Rest of discussions on this thread until July 21, before server went offline.
Posted by shiv (Member # 367) on 05 July 2003, 09:29 AM:
N Korean defector's nuclear claim
The most high-profile defector from North Korea has said he was told in 1996 that the secretive state had already developed nuclear weapons. Hwang Yang-jop, a former tutor to North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, also said that Pyongyang signed a contract with Pakistan the same year to receive help in enriching uranium for its nuclear arsenal.
Mr Hwang's comments will add credence to United States intelligence reports that the North had developed a small number of nuclear weapons before it agreed to mothball its programme in 1994.
The collapse of that agreement last year triggered mounting concern about the North's nuclear ambitions, and speculation as to whether it would be able to increase its arsenal.
Mr Hwang was making his first public comments since he defected to South Korea in 1997. "I heard from Kim Jong-il and others including Jun Byong-ho that nuclear weapons had been produced," Mr Hwang told a parliamentary forum in Seoul.
Mr Hwang said Jun Byong-ho was a secretary of the central committee of the ruling Korean Workers Party in charge of Pyongyang's nuclear weapons development. Mr Hwang said that that the North Korean regime - which he described as "a ring of crime opposing democracy and infringing on human rights" - must be disarmed.
However, Mr Hwang noted that a conventional military assault on North Korea would be "almost impossible". "The North has piled up on weapons of mass destruction and turned the whole country into a fortress," he said.
Mr Hwang's naming of Pakistan is likely to be embarrassing to that country's government.
However, the US indicated earlier this year that it was no longer worried by reports that North Korea and Pakistan had collaborated on nuclear weapons technology.
US Secretary of State Colin Powell said in April that Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf had assured him there were no further contacts of the kind referred to in a newspaper report which said Islamabad provided Pyongyang with gas centrifuges and equipment to make highly-enriched uranium.
Story from BBC NEWS: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/asia-pacific/3044070.stm
Published: 2003/07/04 10:54:31 GMT
© BBC MMIII
Posted by Sriman (Member # 189) on 05 July 2003, 08:49 PM:
The following is primarily NK related, but this thread looks like a good place to post:
US plans on disrupting NK-Pak trade
The most hawkish of the North Korea hawks nest, ironically, at the State Department, where Undersecretary of State John Bolton presides over a miniature Pentagon on the seventh floor. Bolton, whose hawkish foreign policy views routinely put him at odds with his State colleagues, has never had much use for the blandishments America's diplomatic corps favors in its dealings with North Korea. In response to the latest round of provocations from Pyongyang, which included an announcement that it possesses a nuclear weapon, Bolton--along with Condoleezza Rice, National Security Council counterproliferation point man Robert Joseph, Donald Rumsfeld, and **** Cheney--has devised a new policy toward the Stalinist state. The Bolton strategy, as Koreawatchers have dubbed it, calls for the selective interdiction of ships from the North carrying drugs, missiles, and weapons technology. These illicit exports, bound for the likes of Yemen and Pakistan, net Pyongyang roughly $1 billion per year, almost twice the amount of its legitimate exports. Administration officials claim the strategy's goals are fairly straightforward: "strangulation" followed by "regime change." Hence, its supporters see no pressing need for negotiations with the North. As Paul Wolfowitz explained during the Bush presidential campaign, it was "totally implausible" that North Korea, "a regime that cares about very little except its military capabilities, would voluntarily give up the ultimate weapon" in exchange for promises of U.S. assistance. Indeed, Pentagon officials lobbied hard against the last round of U.S.-North Korea talks held in April in Beijing. And, when that failed, Rumsfeld recommended that Bolton represent the United States in place of Colin Powell's candidate, Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly.
Aware that the interdiction policy requires the cooperation of Japan, South Korea, Australia, and China, the Bush team's unilateralists were unusually busy during the last few weeks trying to forge a multilateral consensus on interdiction a campaign that has already yielded a more unified negotiating stance toward the North. At a summit in Madrid two weeks ago, the administration secured the rhetorical backing of ten nations for its Proliferation Security Initiative, the broader policy of clamping down on weapon and drug exports from rogue states. In meetings in Japan, Cambodia, and Hawaii during the past two weeks, representatives from Tokyo, Canberra, and Seoul all pledged to help Washington implement the strategy, and the South Korean government explicitly announced that pressure on the North would help compel Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear program. Japan quickly made good on its promise by detaining two North Korean ships and threatening to board a third, something Australia has done as well. As for China, it likely will never match the pledges made by South Korea, Australia, and Japan.
Even if China refuses to squeeze its Stalinist neighbor and even if the skeptics who claim the interdiction effort will not detect every weapons shipment turn out to be correct, the strategy still makes sense as a negotiating tool. To begin with, halting 80 percent or even 50 percent of North Korea's deadly exports would be an improvement over the current status quo--halting none at all. It will also probably have an effect on the buying end, prompting countries such as Yemen or Pakistan to think twice about purchasing North Korean weapons that they may never receive. More broadly, the policy shows Pyongyang that crime doesn't pay. "What this strategy does," says Victor Cha, a North Korea scholar at Georgetown University, "is to show the North Koreans that nuclear weapons will diminish rather than enhance their security, to the point of them having even fewer resources than they already have."
Washington--fearing a repeat of the incident last December when Spanish forces seized a missile-laden North Korean ship on the high seas, only to let it go in the absence of an international convention permitting them to detain it--has urged its allies to invoke their own national laws when halting future shipments.
Posted by Rangudu (Member # 3972) on 08 July 2003, 12:33 PM:
The following is a policy paper at the James Baker Institute for Public Policy, Rice University, Houston.
Weapons of Mass Destruction and the Middle East: The View from Israel
In the early ’90s, Pakistan concluded a deal with North Korea for the exchange of missile and nuclear technology. Islamabad obtained from North Korea parts of missiles that, among other things, would help produce its Ghauri ground-to-ground missile, capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and identical to attributes of the North Korean No Dong and the Iranian missiles developed subsequently, the Shihab-3. In return, Pakistan passed on know-how and technology for the construction of the uranium-enriching centrifuge. Years later, North Korea passed on this information to Iran and probably to other countries in the Middle East. North Korea and Iran traded in technology for the production of nuclear weapons, which had originally come from Pakistan.
Posted by Arun A (Member # 3120) on 09 July 2003, 12:33 PM:
while dubya is busy linking saddam to 9/11, the commie half of korea has nukes..thanks to TSP..
Added later: This report and the one above it say TSP supplied Uranium enriching centrifuges to NK. IIRC, Tim Hoyt said there is no way TSP could have help NK because the NK program was pu and TSP's was uranium based.
Aide agrees: North testing mini-bomb
The director of the National Intelligence Service, Ko Young-koo, told a National Assembly committee yesterday that the intelligence community believes North Korea has reprocessed “a small number” of the 8,000 spent plutonium fuel rods at its nuclear facility at Yeongbyeon.
Mr. Ko did not say what led to that assessment. He was speaking at a closed-door hearing of the Assembly’s Intelligence Committee. He said the reprocessing was probably done on April 30 and May 1. “It appears to have been done as a threat in connection with the negotiations on its nuclear programs,” sources at the meeting quoted him as saying.
North Korea also imported equipment needed to assemble about 1,000 centrifuges from Pakistan beginning in 1999, the officials said. They are used to enrich raw uranium to produce weapons-grade material.
Posted by rvaidya (Member # 5101) on 09 July 2003, 02:55 PM:
THIS MAY BE AN INTERESTING ITEM IN THE CONTEXT OF DISCUSSION ON TSP ASSETS TAKEN AWAY http://www.nation.com.pk/daily/July-2003/2/EDITOR/edi3.asp
IT has been reported that for the last six months Kahuta Research Laboratories have reduced the level of uranium enrichment to 20 percent, which is far below the minimum 90 percent level required for nuclear weapons. According to experts this is the base level needed to keep the laboratory functional, and does not contribute to production of weapons-grade fissile material. If true, it is logical to assume that the process of freezing Pakistan’s nuclear programme was put into effect six months ago and though previous production will allow manufacture to go on for a while, the wheels will eventually grind to a halt.The report raises a number of questions. Since Pakistan has always maintained that its nuclear programme is of a minimum deterrent nature, does this development indicate we have achieved that level? There is also the apprehension that if this has been done under pressure and as a precursor to the Washington visit, where does that leave us vis-à-vis New Delhi?There are no indications that India has adopted similar restraints to maintain a regional nuclear balance.
Such reports are likely to raise curiosity about the discussions on our nuclear programme during the President’s Washington visit. It was given out that these were specific to allegations about Pakistan’s assistance to the North Korean nuclear issue and that Pakistan’s own programme was not on the agenda. However this reported freeze on uranium enrichment is likely to give a new spin to events. It would be difficult to ignore that just weeks before the Washington visit, Senator Shaukat Aziz visited Kahuta, an unusual honour denied even to PMs in the past. And then he was the only cabinet member to accompany the President Musharraf to the US.
Islamabad cannot afford to ignore these apprehensions. As recently as four weeks ago Defence Minister Rao Sikander Iqbal said Pakistan will never curtail or compromise its nuclear programme. Now we find the enrichment freeze put into effect five months earlier. Islamabad needs to be transparent on the new policy , if there is one. Such important decisions cannot be kept under the blanket of official secrecy because public curiosity is likely to be fed by the rumour industry, which could prove highly destabilising politically.
Posted by rvaidya (Member # 5101) on 09 July 2003, 02:59 PM:
Further on TSP " assets"
Finance minister --American citizen--gets to see the inside of TSP Nuclear facility--not allowed even to earlier PMs. http://www.satribune.com/archives/jun15_21_03/opinion_drzafar.htm
Dr Zafar Altaf
LAST WEEK, indifferent, exhausted and tired Pakistanis had to digest two terrible news that are likely to negatively impact the Pakistani society for different reasons in the coming days.
The first startling news was revealed in the Senate that Shaukat Aziz had visited the nuclear stockpiles where even former Director General of ISI, General Hameed Gul was not allowed to enter what to speak of civilians prime ministers Benazir Bhutto or Nawaz Sharif or the Presidents.
The second bad news which in my view is more problematic was the resignation of Amir Mir -- Editor of “Weekly Independent” of Lahore -- a valiant and bold editor in the recent history of journalism in Pakistan. He was being hounded by the government agencies and cronies for exposing them.
Amir was a rare breed of editors in Pakistan and within a period of merely three years, this young man shattered the military regime with hard hitting reports, uncompromising editorials, punching cartoons, and bold stuff which otherwise no newspaper or weekly could afford to use. He was the single editor in Pakistan who never forgot to use South Asia Tribune stuff otherwise officially banned by the military government. Today, Amir is jobless and many would be taunting him why did he choose that course of defiance.
The Finance Minster came in for flak at the National Assembly for his visits to the nuclear sites. The former finance minister of Nawaz Sharif, Ishaq Dar launched a massive attack on Shaukat Aziz who did not deny his visit but gave no reason for doing so. It is therefore widely believed that the visit had other sensitive parameters. Aziz was made the finance minister when Musharraf came to power. He was till then working for an American bank the First National City Bank (FNCB). His credentials as a banker are under question.
It is the unusual nature of the visit to a super sensitive site which arouses suspicions as it is known that he would be visiting the United States soon. If this be the case was he looking at facilities to tell his mentors what it is all about?
It is a litany of love-hate relationship. Every time Pakistan is to do something for the powers that be it is allowed to do as it pleases. The United States turns a blind eye. Is there a nexus between what has happened in Pakistan and the people that were placed here? How are attitudes softened? Through human beings placed in positions of strength. In its home elections the people of the United States do not brook any nonsense and rightly so. As a leader in democratic thought process it has duty towards other nations. Has it done its duty by itself and can it stand proudly today to say that as the leading democracy we have done well by others as well as by ourselves.
The fact remains that evidence is coming through that the arms race between India and Pakistan has been perpetuated by the United States [consider the payment for Nuclear reactor from US in 1960 worth 350,000 dollars, between 1972 and 1978 secretly 6 billion dollars were handed over to the country, Saudi Arabia was asked to send billions more. In 1981 3.2 billion dollar program again came Pakistan’s way, Reagan and Clinton administration played the same game. India received deals from the British and the United States in the same manner. The details can become cumbersome but the fact remains the developed countries imperial efforts bear fruit when two countries are embroiled in a fight no one can win. There are other costs that have to be looked into.
Normally a finance minister is invited by an organization to demonstrate what is being done is worthwhile and that more funds are required. That argument is not valid because the nuclear program was never short funded. It always had enough resources to meet its logical and illogical requirements. The real arguments are different. Dar has been an outstanding example in the budget previews and has done extensive work before going on to these debates [Incidentally Dar was responsible along with Shahbaz Sharif for my transfer from Ministry of Food and Agriculture where I was working as Federal Secretary). So please do not blame me for being politically savvy with one or the other parties.
Credit is due to Dar and Sartaj Aziz, both Finance Ministers with Nawaz Sharif. Both have done their homework and both are as articulate as you can get. Sartaj has an added advantage of having served the FAO in the capacity of Senior Vice-President. So he has a bit of planning division in him, a lot of international experience and a great amount of gray matter.
So if they get after any one we must admire their scholarship and their ability at analysis and examination. They questioned the macro figures but the current attack on Shaukat Aziz is in a totally different field. The nuclear program is going to be discussed during the US visit as has been indicated by Dar and the visit has not been not denied by Shaukat. He, Shaukat, is not of Pakistan vintage and has an ambiguity when it comes to determining what is good or bad for the country. His dimensions at omissions in the budget are phenomenal. But that would come in another article later on.
His visits to the world arena are now proverbial but he has no idea of the places in Pakistan and frequently he keeps asking where this place is? The same was true of the other World Bank sages who have come to Pakistan. The latest one to try and curry favor is Shahid Javed Burki. His reasons are reasonable and only he can tell how illegitimates can become legitimates?
Does this mean that Shaukat will sell Pakistan short? No indication I assure you. He might bargain and get a better deal for Pakistan. But the winner is the National Assembly where it has been demonstrated time and again the openness with which matters are addressed. This is excellent for the purpose of setting up a dialogue and the surreptitious activities of the government could be kept in check. All modern governments [we are primitive] allow this debate to continue in the national assemblies and resolve issues in a civil manner. In the current governance culture consensus is arrived at through a process of managed democracy. The argument goes when political systems are managed why not the economic systems.
There are a number of such dissonances in the current governance of the country. The fact is that there are not very many who would be able to take on the complexities that are there. Governance is not a one to one act and especially in the field of nuclear technology. The attitudes and the development has to move pace with the technology and the more dangerous and the more hazardous the more transcendental the attitudes. Imagine what the Japanese requested of Pakistan but NS was adamant. Had we played the psychological game well Pakistan would not be a pariah country and may be, just may be, well on the way to becoming a nation.
I tried to figure out the cost of our nuclear program. Despite concentrated efforts the cost figures are not available. So I went through the other countries and I found that Iraq had spent about 89 billion dollars. Now that is a hefty sum and could have done so much for the country and its economic well being. The fact that it was used for saber rattling has led to what it is at the moment. Evidence coming out of the interviews suggests that the Kargil episode had much more to it than was indicated to the decision makers of the time.
It was also apparent that when NS was going to Kargil to try and see for himself some of the Khakis were trying to promote people to civil jobs. My guesstimate is that about 100 billion dollars came from elsewhere courtesy Mr. ZA Bhutto. He was a great proponent of this and wanted to see the Pakistanis match India in technology on the war front. Had this 100 billion been better used what could have happened to our debt and what could have happened to our poverty program? Would we have to beg, borrow, and steal?
These are now hypothetical questions. The question now is having got the weapon is it a liability round our neck or are we Pakistanis still comfortable with the fact that we have matched our arch enemy? If things have changed vis a vis India someone should tell me and I shall stand corrected.
Recently sycophants were saying Kargil changed all this. How? What is the basis for airing this opinion except to curry favor with its author? I have some questions to ask of the Director Operations of the time. But he is not available because he is busy in correcting the affairs of Pakistan cricket since 1999. As a loose canon in the hands of the nearest to the homo sapiens Pakistani decision makers have to take their discussion to the level to which it should normally belong.
Money wisely spent in the service of the people of Pakistan is money well spent. But then bankers have never learnt to spend money they have only learnt how to collect and collectors they all are. Does it mean that Shaukat Aziz will barter Pakistan away? No and yes. He has the chance of a lifetime to steer the rudder to safer waters and make a clean breast of it.
In the near future if some one thinks that they can get something by force they are mistaken. In fact strong institutional changes are needed not only in the civil service but in all the segments of this society. There are no holy cows any more. Those days are over and the sooner we realize that we are in the realm of reason and reason that is applied compassionately the better it will be for the country and its people. But the reason part is the more difficult. One can build the Atom Bomb but the reason configuration is rather difficult.
My own brilliant class mates are the ones involved. There brilliance has taken them to destructive powers. The others who had chosen the productive path have relatively little to offer this country except a better civil society.
We come back to the main actor in this drama. The central figure seems to be Shaukat Aziz and we know that the Americans can be very patient and the targets that are set by them need some one to project. They had that opportunity and they seized it. The Finance Minister came from elsewhere, the State Bank Governor came from other sources. A case can be made out of how this team has played havoc with the country and its thinking. The order seems to be that the more the educated the worse the decisions and the implementation. The articulate can make any thing stick. Since all this is in the future one can strut around and then at the end of the day say bad luck.
The breaks never came my way. They had been telling the CEO General Pervez Musharraf that poverty was on the decline. They tell me the parameters and I bet you that the evidence available will convict these major players for not only their deeds but also their lopsided thinking.
The question remains to be answered. Why did Shaukat Aziz visit the nuclear site? The answers are all ambiguous for they have been interpreted differently. Can Pakistan change its foreign policy and hence its defense policy? Can Pakistan use this destructive aspect and change it to a productive base. Can all Pakistanis be nationalized on a decent and ease of option basis or should people be crushed?
What crimes have been committed by the people living in the border to suffer the consequences of the effects of those living in comfort in Islamabad?
The options are clear. Either we maintain a nuclear program under the aegis of the world body or we roll it back or we give it up and concentrate on the well being of the people of this country. There is no other way out.
My choice would be to work this amount on the well being of the people. There is much to do. The debt could be retired, the economic wealth of the nation could be increased, and funds wasted by bloated chesty and unchaste people could be saved for better use. The opportunity cost of this money is dear. We could have been proud of ourselves and found a place in the comity of nations. It can still be done. It’s a long haul and cannot be done by the present economic team which believes in talking and not performing, which lies in your face and does not place facts as they are. Can they walk their talk? Let them try and play with a straight bat rather than a crooked hockey stick.
PS: Amir Mir is a fresh towering role model in our otherwise morally, financially and ethically corrupt society. My hats off to this young and defiant editor of our times
Posted by John Umrao (Member # 3015) on 09 July 2003, 03:21 PM:
Every life we has some trouble
When you worry you make it double
Don't worry, be happy ho…
(Don't worry, be happy yeah)
Uh uh uh uh don't worry be happy….(4x)
One more term and N Korea
will vanish from the globe
(Don't worry, be happy yeah)
Uh uh uh uh don't worry be happy….(4x)
Posted by Viren (Member # 4031) on 10 July 2003, 09:03 AM:
Statement of Magnus Ranstorp to the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States
As the world scrambled to pre-empt another 'mega-terrorist' attack with an unprecedented coalition waging a global war on terrorism and as the U.S. unleashed its military against the Taliban regime and al-Qaeda camps within Afghanistan, CNN's investigative team in Kabul located a manual entitled 'Super bomb' - a manual that contained the words 'nuclear fission, isotopes and heating temperatures for uranium-235 and 238.' This 'Super bomb' was not a manual for a workable nuclear fissionable device, though al-Qaeda had received extensive scientific assistance from Pakistani nuclear physicists according to intelligence sources. Instead the manual contained al-Qaeda's blueprint for the detonation of a radiological device - a so-called 'dirty bomb.'
Posted by John Umrao (Member # 3015) on 10 July 2003, 03:35 PM:
Musharraf hoodwinked US: Expert
PTI[ THURSDAY, JULY 10, 2003 03:19:40 PM ]
NEW DELHI: Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has "blatantly lied" to the United States about the supply of Pakistani nuclear technology to North Korea, a leading South Asia expert has said.
"Musharraf had blatantly lied to (US Secretary of State Colin) Powell that no Pakistani nuclear technology had been supplied to North Korea", renowned American expert Selig S Harrison told 'South Asia Tribune' in an interview.
Harrison, who is the Asia Director at Washington-based Center for International Policy, was also quoted as saying, "British intelligence contacts at the Pakistani High Commission in London last year obtained incriminating documents that Musharraf was fully involved in supplying uranium enrichment technology to Pyongyang".
He told the Pakistani web magazine that the idea of "lionising" Musharraf was wrong as the Pakistani General was "badly isolated at home and was totally dependent on US economic life support for his political survival".
Harrison, a former Bureau Chief of Washington Post in South Asia, expressed concern that "some of the latest Nodong missiles from North Korea may have been purchased by Musharraf through hard cash originally meant for social uplift," the magazine said.
Stating that "duplicity had been a hallmark of Musharraf during his entire military career", he said in the last elections "while vowing (US-led anti-terror) alliance to end terrorism, his (Musharraf's) administration at the same time ensured the victory of fundamentalists in the two provinces of Frontier and Baluchistan".
The wearing of caps of the army chief and the President was "a mockery of democracy", he added in the interview.
"The road to Nucklear disarmament starts in Islamabad travels thru Bejing and ends in Pongyong " Spnster 1999
Posted by Arun A (Member # 3120) on 10 July 2003, 09:09 PM:
ft.com..I think this will be subscription-only in a few days..
Plenty of intelligence but few facts available on North Korea's weapons of mass destruction
When US satellitesdetected a bigunderground construction site at Kumchang-niin North Korea five years ago, reports quickly surfaced that Washington believed the communist state was building a nuclear reprocessing plant.
The US alleged last October that North Korea had supplemented its Yongbyon-based nuclear activities with a second programme, using highly-enriched uranium (HEU). Washington is believed to have reached the conclusion after tracking shipments of nuclear technology from Pakistan to North Korea, although this is denied by Islamabad.
Diplomats say the intelligence about North Korea's HEU programme is much firmer than the US and British evidence of Iraq's alleged imports of uranium from Niger. However, Washington does not know where in North Korea the HEU programme is located, nor how advanced it is.
Posted by jrjrao (Member # 3103) on 14 July 2003, 04:19 AM:
Op-ed in the WSJ today.
July 14, 2003
Nuclear Terrorism Poses The Gravest Threat Today
By GRAHAM ALLISON
What is the gravest threat to the lives and liberties of Europeans and Americans today? Europeans and Americans differ profoundly in their answers to this fundamental question. Recent conversations with 100 security experts at NATO in Brussels and in Berlin, London and Athens underscored for me just how profoundly.
The American security community is unanimous. Democrats as well as Republicans agree with the Bush administration that the gravest threat to civilization as we know it is the marriage of terrorism with weapons of mass destruction. The specter is not just 9/11, but a nuclear 9/11.
Europeans disagree. Many express a mixture of skepticism and bemusement with what they imagine is a peculiar Bush fixation. Even as good a friend of America as Czech President Vaclav Klaus summarized his own view of the matter in what he called "a fundamental question: Was 9/11 an isolated act, or typical of phenomena the world will face in the first half of the 21st century?"
Beneath the headlines, deeper trendlines point to the latter. The relentless diffusion of deadly technologies allows progressively smaller groups to wreak increasingly greater destruction. Globalization has enhanced terrorists' ability to travel, communicate, and transport weapons. America's overwhelming dominance on all conventional battlefields drives rational adversaries to asymmetric responses like WMD terrorism.
In 1993, an al Qaeda-linked terrorist, Ramzi Yousef, tried to collapse the World Trade Center by exploding a truck filled with fertilizer-based explosives. Had that same truck carried an elementary nuclear weapon, the blast would have vaporized not just the World Trade Center, but also the entire New York financial district. Two miles from ground zero, only the shells of buildings would remain.
Imagine an equivalent explosion in Paris at the Eiffel Tower -- a terrorist target, as demonstrated by the 1994 attempt to crash an airliner into it. The result would be absolute devastation out to the Arc de Triomphe, with substantial destruction out to and encompassing the Louvre.
How likely is such an event? No one knows. But if we followed the methodology of Sherlock Holmes in analyzing crime, we would examine "MMO": motive, means and opportunity.
Before 9/11, experts debated motive. Conventional wisdom concluded that terrorists sought not to maximize victims, but rather publicity that could engender sympathy for their cause. Post 9/11, bin Laden's spokesman, Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, announced that al Qaeda had "the right to kill four million Americans, including one million children," in response to casualties perceived to have been inflicted on Muslims.
If motivated, could terrorists acquire the means for a nuclear attack? Because of the vastness of its arsenal and stockpile of highly enriched uranium and plutonium, Russia remains the most probable source of a nuclear weapon or material from which one could be made. Despite a decade of significant improvement, many of these weapons remain vulnerable to theft by a serious organized effort. Pakistan is next on the list, given close historical links between elements in its security services and al Qaeda. Next comes North Korea, the world's most promiscuous proliferator.
Were al Qaeda terrorists to acquire a nuclear device, could they successfully seize an opportunity to bring it to Paris, London, Berlin or Rome? As a colleague of mine has noted, they could always wrap it in a bale of marijuana. Reviewing this evidence, the world's most successful investor, Warren Buffett, has concluded: "It will happen. It's inevitable."
September 11 awakened Americans to existential vulnerability. The Bush administration has led the American security community to one profound conclusion: The status quo is fatally flawed. The U.N.-chartered, rule-based international security order that was accepted pre-9/11 leaves America or Europe vulnerable to a series of nuclear 9/11s. Such conditions are incompatible with our survival as free nations whose fundamental institutions and values are intact.
The assault on the World Trade Center shocked Americans into recognizing that the leading nations were essentially standing by and letting this happen. In an Afghan sanctuary, behind the accepted shield of sovereign immunity, al Qaeda trained thousands of terrorists for attacks like 9/11. The West's perceived helplessness emboldened groups like al Qaeda. In Osama bin Laden's apt metaphor, the West had become the "weak horse" that could be defied with impunity.
What President Bush surely has right is the conviction that the U.S. and other civilized nations can no longer allow the presumption of sovereign immunity to permit developments inconsistent with our common survival. In a process of fits and starts the Bush administration is seeking to invent a new "new" world order. Confronting both Iran and North Korea's aspirations for nuclear arsenals, the administration has been enlisting European Union support to just say no.
What the Bush administration has not yet fashioned is a coherent strategy for combating WMD terrorism. Such a strategy will have to be multi-layered, from detection at borders to denial of weapons and materials; all-azimuth, from space to container cargo on ships; and root-and-branch, addressing motivations as well as means.
For Europeans committed to partnership with the United States, this unprecedented threat presents a grand opportunity. Europeans should not simply enlist in the American-led campaign. Rather, they should marshal their own intelligence and strategic sense to design and create an international order in which such catastrophic threats can be prevented.
Mr. Allison is director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.
URL for this article: http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB105813273777796800,00.html
Posted by Tim (Member # 272) on 14 July 2003, 07:19 AM:
Actually,that's NOT what I said. What I said was that the near-term concern for North Korean nuclear capbilities lies in the issue of reprocessing Pu from existing spent fuel rods - a program that did not have Pakistani involvement. The HEU program, which was based on Pakistani assistance, is at least 3-5 years away from completion.
My point was that North Korea has TWO programs - one apparently capped by the Agreed Framework, which provides the near-term threat, and one begun with Pakistani assistance which bypassed the Agreed Framework and constitutes a longer-term, but still significant, capability.
Posted by John Umrao (Member # 3015) on 14 July 2003, 08:28 AM:
It is dumb to expect N Korea to produce EU to make bomb, they will use the EU to produce Pu.
EU bomb is too heavy, very energy intensive.
As usual the S Asian experts here are trying to shield the TSP from culpability. After all TSP had been certified as a rational nucklear power well ahead of India.
Posted by Amber G. (Member # 4967) on 14 July 2003, 05:09 PM:
From Duke University Media clips an article about Fuel-rod treatment is claimed
Posted by jrjrao (Member # 3103) on 15 July 2003, 05:38 PM:
Dung op-ed edges that much closer to the edge:
The American intelligence believes that infiltrated al-Qaeda fighters are sheltered in Pakistan and aided by military/intelligence agencies....
What's being posed is a nation penetrated by lured Islamic radicals, in precarious possession of nuclear and reportedly proliferating them to other dictatorial countries. For US, the fabricated excuse that Pakistan cannot put a tight lid on its nuclear proliferation activities gives a false incentive to intervene. After all if kegs could disappear from the Russian inventory, who says Pakistan can't misplace a few. In fact... I wonder if US has given thought to the possibility of one sitting in Washington this very moment. Or maybe London or even Delhi for all that we know...
...the fact remains that someone is waiting to change the fate of Pakistan's nuclear. Somebody is sniffing around for an excuse. Somebody else really wants to screech, 'I told you so'. Somebody is misleading someone somewhere for some reason. Someone is about to smirk, 'Guess who!'...And it isn't me, nor is it you...