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Los Alamos Lab Halts Operations

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zavvy

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<b>Los Alamos Lab Halts Operations</b><br /><br />Los Alamos National Laboratory director Pete Nanos shut down the country's leading nuclear weapons lab on Friday, after a set of classified computer disks disappeared and a student was hit in the eye with a powerful laser beam -- all in the space of a week. <br /><br />"As of today, director Nanos has suspended all operations at the laboratory," an internal e-mail obtained by Wired News read. "This is a very serious step." <br /><br />"This willful flouting of the rules must stop, and I don't care how many people I have to fire to make it stop. If you think the rules are silly, if you think compliance is a joke, please resign now and save me the trouble," Nanos added in a separate e-mail to Los Alamos employees. <br /><br />It's a nearly unprecedented move, lab watchers said. The only other time in recent memory that the entire facility was shut down was in 2000, when the Cerro Grande forest fire tore through Bandelier National Monument, on Los Alamos' border. The suspension couldn't come at a more delicate moment. The lab is under fire for losing track of its classified material three times in the last eight months. One of Los Alamos' chief overseers in Congress, House Energy and Commerce Committee chairman Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas), is due at the lab on Monday for security inspections. <br /><br />After entrusting the University of California to run the lab for more than 60 years, the Energy Department has opened the Los Alamos contract for bidding when it expires next year. The latest incidents won't help UC if it decides to bid. <br /><br />On Thursday, Nanos suspended all classified work at Los Alamos, after officials there lost track of a pair of Zip disks and two external hard drives containing classified information. Nanos ordered a rechecking of all classified inventories throughout the nuclear weapons complex, and a retraining of all personnel on how to handle secrets properly. Kevin Roark, a lab spokesman, said this "
 
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tom_hobbes

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I've read accounts of a number of similar incidents, 'missing' technical data, some of it highly sensitive, over the last year at Los Alamos. I read about the recent theft the other week and wondered about the pattern emerging there. <br /><br />Interesting. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font size="2" color="#339966"> I wish I could remember<br /> But my selective memory<br /> Won't let me</font><font size="2" color="#99cc00"> </font><font size="3" color="#339966"><font size="2">- </font></font><font size="1" color="#339966">Mark Oliver Everett</font></p><p> </p> </div>
 
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a_lost_packet_

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I'm tempted to ask a friend of mine.. but, he wouldn't be able to say anything in regards to it... <img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" /><br /><br /><br />a_lost_packet_ <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1">I put on my robe and wizard hat...</font> </div>
 
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zavvy

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<font color="yellow">I'm tempted to ask a friend of mine..</font><br /><br />Me too... he calls it 'Lost Animals'...
 
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zavvy

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More on the shutdown .... <br /><br /><b>Los Alamos Security Woes Increase</b><br /><br />LINK<br /><br />Los Alamos National Laboratory officials have discovered in recent weeks that secret information at the nuclear weapons facility was repeatedly transmitted over an unclassified e-mail system.<br /><br />Officials at the New Mexico lab confirmed Sunday that the incidents were reported to Energy Department headquarters in Washington and said they were taking measures to improve security and ``prevent significant risks to national security.''<br /><br />The breakdown marks another case of lax internal security at the lab. In a previous case, at least two computer disks that contained sensitive weapons information were discovered missing July 7 from the facility, which is run by the University of California.<br /><br />Top Energy Department officials arrived at the lab Sunday to begin an investigation of the problems, which prompted a shutdown Friday of all lab activities. Among other items, the officials are planning to examine a report that 19 electronic storage devices with classified data also are missing, according to a lab memo dated Thursday.<br /><br />Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham asserted last week that lab employees are engaged in ``widespread disregard of security procedures.''<br /><br />The latest security crisis comes after more than a decade of turmoil at the lab and general management failures that have also included financial fraud, violations of nuclear safety and the illegal firing of employees who blew the whistle on potential problems.<br /><br />The improper use of e-mail ``goes to the heart of why we are suspending activities here,'' said James Fallin, director of public affairs at the lab. ``It is a lack of attention to detail. It is exactly why lab director'' Pete Nanos ``has said we are going to stop everything.''<br /><br />Fallin said he could not discuss specific
 
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rogers_buck

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Gee, I'm surprized they just don't outsource the whole thing. Get a much better price if they let China or India run things. That's globalization.<br />
 
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