Pakistan Nuclear Program: Kahuta in the Crosshairs of India & Israel in 1980s

Recent death of Pakistani nuclear scientist Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan has brought back memories of the success of Pakistan's nuclear program in the face of extreme adversity. This story came into particularly sharp focus by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz's headline "How Pakistan's A.Q. Khan, Father of the 'Muslim Bomb,' Escaped Mossad Assassination".  The opponents' efforts to stop what they called "The Muslim Bomb" exemplified "by all means necessary" madness, including assassinations of scientists. It included a joint India-Israel plan to attack and destroy Kahuta, the location of the Khan Research Lab (KRL) tasked with enriching uranium to build the bomb. Accounts of this plan have emerged from multiple sources in India, Israel and Pakistan.  

Dr. Abul Qadeer Khan

Joint India-Israel plan was developed to attack and destroy Khan Research Lab, named after Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, in1982. The plan involved Israeli F-16 fighters carrying bombs and F-15 air superiority aircraft providing air defense to the attacking aircraft. The Israeli aircraft would fly from an airbase in India.  

India-Israel Partnership

Adrian Levy and Catherine Scott-Clark:

British journalists Adrian Levy and Catherine Scott-Clark, authors of ‘Deception: Pakistan, the US, and the Global Weapons Conspiracy’, have reported that the Israeli Air Force was to launch an attack on Kahuta. The book claims that “in March 1984, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi signed off (on) the Israeli-led operation bringing India, Pakistan, and Israel to within a hair’s breadth of a nuclear conflagration”. Here is an excerpt of Levy's book:

"In February 1983, with the strike plan at an advanced stage, Indian military officials had travelled secretly to Israel, which had a common interest in eliminating Khan, to buy electronic warfare equipment to neutralize Kahuta’s air defenses. On 25 February 1983, Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi had accused Pakistan of “covertly attempting to make nuclear weapons,” and three days later, Raja Ramanna, director of India’s Bhabha Atomic Research Center, had revealed that India, too, was developing a uranium enrichment facility. Suspecting something was brewing, the ISI sent a message to their Indian intelligence counterparts in RAW that autumn, and as a result Munir Ahmed Khan of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission met Dr. Ramanna at the Imperial Hotel in Vienna. He warned Ramanna that if India were to strike at Kahuta, Pakistan would hit India’s nuclear facilities at Trombay. It lay downwind from the teeming Indian city of Mumbai and an attack would result in the release of “massive amounts of radiation to a large populated area, causing a disaster.”

Indian Defense Analyst Bharat Karnad:

Indian defense analyst Bharat Karnad has also reported about  the Israel-India plan, citing Israeli sources. Here's Karnad's account:

"....I met with the Israeli army chief Moshe Dayan’s legendary MilIntel head from the 1956 Sinai Operations, retired Major General Aharon Yaariv then in Reserve and called up for duty, at the Kiryat Shimona kibbutz just this side of the Israeli border. It was Yaariv who told me over breakfast the story of how Indira Gandhi had first approved of an Israeli strike on the Pakistani uranium enrichment centrifuge complex in Kahuta in 1982 with Indian help but called off the raid just before it got underway. The Israelis who had taken out Saddam Hussein’s Osiraq military reactor in Baghdad in June 1981 had planned the attack, according to Yaariv, thus: A sortie of six IsAF F-16s and like number of F-15s flying combat air patrol (CAP) were to come in from Haifa over the southern Arabian Sea into Jamnagar where the crews would rest up for a couple of days, and tie-up last minute, minor, changes in the flight and mission plans. The IsAF strike and CAP aircraft would then take off from Jamnagar, fly over central India and into Udhampur where previously IsAF C-17s would have landed with a cargo of deep penetration and detonation weapons for use on Kahuta targets. The Israelis had warned GOI that their aircraft would fly with Israeli roundels and entirely unmasked because, as Yaariv put it, they didn’t trust the Indians, who would be the principal beneficiaries, to not claim that it was a solely Israeli initiative in which India had no role whatsoever. “We wanted India to be fully involved and implicated and to share in the responsibility for the mission”, he told me, even though the IsAF could have carried out the entire operation all by itself using aerial refuelers as was done on the strike on the PLO HQ outside Tunis (over 1,500 miles away) in 1985. The plans were thereafter for the Israeli F-16-F-15 complement to top off their tanks, upload the special heavy ordnance on fuselage points and take off, flying in the lee of the mountains to avoid Pakistani radar detection, before coming into the open for the final bomb run over target — two F-16s at a time drooping (sic) their loads and egressing as the F-15s circled overhead to take care of any interference by PAF air defence aircraft. The attacks completed the F-16s would continue flying west, out of Pakistani airspace, before dipping southwards and returning to home base. The IsAF aircraft breaking out into the open from the mountain shadows would not have afforded PAF and Pakistani RBS-70 anti-aircraft guns (ex-Sweden) enough time to erect and fire away. (Wrote about it first in the Sunday Observer in the mid 1980s.)" 

Pakistan's Brigadier Feroz Hasan Khan:

Pakistani Brigadier Feroz Hasan Khan, the author of "Eating Grass: The Making of the Pakistani Bomb", described it in his book as follows: 

"... Pakistani intelligence picked up leads of Israeli and Indian intelligence collaboration and discovered that the Indian Air Force had begun planning a strike on Pakistan’s nuclear facilities. India conducted a feasibility study on an Osirak-type attack against Pakistan at its Combat College, and the Indian Air Force conducted a series of exercises related to this study, some of which used top-of-the-line Jaguar aircraft. Meanwhile, Israel offered a new proposal that would accomplish New Delhi’s goals. Under this new plan, Israeli planes would take off from an Indian Air Force base in Jamnagar, refuel at a satellite airfield somewhere in northern India, and in the final stage, the planes would track the Himalayas to avoid early radar detection before penetrating Pakistani airspace.”   

President Musharraf on Dr. AQ Khan's Contribution: 

In a Dawn TV interview with Naeem Bukhari, former President of Pakistan General Pervez Musharraf explained the complexity of the development of the nuclear bomb. He recognized Dr. AQ Khan's major contribution to the development of uranium enrichment process but went on to elaborate that it takes a lot more to build a bomb. To put it perspective, Brigadier Feroz Khan, author of "Eating Grass: The Making of the Pakistani Bomb", cites a 1968 UN study's finding that it takes at least 500 scientists and 1300 engineers with relevant training and skills to have a nuclear weapons program. Unlike most western accounts of Pakistani nuclear program which begin and end with A.Q. Khan's network, Brig Feroz H. Khan's scholarly work "Eating Grass" offers a very comprehensive story of "The Making of The Pakistani Bomb". Feroz Khan takes the reader through the interdisciplinary nature and the inherent complexity of what it takes to develop, build and operationalize a nuclear weapons arsenal.

Western Media Coverage:

A Stanford study of the western media coverage of Pakistan's nuclear program found it to be negative. Here's an excerpt from "Media's Use of Propaganda to Persuade People's Attitude, Beliefs and Behaviors" by Johnnie Manzaria & Jonathon Bruck:    

"In order to get a better feel for how the United States media is able to persuade the public to think about Pakistan’s nuclear technology in a negative way, it is helpful to see how the same media is able to make a different county’s nuclear technology appear unrelated to global stability and safety. In effect, the purpose of the propaganda will be to ensure that French nuclear technology appears non-threatening. In order to achieve this goal, the media had to take the focus of nuclear technology away from the military implications and focus it elsewhere. Many articles that came out in newspapers across America after France exploded their first atomic bomb on February 13, 1960 shifted the focus toward more political themes. This is a clear example of the Dune affect, which states that those who control the media control the opinions of the people. Subjectively, the media focuses on shifting the focus from something bad to something good when it serves the ideology they wish to spread. Furthermore, it is possible for this to be work because this exploits a well-known principle of human behavior which says, "people simply like to have reasons for what they do" (Cialdini 3)............Thus, the media only needs to give a reason for their message despite its validity in order for it to be accepted" The Jerusalem Post and the Washington Post articles also take another approach to the propagandistic tactic of creating an enemy as friend of enemy. Not only do both of them link Pakistan to Iran, Syria, and Libya politically--by showing ties between the countries--they further connect the countries through religion by using the coined term: Islamic bomb. The term is not a new one, originating in the 1970’s after the former President of Pakistan Zulfikar Ali Bhutto referred to the desire to produce a nuclear bomb to help counter the nuclear arsenals of the Christians, Communists, and eventually Hindus (Downie A20). Largely misquoted, the term became used in much of the anti-Pakistani propaganda of labeling by generalization. 1In fact, both the articles in the Washington Post and the Jerusalem Post make references to the potential threat of an "Islamic bomb." Such references are made despite repeated statements from the Pakistani government explaining that Pakistan does not intend to share any of its nuclear technology with any country. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said, "No one should give religious color to the success achieved by our nuclear scientists.... It is incorrect to call it an Islamic bomb" (Moore 19). Despite the Pakistani attempts to disavow the notion of an Islamic Bomb, American media has been using the term rather liberally as a propaganda tactic of dehumanization, a tactic that involves lumping a group together in such a way that takes away any individuality. 1This is effective because we systematically blur distinctions and insist that the enemy remain faceless so that any acts are done not against men, women, and children, but a mass identity and in this case surrounded by the group with the "Islamic bomb." Such techniques can be found in even scholarly works, such as one written through the Center for Strategic and International Studies at Georgetown University where the term Islamic Bomb is used to persuade the public to see nuclear proliferation into South Asia as a threat to national security. Using the faceless enemy tactic, the paper written by Rodney Jones states that Pakistan’s centrifuge program in 1979 "were accompanied by suggestions that the program was financed by Libya and dramatized the notion that the end result would be an Islamic bomb"" . 


Sources from India, Israel and Pakistan have confirmed that India and Israel secretly planned to attack and destroy Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan Research Lab in Kahuta, Pakistan in early 1980s. It was intended to stop Pakistan from enriching uranium to build a nuclear bomb. Pakistani ISI learned of the secret plan and tipped off the Pakistan Air Force which started increased patrols. PAF was also told to be ready to strike at nuclear sites in Trombay in India and Dimona in Israel. Meanwhile, the ISI let the Indians and the Israelis know that Pakistan would retaliate, bringing "India, Pakistan, and Israel to within a hair’s breadth of a nuclear conflagration". In the end, better sense prevailed in New Delhi with the Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi rescinding her orders.

Here's a video of President Pervez Musharraf speaking about Dr. AQ Khan's contribution to the Pakistani atomic bomb development:

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

India's Indigenous Copies of Nukes and Missiles 

Eating Grass: The Making of the Pakistani Bomb

Pakistan's Shaheen 3 Can Hit Deep Inside India and Israel

Western Media Propaganda Against Pakistani Nuclear Program by Manzaria & Bruck

Pakistan's Defense Industry Going High-Tech

Islamophobia Has Doubled Since 911

Modi's India: A Paper Elephant?

Scientist Reveals Indian Nuke Test Fizzled

The Wisconsin Project

Top American CIA Official on Pakistan ISI

India, Pakistan Comparison 2010

Can India "Do a Lebanon" in Pakistan?

Global Firepower Comparison

Evaluation of Military Strengths--India vs. Pakistan

Only the Paranoid Survive

India Races Ahead in Space

21st Century High-Tech Warfare

World Military Spending

Indian Attempts to Scuttle F-16s For Pakistan

Riaz Haq's YouTube Channel

PakAlumni: Pakistani Social Network


Riaz Haq said…
#Israeli consulate poster promoting #Zionism and #Hindutva event in #Mumbai #India. It has pictures of #Zionist leader Theodor Hertzl and #Hindu Nationalist leader of RSS VD Savarkar
Riaz Haq said…
Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin writes to Margaret Thatcher in 1979, warning of the threat posed by Pakistan's Nuclear Program

As of the late 1970s, Pakistan knew that Israel saw its nuclear program as a clear and present threat. Fears of a possible Israeli raid were fuelled by targeted attacks conducted between 1979 and 1981 against AQ Khan’s European suppliers; attacks that the Pakistani government believed (and not without reason) that the Israeli Mossad was behind.[1] In 1979, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin launched a letter writing campaign in an attempt to convince Western leaders to clamp-down on the Pakistani program. One such letter from May 1979, addressed to British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and published today in the NPIHP Digital Archive, stressed that “to the people of Israel this could, one day, become a mortal danger.”[2] Warning against the collaboration between Pakistan and Colonel Qaddafi of Libya, Begin cautioned Thatcher of “what could happen in the Middle East, and particularly to the men, women and children in Israel should the lethal weapons of mass killing and destruction fall at any time into the hands of an absolute ruler like Colonel Qaddafi.” The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office was not impressed and saw Begin’s letter as an opportunity to raise the issue of Israel’s own nuclear status with the Israeli government and “underline to the Israelis… that they also have a part to play in ensuring that nuclear weapons are not introduced into the Middle East.”

Pakistani fears of an Israeli attack only grew after Israel’s successful raid against the Iraqi Osirak nuclear site on 7 June 1981. The Pakistani government read a clear message from this event: even if Washington is willing to ignore a clandestine nuclear program such as Iraq’s, Israel was not. Former Brigadier General Feroz Hassan Khan details the Pakistani fear of a joint Israeli-Indian attack against Pakistan’s Kahuta nuclear facility in the mid-1980s in his book Eating Grass.[3]According to researchers Levy and Scott-Clark it was the Americans who tipped off the Pakistanis in 1984 about a possible Indian-Israeli attack against Kahuta; they quote Pakistan’s vice chief of army staff, General K.M Arif, acknowledging that “Our friends [the Americans] let us know what the Israelis and Indians intended to do and so we let them know how we would respond . . .”[4]

As the research supporting my book Bargaining on Nuclear Tests shows, the 1984 American tip-off to Pakistan was not an isolated incident. Reassured by Pakistan’s promise not to conduct a nuclear test, the Reagan administration made numerous gestures of leniancy towards Pakistan’s nuclear efforts during the 1980s. In Bargaining on Nuclear Tests I explore how the Reagan administration decided to turn a de-facto blind eye to Pakistan’s nuclear efforts—limiting itself to diplomatic reprimands in the face of Pakistani violations of nonproliferation commitments.[5]

Riaz Haq said…
Media's Use of Propaganda to Persuade People's Attitude, Beliefs and Behaviors
Media's Use of Propaganda to Persuade People's Attitude, Beliefs and Behaviors

2Johnnie Manzaria & Jonathon Bruck

Thus the distinction at this point is that because the article began by subliminally suggesting connections between Pakistan and a nation connected to terrorism (Iran), the ability of the aforementioned passage to link Pakistan with Syria and Libya all the more affective. By creating the sensation that Pakistan is connected with such nations early on, the notion becomes all the more believable later, even when no direct evidence is presented.

24The Washington Post article is not merely an isolated incident. We have found many examples of this propagandistic approach in our research, from newspapers in the United States and other ally nations (Fisk 9, Goldenberg 19, Stockill 22). Interestingly, a Jewish newspaper in Jerusalem adopted this approach as well. The Jerusalem Post published a similar article on Pakistan’s atomic weapons, starting with a reference to the Iranian Foreign Minister. Using the same propagandistic method of creating an enemy through association, the article stated: "Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi’s visit to Islamabad a few days after Pakistan joined the nuclear club seemed to emphasize [the dangers of an ‘Islamic bomb’]" (Steinberg 8).

25The Jerusalem Post and the Washington Post articles also take another approach to the propagandistic tactic of creating an enemy as friend of enemy. Not only do both of them link Pakistan to Iran, Syria, and Libya politically--by showing ties between the countries--they further connect the countries through religion by using the coined term: Islamic bomb. The term is not a new one, originating in the 1970’s after the former President of Pakistan Zulfikar Ali Bhutton referred to the desire to produce a nuclear bomb to help counter the nuclear arsenals of the Christians, Communists, and eventually Hindus (Downie A20).

126Largely misquoted, the term became used in much of the anti-Pakistani propaganda of labeling by generalization. 1In fact, both the articles in the Washington Post and the Jerusalem Post make references to the potential threat of an "Islamic bomb." Such references are made despite repeated statements from the Pakistani government explaining that Pakistan does not intend to share any of its nuclear technology with any country. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said, "No one should give religious color to the success achieved by our nuclear scientists.... It is incorrect to call it an Islamic bomb" (Moore 19).

127Despite the Pakistani attempts to disavow the notion of an Islamic Bomb, American media has been using the term rather liberally as a propaganda tactic of dehumanization, a tactic that involves lumping a group together in such a way that takes away any individuality. 1This is effective because we systematically blur distinctions and insist that the enemy remain faceless so that any acts are done not against men, women, and children, but a mass identity and in this case surrounded by the group with the "Islamic bomb."

28Such techniques can be found in even scholarly works, such as one written through the Center for Strategic and International Studies at Georgetown University where the term Islamic Bomb is used to persuade the public to see nuclear proliferation into South Asia as a threat to national security. Using the faceless enemy tactic, the paper written by Rodney Jones states that Pakistan’s centrifuge program in 1979 "were accompanied by suggestions that the program was financed by Libya and dramatized the notion that the end result would be an Islamic bomb" (44).

Riaz Haq said…
Two Unlikely Allies Come Together in Fight Against Muslims - The New York Times

A Web site run by militant Hindus in Queens and Long Island was recently shut down by its service provider because of complaints that it advocated hatred and violence toward Muslims. But a few days later, the site was back on the Internet. The unlikely rescuers were some radical Jews in Brooklyn who are under investigation for possible ties to anti-Arab terrorist organizations in Israel.

The unusual alliance brings together two extreme religious philosophies from different parts of the world that, at first glance, have little in common. But living elbow-to-elbow in the ethnic mix of New York, the small groups of Hindus and Jews have discovered that sharing a distant enemy is sufficient basis for friendship.

So tight is their anti-Muslim bond that some of the Hindus marched alongside the Jews in the annual Salute to Israel Parade on Fifth Avenue last month. Yesterday, several of the Jews joined a protest outside the United Nations against the treatment of Hindus in Afghanistan by the Taliban regime.

''We are fighting the same war,'' said Rohit Vyasmaan, who helps run the Hindu Web site,, from his home in Flushing, Queens. ''Whether you call them Palestinians, Afghans or Pakistanis, the root of the problem for Hindus and Jews is Islam.''


Mr. Guzofsky said his group had not officially endorsed the views on the Hindu Web site, but they support the right of the Hindus to express them. For that reason, there is a link to on the Kahane Web site and, Mr. Guzofsky posted an announcement this week about the Hindu protest outside the United Nations.

''It is a core issue of free speech,'' Mr. Guzofsky said. ''We have made it clear to the folks at that if their site ever comes down again, we will offer them a mirror site with ours so people can be updated concerning their events. I would hope they would do the same for us.''

Mr. Vyasmaan said there is no doubt that the favor would be returned. Already, he said, Hindus associated with the Web site have written to Congress urging that the two Kahane political parties be removed from the State Department's list of terrorist organizations. It is a cause very dear to Mr. Guzofsky, who said he was recently asked by the authorities to submit fingerprints and handwriting samples for use in their investigation into his Brooklyn operations.

Mr. Vyasmaan said doubters of the Hindu-Jewish commitment need to look no further than his home in Flushing, where he displays a large picture of Rabbi Kahane.

''He was a great man,'' Mr. Vyasmaan said. ''It almost appeared as if he was speaking for the Hindus.''
Riaz Haq said…

Puar’s formulations, insights, arguments, and provocations have featured prominently in queer activist circles against racism, Islamophobia, and Zionism in North America, Western Europe, and Israel/ Palestine. The book’s political valence has also been a part of ongoing conversations on the emerging alliances between queer politics, neoliberalism, and Hindu nationalism (Hindutva) in India—the locational context of my engagement.

Riaz Haq said…
Speaking at #dismantlingglobalhindutva conf, Leena Manimekalai, producer of underproduction film "Rape Nation", said: “Hindutva has redefined nationalism as a genocidal impulse to rape and murder non-Hindu women. It is a celebration of toxic masculinity.”

The transgender studies scholar Aniruddha Dutta showed in his presentation how the BJP’s rise had even affected the Hijra tradition where there has been a transformation from a “syncretic Indo-Islamic tradition to a more orthodox version of Hinduism”. The Dalit feminist P. Sivakami critiqued Hindutva as having “no vision for Hindu women except that it intends to prepare and reorient them against their imaginary enemy, i.e., the Muslim man, thus diverting her from her real struggles”. The feminist scholar Akanksha Mehta segued from this presentation, stating that “notions of gender and sexuality rooted in caste and race are crucial to the Hindutva project” even as she compared the analogous role of women among savarna (caste) Hindus and Zionists.
Riaz Haq said…
Please read the following:


By Victor Gilinsky; Paul Leventhal June 15, 1998

You wouldn't know it from news reports, but most of the military plutonium stocks India dipped into for its recent nuclear tests came from a research project provided years ago by the United States and Canada. India had promised both countries it would not use this plutonium for bombs.

If Washington and Ottawa were now to keep India to its promise, and verify this, India would lose more than half the weapons-grade plutonium for its nuclear bombs and missiles. The United States and Canada should make this an essential condition for the lifting of economic sanctions.

The plutonium in question is the approximately 600 pounds -- enough for about 50 bombs -- produced in India's CIRUS research reactor since it began operating in 1960. This was an "Atoms for Peace" reactor built by Canada and made operable by an essential 21 tons of heavy water supplied by the United States. In return for this assistance, India promised both suppliers in writing that the reactor would be reserved for "peaceful purposes."

India used plutonium from this reactor for its 1974 nuclear explosion. When the facts emerged, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi insisted there had been no violation of the peaceful-use commitments because India had set off a "peaceful nuclear explosion." The Indian scientist then in charge, Raja Ramanna, now has admitted it was a bomb all along. And India now has declared itself a nuclear-weapons state on the basis of its current tests. With the decades-old "peaceful" pretense stripped away, the United States and Canada should make unambiguously clear that India may not use CIRUS plutonium for warheads or related research.

The fact that neither capital has uttered a peep about this matter is symptomatic of Western complicity in the South Asian nuclear crisis and of the present paralysis in dealing with it. There is also the matter of a 1963 agreement covering two U.S.-supplied nuclear power reactors at Tarapur and their fuel. The radioactive used fuel from these reactors is in storage and contains most of India's "reactor-grade" plutonium. India has said it will reprocess the used fuel to extract the plutonium for use as civilian power-reactor fuel. But reactor-grade plutonium also is explosive and, once separated, it could be used by India's scientists for rapid deployment in warheads. There is enough Tarapur plutonium for hundreds of them.

Under the 1963 agreement, India must get U.S. approval to reprocess. India disputes this and insists it is free to reprocess the used fuel at any time. The State Department, historically reluctant to tangle with India, rationalized Tarapur as an unnecessary irritant in U.S.-India relations and put this disagreement in the sleeping-dogs category.
Riaz Haq said…
Abdul Qadeer Khan obituary | Pakistan | The Guardian

When India conducted its first nuclear test in May 1974, Khan was working for the FDO laboratory in Amsterdam, an institute involved in research into centrifuges, connected to the Urenco plant that provided uranium enrichment technology for the British, Dutch and German governments.

Determined to help his country match its rival he volunteered his services. Within months, the prime minister, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, asked the Pakistani embassy in the Netherlands to contact him and by the end of the year Khan had started copying designs for centrifuges and putting together a list of companies that could provide the technology Pakistan would need to produce highly enriched uranium.

Numerous opportunities to prevent Khan’s activities were missed. In 1975 Dutch police officers monitored a meeting between Khan and a Pakistani diplomat. While they felt they had evidence to arrest him, they decided to keep him under surveillance.

By October suspicions about Khan were growing and he was transferred away from work enriching uranium. But Pakistan had already begun buying components for its own uranium-enrichment programme from various European companies that supplied Urenco.

He left the Netherlands for Pakistan in December, taking with him copied blueprints for centrifuges and other parts. A Dutch court later sentenced him in absentia to four years’ imprisonment for nuclear espionage, though the conviction was later overturned on a technicality.

He reappeared the following year working at the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), run by Munir Ahmad Khan, who was focusing on the plutonium route. Following disagreements within PAEC, Bhutto gave Khan control over Pakistan’s uranium enrichment programme and he established the Engineering Research Laboratory (ERL). Pakistan successfully enriched uranium at Khan’s laboratory in 1978.

Pakistan’s efforts were a source of widespread concern. In April 1979 the US president Jimmy Carter imposed economic sanctions on Pakistan to try to halt its progress. Whether this pressure could have made a difference is unknown.

On Christmas Day that year the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. The US saw the opportunity to weaken its adversary by increasing support for its opponents, the mujahideen. But to do so required Pakistan’s support, which gave the country a new-found strategic significance. Its quid pro quo was for the US to turn a blind eye to its nuclear programme. The US agreed, the sanctions were lifted and instead Pakistan received a generous package of assistance. Khan was later to claim that the leeway Pakistan received served to expedite the nuclear programme.

By the mid-1980s, with ERL now renamed the AQ Khan Research Laboratory (KRL), Pakistan had produced enough HEU to make a nuclear weapon. Meanwhile Khan had a surplus of centrifuges, which he started selling to Iran. He continued over-ordering the components and passing them on. He is also believed to have offered technology to Iraq, an offer which was not taken up.

Riaz Haq said…
#India's Ruling #BJP's ideological parent RSS's Chief Bhagwat: "the only solution to the pain of Partition lies in undoing it." #Pakistan has condemned Bhagwat's Partition remarks, calls it 'delusional thinking, historical revisionism'. #Modi #Hindutva

Pakistan on Saturday strongly condemned the statement of Hindu nationalist group Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat's statement — in which he said "the only solution to the pain of Partition lies in undoing it" — terming it "delusional thinking and historical revisionism".

According to a report by The Indian Express, the RSS issued a statement on Thursday quoting Bhagwat as saying that the India of 2021 was not the same as the one in 1947 while speaking at a book launch event.

"Partition has happened once, it won't happen again. Those who think that way will face partition themselves," he said.

The RSS chief said if India wanted to contribute to the world, it would need to become "capable", adding, "the only solution to the pain of Partition lies in undoing it."

Reacting to the remarks, the Foreign Office, in its statement issued today, said Pakistan completely rejected the "highly provocative and irresponsible remarks", pointing out that the RSS chief had also indulged in "such delusional thinking and historical revisionism" previously.

"Pakistan has repeatedly highlighted the threat posed to regional peace and stability by the toxic mix of the extremist Hindutva ideology (Hindu Rashtra) and expansionist foreign policy (Akhand Bharat) being pursued by the ruling RSS-BJP dispensation in India."

The FO warned that the "dangerous mindset" was aimed to "completely marginalise and displace" minorities in India, and also posed an existential threat to all South Asian neighbours.

The world was witness to the systematic usurpation of the rights of minorities, especially Muslims, in India and the unabated repression of Kashmiris in occupied Kashmir, the statement noted. In addition, the world had also seen India's reckless misadventures in February 2019 —when Indian aircraft violated the Line of Control, it said.

"Pakistan has consistently opposed India's hegemonic impulses and demonstrated a firm resolve to thwart any aggressive designs. While committed to peace, the people and armed forces of Pakistan are fully capable of defending the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country," the Foreign Office reiterated.

It advised the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the RSS to "refrain from making such provocative and irresponsible statements, accept the established realities, and learn to follow the imperatives of peaceful coexistence."

The Partition of British India into two separate states of Pakistan and India, on August 14 and 15, 1947, respectively, was a tumultuous time in history that caused communal riots, mass casualties and a colossal wave of migration.
Riaz Haq said…
Solution to pain of Partition is undoing it: Mohan Bhagwat
ūüĒī The book, ‘Vibhajan Kalin Bharat ke Sakshi’ (The Witnesses of Partition-era India), has been written by Krishnanand Sagar. “The RSS chief also said this is India of 2021 and not of 1947.

The only solution to the pain of Partition lies in undoing it, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Thursday.

“If we want to become a strong nation and contribute in the world’s welfare, the Hindu society will have to become capable. Bharat ke vibhajan ki peeda ka samadhan, vibhajan ko nirast karne mein hi hai (the solution to the pain of Partition is in undoing it),” the RSS quoted Bhagwat as saying at a book launch event in Noida.

The book, ‘Vibhajan Kalin Bharat ke Sakshi’ (The Witnesses of Partition-era India), has been written by Krishnanand Sagar.

“The RSS chief also said this is India of 2021 and not of 1947. Partition has happened once, it won’t happen again. Those who think that way will face partition themselves,” the RSS statement said. Bhagwat said all should read history and accept its truth, according to the statement.

“Indian ideology is about taking everyone along. It is not about claiming to be right and proving others wrong,” he said. “Contrary to this, the thought process of Islamic extremists is to prove others wrong and claim themselves to be right. This was the main reason for struggle in the past.”

The programme was presided over by retired judge of Allahabad High Court Shambhu Nath Srivastav. The RSS statement said he discussed the genocide of the Hindus till date.

Riaz Haq said…
#Israel's #Intelligence Agency #Mossad bombed #German, #Swiss firms to stop #Pakistani nukes. #Pakistan's AQ Khan crisscrossed #Europe during the 1980s to secure #technology & blueprints from Western institutions & companies to develop #nuclear weapons.

Two German engineers, Gotthard Lerch and Heinz Mebus, along with Naraghi, who earned his PhD in the USA, met with Khan’s group in Switzerland. Additional meetings took place in Dubai in the UAE.
With the fast-moving efforts by Pakistan to jumpstart its nuclear weapons program, the US government sought, without success, to get the German and Swiss governments to crack down on companies in their countries that were aiding Pakistan. Suspected Mossad agents allegedly took action in Switzerland and Germany against the companies and engineers involved in aiding Pakistan.

According to the NZZ, “A few months after the unsuccessful intervention of the American state department in Bonn [then-capital of West Germany] and Bern, unknown perpetrators carried out explosive attacks on three of these companies: on February 20, 1981 on the house of a leading employee of Cora Engineering Chur; on May 18, 1981 on the factory building of the W√§lischmiller company in Markdorf; and finally, on November 6th, 1981, on the engineering office of Heinz Mebus in Erlangen. All three attacks resulted in only property damage, only Mebus's dog was killed.”
The paper noted that “ The explosives attacks were accompanied by several phone calls in which strangers threatened other delivery companies in English or broken German. Sometimes the caller would order the threats to be taped. ‘The attack that we carried out against the W√§lischmiller company could happen to you too’ - this is how the Leybold-Heraeus administration office was intimidated. Siegfried Schertler, the owner of VAT at the time, and his head salesman Tinner were called several times on their private lines. Schertler also reported to the Swiss Federal Police that the Israeli secret service had contacted him. This emerges from the investigation files, which the NZZ was able to see for the first time.”
Schertler said an employee of the Israeli embassy in Germany, who was named David, contacted the VAT executive. The company head said that David urged him to stop “these businesses” regarding nuclear weapons and switch to the textile business.
Swiss and German companies derived significant profits from their business with the Khan nuclear weapons network. The NZZ reported “Many of these suppliers, mainly from Germany and Switzerland, soon entered into business worth millions with Pakistan: Leybold-Heraeus, W√§lischmiller, Cora Engineering Chur, Vakuum-Apparate-Technik (VAT, with the chief buyer Friedrich Tinner) or the Buchs metal works, to name but a few to name a few. They benefited from an important circumstance: the German and Swiss authorities interpreted their dual-use provisions very generously: Most of the components that are required for uranium enrichment, for example, high-precision vacuum valves, are primarily used for civil purposes.”

The NZZ reported that recently the National Security Archive in Washington published diplomatic correspondence from the US State Department from Bonn and Bern in 1980.
“This shows how the US resented the two countries' casual handling of the delicate deliveries to Pakistan. In a note from an employee, Bern's behavior was described as a ‘hands-off approach’ - the local authorities were accordingly accused of turning a blind eye. In the now released dispatches, which were previously classified as secret, those companies are listed for the first time that the US has accused of supporting the Pakistani nuclear weapons program with their deliveries. The list included around half a dozen companies each from Germany and Switzerland.”
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan is among twe­nty trading partners which have been placed on the ‘watch list’ of the US government. These countries, however, merit bilateral attention to address und­erlying intellectual property problems.

The 2022 “Special 301” report of the US Trade Representative (USTR), which is the annual review of the global state of intellectual property protection and enforcement, reviewed more than 100 trade partners for the 2022 special report and also placed 27 of them on the ‘Priority Watch List’.


China, Russia, India, four others on US property rights 'Priority Watch List'

Twenty trading partners are on the Watch List, and merit bilateral attention to address underlying IP problems - Algeria, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Guatemala, Mexico, Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.
Riaz Haq said…
#Nuclear arsenals of #China, #India, #Pakistan are growing. But it's not an arms race—yet. Combined arsenals of China (350 warheads), India (160) and Pakistan (165) are much smaller than #US's & #Russia's but exceed #British & #French stockpiles. #Nukes

Yet, in many ways, all three countries were hesitant nuclear powers. China did not deploy a missile capable of hitting the American mainland until the 1980s. When India and Pakistan fought a war over Kargil, in the disputed region of Kashmir, in the summer of 1999, India’s air force, tasked with delivering the bombs if needed, was not told what they looked like, how many there were or the targets over which they might have to be dropped.

All that has changed. China has been adding hundreds of new missile silos in recent years. When Pakistan celebrated its 60th birthday in 2007 it had roughly 60 nuclear warheads. Fifteen years on, that number has nearly tripled (see chart). The combined arsenals of China (350 warheads), India (160) and Pakistan (165), though modest by American and Russian standards (several thousand each), now exceed British and French stockpiles in Europe (around 500 in total). All three countries are emulating the American and Russian practice of having a nuclear “triad”: nukes deliverable from land, air and sea. South Asia’s nuclear era is entering a more mature phase.

That need not mean a more dangerous one. A new report by Ashley Tellis of the Carnegie Endowment, a think-tank in Washington, explores the dynamics among Asia’s three nuclear powers. Since 1998, most Western attention has focused on the risk of a conflagration between India and Pakistan over Kashmir. That danger persists. Yet the risk of an arms race has been exaggerated, argues Mr Tellis, a former State Department official.

India’s arsenal has grown slowly, he observes—it remains smaller than Pakistan’s—and its nuclear posture remains “remarkably conservative”. The comparison with the nuclear behemoths is instructive. America and Russia both maintain huge arsenals designed to enable so-called counterforce strikes—those which pre-emptively target the other side’s nuclear weapons to limit the damage they might do. That means their arsenals must be large, sophisticated and kept on high alert.

In contrast, China, India and Pakistan, despite their manifold differences, all view nukes as “political instruments” rather than “usable tools of war”, argues Mr Tellis. Both China and India, for instance, pledge that they would not use nuclear weapons unless an adversary had used weapons of mass destruction first, a commitment known as “no first use”. America disbelieves China’s promise, much as Pakistan doubts India’s. But the Chinese and Indian arsenals are consistent with the pledges, insists Mr Tellis.

He calculates that if India wanted to use a tactical (or low-yield) nuclear weapon to take out a Pakistani missile on the ground, it would have to do so within a few minutes of the Pakistani launcher leaving its storage site. That is implausible. India does not have missiles that can launch within minutes of an order, nor those accurate to within tens of metres of their target. And, for now, China’s rocketeers also train and operate on the assumption that their forces would be used in retaliation. The result is that things are more stable than the swelling arsenals suggest.
Riaz Haq said…

Christopher Clary
A bit of a tour d'horizon of India-Israel Aerospece Industries cooperation in the Indian Express the other day. "The reporter was in Israel at the invitation of the Embassy of Israel in New Delhi." A few highlights. /1

From UAVs to refuellers: How Israel is helping India keep an eye on LAC
These days, Avi Bleser, vice-president of marketing for India at Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), says he is working closely with the Indian Army and Indian Air Force to tailor solutions for their defence needs.


Christopher Clary
IAI is working closely with India on "the induction of Heron MK II, a state-of-the-art UAV that can fly at a height of 35,000 feet, cover a radius of 1000 km, see through dense clouds, work in bad weather & fly for 45 hours. It’s learnt that MK IIs are being deployed in Leh." /2


Christopher Clary
"Last year, the Indian Army had also taken on lease Heron TPs, a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) for all-weather missions, from IAI. Heron TP drones are one of the two drones made in Israel that can be armed, if needed." /3


Christopher Clary
"The IAI and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) have signed a joint venture whereby IAI will not only offer UAVs to India, but also help HAL in manufacturing them in India." /4


Christopher Clary
"Earlier this year, HAL signed [an MoU] with IAI to convert civil passenger aircraft into a multi-mission tanker transport for air refuelling with cargo & transport capabilities. The MoU also covers conversion of passenger planes into freighter aircraft." /end
Riaz Haq said…
India, Israel, and Geopolitical Imaginaries of Cooperation and Oppression
Author: Nitasha Kaul
Date Published: June 17, 2022

Portrayals of India and Israel as strategic partners or allies in the oppression of Kashmiris and Palestinians often suggest that India emulates Israel in how it manages oppression. Yet, the designation of Israel as a unique source of learning for oppression limits the recognition of the indigenous Indian nature of the long-standing ideological and technological infrastructures of occupation in Kashmir. We must eschew simplistic geopolitical imaginaries of cooperation and oppression and pay greater attention to the similarities as well as the differences across contexts.

The contemporary global moment requires us to be alert to the multiple trajectories of repression. Tactics and technologies circulate amongst and between democracies and authoritarian regimes. Russian and Chinese models of digital authoritarianism have been regionally exported, and there has been Indian and Chinese mutual learning on modalities of repression. These circulations occur along supra- and intra-statal pathways, and via traffic in both economically profitable weapons and ideologies. To attend to these trajectories, we must carefully examine the preferred narratives adopted by the states as well as those offered by resistance and solidarity movements across national boundaries. In this context, the relationship between India and Israel is notable for how the two countries are celebrated as friendly partners for strategic cooperation, or alternatively, critiqued as allies for the parallel oppressions of Kashmiris and Palestinians.

The ties between India and Israel present a systematic divergence between official accounts of these relations and the perspectives of critical resistance scholarship on Palestine and Kashmir. The official story in the media unsurprisingly focuses on the mutually fertile and growing cooperation between India and Israel as strategic partners at every level of investment from infrastructure, innovation, and defense to people-to-people interaction. The bilateral trade between the two countries has been steadily increasing, and apart from growth in collaborative ventures, there is the imminent possibility of the conclusion of longstanding negotiations on the Free Trade Agreement between the two countries. Then, there is the resonance at the level of political leadership. The meeting between Netanyahu and Modi was perceived as a bromance between these leaders of deeply illiberal projects; the right-wing majoritarian nationalist projects championed by the regimes in the two countries both portray themselves as beleaguered by Islamists and resolute in combating terrorism.

On the other hand, there is no dearth of critical narratives that point to Kashmir and Palestine as being symmetrical occupations; here the focus is on the ways in which the oppressed populations in both cases are Muslims and oppressors are non-Muslims. India is the largest buyer of Israeli weapons and Israel is the second largest supplier to India; Israeli drones are used in Kashmir (one unmanned aerial vehicle called the Heron was specially adapted for such use). Indian forces have used Israeli Tavor rifles in 2008, used Spice-2000 guidance technology in the aftermath of Pulwama attacks in Kashmir in 2019, and bought Pegasus from Israel that same year.

Although these two portrayals of India and Israel as strategic partners for cooperation or allies in the oppression of Kashmiris and Palestinians are manifestly different, they have one important point in common. Both these narratives (often explicitly) suggest that India copies from Israel in the ways in which it manages oppression.

Riaz Haq said…
US holds title for world's most powerful military, Pakistan ranks 7th, Where does India stand?

Pakistan has entered the top 10 of the most powerful militaries in the world, securing the seventh spot. Japan and France have dropped to eighth and ninth respectively. The United States, Russia, and China remain the top three.

According to Global Firepower, a prominent data website specializing in defence-related information, the United States possesses the most powerful military force worldwide.

Russia and China follow closely in second and third place, respectively, while India secures the fourth position. The recently released 2023 Military Strength list, which evaluates over 60 factors, also highlights nations with comparatively weaker military forces such as Bhutan and Iceland.

The assessment by Global Firepower takes into account various criteria, including the number of military units, financial resources, logistical capabilities, and geographical considerations, to determine each nation's overall score.

"Our unique, in-house formula allows for smaller (and) more technologically-advanced nations to compete with larger (and) lesser-developed powers… special modifiers, in the form of bonuses and penalties, are applied to further refine the list which is compiled annually. Trends do not necessarily indicate a declining power as changes to the GFP formula can also account for this."

The report lists 145 countries and also compares each nation's year-on-year ranking changes.

Here are the 10 nations with the most powerful militaries in the world:

United States




United Kingdom

South Korea





Here are the 10 nations with the least powerful militaries in the world:








Central African Republic


Sierra Leone

The top four nations remain as they were in the 2022 Global Firepower list.

In a shift from the previous year's rankings, the United Kingdom has advanced from eighth to fifth place in terms of military strength. South Korea retains its sixth position from last year.

Notably, Pakistan has entered the top 10, securing the seventh spot. Conversely, Japan and France, which held the fifth and seventh positions respectively last year, have dropped to eighth and ninth this year.

Despite ongoing conflicts and Russia's "special operation" invasion of Ukraine in February of the previous year, Russia maintains its second position. The rankings reflect the evolving dynamics and complexities of global military capabilities and highlight the continuous assessment of various factors influencing military strength.
Riaz Haq said…
Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan: The Opennheimer Of Pakistan – OpEd

by Isha Noor

Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, a brilliant scientist whose exceptional work prompted Pakistan’s nuclear capabilities, appears as an enigmatic figure in the historical events where the strands of science and destiny interwine.

The “Opennheimer of Pakistan,” Abdul Qadeer Khan, was a visionary scientist whose contributions to nuclear technology changed the course of Pakistan. Dr. Khan’s journey was one of brilliance and controversy, leading to his position as a key player in Pakistan’s nuclear programme. Although appreciated in Pakistan for his part in building the nation’s nuclear deterrent, his efforts towards nuclear proliferation sparked concerns around the entire globe. Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan’s tale is still fascinating and t serves as a reminder of how much influence scientific knowledge has on determination of the future of nations. In the end, it is important to recognise both the achievements and the concerns around Dr. Khan to understand the complex interplay between science and politics in the context of nuclear proliferation.

Dr. Khan was born in Bhopal, India, on April 27, 1936, migrated to Pakistan in 1952 and began a remarkable journey that would completely changed the direction of his country’s history permanently. He became a symbol of scientific brilliance and national pride thanks to his groundbreaking contribution in the creation of Pakistan’s nuclear programme. This article examines Dr. Abdul Qadeer’s significant contribution to Pakistan’s nuclear programme and the circumstances that led to his perception as a danger to the West.

In the 1960s, Dr. Khan began his career as a scientist by studying metallurgical engineering in Germany. The foundation for his future contributions to Pakistan’s technological breakthroughs was created by this academic endeavour. As he ventured into the field of nuclear research, Dr. Khan’s experience in metallurgical engineering proved to be a valuable advantage. His early experiences in Western research labs broadened his knowledge.

The acquirement to uranium centrifuge blueprints, which turn uranium into weapons-grade fuel for nuclear fissile material, was a key contribution to Pakistan’s nuclear programme. While employed by the Anglo-Dutch-German nuclear engineering partnership Urenco, he was accused of stealing it from the Netherlands and transporting it to Pakistan in 1976. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the country’s former prime minister, assigned Khan control over the initiating uranium enrichment programme shortly after he returned to Pakistan. Khan later revealed in a newspaper interview that by 1978 his team had enriched uranium and that by 1984 they were all set to explode a nuclear bomb. Pakistan’s economy fell into a severe decline after the 1998 nuclear test because of the international sanctions.

The Nishan-e-Imtiaz was given to him by the government in recognition of his remarkable contributions in 1996 and again in 1998. . Although Dr. Khan is considered as a national hero in Pakistan, his work and Pakistan’s nuclear programme threatened Western countries, especially the United States. The West saw Pakistan’s groundbreaking achievement of nuclear weapons as a threat because it was concerned about the conflicts that could come with the proliferation of nuclear technology. The potential of nuclear technology slipping into the wrong hands was one of the most important issues that the West emphasised, particularly in the view of the unstable regional security climate. Calls for greater regulation of the transfer of nuclear technology and initiatives to stop proliferation were stimulated by this concern.

Riaz Haq said…
Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan: The Opennheimer Of Pakistan – OpEd

by Isha Noor

Pakistan’s relations with the West were crucial in the early 2000s by the disclosure of the Khan network. The network, an illegal proliferation network controlled by Dr. Khan, facilitated the sharing of nuclear technology with other countries, including Iran, Libya and North Korea. Geopolitical dynamics were complicated as a result of the Western response to Pakistan’s nuclear programme and Dr. Khan’s participation in proliferation activities. Pakistan was under pressure from the United States and other Western nations to stop developing nuclear weapons and abide by international non-proliferation standards. Pakistan was in a difficult situation as it tried to establish its right for national security while dealing with the foreign pressure.

It is crucial to comprehend the intricate context in which Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan’s acts took place. Pakistan believes in nuclear deterrence as the only way to maintain national security and safeguard the country’s sovereignty. In the beginning, Dr. Khan denied any kind of involvement in the nuclear proliferation but he confessed on national television in Pakistan in 2004 that he had given nuclear technology and centrifuge parts to other nations. He asserted that he did not have the Pakistani government’s consent and took full responsibility for his actions. After this confession, Khan was pardoned by Musharraf, although he later walked back his statements.

“I saved the country for the first time when I made Pakistan a nuclear nation and saved it again when I confessed and took the whole blame on myself,” Khan said in an interview while under effective house arrest.

Pakistan is the first and only Muslim country to have developed and tested nuclear weapons till the date. It was crucial for Pakistan to develop nuclear weapons because of the geostrategic threats including establishing deterrence to deter aggression, ensuring security against India’s nuclear threat, improving national prestige, achieving regional power balance and obtaining diplomatic leverage in peace negotiations. Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan’s work played a major role in the establishment of Pakistan’s nuclear programme.

In conclusion, Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan has been the only driving force behind Pakistan’s development of nuclear weapons. His outstanding achievements in the field of nuclear science significantly advanced the nation’s nuclear programme. Dr. Khan’s knowledge of uranium enrichment accelerated Pakistan’s progress towards nuclear capability. Dr. Khan played a crucial part in the creation of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, despite the controversies and international concerns. His contributions changed South Asia’s geostrategic environment, changing the security dynamics and strengthening Pakistan’s position on national security. As the curtains fall on the remarkable contributions of Dr. Khan, it is clear that his unwavering commitment, dedication, and groundbreaking accomplishmentsb have forever cemented his legacy as the Oppennheimer of Pakistan, a visionary scientist whose exceptional work will continue to inspire generations to come.
Riaz Haq said…
The FBI surveilled J. Robert Oppenheimer for months on one man's suggestion. During the surveillance, interviewees alleged he was feeding nuclear secrets to the Soviet Union.,information%20to%20the%20Soviet%20Union.

During an inquest into the actions of J. Robert Oppenheimer by the FBI, the agency accused the "father of the atomic bomb" of a number of false crimes, including espionage and the dissemination of nuclear information to the Soviet Union.

As depicted in Christopher Nolan's summer blockbuster biopic "Oppenheimer," then-FBI director J. Edgar Hoover began investigating Oppenheimer in 1953, at the suggestion of his political nemesis, businessman and member of the US Atomic Energy Commission Lewis Strauss.

Based on both Strauss's recommendation and associations the US government found suspicious, Hoover allowed for a wiretap of Oppenheimer's phone — which was illegal, according to the Los Alamos National Laboratory — to gather evidence after Strauss accused the physicist of holding communist sympathies.

Documents from the investigation include hundreds of pages of phone records, along with interviews from his colleagues.

The then-dean of UC Berkeley's school of chemistry, Kenneth Pitzer, said to agents in 1952 that his opinion of Oppenheimer had changed over the years — earlier, in 1947, he had said that he had "the utmost confidence in both the loyalty and the scientific ability" of Oppenheimer, according to the report.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan nuclear weapons, 2023
By Hans M. Kristensen, Matt Korda, Eliana Johns, September 11, 2023

Pakistan continues to gradually expand its nuclear arsenal with more warheads, more delivery systems, and a growing fissile material production industry. Analysis of commercial satellite images of construction at Pakistani army garrisons and air force bases shows what appear to be newer launchers and facilities that might be related to Pakistan’s nuclear forces.

We estimate that Pakistan now has a nuclear weapons stockpile of approximately 170 warheads (See Table 1). The US Defense Intelligence Agency projected in 1999 that Pakistan would have 60 to 80 warheads by 2020 (US Defense Intelligence Agency 1999, 38), but several new weapon systems have been fielded and developed since then, which leads us to a higher estimate. Our estimate comes with considerable uncertainty because neither Pakistan nor other countries publish much information about the Pakistani nuclear arsenal.

With several new delivery systems in development, four plutonium production reactors, and an expanding uranium enrichment infrastructure, Pakistan’s stockpile has the potential to increase further over the next several years. The size of this projected increase will depend on several factors, including how many nuclear-capable launchers Pakistan plans to deploy, how its nuclear strategy evolves, and how much the Indian nuclear arsenal grows. We estimate that the country’s stockpile could potentially grow to around 200 warheads by the late 2020s, at the current growth rate. But unless India significantly expands its arsenal or further builds up its conventional forces, it seems reasonable to expect that Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal will not continue to grow indefinitely but might begin to level off as its current weapons programs are completed.

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