Clinton lost nuclear-strike codes card
Published 22/10/2010 | 05:00
It is a mistake any busy person could make. Change a jacket or trousers, lose a credit card and even fail to notice it is missing.
Only in the case of Bill Clinton, the small plastic rectangular card contained the codes needed to launch a nuclear weapon.
According to a new book by Gen Hugh Shelton, a former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, the former US president lost the card, refered to as "biscuit" for several months in 2000.
The retired general said: "The codes were actually missing for months. That's a big deal, a gargantuan deal."
The blunder was described in Gen Shelton's autobiography 'Without Hesitation: The Odyssey of an American Warrior.'
The "biscuit" card -- so named apparently because of its shape and golden hue - is supposed to be kept close at hand at all times.
The codes are used to identify the president to military commanders in the event of the US launching a nuclear attack. (© Daily Telegraph, London)