Are animals ever shipped in shipping containers?
Clinton was criticizing Bush last night for not taxing the “super-rich” $5k per year for security systems that would scan incoming cargo containers for contraband and terrorists. Lots of attention has been paid to the concept of terrorists sneaking in through these scantily-inspected containers.
Okay, if al Q. has a suitcase nuclear bomb or anthrax disperser or something that could be loaded into a container, that’s a problem.
But if the concern is little terrorist buggers smuggling themselves along with their payload (and there seems to be some precedent for this being feasible), wouldn’t a cheap and easy way to prevent against this just be to irradiate the containers with lethal doses of X-rays? Sure, the guy might figure out that he was dying (if it took long enough) and trigger his doomsday device, but the same is eminently true of any inspection protocol predicated on detecting and then extracting him alive. I suspect that the detection part of the equation is mostly likely to be expensive, and can’t be omitted as we need to detect non-living payloads too, but how large a dose of radiation would it take to pretty quickly kill a person hiding in a container, and would such a dose have ill effects on container and its inert contents?