Turning Off the U.S. Power Grid- The Next 9/11?
The Jihadist attacks of September 11, 2001 demonstrated the wretched weakness of U.S. airport security and how a means of civilian transportation could easily be turned into weapon of mass destruction. Now comes news that a very small piece of our power grid was physically attacked last April in California. Was this a trial run for an attack on the entire power grid, Jihadist or otherwise? Look at what happens when portions of the United States lose power due to a hurricane or snowstorm. Recall the accidental power outage on August 14, 2003 when 50 million people across the Northeast lost power due to a fallen tree branch. Must we suffer the impact of a massive power outage after our grid is attacked or will we fortify the grid now? –Grizzly Joe
Last April, a nighttime attack destroyed a power substation in San Jose, Calif., the center of Silicon Valley. The attackers had a good understanding of the facility and how to destroy it. News of the incident was suppressed, with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. blaming vandalism. The damage took a month to repair.
Jon Wellinghoff, who was head of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission when the incident occurred, says this could be a trial run for attacks to bring down large parts of the electrical grid.
Former CIA director Jim Woolsey told the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco in October that three or four men operating in a “disciplined military fashion” were responsible for the attack. “This wasn’t hooliganism,” he said. “This was a systematic attempt to take down the electric grid.”
The power grid is especially vulnerable because many substations are in rural areas, protected only by chain-link fences.
The security of the electrical grid is too important to be left to chain-link fencing. Block quote excerpted from L. Gordon Crovitz “The Power Grid: Our Achilles’ Heel” Wall Street Journal 2/10/14