testing the atomic bomb. Secondly, we know how to counter this threat. It is not cheap, but we can harden electronic devices so they can withstand different levels of an EMP strike.

In this year 2016, decades after my experience of working at Control Data, we sit unprepared. Virtually defenseless. Most of us know what the ramifications of an EMP strike would be to our country. It would be the end. End of life as we know it. And the fact we have done NOTHING to protect ourselves from this threat, is almost treasonous by our elected officials. There really is no excuse - no excuse what so ever.  

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