Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

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Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 26 Dec 2003 10:05

All,

Please post any articles and discussions relating to nuclear proliferation by Pakistan.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 26 Dec 2003 10:11

Pakistan comes under pressure to probe scientists over nuclear secrets

Pakistan is facing calls for a full public investigation into allegations that its scientists may have sold sensitive nuclear secrets to Iran.

The demands came after the government revealed that several scientists had been questioned in response to information from Tehran and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The developments have put Islamabad in a tough position .

Evidence gathered in Iran by the International Atomic Energy Agency strongly suggests Iran's source for critical nuclear technology was Pakistan, or with people with close ties to the nuclear nation.

Miriam Rajkumar, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said: "What's unclear at this point is how much the highest level of the Pakistani government has sanctioned these connections. Certainly there have been questions, not only with Iran, but also with North Korea on the missile technology and the nuclear technology."

"It is hard to dismiss all of this and if indeed this is true, then its important to them to kind of close the gaps in their system, these are very dangerous technologies and it is not in Pakistan's interests to proliferate," she added.

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf has repeatedly told the Bush administration that he is not proliferating nuclear technology.

For now, the White House is taking him at his word and focusing on the present, not the past.

Scott McClellan, White House Spokesman, said: "First of all, when you talk about the past, I mean, that is the past and for a variety of reasons, I'm not in a position to discuss those matters relating to classified information and intelligence matters, such as sources and methods. But let me talk to the present. President Musharraf has assured us there are not any transfers of WMD-related technologies or know-how going on in the present time."

Now, President Musharraf's government is investigating what it terms are rogue Pakistani scientists who may have been motivated by personal ambition and greed.

They may include Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan's nuclear bomb.

As Islamabad questions Pakistan's top nuclear scientists, reports say, merchants in Dubai and elsewhere may be involved.

Analysts say it is entirely possible that the central government in Islamabad did not know about the transfer of nuclear technology. <img src="http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/ubb/icons/icon8.gif" alt="" /> <img src="http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/ubb/icons/icon13.gif" alt="" /> [color=blue size=0.5]Here's we go again, non-prolif Wahhabis shielding TSP again</font>

Robert Einhorn, CSIS, said: "So you can assume these transactions used various brokers, middlemen, false end-users, false destinations and so forth. This is a shadowy world of black market sales and I think this is what happened."

In other words, it was not a straightforward transaction and there were lots of intermediaries, cut-outs and this disguised the ultimate destination.


The IAEA believes that Iran got its initial technology from Pakistan in the late 1980s, long before President Musharraf was in power, but Tehran made its own improvements.

One key piece of evidence was the type of enriched uranium found in Iran.

Enriched uranium is the critical ingredient in nuclear weapons and a centrifuge, a complicated piece of machinery, is required to process uranium.

Robert Einhorn, CSIS, said: "It's become clear in recent years that centrifuge technology, that the diffusion of centrifuge technology is a tremendous proliferation threat. We have to find out which individuals, which firms are brokering these technologies and we have to clamp down and that other countries and even terrorists can't get their hands on this technology and this sensitive equipment."

The White House is trying to put a positive face on the situation, praising Pakistan for keeping to its commitments to secure its nuclear arsenal.

But analysts fear, with so many - from Pakistan to Europe to China - having access to the know-how, much more needs to be done to make sure it does not fall into the wrong hands.CNA

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 27 Dec 2003 00:13

AP Wire Report.

More Nations Drawn Into Iran Nuke Probe

One of those diplomats talking to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity also linked Pakistan to North Korea's weapons program, saying U.S. intelligence had ``pretty convincing'' evidence of such a connection.

<snip>

The White House says Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, an important U.S. ally in the war on terrorism, has assured Washington that his country is not offering to export technology related to weapons of mass destruction. But David Albright, a former Iraq weapons inspector who runs the Institute for Science and International Security in Washington, suggests things were different before Musharraf seized power in 1999.

``It defies belief that the senior leadership of the Pakistani government, particularly its intelligence operations, did not know about the activities of these Pakistani scientists,'' he said. ``The U.S. had come to them about this several times.''

Pakistan has long been suspected of proliferation during its 30-year effort to build nuclear weapons - of sending nuclear technology to North Korea in exchange for missiles, or helping Libya and Iraq. A middleman claiming to represent Pakistan's top nuclear scientist offered Saddam Hussein help in building an atomic bomb on the eve of the 1991 Gulf War, according to U.N. documents shown to AP last year.

Pakistan strongly denies the allegations.

But last month Pakistan started investigating several scientists at its top nuclear facility, the Khan Research Laboratories. Mohammad Farooq, the lab's former director general, is in detention.

Pakistani officials say among those being questioned was the founder of Pakistan's nuclear program, Abdul Qadeer Khan - a 1990 winner of Pakistan's ``Man of the Nation Award.''

Khan is believed to have traveled to Iran several times in the late 1980s and early 1990s, said a nuclear expert who also spoke on condition of anonymity.

A few years earlier, before international attention began focusing on the dangers of proliferation, some Pakistani scientists handed out brochures at trade shows in Germany and elsewhere ``that implied that they were willing to sell sensitive centrifuge know-how or items of equipment,'' he said. :eek:

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Div » 27 Dec 2003 06:49

Why Gaddafi turned from villain to role model
http://straitstimes.asia1.com.sg/world/story/0,4386,227166,00.html

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Anoop » 27 Dec 2003 07:31

From an academic view-point (which the non-proliferation community would fancy it represents), what is the argument for suggesting that transfer of nuclear technology from Pakistan did not occur with the highest level of collusion? On the face of it, there is no reason for this line of argument, other than that it is the least awkward for the USG.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby shynee » 28 Dec 2003 20:19

Benazir, Nawaz to be grilled
by the UN investigating team probing the allegations of nuclear technology transfers

URL

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Prateek » 29 Dec 2003 10:05

Iran-Pakistan Atomic Link Confirmed
http://www.truthnews.net/world/2003120120.htm

Gary Fitleberg, December 28, 2003

It has long been suspected that Pakistan has assisted and cooperated with Iran in development of its nuclear program.

Pakistan finally acknowledged that several of its nuclear scientists may have been motivated by "personal ambition and greed" to share sensitive technology with Iran, but adamantly insisted the government never authorized the transfer of such information.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Masood Khan said the government is questioning a "very small number" of its scientists over the possibility they spread sensitive technology to Iran. The questioning, which began five or six weeks ago, was prompted by information from Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

"We had been approached by the IAEA. We had been given some information by the government of Iran. The information that was shared with us pointed to certain individuals and we had to hold the debriefing sessions," he told a news conference.

"There are indications that certain individuals might have been motivated by personal ambition or greed, but let me add we have not made a final determination," he said. "Let's not jump to conclusions."

The government said that the founder of Pakistan's nuclear weapons program, Abdul Qadeer Khan, was being questioned in connection with debriefings of other scientists, but was not in custody.

At least two scientists from Khan Research Laboratories, the country's top nuclear laboratory named after its founder, were held for questioning this month - including Mohammad Farooq, its former director general and aide to Khan, who is still being held.

Pakistani officials have stated two scientists at the country’s top nuclear lab were being questioned by intelligence agents.

Some newspapers suggested the pair were being questioned over allegations Pakistan transferred nuclear technology to Iran. The Foreign office denied that saying it was a "routine debriefing" and stated that Pakistan had no links [official] with Iran’s program.

An intelligence official said the men worked for Khan Research Laboratories headed by Abdul Qadeer Khan, father of Pakistan’s nuclear bomb.

Gary Fitleberg is a Political Analyst specializing in International Relations with emphasis on Middle East affairs.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Prateek » 29 Dec 2003 10:15

‘Pak N-secrets sold through Germans’
Vijay Dutt
London, December 28
http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_511476,0005.htm

A few scientists associated with Pakistan's nuclear weapons programme used German go-betweens to sell their secrets to Iran, according to a high-level source in Islamabad quoted in the Sunday Times.

This makes sense if one recalls that a few Pakistanis had been detained in Munich quite a few years ago when allegedly caught carrying stolen fissile material from Russia. Later, it was said the German Intelligence officers had caught them during a sting operation.

The Times report also said the scientists were " motivated entirely by money". Two Sri Lankan businessmen based in Dubai helped the scientists when they passed on details of Pakistan's nuclear technology during the late 1980s.

"The Germans were the mercenary go-between with the Sri Lankans to facilitate the transfer," said the official in Islamabad.

A former senior member of Pak establishment and currently in London also said there were unconfirmed reports that Dawood Ibrahim's set-up in Dubai was used to assist Pakistani scientists in getting materials collected and brought in for the nuclear programme.

This could be the reason for the protection and security provided to Dawood in Pakistan.

Whatever be the truth it is accepted by diplomats here that since the allegation that four Pak scientists have had links with Iran, there is a growing belief that Pakistan poses some of the biggest international security problems. An official was quoted saying, " It is only Musharraf's personal credibility with the US and the world that has prevented a horrible backlash."

The report has also revealed that the illegal sale of nuclear secrets came to light when General Musharraf visited Teheran after the Iranian Government's decision to allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency to see its facilities.

It is said that the Pakistani leader was "caught unawares" when the Iranians told him of the Pakistani scientists' involvement. He was also told that Washington had also been informed.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 29 Dec 2003 11:30

Below is the Sunday Times (London) report that is referred to in Muddur's post above. Strangely enough, Humayun Gobar, the slithery Nation columnist, seems to be the Times' reporter from TSP.

No URL.

Pakistan scientists sold nuclear secrets to Iran

Humayun Gauhar in Islamabad

28 December 2003

ROGUE scientists from Pakistan's nuclear weapons programme used German go- betweens to sell their secrets to Iran, a high-level government source in Islamabad claimed last week.

The scientists, motivated entirely by money, were also helped by two Sri Lankan businessmen based in Dubai when they passed on details of Pakistani nuclear technology during the late 1980s.

"The Germans were the mercenary go-between and with the Sri Lankans could facilitate the transfer," said the official.

The disclosure follows reports that four scientists have been questioned over suspected links with Iran and lends credence to claims in Washington that Pakistan poses some of the biggest international security problems of the year ahead.

Pakistan has long been suspected of responsibility for the proliferation of nuclear know-how, not only to Iran but also to North Korea. The volatility of the first Islamic nuclear power was emphasised on Christmas Day when suicide bombers mounted the second attempt in 11 days to assassinate President Pervez Musharraf.

Fourteen people died in the attack on the president's motorcade near Rawalpindi.

The 40 injured included Major-General Nadeem Taj, who is preparing to take over as the head of military intelligence. A number of arrests were made in connection with the incident yesterday.

The illegal sale of nuclear secrets came to light when Musharraf visited Tehran after the Iranian government's decision to allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency to see its facilities.

Musharraf was caught unawares when the Iranians told him of the Pakistani scientists' involvement. They also said they had informed the United States.

According to the source, who wishes to remain anonymous, Musharraf was aghast. :roll:

His horror soon turned to anger because while Pakistan was trying to protect its nuclear assets by convincing the world that it had stringent checks, the country had been betrayed in a way that made it appear to lack control over its scientists.

"It is only Musharraf's personal credibility :roll: with the US and the world that has prevented a horrible backlash," said one source in the Pakistani government. The embarrassment was compounded when a former army chief [color=blue size=0.5]Mirza Aslam Beg</font>suggested that Pakistan sell its nuclear technology to Iran for a sum in the region of $20 billion.

The Pakistani scientists who were subsequently questioned included two men regarded as being close to Abdul Qadeer Khan, the so-called father of Pakistan's nuclear bomb.

Suspicion also fell on Khan, who was regarded as a hero by successive Pakistani governments in the 1980s and 1990s. Last week the military guard had gone from Khan's row of houses in a wealthy district of Islamabad. The foreign ministry confirmed that he was being questioned. He has always denied any link with Iran.

Iran and North Korea might not have been the only ones to ask for Pakistani nuclear technology. A report two years ago claimed that Osama Bin Laden approached a senior Pakistani scientist but had been rebuffed.

Bin Laden's deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, called three months ago for the overthrow of Musharraf, an important ally of the US in the war on terror. Some analysts believe that Al-Qaeda might have been behind last week's attempt on the president's life.

The face of one of the suicide bombers became detached from his head when he detonated his explosives and landed on the roof of a police station near the attack. It helped the police to identify him as Jameel Ahmad Khan, of Poonch in Kashmir. They discovered that he was a member of Jaish Mohammed, a group involved in the Kashmiri liberation struggle :roll: , closely linked to Al-Qaeda and banned by Musharraf's government.

The exposure of nuclear scientists, continuing violence over Kashmir and the threats to the president have prompted renewed concern in Washington about the stability of Pakistan.

A recent report by the Brookings Institution [color=blue size=0.5]authored by that Indian traitor Muqtedar Khan</font>, the independent policy analysts, warned that Pakistan had taken more risks than other nations in the war on terror, yet remained insecure about its relations with Washington. "Insecurity can lead nations to monumental irrationality," the report said. "Pakistanis ... have been made to feel their nation is being bullied into working against its own interests."

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Vivek_A » 29 Dec 2003 20:06

Arnaud deBorchgrave hits it out of the park again. Was this posted before?

Commentary: 1.5 million fingers on trigger

WASHINGTON, Dec. 26 (UPI) -- It was the eighth assassination attempt on President Pervez Musharraf since he seized power in Pakistan in October 1999 -- and the second in 11 days.

By his own reckoning, an estimated 1 percent of Pakistan's 150 million people are extremists, which is local patois for Islamist fanatics who would love to see Musharraf dead and the country in chaos.

For this militant minority, Osama bin Laden, the world's most wanted terrorist, is the second most popular man after the Prophet himself. Out of the ashes, they believe a nuclear-tipped Islamist phantasmagoria would rise to merge with a post-monarchy Saudi Arabia. Oil plus nukes is the vision the crazies share to level the playing field with the world's only superpower.

Two months ago, bin Laden's No. 2, Ayman al-Zawahiri's voice was heard on an audiotape that appealed to all Pakistanis to overthrow Musharraf.

Swiss banking contacts have told this writer in the past two weeks that tens of billions of dollars have moved into Swiss accounts from the Gulf, mostly Saudi money that no longer felt safe at home. Nor does it feel secure in the United States. Which may account, at least in part, for the spectacular fall of the dollar vis-à-vis the euro.

At a Christmas Day dinner, one knowledgeable Arab-born Swiss oil trader was even willing to bet "any amount of money" that the Saudi royal family would be history by the end of 2004. We took him on. Others around the table agreed the House of Saud was headed for oblivion, but that this would take a few more years. The oil trader then added, "Many princes have already sent their families out of the country and their Swiss and French residences, usually empty at this time of the year, are full."

Musharraf has a long history of appeasing extremists while backing the Bush administration against the same terrorists. The banning of extremist groups in Pakistan meant that shingles would come down only to reopen a few days later under different names a few blocks away. One known terrorist was elected to Parliament from a country club prison run by sympathetic jailers. Anyone seen to be cooperating either with U.S. intelligence or the U.S. military is perceived as betraying the sacred tenets of Islam.

The last two assassination attempts took place 10 miles from Islamabad, in Rawalpindi, a heavily guarded military garrison and army headquarters town going back to the days of the British Raj, a possible indication of military wire-pulling and/or intelligence conniving. Islamist fundamentalists exist at all levels of both the Pakistani army and the Inter-Services Intelligence agency, possibly as high as 20 percent among junior officers, but no more than 5 percent at the field grade level. They are particularly resentful of the way Musharraf ditched Pakistan's pro-Taliban policy after 9/11 and ordered the army to cooperate with U.S. special forces in their hunt for bin Laden in the jagged, snow-capped mountains that line some 1,500 miles of common border with Afghanistan.

In the past two years, some 500 al-Qaida terrorists were smoked out of their lairs throughout Pakistan. Taliban operatives, on the other hand, come and go with impunity in most Pakistani towns and cities where many of them have homes.

Pakistan's prestigious nuclear establishment is heavily fundamentalist, beginning with the father of its nuclear bomb, Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan. U.S. intelligence believes that Pakistani scientists, behind Musharraf's back, but with the complicity of ISI, shared its secrets with North Korea and Iran. Libya's eccentric leader Moammar Gadhafi gave Pakistan generous dollops of hard currency for its nuclear program when it was in its infancy. Gadhafi talked expectantly about the coming "Islamic bomb." To what extent Libya received help for its own nuclear weapons project, which Gadhafi now wants to scrap under international control, is not known -- yet.

Qadeer Khan, a Pakistani national hero, and two other nuclear scientists were pulled in for questioning after the first of the last two attempts on Musharraf's life. They denied any involvement with Iran. But what triggered the investigation was a close resemblance between the nuclear centrifuge designs in Pakistan and in Iran.

Prior to 9/11, two Pakistani nuclear scientists journeyed to Kandahar, the religious capital of Afghanistan, to confer with Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar. They are also believed to have been introduced to Osama bin Laden. Former ISI chief Hamid Gul, a retired general who functions as "strategic adviser" to MMA, a coalition of six politico-religious parties, organized the trip.

When United Press International broke the news of the nuclear visits to Taliban country, the Pakistani government lamely explained they had gone to Afghanistan to discuss an agricultural development project. More plausible, according to Western intelligence agencies, were instructions on how to make a "dirty" radiological device. Sketches of radioactive materials wrapped around conventional explosives were found in al-Qaida safe houses after the liberation of Kabul.

As plotters were preparing to assassinate Musharraf -- who is known derisively as Busharraf for his close relationship with President Bush -- security services pulled in three nuclear scientists for questioning about possible links to Iran's nuclear establishment.

MMA governs the Northwest Frontier Province, one of the country's four provinces, shares power in Baluchistan, and controls 20 percent of the seats in the federal assembly, where it is now the third largest party.

The religious politicians have paralyzed the assembly by shouting demands that Musharraf relinquish his post as army chief of staff -- the most powerful post in what is essentially a country of 150 million ruled by the military -- and run for election as a civilian politician. The day before the most recent attempt on his life, Musharraf complied. He agreed to doff his uniform and four-star rank at the end of 2004. He also gave in to MMA's other demands that were designed to water down Musharraf's 29 draft constitutional amendments.

It was a crushing political defeat for the pro-American president. He gave up the power to dismiss the prime minister and dissolve Parliament.

There is now little doubt that a mullah-cum-military alliance is emerging to the detriment of the close alliance Musharraf had forged with the Bush administration.

Nor does the president's constant appeasement of the MMA bode well for Pakistan's most urgent task -- reform of the madrassa network of some 10,000 Koranic schools where America, Israel and India are depicted as evildoers whose unholy alliance is out to destroy Islam. The country's clerics who run these jihadi (holy war) incubators and their MMA protectors have told government reformers to butt out. Some five million young Pakistani males have passed through the madrassa system since 1989, 750,000 this past year alone.

The House of Saud must now face the evidence that its clergy did not heed instructions to cease and desist undermining the future of Pakistan. Musharraf, for his part, must come to grips with the fact that Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, a revered national icon, is working the wrong side of the nuclear street. Fired three years ago by Musharraf, Qadeer Khan apparently still believes in helping America's enemies.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 29 Dec 2003 20:28

Editorial in Delaware paper

Pakistan's nuclear ability suggests it is a double-dealing ally

12/29/2003

The ominous possibility that Pakistani scientists may have smuggled nuclear secrets to Iran -- and who knows where else -- again raises the question about which nations the United States should trust in the fight against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Pakistan is ostensibly an ally, one we rely upon to help suppress the Taliban in Afghanistan and catch Osama bin Laden. However, there are numerous reports that Pakistan's military is reluctant to do either in spite of the wishes of President Pervez Musharraf. The president has just escaped two assassination attempts.

Now four Pakistani scientists, including Abdul Qadeer Khan, the developer of Pakistan's nuclear bomb program, are under suspicion. Apparently while U.S. intelligence zeroed in on Iraq, Iran was getting help from Pakistan.

With North Korea known to be a nuclear threat, there is also a chance it's sharing secrets as well.

India has nuclear bombs, which spurred Pakistan to do the same. Israel has some kind of nuclear capability as well. Muslim nations who oppose Israel have been trying to get their own. Nuclear materials exist in unstable countries that were part of the Soviet Union.

The United States correctly focuses on suppressing nuclear weapons development in its war on terrorism. But it is evident this is not a simple matter of targeting nations we consider enemies.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby JE Menon » 29 Dec 2003 23:28

>>who is known derisively as Busharraf for his close relationship with President Bush

:D

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 01 Jan 2004 09:50

Link

North Koreans went to Pakistan for nuclear study - report

TOKYO (Reuters) - North Korea, involved in a crisis over its nuclear weapons programme, sent three engineers to Pakistan in 1999 to study uranium enrichment technology, a leading Japanese newspaper reported on Thursday.

Quoting South Korean intelligence sources, the Mainichi Shimbun said the three went to a nuclear institute in Pakistan headed at that time by Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan's atom bomb.

It added that the purpose of their visit was to study how to prevent radioactive damage in the process of uranium enrichment.

No further details were given, but the newspaper noted that North Korea and Pakistan have denied such links in the past.

The UN's nuclear watchdog has been investigating a possible Pakistan-Iran nuclear link, and diplomats and arms experts have told Reuters that suspicions are growing that Pakistani individuals may also have helped North Korea get enrichment know-how and hardware.

Pakistan's government said on December 22 that Khan was being questioned about reports of possible links to Iran.

The report comes as officials from nations including China and the United States are working on a schedule for six-way negotiations on North Korea's nuclear arms programme.

The nuclear crisis involving North Korea erupted in October 2002 when U.S. officials said Pyongyang had admitted to a covert weapons programme.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Div » 01 Jan 2004 10:09

Pakistan's Help to Iran, Libya Hikes Nuke Peril
http://www.antiwar.com/bidwai/bi010104.html
Revelations that Pakistan's scientists may have helped Iran's and Libya's secret nuclear programs raise worrisome questions about nuclear danger in South Asia, which has been described as the world's most dangerous place...
Sorry Prafool, this should read:

Revelations that Pakistan's scientists may have helped Iran's and Libya's secret nuclear programs raise worrisome questions about nuclear danger in Pakistan, which has been described as the world's most dangerous place...
Last time I checked no Nepali or Sri Lankan had threatened to annihilate a good portion of humanity.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby putnanja » 02 Jan 2004 10:19

Peace push, from air, ground & far away America dusts nuke-free plan

Peace push, from air, ground & far away America dusts nuke-free plan
K.P. NAYAR
Washington, Jan. 1: Ahead of next week’s South Asian summit in Islamabad, the US is quietly attempting to revive the idea of a South Asian nuclear-free zone.

The proposal will not be on the agenda of the Islamabad summit. Nor will it be formally discussed by the summiteers.

But US officials dealing with nuclear non-proliferation and counter-proliferation said they have been lobbying for a revival of the idea at briefings and consultations with South Asian diplomats in the run-up to the summit.

For Washington, the proposal has become very urgent following conclusions by non-proliferation officials here that Pakistan sold nuclear secrets a decade and a half ago to Iran, a country defined by President George W. Bush as part of the “axis of evil”.

Following these conclusions, which follow revelations of an earlier tie-up between Pakistan and North Korea on weapons of mass destruction, the Bush administration can be expected in the coming months to pressure General Pervez Musharraf to abandon his nuclear weapons programme, much the same way as the Americans persuaded Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi to abjure the atom bomb recently.

On account of the intense pressure from Washington on this score, Musharraf found it necessary to tell Pakistanis on Monday that “there is no pressure whatsoever on me to roll back the nuclear and missile programme, we are not rolling back, there is no question, these are our national interests and only a traitor will think of rolling back”.

But the problem for the Americans is that they cannot unilaterally demand a rollback by Pakistan without asking India also to do so.

One American non-proliferation official told this correspondent last week that Washington has “absolutely no problems” with India’s record of export controls or of non-proliferation involving third countries.

But the official acknowledged that forcing Pakistan to give up nuclear weapons while allowing India to keep them would tantamount to pronouncing a death sentence on Musharraf politically and perhaps otherwise.

Hence the idea of a nuclear weapons free zone in South Asia, which would mean that both India and Pakistan are free of those weapons.

Musharraf, who is facing Washington’s music following the conclusions on Iran, has been forced in the last few days to take several steps, which would have been unthinkable even a few months ago.

To start with, about a fortnight ago, Musharraf ordered the removal of giant replicas of Pakistan’s nuclear capable missiles which proliferated across the country after its 1998 nuclear tests.

But the removal of one such model at a prominent intersection in Islamabad caused such uproar among the public that plans to remove them on the road from the capital to Rawalpindi and near the site of the nuclear tests in Chagai have been scrapped.

Civic officials subsequently attributed the removal to plans to beautify Islamabad, but according to information here, the idea was to tone down the country’s nuclear and missile profile and reduce any impressions of military aggression to satisfy Washington.

But last week, in his bid for survival, Musharraf was forced to violate something even more sacrosanct. Authorities in Pakistan questioned Abdul Qadeer Khan, father of Pakistan’s nuclear programme, on the sale of material to Iran.

In comparative terms, interrogating Khan is tantamount to Jawaharlal Nehru detaining or investigating the actions of Homi Bhabha, the initiator of the Indian nuclear programme.

Two other scientists from Pakistan’s top nuclear facility, Khan Research Laboratories, were also interrogated last month and one of them, its former director-general Mohammad Farooq, is still in detention, according to information here.

US officials have told South Asian diplomats that what they would like to see is an agreement among countries in the region on the lines of the Treaty of Tlatelolco. South America’s nuclear rivals, Argentina and Brazil, signed the treaty a decade ago, declaring their region a nuclear weapons-free zone.

The Americans are likely to work on India through Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, all of which have voted at the UN in favour of creating a nuclear weapons free zone in South Asia.

In addition to this, Washington will pile up unbearable pressure on Musharraf directly, unless more “assassination attempts” convince Washington that such pressures are inadvisable.
Gives a completely different perspective to mushy's assasination drama!!!

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby SSridhar » 02 Jan 2004 10:30

The Americans are likely to work on India through Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh
Already, this statement vies for top spot for the joke of the year.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby svinayak » 02 Jan 2004 10:45

This is a psec lobby inside India matching up with the non-proliferation mullahs to create a buzz to see if it gets momentum. There could be some words or declaration.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby jrjrao » 02 Jan 2004 15:43

GP writes in the WSJ today. <hr>
January 2, 2004
COMMENTARY

Pakistan Plays Nuclear Footsie; Does Anyone Care?

By GOPALASWAMI PARTHASARATHY
Writing his memoirs in his prison cell just before he was executed by General Zia-ul-Haq in 1979, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto stated that his aim as prime minister of Pakistan had been to put the "Islamic Civilization" at par with the "Christian, Jewish and Hindu Civilizations," by giving the Islamic world a "full nuclear capability." In a meeting of top scientists and advisers that he had convened on Jan. 20, 1972, just after assuming office, Bhutto made it clear that he was determined to achieve nuclear capability, not merely to neutralize India's inherent conventional superiority, but also to make his country a leader of the Islamic world.

But how was a cash-strapped Pakistan to get the financial resources to achieve these objectives? Bhutto's press adviser, Khalid Hasan, has since revealed how Bhutto sought and obtained financial assistance from Saudi Arabia and the mercurial Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi to fulfill his ambitions. Bhutto also indicated in his prison memoirs that China under Mao's leadership had agreed to provide Pakistan the necessary assistance to build the bomb. Despite changes in leadership in China, there has been no dilution of its nuclear and missile assistance to Pakistan.

While successive rulers in Pakistan have vowed that they would not transfer nuclear technology to others, the IAEA has come up with evidence indicating that both Libya and Iran received assistance in developing uranium enrichment capabilities from Pakistan. Col. Gadhafi had such a close relationship with Bhutto that the latter named the largest cricket stadium in Pakistan the "Gadhafi Stadium." Funds from Libya flowed freely to Pakistan "in suitcases," to fuel its nuclear ambitions. What is even more interesting is that the transfer of nuclear technology to Iran is said to have commenced in 1987, when Pakistan was professing to be a close U.S. ally. Pakistan was then under the rule of Gen. Zia. The entire nuclear program was then, as it is now, under the direct control of the Pakistan army. There is no way that there could have been any "rogue operation" by individual scientists to transfer nuclear technology to Iran, without the knowledge and consent of the Pakistan army.

While Iran and Libya have agreed to comprehensive IAEA inspections of their nuclear facilities under international pressure, there has been little or no attention paid to the nexus between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia on nuclear issues. Apart from the revelations of Khalid Hassan about Saudi funding of the Pakistan nuclear program, Mohammed al Khilawi, the senior Saudi diplomat who defected to the U.S. in 1994, has also given details about how Riyadh bankrolled Pakistan and then Iraq to obtain nuclear weapons capabilities.

More recently, eyebrows were raised when the Saudi Defense Minister Prince Sultan was provided unprecedented access to Pakistan's nuclear enrichment facilities in Kahuta in March 1999. During this visit he invited Dr. A.Q. Khan, the "Father of the Islamic Bomb" to visit Saudi Arabia. Dr. Khan had paid over a dozen visits to North Korea and was instrumental in the transfer of enrichment technology to North Korea in exchange for North Korean missiles. Weapons inspectors in Iraq have traced Iraqi documents showing that Dr. Khan had offered nuclear technology to the Saddam Hussein regime. Dr. Khan's associates, Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood and Abdul Majid visited Kandahar for a quiet pow-wow on nuclear technology with Osama bin Laden. And more recently, Dr. Khan has been questioned for his involvement in the transfer of enrichment capabilities to Iran. He obviously did not visit Saudi Arabia at the personal invitation of its defense minister to discuss Islamic theology!

While Saudi Arabia actively uses "charities" to promote Wahhabi extremism across the world, Pakistan has been the recipient of huge direct economic assistance from the desert kingdom. The Saudis have bailed out Islamabad over the past decade by supplying Pakistan with an estimated $ 1.2 billion of oil products annually, virtually free of cost. Just after the visit of Dr. Khan to Saudi Arabia in November 1999, a Saudi nuclear expert, Dr. Al Arfaj, stated at a seminar that "Saudi Arabia must make plans aimed at making a quick response to face the possibilities of nuclear warfare agents being used against the Saudi population, cities or armed forces." After the departure of American forces from its soil, how does Saudi Arabia propose to deal with such nuclear contingencies? The 2,700-kilometer range CSS-2 missiles that Saudi Arabia obtained from China in 1987 are useless if fitted only with conventional warheads. One cannot, therefore, avoid the inference that like the Pakistan-North Korean nukes for missiles deal, there is an "oil for nukes" deal between the Saudis and Pakistanis.

Washington's response to these developments has been strange. When Mr. Al Khilawi made his revelations about Saudi nuclear ambitions in 1994, a senior official in the Clinton White House remarked: "Can you imagine what would happen if we discovered Saudi had a bomb? We would have to do something and nobody wants that. Best not to ask tough questions in the first place." We are now told that Colin Powell is fully satisfied with General Pervez Musharraf's assurances that the nuclear transfers to North Korea and Iran were done by individual scientists, before he assumed office. If this is indeed true then what is one to make of reports that during a visit of a three-member team of its scientists to Pyongyang in 2001, Pakistan shared data of its nuclear tests with the North Koreans?

In July 2002, U.S. satellites took pictures of C-130 aircraft of the Pakistan Air Force picking up missile components from North Korea. Around the same time, a Pakistani "Shaheen Airlines" aircraft is reported to have transported 47 tons of special aluminum acquired from the U.K. by the Kahuta Research Laboratories established by Dr. Khan, to Pyongyang for its enrichment program. The Clinton administration sought to appease China by pretending that it could not make a "determination" about that country's missile and nuclear transfers to Pakistan. The Bush administration would be ill advised to follow this example.
Mr. Parthasarathy, a visiting professor at the Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi, is a former Indian ambassador to Pakistan.

URL for this article:
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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby jrjrao » 02 Jan 2004 17:06

Did somebody say that Pak nuke leaks were all very safely in the past? And that there has been no recent mischief??

Intercepted shipment was key to Libya deal
The interception by British and US intelligence of a shipment of uranium enrichment centrifuges bound for Libya in October appears to have been the decisive step in persuading Colonel Muammar Gaddafi to abandon his nuclear weapons programme.

The disclosure, confirmed by US officials yesterday, came as John Bolton, US under-Secretary of State and a leading Bush administration anti-proliferation hawk, set off for London for talks on how to hold Libya to its promise.

According to the officials, the shipment, aboard a German freighter, originated in a Persian Gulf port, which they would not name. The vessel's owners were alerted and ordered the freighter to divert to an Italian port. There, intelligence operatives discovered the centrifuges, which are equipment for enriching uranium for civil or military nuclear projects. Officials declined to name the country that supplied the centrifuges. One likely suspect is Pakistan, which has nuclear weapons, and which is believed to have provided nuclear equipment to Iran, whose alleged weapons programme is under intense scrutiny.
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/politics/story.jsp?story=477395

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Vivek_A » 02 Jan 2004 20:31

'N. Koreans visited Pakistan'

TOKYO, Jan 1: North Korea, involved in a crisis over its nuclear weapons programme, sent three engineers to Pakistan in 1999 to study uranium enrichment technology, a leading Japanese newspaper claimed on Thursday.

Quoting South Korean intelligence sources, the Mainichi Shimbun said the three went to a nuclear institute in Pakistan headed at that time by Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan's nuclear programme.

It added that the purpose of their visit was to study how to prevent radioactive damage in the process of uranium enrichment. No further details were given, but the newspaper noted that North Korea and Pakistan have denied such links in the past.

The UN's nuclear watchdog has been investigating a possible Pakistan-Iran nuclear link, and diplomats and arms experts have told Reuters that suspicions are growing that Pakistani individuals may also have helped North Korea get enrichment know-how and hardware. -Reuters

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Gerard » 03 Jan 2004 03:37

Originally posted by Ravi:

But US officials dealing with nuclear non-proliferation and counter-proliferation
snip
The Americans are likely to work on India through Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh,
Bolton and the non-prolif jihadis must be on drugs.

Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will convince India to give up its nukes?

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby John_Doe » 03 Jan 2004 06:07

Originally posted by Gerard:
Originally posted by Ravi:
[b]
But US officials dealing with nuclear non-proliferation and counter-proliferation
snip
The Americans are likely to work on India through Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh,
Bolton and the non-prolif jihadis must be on drugs.

Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will convince India to give up its nukes?[/b]
The USA may help fund and maintain insurgencies. Maybe BD is already the start of this policy? It could well be that the Americans are funding or otherwise supporting NE insurgencies via ISI via BD. Who knows?

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rangudu » 03 Jan 2004 06:09

Wrong thread fellas.

Let's keep this thread only for Pakistani nuclear proloferation.

Thanks

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Gerard » 03 Jan 2004 19:45


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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Vivek_A » 03 Jan 2004 21:52

From Rogue Nuclear Programs, Web of Trails Leads to Pakistan

By DAVID E. SANGER and WILLIAM J. BROAD

The Pakistani leaders who denied for years that scientists at the country's secret A. Q. Khan Research Laboratories were peddling advanced nuclear technology must have been averting their eyes from a most conspicuous piece of evidence: the laboratory's own sales brochure, quietly circulated to aspiring nuclear weapons states and a network of nuclear middlemen around the world.

The cover bears an official-looking seal that says "Government of Pakistan" and a photograph of the father of the Pakistani bomb, Abdul Qadeer Khan. It promotes components that were spinoffs from Pakistan's three-decade-long project to build a nuclear stockpile of enriched uranium, set in a drawing that bears a striking resemblance to a mushroom cloud.

In other nations, such sales would be strictly controlled. But Pakistan has always played by its own rules.

As investigators unravel the mysteries of the North Korean, Iranian and now the Libyan nuclear projects, Pakistan — and those it empowered with knowledge and technology they are now selling on their own — has emerged as the intellectual and trading hub of a loose network of hidden nuclear proliferators.

That network is global, stretching from Germany to Dubai and from China to South Asia, and involves many middlemen and suppliers. But what is striking about a string of recent disclosures, experts say, is how many roads appear ultimately to lead back to the Khan Research Laboratories in Kahuta, where Pakistan's own bomb was developed.

In 2002 the United States was surprised to discover how North Korea had turned to the Khan laboratory for an alternative way to manufacture nuclear fuel, after the reactors and reprocessing facilities it had relied on for years were "frozen" under a now shattered agreement with the Clinton administration. Last year, international inspectors and Western intelligence agencies were surprised again, this time by the central role Pakistan played in the initial technology that enabled Iran to pursue a secret uranium enrichment program for 18 years.

The sources of Libya's enrichment program are still under investigation, but those who have had an early glance say they see "interconnections" with both Pakistan and Iran's programs — and Libyan financial support for the Pakistani program that stretches back three decades.

Until two weeks ago, Pakistani officials had long denied that any nuclear technology was transferred from their laboratories. But now that story has begun to change, after the Pakistani authorities, under pressure, began interrogating scientists from the laboratory about their assistance to other nuclear aspirants. Two weeks ago, Dr. Khan himself was called in for what appears to have been a respectful, and still inconclusive, questioning.

Responding to requests relayed through associates, Dr. Khan has recently denied that he aided atomic hopefuls. But American and European officials note that in the 1980's he repeatedly denied that Pakistan was at work on an atomic bomb, which it finally tested in 1998.

While American intelligence officials have gathered details on the activities of the creator of the Pakistani bomb and his compatriots for decades, four successive American presidents have dealt with the issue extremely delicately, turning modest sanctions against Pakistan on and off, for fear of destabilizing the country when it was needed to counter the Soviets in the 1980's, much as it is needed to battle terrorism today.

President Bush, who regularly talks about nuclear dangers, has never mentioned the Pakistan's laboratories or their proliferation in public — probably out of concern of destabilizing President Pervez Musharraf, who has survived two assassination attempts in the past two weeks.

"He's been a stand-up guy when it comes to dealing with the terrorists," Mr. Bush said of General Musharraf on Thursday. "We are making progress against Al Qaeda because of his cooperation." He dismissed a question about the vulnerability of Pakistan's own nuclear weapons, saying, "Yes, they are secure," then changed the subject.

Yet when President Bush talks about the horrors that could unfold if a nuclear weapon fell into the hands of terrorists, it is Pakistan's combustible mix of expertise, components, fuel and fully assembled weapons that springs to the minds of American and European intelligence experts. In public, the White House says it has received "assurances" from Pakistan that if there ever were nuclear exports they are finished.

"There is this almost empty-headed recitation of assurances that whatever Pakistan did in the past it's over, it's no longer a problem," said one senior European diplomat with access to much of the intelligence about proliferation. "But there's is no evidence that it has ever stopped."

Mohamed ElBaradei, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations organization charged with monitoring nuclear energy worldwide, contends that the recent nuclear disclosures show that the system put in place at the height of the cold war to contain nuclear weapons technology has ruptured and can no longer control the new nuclear trade.

"The information is now all over the place, and that's what makes it more dangerous than in the 1960's," Dr. ElBaradei said.

The Crucial Ingredient

The biggest hurdle in making a nuclear weapon is not designing the warhead, but getting the right fuel to create an atomic explosion. One route is to extract plutonium from nuclear reactors and reprocess it to produce more fuel, known as creating a fuel cycle. The other is to extract uranium from the ground and enrich it.

The 1970 treaty on the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons was devised to control which countries could possess and pursue nuclear arms. It allowed the United States, Britain, France, the Soviet Union and China to keep all their weapons but required all other signatories to forswear nuclear arms. North Korea, Iran and Libya all signed, allowing I.A.E.A. inspectors limited visits to verify that countries producing nuclear fuel were truly using "atoms for peace." Pakistan and India never signed, nor did Israel.

Aside from inspections, spy satellites and airborne "sniffers" can usually pick out the huge complexes needed to extract spent fuel from nuclear reactors and turn it into bomb fuel. But after North Korea was caught cheating by the United States in the early 1990's and was forced into an agreement to "freeze" its reactor-and-reprocessing complex at Yongbyon, the lesson was clear: to produce bomb fuel, countries needed to take a more surreptitious route.

Uranium enrichment was the most promising, because it can take place in hidden facilities, emitting few traces. And that was the technology that Dr. Khan perfected as his laboratory raced to produce a nuclear bomb to keep up with its rival India.

The key to the technology is the development of centrifuges. These hollow tubes spin fast to separate a gaseous form of natural uranium into U-238, a heavy isotope, and U-235, a light one. The rare U-235 isotope is the holy grail: it can easily split in two, releasing bursts of nuclear energy.

But making centrifuges is no easy trick. The rotors of centrifuges, spinning at the speed of sound or faster, must be very strong and perfectly balanced or they fly apart catastrophically.

To produce bomb-grade fuel, uranium must pass through hundreds or thousands of centrifuges linked in a cascade, until impurities are spun away and what remains is mainly U-235 . The result is known as highly enriched uranium.

Dr. Khan returned to Pakistan in 1976 after working in the Netherlands, carrying extremely secret centrifuge designs — a Dutch one that featured an aluminum rotor, and a German one made of maraging steel, a superhard alloy. He was charged with stealing the designs from a European consortium where he worked.

"The designs for the machines," said a secret State Department memo at the time, "were stolen by a Pakistani national."

The steel rotor in the German design turned out to be particularly difficult to make, but it could spin twice as fast, meaning it produced more fuel.

His accomplishments turned Dr. Khan into a national hero. In 1981, as a tribute, the president of Pakistan, Gen. Mohammad Zia ul-Haq, renamed the enrichment plant the A. Q. Khan Research Laboratories.

Dr. Khan, a fervent nationalist, has condemned the system that limits legal nuclear knowledge to the five major nuclear powers, or that ignored Israel's nuclear weapon while focusing on the fear of an Islamic bomb. "All Western countries," he was once quoted as saying, "are not only the enemies of Pakistan but in fact of Islam."

In the years before Pakistan's first test in 1998, Dr. Khan and his team began publishing papers in the global scientific literature on how to make and test its uranium centrifuges. In the West, these publications would have been classified secret or top secret.

But Dr. Khan made no secret of his motive: he boasted in print of circumventing the restrictions of the Western nuclear powers, declaring in a 1987 paper that he sought to pierce "the clouds of the so-called secrecy." Papers in 1987 and 1988 detailed how to take the next, difficult steps in the construction of centrifuges — reaching beyond first-generation aluminum rotors to produce more efficient centrifuges out of maraging steel.

David Albright, a former weapons inspector for the I.A.E.A, said the American intelligence community viewed Dr. Khan's papers as a boast. They proved that Pakistan "knew how to build the G-2," a particularly complex design of German origin.

A 1991 paper by his colleagues at the laboratory gave more details away, revealing how to etch special grooves on a centrifuge's bottom bearing, a crucial part for aiding the flow of lubricants in machines spinning at blindingly fast speeds.

A Pentagon program that tracks foreign scientific publications has uncovered dozens of reports, scientific papers and conference proceedings on uranium enrichment that Dr. Khan and his colleagues published. While federal and private experts agree that the blitz left much confidential — including some crucial dimensions, ingredients, manufacturing tricks and design secrets — Pakistan was clearly proclaiming that it had mastered the black art.

"It was a signal to India and the West saying, `Look, we're not the backward people you think we are,' " said Mark Gorwitz, a nonproliferation expert who tracks the Pakistani literature.

The scientific papers were soon followed by sales brochures. Much of the gear marketed by the Khan laboratory was critical for anyone eager to make Dr. Khan's kind of centrifuges. It included vacuum devices that attached to a centrifuge casing and sucked out virtually all the air, reducing friction around the spinning rotors.

In 2000, the Pakistani government ran its own advertisement announcing procedures for commercial exports of many types of nuclear gear, including gas centrifuges and their parts, according to a Congressional Research Service report published in May. Many of the items, it noted, "would be useful in a nuclear weapons program."

Former American intelligence and nonproliferation experts say the C.I.A. was aware of some, but not all, of these activities, and began tracking scientists at the Khan laboratory.

But at every turn, overt pressure was weighed against strategic interests. In the 1980's, Washington viewed Pakistan as a critical ally in the covert war it was waging against the Soviets in Afghanistan. By 1986, American intelligence agencies concluded that Pakistan had succeeded in making weapon-grade uranium, the sure sign that the centrifuges worked. But that same year, the Mr. Reagan announced an aid package to Pakistan of more than $4 billion.

The First Nuclear Deals

What American intelligence agencies apparently did not understand at the time was the pace at which Dr. Khan's team was beginning to help other nations.

It started as a quid pro quo with an old patron: China. A declassified State Department memo, obtained by the National Security Archive in Washington, concluded that China, sometime after its first bomb tests in the mid-1960's, had provided Pakistan technology for "fissile material production and possibly also nuclear device design."

Years later, the flow reversed. Mr. Albright, who is the president of the Institute for Science and International Security, an arms control group in Washington, has concluded China was an early recipient of Pakistan's designs for centrifuges. China had used an antiquated, expensive process for enriching uranium and the technology Dr. Khan held promised a faster, cheaper, more efficient path to bomb-making.

But that was just the start. Evidence uncovered in recent months shows that around 1987 Pakistan struck a deal with Iran, which had tried unsuccessfully to master enrichment technology on its own during its war with Iraq. The outlines of the deal — pieced together from limited inspections and documents turned over to the I.A.E.A. in October — show that a centrifuge of Pakistani design finally solved Iran's technological problems. That deal was "a tremendous boost," Mr. Albright and his colleague, Corey Hinderstein, said in a draft report on the Iranian program. "The possession of detailed designs could allow Iran to skip many difficult research steps," they added.

The Iranian documents turned over to the I.A.E.A. make no reference to Pakistan itself; they only point to its signature technologies.

"We have middlemen and suspicions," said a Western diplomat with access to the documents. "There is a Pakistani tie for sure, but we don't know the details."

Iran's program fooled the I.A.E.A., which caught no whiff of it during 18 years of inspections. But Pakistan's role was also well hidden from American intelligence agencies.

"We had some intelligence successes with Iran, we knew about some of their enrichment efforts," said Gary Samore, who headed up nonproliferation efforts in the Clinton administration's National Security Council. "What we didn't know was the Pakistan connection — that was a surprise. And the extent of Pakistan's ties was, in retrospect, the surprise of the 1990's."

The Iranians were hardly satisfied customers. They had gotten Pakistan's older models and were forced to slog ahead slowly for two decades, foraging around the world for parts, building experimental facilities involving a few hundred centrifuges, but apparently failing to produce enough fissile material for a bomb.

If the Iranians were the turtle, the North Koreans proved the hare. Around 1997, a decade after the Pakistani deal with Iran, Dr. Khan made inroads with the government of Kim Jong Il, as it sought a way to make nuclear fuel away from the Yongbyon plant and the prying eyes of American satellites. Dr. Khan began traveling to North Korea, visiting 13 times, American intelligence officials said.

During those visits, North Korea offered to exchange centrifuge technology for North Korean missile technology, enabling Pakistan to extend the reach of its nuclear weapons across India.

Again, American intelligence agencies missed many of the signals. They knew of an experimental program, but it took evidence from South Korea to demonstrate that North Korea was moving toward industrial-level production. Then in the summer of 2001, American spy satellites spotted missile parts being loaded into an Pakistani cargo plane near Pyongyang, the North Korean capital. The parts were assumed to be the quid pro quo for the nuclear technology.

Last spring, a few months after the deal was revealed in The New York Times, the State Department announced some sanctions against the Khan laboratory but cited the illegal missile transactions. The State Department said it had insufficient evidence to issue sanctions for a nuclear transfer, a move some dissenting officials suspected was a concession to avoid embarrassing General Musharraf, who had denied any nuclear transfers ever occurred.

A Congressional report on the Pakistan-North Korea trade notes that over the years "Pakistan has been sanctioned in what some observers deem, an `on again, off again' fashion," mostly for importing technology for unconventional weapons, and later for its 1998 nuclear tests. Those sanctions which were also issued against India were waived shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, when the United States suddenly needed Pakistan's cooperation.

It is unclear whether the Pakistan-North Korea connection has been cut off. But new evidence suggests that North Korea is still racing ahead. In April, a ship carrying a large cargo of super-strong aluminum tubing was stopped in the Suez Canal after the German authorities determined that it was destined for North Korea. The precise size of the tubes, according to Western diplomats and industry reports, suggested that they were intended for making the outer casings of G-2 centrifuges, the kind whose rotors are made of steel, and that Dr. Khan wrote about.

The C.I.A. estimates that by 2005, if unchecked, North Korea will begin large-scale production of enriched uranium.

But so far, American intelligence agencies say they are uncertain where North Korea's centrifuge operations are. On Jan. 2, North Korea said it would allow a delegation of American experts into the country this week.

Halting Nuclear Trades

Early in 2003, Mr. Bush established a coordinating group inside the White House to oversee the interception of shipments of unconventional weapons around the world. So far, Washington has drawn more than a dozen nations into a loose posse to track and stop shipments, and Germany, Italy, Taiwan and Japan have executed seizures.

But the first interceptions — and the trail of parts and agreements they reveal — have only pointed to the mushrooming size of the secondary market in parts.

Even more worrisome are the kinds of exchanges that do not move on ships and planes, what Ashton B. Carter, who worked in the Clinton administration on North Korean issues, calls "substantial technical cooperation among all members of the brotherhood of rogues."

North Korean engineers have been sighted living in Iran, ostensibly to help the country build medium- and long-range missiles. But the growing suspicion is that the relationship has now expanded beyond missiles, and that the two nations are warily dealing in the nuclear arena as well.

"We're debating the evidence," said one administration official.

The latest nuclear disclosures came after the United States spotted a German-registered ship headed for Libya through the Suez Canal, with thousands of parts for uranium centrifuges. The interception in October of that shipment, American officials say, tipped the balance for the Libyan leader, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, forcing him to agree in December to disclose and dismantle his own nuclear program.

Inspectors are still investigating where Libya's components came from, focusing on manufacturers in Europe and what Dr. ElBaradei calls "interconnections" between the Libyan program and Iran's.

The intercepted shipment came from Dubai, a place of great importance in Dr. Khan's secretive world. It was a Dubai middleman claiming to represent Dr. Khan who in 1990, on the eve of the Persian Gulf war, offered Dr. Khan's aid to Iraq in building an atom bomb. And it was a Dubai middleman whom Dr. Khan blamed for supplying centrifuge parts to Iran, said a European confidante of Dr. Khan's who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Ties between Libya and Pakistan go back years. In 1973, when Pakistan was just starting its nuclear program, Libya signed an deal to help finance its atomic efforts in exchange for knowledge about how to make nuclear fuel, said Leonard S. Spector of the Monterey Institute of International Studies' Center for Nonproliferation Studies. From 1978 to 1980, he added, Libya appears to have supplied Pakistan with uranium ore. But Libya appears to have made much less progress than the Iranians did.

Dr. ElBaradei estimates that 35 to 40 nations now have the knowledge to build an atomic weapon. In place of the nonproliferation treaty, which he calls obsolete, he proposes revising the world's system to place any facilities that can manufacture fissile material under multinational control.

"Unless you are able to control the actual acquisition of weapon-usable material, you are not able to control proliferation," he said in recent interview. But Mr. Bush and the leaders of the other established nuclear states are reluctant to renegotiate a stronger treaty because it will reopen the question of why some states are permitted to hold nuclear weapons and others are not.

For now the world is left watching a terrifying race — one that pits scientists, middlemen and extremists against Western powers trying to intercept, shipload by shipload, the technology as it spreads through the clandestine network. Mr. Bush remains wary of cracking down on a fragile Pakistan, for fear pressure could tip the situation toward the radicals.

Some in the administration say they think other nations may follow Libya's calculations and abandon their programs voluntarily. But there are doubters.

"Its a fine theory," said a top nonproliferation strategist in the administration said recently. "The question for 2004 is whether the mullahs or Kim Jong Il buy into it."

David Rohde contributed reporting from Pakistan for this article.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Prof Raghu » 04 Jan 2004 17:29

Our local metro paper has a picture to go with this story this morning -- so I am sure other papers / versions also must be having that picture of the brochure with A.Q. Khan's "photo" and the mushroom image the article talks about. Since a picture is worth a thousand words, can someone scan and post it here so our archivists can have it?

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby jrjrao » 04 Jan 2004 17:36

Sriman, here is the image from the NY Times story.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby arun » 04 Jan 2004 19:15

From the Sunday Times UK via The Australian, quoting Colonel Gaddafi's son :



Libya bought Pakistan N-plans
By Michael Sheridan and Marie Colvin, The Sunday Times
05jan04

The son of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has revealed that Libya bought plans to make a nuclear bomb from Pakistani scientists as part of the quest for weapons of mass destruction it has now promised to abandon.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi said Libya had spent at least $US40million ($53 million) trying to build the bomb – an effort that Western weapons inspectors believe came much closer to fruition than previously thought. Revelations of the extent of Pakistani involvement are expected to increase US and British pressure on President Pervez Musharraf, who already stands accused of failing to prevent the illicit sale of nuclear material to Iran.

Pakistan admitted last week that "rogue scientists" might have peddled technology for individual gain. It said several had been questioned, including Abdul Qadeer Khan, a fundamentalist sympathiser regarded as the father of Pakistan's nuclear program.

In an interview on his farm east of Tripoli, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, 32, confirmed that Libya used a network of international middlemen to buy nuclear components, including centrifuges, on the black market.

Some of the material came from Malaysia and other Asian countries while other components were bought in South Africa.

Dressed in traditional gold silk Libyan robes and a checked turban, he spoke excitedly of a "new page in Libya's history" and revealed how he had worked as a "trouble shooter" in talks with US and British officials that culminated in Colonel Gaddafi's pre-Christmas offer to dismantle Libya's weapons of mass destruction programs.
"I was able to take messages to my father and explain to him. By the end we had a good relationship with the CIA, MI6 and all the Americans and British," he said.

His father had needed to be reassured that the Americans and British did not have a hidden agenda for regime change in Tripoli. "Once they assured us they did not, everything went forward."

It also emerged at the weekend that Libya appeared to have begun the process of enriching uranium, indicating Colonel Gaddafi was much closer to making a nuclear device than had been thought.

According to one Western diplomat based in Tripoli, British and American experts who inspected Libyan weapons sites were startled to discover how advanced the nuclear program was.
Libya had a "uranium enrichment program actually in progress", the diplomat said.
The experts were also taken aback to find that Colonel Gaddafi's nuclear scientists had what one Western official described as a "full bomb dossier" from the Pakistanis.

URL

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby JE Menon » 04 Jan 2004 19:45

Cross-posting...

Well, it's nice to see "the West" acting surprised. Perhaps they forget that after the whipping Pakistan received in December 1971, Bhutto moved immediately to vitalise the Pak nuclear programme and proflieration was built-in from the start. Perhaps they forget that in January 1972 he called a conference of his top scientists in Multan and ordered them to build a bomb in 3 years (though they estimated they needed 5 years). Perhaps they forget that, within hours of the conference he was on a fund-raising visit to the Middle East which took in, among others (Libya, Iran and Saudi Arabia). Perhaps they also forget that secret meetings were held in Paris in the subsequent years by representatives from Pakistan, Libya, Iran and Saudi Arabia to work out the modalities for the exchange of information and money. Perhaps they forget, furthermore, that after the Islamic summit in Lahore in February 1974, when the sums to be made available (in exchange for the bomb) was believed to have been finalised, two special planeloads of money were dispatched from Libya in December 1975 and the summer of 1976.

But perhaps not. Perhaps it was convenient then to ignore Bhutto's lies, just as it is convenient now to rely on Musharraf's 400% assurances and the canard that rogue scientists did it for the money.

These buggers will not learn until the Paks pop one in one of their cities. And knowing the Paks, they probably will do it, just to show themselves as more pure Arab than Al Qaida!!!

On this matter, extreme contempt must be shown to those who act surprised. They had the means and the methods to stop it, and they didn't. We at least have the excuse that we couldn't!

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Calvin » 04 Jan 2004 19:49

I remember talking to someone in the early 1990s, back when the Soviet Union collapsed, about the Libyans looking for Russian nuclear engineers. The interesting comment, from a Russian, was that the Libyan's for whatever reason were not willing to spend the amount of money required to actually build the bomb. This nonsense about $50MM program is along those lines. WHy wouldn't they spend $5billion?

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Prof Raghu » 04 Jan 2004 20:58

Do not know where else to post -- the following has been nagging me for a few days now.

Let us take this to the logical conclusion. Say the "international community" (aka the US, and its "Yessir" allies) decides that action must be taken, lessons must be taught, punishments meted for proliferation sins.

What then? Say this leads to OVERT (this part is crucial, covert as may have happened now is a different matter altogether) Pak de-nuclearization.

Is that good for India?
Iraq forcibly, then Iran and Libya and maybe North Korea "voluntarily" after seeing the writing on the wall -- then Pakistan, and maybe Israel too as part of a mid-east peace (coupled with some overt or covert US guarantee).

Where does this leave India?
Ponder about President Kalam's statements -- well before he became President, of course -- about this issue too! (I believe he has said something about being in favor of more nations having nukes, since that equalizes and hence makes it less likely there will be conflicts -- I am paraphrasing here, and in fact his comments may have been in the context of missiles not nukes, but you get the gist of the idea)

So: it may not necessarily be in India's interests to have Pakistan OVERTLY de-nuked -- at least in the short and intermediate term (say a decade or so?)

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Calvin » 04 Jan 2004 21:10

Probably more important that Israel not be denuked than Pakistan. There have to be non-P5 nuclear nations.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Rak » 04 Jan 2004 21:18

Originally posted by arun:
From the Sunday Times UK via The Australian, quoting Colonel Gaddafi's son :

Libya bought Pakistan N-plans
By Michael Sheridan and Marie Colvin, The Sunday Times
05jan04

The son of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has revealed that Libya bought plans to make a nuclear bomb from Pakistani scientists as part of the quest for weapons of mass destruction it has now promised to abandon.
Amazing unity among Islamic countries :p . Its truly a system to follow. A shining example of Fraternity of Islamic brotherhood :roll:

Each of these Islamic countries would sell each other to survive. The bravado talk about Pan Islamic Unity is full of sh!t.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Div » 04 Jan 2004 22:43

Sriman,

Here's a bigger, more clearer picture of the brochure.

http://www.thebulletin.org/issues/2003/ma03/ma03albright_01.jpg

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Vadivel » 04 Jan 2004 23:04

Originally posted by Sriman:
Do not know where else to post -- the following has been nagging me for a few days now.

Let us take this to the logical conclusion. Say the "international community" (aka the US, and its "Yessir" allies) decides that action must be taken, lessons must be taught, punishments meted for proliferation sins.

What then? Say this leads to OVERT (this part is crucial, covert as may have happened now is a different matter altogether) Pak de-nuclearization.

Is that good for India?
Iraq forcibly, then Iran and Libya and maybe North Korea "voluntarily" after seeing the writing on the wall -- then Pakistan, and maybe Israel too as part of a mid-east peace (coupled with some overt or covert US guarantee).

Where does this leave India?
Ponder about President Kalam's statements -- well before he became President, of course -- about this issue too! (I believe he has said something about being in favor of more nations having nukes, since that equalizes and hence makes it less likely there will be conflicts -- I am paraphrasing here, and in fact his comments may have been in the context of missiles not nukes, but you get the gist of the idea)

So: it may not necessarily be in India's interests to have Pakistan OVERTLY de-nuked -- at least in the short and intermediate term (say a decade or so?)
I think there will be pressure, but we need our nukes to counter chinese nukes.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Prof Raghu » 04 Jan 2004 23:12

Originally posted by Calvin:
Probably more important that Israel not be denuked than Pakistan. There have to be non-P5 nuclear nations.
Calvin, I disagree for the following reason.

The US will not permit any existential threat to the state of Israel from another state. There will always be a US umbrella and more importantly the enemies of Israel will believe that there will be such an umbrella (or, more precisely, can never be sure about the absence of such an umbrella).

So, Israel can afford to have an overt de-nuking safe in the knowledge that her enemies must always take into account the US protective umbrella.

Another scenario is that the non-prolif mullahs persuade Israel to publicly renounce nukes yet have an implicit understanding of not blowing the whistle on the Israeli arsenal -- appearance of de-nuking without actual complete de-nuking. That opens up some interesting possibilities for the non-prolif mullahcracy.

So P5 + Israel alone may not suffice, from an Indian persepective.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Kuttan » 05 Jan 2004 00:05

At some propitious time in the future, India I hope will "open" conducted Package Tours of "all" :roll: nook-e-leer facilities. With suitable fanfare about "safeguards". And pay some baksheesh along with the donations to the NMD program.

My sense is that this is what Dubya intended by the recent comment about "would be good if India's nooks were secure as well, now that TSP is dong-less".

In India, the Babucracy needs to learn the virtues of "openness", American style. Start by removing silly rules like "Photography phorbidden onlee over Indian territory".

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby Calvin » 05 Jan 2004 00:30

Sriman: I don't disagree. There are really three situations:

(a) Pakistan denuked
(b) Pakistan and Israel denuked
(c) Israel denuked

(c) does not worry us as much as (a) and (b). There is no doubt that (a) will result in considerable pressure on GOI.

However the situation where both Pakistan and Israel are denuked would result in India being the sole hold-out. Without Russian support things could go south.

The current strategy seems to be that of silence in the apparent hope that the focus does not turn on us. And may be that is the best strategy - "fly under the radar" until you are big enough to take them on. Perhaps one strategy is to use PSI to effectively sideline NPT.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby svinayak » 05 Jan 2004 01:33

Originally posted by Calvin:
Probably more important that Israel not be denuked than Pakistan. There have to be non-P5 nuclear nations.
They are trying to make sure that outside of P5 nations other countries do not have any nukes.
The timing of NPT extension in 1995 should tell a story about how confident they were/are in making sure that no non-P5 countries will ever have any nuclear weapons program.

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Re: Pakistan Nuclear Proliferation - 25 Dec 2003

Postby svinayak » 05 Jan 2004 01:39

Originally posted by Sriman:

The US will not permit any existential threat to the state of Israel from another state. There will always be a US umbrella and more importantly the enemies of Israel will believe that there will be such an umbrella (or, more precisely, can never be sure about the absence of such an umbrella).
With Iraq in US control, this is taken care of.

That is why we are seeing non-proliferation discussion in Israel.


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