Editor's note: Today and tomorrow, we're sharing a brand-new essay from Crisis Investing editor Nick Giambruno. It's a mysterious story that almost no one knows about…and it involves the world's most hated and distressed resource market.
As you'll see, it's the ultimate crisis investment right now…
By Nick Giambruno, editor, Crisis Investing
This is not fiction…
It’s not a conspiracy theory…
It’s a plausible explanation for a mysterious event that actually happened.
On the evening of May 28, 1993, an enormous blast rocked the Australian Outback. It measured 3.9 on the Richter scale and sent shock waves out hundreds of miles. Truck drivers and gold prospectors in the area saw the dark sky light up with a bright flash.
I only heard about the incident a few months ago, when Doug Casey and I met a shadowy figure with deep connections to the US government in a café in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. He and his colleagues within the US military and intelligence community are 100% convinced that this strange event was actually Aum Shinrikyo—a Japanese doomsday cult—testing a nuclear weapon.
If he was right, then it was the first time a non-state actor had ever detonated a nuclear bomb.
It was such an extraordinary claim that, at first, I didn’t even think it possible. No one I knew had ever heard of it. And I’d never seen it in the news, though I later discovered that outlets like The New York Times did cover it decades ago—buried somewhere in the back pages.
Aum Shinrikyo, which means Supreme Truth, is a religious movement that started in Japan in 1984. They believe in a doomsday prophecy where World War 3 ushers in a nuclear Armageddon. Of course, only their group survives, and they go on to rule the world.
Aum gained global notoriety in 1995 when it attacked the Tokyo subway system with sarin gas, a deadly nerve agent. The attack, which was meant to spark a Japanese civil war, killed 12 people and injured thousands. It was the first chemical weapons attack by a non-state actor.
The Tokyo subway attack surprised Japan and other world governments, and they rushed to learn more about the group.
It turns out Aum was not just a small group of vulnerable people with strange views. The cult had ballooned to over 50,000 converts in at least six countries and acquired over $1 billion in assets.
The US government learned that the cult had recruited at least two Russian nuclear scientists and tried to buy a Russian nuclear warhead.
As investigators unraveled Aum’s international web, they found it had purchased a 500,000-acre ranch at Banjawarn Station, about 400 miles northeast of Perth in remote Western Australia.
They discovered Aum had set up an advanced laboratory there, where it manufactured sarin gas and tested chemical weapons on sheep. There were known uranium deposits in the area, and Aum was mining them. (Uranium is a main ingredient for making atomic weapons.)
But what disturbed and puzzled them the most was that Aum’s ranch was in the exact same area as the mysterious 1993 explosion.
Investigators calculated that the explosion had the force of 2,000 tons of high explosives, or that of a small nuclear device. For perspective, the atomic bomb that destroyed Hiroshima had the force of around 15,000 tons of high explosives.
The bizarre blast happened two years before the Tokyo subway attack. At the time, Aum wasn’t really on anyone’s radar. Most people simply wrote it off as a strange explosion in the middle of nowhere. No one really thought much of it, until they connected the dots years later…
Investigators feared that Aum had somehow acquired and tested a massive weapon—possibly the ultimate weapon. After all, they’d successfully recruited at least two Russian nuclear scientists to their cult. And they’d tried to buy nuclear weapons.
Investigators hoped they could rule out Aum by proving the blast was something else—an earthquake, a mining explosion, or possibly a meteor.
Instead, they found themselves ruling out all the possibilities they had hoped to prove.
It’s highly unlikely the blast was a mining explosion. The detonation was over 170 times more powerful than the biggest mining explosion ever recorded in Australia up until then.
The blast was consistent with a meteor strike… except for one key element: With an explosion of that force, they’d expect to find an enormous crater with a diameter of at least three football fields. They never found a crater.
Earthquakes are rare in the region. And it wouldn’t explain the loud noise or bright flash on a pitch-black night in the Australian Outback.
Some insiders are certain Aum detonated a nuclear device of some sort. However, the investigators still haven’t decisively proven what happened. The cause of the gigantic blast remains a mystery.
I’m sharing this story, first, because it’s interesting and almost no one knows about it. And second, because it hits on uranium… the world’s most hated and most distressed resource market.
And right now, as I'll explain in tomorrow's essay, it’s handing us a historic opportunity.
Editor's note: Doug and Nick are closely watching an upcoming crisis opportunity that's about to come to a head in the next few weeks…on December 4, to be exact. The crisis threatens to be more than five times BIGGER than Brexit, and—if you play it right—it promises to be the biggest profit opportunity of your lifetime.
Stay tuned… We'll be sharing more details on this opportunity next week in the Dispatch.