Some educated questions on that huge explosion in Beirut.
From Paul Lehto:
Though I am no munitions expert, I used to operate a gas plant and so am trained with regard to fuel explosions. The initial blast is orange, indicating a temperature cooler than nuclear fission. The white gray clouds are with the advancing pressure wave. There appears to have been a fire in progress before detonation.
The tell for a chemical munition is not visible in this video but occurs when you can see the colors when the plume slows down. Munitions experts would have to comment on that.
Possibly this could be a fuel-air bomb or “poor man’s nuke” ignited by an initial chemical explosion but that requires a means of creating a relatively ideal cloud of fossil fuel vapor somehow, either intentionally or by a relatively freak occurrence. Such an explosion creates an especially massive pressure wave like the one we see here that damaged buildings up to ten miles away and was felt up to a hundred miles away (it was a 3.3 earthquake equivalent).
Other videos would provide more information. Reports suggest there was a large cache of ammonium nitrate there. If that is true, it is a real head scratcher what that was doing in a port storage facility in a big city.
Were there secondary explosions? What did the plume look like ten seconds after detonation? Did anyone observe fuel somehow sprayed into the air? At this point there are lots of unanswered questions but it doesn’t seem nuclear and I imagine somebody has Geiger counters there. If it was just ammonium nitrate there is no reason to believe people in Beirut are any less aware of its danger than those of us living in areas less afflicted by war. So, this is a bit of a mystery right now.