The Devastating Impact of an EMP Attack

Learn about Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) attacks and their potential to cause widespread disruption to communications, computers, and other essential electronic equipment. Understand how to protect yourself from radiation contamination.

The Devastating Impact of an EMP Attack

Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) attacks have the potential to cause massive disruption to communications, computers, and other essential electronic equipment. This could include major hospital equipment, gas stations, and other electrical components of a region's critical infrastructure. An EMP event itself won't directly injure or kill people, but its side effects can be devastating. Think of the implications for critical surgeries or emergency room patients who rely on functioning electronic systems, or vehicles travelling at high speed that suddenly lose power.

The third component of an EMP field is the late EMP, also known as magnetohydrodynamic EMP (MHD) or E3. This is caused by the distortion of the Earth's magnetic field lines due to the expansion of the nuclear fireball and the rise of the hot, ionized layers of the ionosphere. In an EMP war, the advantage lies with the first to attack, as it has a paralyzing effect on the target country's vital systems with limited second-strike capacity. Iran has already conducted EMP attacks launched from ships carrying Scud missiles, which are in possession of many countries and even terrorist groups.

What's more alarming is that most local and national government agencies in the United States are not prepared for an EMP attack.

The government has failed to protect the power grid and other critical infrastructure from this existential threat. However, they are aware of its potential harm, as evidenced by a congressional report on its devastating effects. Any missile, including short-range missiles that can launch a nuclear warhead at an altitude of 30 kilometers or more, can launch a catastrophic electromagnetic attack against the United States.

An EMP attack launched from a ship - since Scuds are common and a warhead detonated in outer space would not leave any remnants of bombs for forensic analysis - could allow rebel or terrorist states to destroy U. S. infrastructure without leaving any trace. Since EMP attacks can cause nuclear detonations in the atmosphere, it is important to protect yourself from radiation contamination. Without external electricity, nuclear reactors would rely on on-site systems to prevent a meltdown, which could also be compromised in the event of an EMP attack.

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