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The head-scratching raises a more fundamental question: What will the U.S. and others do when the next civil war poses even more daunting WMD perils, namely nuclear weapons and reactors?A nation wracked by decade-long civil strife that has taken the lives of more than 50,000 people and included sophisticated attacks on heavily guarded military installations, Pakistan possesses more than 100 nuclear weapons and materials for many more as well as a large production complex that includes reactors terrorists could sabotage to release radioactive contents.In February 2012, the Pentagon estimated it would take some 75,000 ground troops to find and lock down Syria's arsenal.The Syrian government evidently was unimpressed, first moving and then using chemical weapons possibly as early as December 2012 .The administration failed to make a convincing case that a limited military strike would eliminate the chemical arsenal and apprehension emerged that such an attack would be the first step to sucking the U.S. into yet another war.Pakistan and North Korea, of course, are not America's problem alone.Does an Iraq 2003 redux – invasion and occupation – make sense or does it bring another American quagmire?
What can be done to reduce nuclear risks in volatile countries?
A Russian attack on Ukraine may threaten its nuclear reactors
Nuclear disarmament examples provide Iran bleak options
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