By Kitengela Biznet Team

Kaboom! The landscape of the port city of Beirut is completely changed following a massive bomb detonation in the evening of Tuesday 04 August 2020. Over 100 score of people are confirmed dead and thousands injured are still streaming in to the various hospitals and medical centres. Over 300,000 have been left homeless.

The City of Beirut destroyed by recent explotion. Photo Courtesy

It also emerged that 85 per cent of grain stocks in Lebanon, which relies heavily on food imports, were destroyed.

A government statement released has admitted that  large cache of explosive material specifically- more than 2,700 tons of Ammonium Nitrate -seized by the government about 6 years back and had been stored in a warehouse accidentally detonated hence the mayhem.

What does a bomb look like?

It looks like anything. We have had bombs that are as tiny as buttons, we have bomb made like pens, we have military standard bombs, we have bombs made for mining, we have suicide bombers who have had bombs lined up in their belts or even in their inner wear and we too have huge bombs used in the maritime environment. The way a bomb looks is limited to the imagination of the bomb maker.

How would you scientifically describe a bomb?

A bomb is an explosive weapon that uses the exothermic reaction of an explosive material to provide an extremely sudden and violent release of energy. Detonations inflict damage principally through ground- and atmosphere-transmitted mechanical stress, the impact and penetration of pressure-driven projectiles, pressure damage, and explosion-generated effects. Bombs have been utilized since the 11th century starting in East Asia.

How then do Bombs work?

Basically you convert a little matter into a lot of energy (the ratio being e=mc2), and that energy blows everything nearby to smithereens. The energy is witnessed through explosion and expenditure of energy.

What then is explosion?

An explosion is also defined as a large scale, noisy, rapid expansion of matter into a volume much greater than its original volume. An explosion also produces heat and close to a human body causes instant death.

Describe the Bombs witnessed in Kenya

We have had our bad experience with bombs mainly from the Jihadist terrorists. The first major experience was at a bus station in 1975, on 1 Jan 1980 at Norfolk hotel, the famous August 7 Embassy bombings and a series of attacks by the Al Shabaab terrorist group normally referred to as IED.

Firefighters trying to put off fire after the Beirut explosion. Photo Courtesy

What Is IED?

Improvised Explosive Device.  A factory made bomb, carries some signature, or to use the common parlance. Factory settings.  An IED is a non–military, non–commercial, or modified explosive device designed by the builder with available knowledge and materials. IEDs are merely improvised to fit a murderous situation. In the Somalia theatre, IEDs used by Al Shabaab have mainly been planted on earth roads targeting vehicular borne security forces.

But Ammonium nitrate is easily found in most pharmaceutical shops?

While, Ammonium nitrate could be a primary chemical ingredient in bombs, it is also an important element of our daily lives but being deadly, it explains why its sale and movement is strictly controlled.

What does it take to make a bomb?

If you have to ask this question, you certainly do not have the knowledge or expertise to make and handle bombs at all. They have a really bad habit of dealing with amateurs by going BANG at a most inopportune time (like when you are present) and removing various body parts from your torso. While this may, or may not inconvenience you, personally, (depending on whether you are dead or alive afterwards) someone will have the most unpleasant task of recovering said body parts and cleaning up the fluids which flow out of dismembered bodies. I would most strongly advise on a new career path since making bombs is one path leading to problems-if not physical, then legal.

On the Beirut bombing, there are several conspiracy theories being floated. What would be your bet?

Carelessness! It is inconceivable that almost three tons of such deadly chemicals could have been stored in close proximity to the general populace.

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