Since the Sept. 11 attacks, the multi-billion dollar maritime industry has introduced a raft of security measures, including the Container Security Initiative (CSI).
U.S. fears remain, however, with some 35 million containers estimated to be in use globally.
"What they are worried about is that there is a nuclear device somewhere out there that someone is going to smuggle in (thriller writer) Tom Clancy-style and set it off in Baltimore or New York," said Donald.
"It is a concern that they have got to address and it is very much driving the CSI agenda," he said.
John Pike, director of U.S.-based GlobalSecurity.Org, said the discovery hinted at the scale of the illicit movement of arms via containers.
"One of the challenges in all of this has been to try to figure out whether it (the problem) is bigger than a bread box -- and how much of an effort needs to be put on it and what it needs to focus on.
"There is just no way that you are going to physically inspect every container. And so if you're not going to open up and rummage around every container, what are you going to do?"
He said the answer may be to narrow down and inspect containers from specific world regions.
Reuters, which also recently noticed that it may be possible for terrorists to do some damage to a major choke point, as I noted here, seems to be awakening to the Global War on Terrorism, albeit a little later than the rest of us.
You might find this older post of some interest in thinking about ways in which the smuggling of arms might be carried out.