Investigation: Nuclear scandal - Abdul Qadeer Khan

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  1. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    Investigation: Nuclear scandal - Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan

    The Pakistani scientist who passed nuclear secrets to the world’s rogue states has been muzzled by his government. In a smuggled letter, AQ Khan reveals his side of the story

    Simon Henderson
    It could be a scene from a film. On a winter’s evening, around 8pm, in a quiet suburban street in Amsterdam, a group of cars draw up. Agents of the Dutch intelligence service, the AIVD, accompanied by uniformed police, ring the bell and knock on the door of one of the houses. The occupants, an elderly couple and their unmarried daughter, are slow to come to the door. The bell-ringing becomes more insistent, the knocks sharper. When the door opens, the agents request entry but are clearly not going to take no for an answer.

    The year was 2004. The raid went unreported but was part of the worldwide sweep against associates of Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, the Pakistani scientist and “father of the Islamic bomb”, who had just been accused of selling nuclear secrets to Libya, Iran and North Korea. The house belonged to one of his brothers, a retired Pakistani International Airlines manager, who lived there with his wife and daughter. The two secret agents asked the daughter for a letter she had recently received from abroad. Upstairs in her bedroom, she pulled it from a drawer. It was unopened. The agents grabbed it and told her to put on a coat and come with them.

    The daughter, Kausar Khan, was taken to the local police station, although, contrary to usual practice, she was neither signed in nor signed out. The Dutch agents wanted to know why she had not opened the letter and whether she knew what was in it. She didn’t; she had merely been asked to look after it. Inside the envelope was a copy of a letter that Pakistan did not want to reach the West. The feared Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) had found the letter when they searched Dr AQ Khan’s home in Islamabad. He had also passed a copy on to his daughter Dina to take to her home in London, as rumours of Khan’s “proliferation” — jargon for the dissemination of nuclear secrets — swept the world. The Pakistani ISI were furious. “Now you have got your daughter involved,” they reportedly said. “So far we have left your family alone, but don’t expect any leniency now.”

    Dr Khan collapsed in sobs. Under pressure, he agreed to telephone Dina in London and ordered her to destroy the documents. He used three languages: Urdu, English and Dutch. It was code for her to obey his instructions. Dina dutifully destroyed the letter. That left the copy that was confiscated by the Dutch intelligence service in Amsterdam. I know there is at least one other copy: mine.

    Just four pages long, it is an extraordinary letter, the contents of which have never been revealed before. Dated December 10, 2003, and addressed to Henny, Khan’s Dutch wife, it is handwritten, in apparent haste. It starts simply: “Darling, if the government plays any mischief with me take a tough stand.” In numbered paragraphs, it outlines Pakistan’s nuclear co-operation with China, Iran and North Korea, and also mentions Libya. It ends: “They might try to get rid of me to cover up all the things they got done by me.”

    When I acquired my copy of the secret letter in 2007, I was shocked. On the third page, Khan had written: “Get in touch with Simon Henderson… and give him all the details.” He had also listed my then London address, my telephone number, fax number, mobile-phone number and the e-mail address I used at the time. It has been my luck, or fate, call it what you will, to develop a relationship with AQ Khan.

    Khan became an idolised figure in Pakistan from the 1980s onwards because of his success in building a uranium-enrichment plant at Kahuta, near Islamabad. In February 2004, three years after his retirement, he was accused of proliferating nuclear secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea, and made a televised confession.

    General Pervez Musharraf, at the time the ruler of Pakistan, pardoned Khan for his “crimes” but kept him under house arrest and largely incommunicado in Islamabad until February this year, when a court ordered his release. He was declared a “free man”, but in practice nothing changed.

    His freedom lasted a day or so before international protests, mainly from the United States, locked him back up again. A few months ago, he was refused permission to attend his granddaughter’s high-school graduation. “I continue to be a prisoner,” Khan complained.In Washington, a State Department spokesman said that Khan remained a “proliferation risk” but, after being shut away for five years, that seemed hard to imagine. So why was he silenced? Was it because of what he did, or because of what he knows about Pakistan’s active role in spreading nuclear technology to some of the world’s worst regimes?

    Any relationship with a source is fraught with potential difficulties. One doesn’t want to be blind to the chance of being used. Government officials and politicians in any country are seldom interested in the simple truth. They all have their particular story to tell. In this context, I am frankly amazed that Khan has chosen me to be his interlocutor with the world.

    I have been writing about Pakistan ever since I arrived there in June 1977, sent by the BBC to be a stringer because the local man was considered to be under the thumb of the then prime minister, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (the father of the assassinated Benazir), who had held disputed elections and was facing widespread street protests.

    At the time I had never heard of AQ Khan, although, it turns out, he and his family had also lived months earlier at the same small hotel in Rawalpindi where I had lodged for a while. Pakistan was already vying to be a nuclear power and America was pressuring France to stop the sale of a reprocessing plant which would have enabled Pakistan to acquire plutonium, a nuclear explosive.

    I returned to London in 1978 to join the Financial Times, and was replaced by a journalist who latched on to a bigger story: that Pakistan was building a centrifuge enrichment plant to make highly enriched uranium, the alternative route to an atomic bomb. A Dutch-trained previously unknown Pakistani scientist, Dr AQ Khan, was leading the project.My intrepid replacement went to visit Khan’s nuclear construction site at Kahuta. He also found out where Khan was living and went to his home. Khan’s security guards beat him up before he reached the front door.

    The FT sent me back to Pakistan to help broker a deal whereby my replacement could leave without being prosecuted. At that point, I began my own investigations of Khan, which led to a frontpage story about his purchasing network in Britain. I doubt that either Khan or the Pakistan government was happy to see the exposé.

    Even so, the first time I contacted Khan, he was civil to me. It was 1986 and he had just won, on a technicality, an appeal against a Netherlands court judgment that he had attempted to steal centrifuge secrets. Although my story was not a whitewash, it did quote him accurately, and Khan wrote to me with some more information about his case. I replied, and he reciprocated. It started a “penfriendship” that has continued for 23 years and has included two visits.

    At the time, I thought Khan might make a good subject for a book. I amassed material, but never thought I had enough, and was not even sure if he was interesting enough for a biography. For his part, Khan was cautious. “When I write my autobiography, Mr Henderson, I shall ask you for your help.” It wasn’t the answer I wanted.

    Frankly, in news terms, there wasn’t a great deal of interest in him, even in 1998, when Pakistan first tested its 1,500-kilometre-range Ghauri missile, a Khan-directed copy of the North Korean Nodong rocket, and went on to test two nuclear weapons. In 2001, when he turned 65, he retired. We kept in touch, but it was mostly Christmas cards.

    Then, in late 2003, he became the story again. I was in London, on a bicycle ride by the River Thames, when my mobile phone rang. A voice said: “I am a friend of your friend in Pakistan.” I knew my “friend” must be Khan. The voice on the line said he had been asked to call.

    My “friend’s” associates were being arrested — former colleagues at KRL, the Dr AQ Khan Research Laboratories, as the Kahuta centrifuge plant was known. I asked why. The voice said “Iran” — which was attempting to go nuclear. I asked what my friend wanted me to do with the information. The voice said I should try to publish it. It might help.I explained that I was happy to listen to what I was being told, but I needed some corroboration. I told him that my friend should call or e-mail me; he didn’t have to go through the details again. As far as I was concerned, he could just say “Merry Christmas”. I cycled home quickly and took a shower. Thirty minutes later, Khan rang from Pakistan and wished me merry Christmas.

    The next few weeks were turbulent. A week or so after Khan’s call to me, Libya announced that it would abandon weapons of mass destruction. Shortly afterwards, in December 2003, The Wall Street Journal revealed that a German cargo ship called BBC China had been intercepted on its way to Libya with thousands of centrifuge components, and diverted to Italy. There was a Khan link there as well, but Khan declined my request for an interview. His “friend” called to say the time was not right and Khan was exhausted after long bouts of interrogation.

    Khan was placed under house arrest on February 1, 2004, and since then he has rarely been able to leave his house. What do you do when under house arrest in Islamabad? You watch the BBC on satellite television. I knew he would. So, in 2006, when Panorama came to me saying they were making a film about Khan’s role in nuclear proliferation and would I be interviewed, the answer was simple: “Yes”. I told them that, from my knowledge of Pakistan and Khan, he could not have acted without the permission and collaboration of the government.

    Khan watched the programme. After that, one thing quickly led to another. I came to know of the existence of the letter, and also learnt that its contents were known to Dutch intelligence, and also to anyone they might have passed details on to — including, in all likelihood, the British and Americans.Why were Dutch intelligence agents so keen to seize it? On the face of it, the letter’s contents are a damning indictment of a generation of Pakistan’s political and military leadership, who used Khan’s nuclear and missile skills to enhance Pakistan’s diplomacy.

    It was not rocket science to work out a plausible explanation for the Dutch seizure. Bloggers will probably err on the side of more imaginative conspiracy theories, but the truth is probably simpler. After the September 11 attacks, the West in general, and the United States in particular, had to work with Pakistan to counter Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda in neighbouring Afghanistan. That meant that they had to work with President Musharraf, even though he was no democrat. As part of the bargain, Pakistan’s nuclear sins also needed to be placed to one side.

    As sins go, they were big: Pakistan had been spreading nuclear technology for years. The first customer for one of its enrichment plants was China — which itself had supplied Pakistan with enough highly enriched uranium for two nuclear bombs in the summer of 1982.

    There it was in the letter: “We put up a centrifuge plant at Hanzhong (250km southwest of Xian).” It went on: “The Chinese gave us drawings of the nuclear weapon, gave us 50kg of enriched uranium, gave us 10 tons of UF6 (natural) and 5 tons of UF6 (3%).” (UF6 is uranium hexafluoride, the gaseous feedstock for an enrichment plant.)

    On Iran, the letter says: “Probably with the blessings of BB [Benazir Bhutto, who became prime minister in 1988] and [a now-retired general]… General Imtiaz [Benazir’s defence adviser, now dead] asked… me to give a set of drawings and some components to the Iranians…The names and addresses of suppliers were also given to the Iranians.”

    On North Korea: “[A now-retired general] took $3million through me from the N. Koreans and asked me to give some drawings and machines.”

    In late 2003, with Al-Qaeda far from vanquished in Afghanistan and Pakistan-linked centrifuge components heading towards Libya, President Musharraf was under tremendous pressure from Washington. In all likelihood, he was offered a way out: “Work with us and we will support you. Blame all the nuclear nonsense on AQ Khan.” Although Musharraf had lavished praise on Khan at a banquet in 2001, he didn’t like him personally. So the choice was simple. Khan was made a scapegoat.

    Years earlier, Khan had been warned about the Pakistan army by Li Chew, the senior minister who ran China’s nuclear-weapons programme. Visiting Kahuta, Chew had said: “As long as they need the bomb, they will lick your balls. As soon as you have delivered the bomb, they will kick your balls.” In the letter to his wife, Khan rephrased things: “The bastards first used us and are now playing dirty games with us.”

    George Tenet, the director of the CIA at the time of 9/11, has described Khan as “the merchant of death” and “as bad as Osama Bin Laden”. Khan has been accused of unauthorised nuclear proliferation, motivated by personal greed. On top of this, he has been depicted as overstating his contribution to Pakistan’s success in making nuclear weapons and missiles with which to threaten the whole of India.

    These themes, which were repeated endlessly across the world, are now accepted as universal truths. But Khan was a government official and an adviser with ministerial status even after he retired in 2001. If his dissemination of nuclear secrets was authorised by the government, it could not be illegal and he would enjoy sovereign immunity for his actions. Pakistan is also not a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), so its nuclear trades, however reprehensible, were not against international law.

    Khan is adamant that he never sold nuclear secrets for personal gain. So what about the millions of dollars he reportedly made? Nothing was confiscated from him and no reported investigation turned up hidden accounts. Having planted rumours about Khan’s greed, Pakistani officials were curiously indifferent to following them through. General Musharraf told a British newspaper at the time of Khan’s arrest in 2004 that “He can keep his money”. In another interview a few months later, he said: “We don’t know where his funds are.”

    But was there any money? Much was made of a “hotel”, named after Khan’s wife, Henny, built by a local tour guide with the help of money from Khan and a group of friends in Timbuktu, west Africa. It is a modest structure at best, more of a guesthouse. A weekend home at Bani Gala, outside Islamabad, where Khan went to relax, is hardly the palace that some reports have made it.

    In fact, there seemed to be no money. By summer 2007, Khan was finding it difficult to make ends meet on his pension of 12,200 rupees per month (at the time about $200). After pleading with General Khalid Kidwai, the officer supervising both Pakistan’s nuclear weapons and Dr Khan, the pension was increased to $2,500 per month and there was a one-off lump-sum payment of the equivalent of $50,000. I have copies of the agreement and cheques.

    As for his role in the development of Pakistan’s nuclear and missile forces, I have little doubt that Khan won the race between his KRL organisation and the official Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission to develop both a nuclear bomb and a missile system, a rivalry deliberately constructed by the dictator General Zia ul-Haq in the 1980s and sustained by later governments.

    But there is a simple way to clarify matters. Pakistan’s system of national civilian honours is topped by the Nishan-i-Imtiaz (Order of Excellence), abbreviated as NI. A second tier of honour is the Hilal-i-Imtiaz (Crescent of Excellence), or HI. Khan was awarded the NI twice, a distinction never achieved before or since. He was also earlier awarded the HI. It is stretching one’s imagination to think that Khan could hijack the country’s honour system and the judgment of successive presidents.

    Although the West continues to condemn Khan, Pakistan’s own energy to do so is fading, particularly since the departure of Musharraf in 2008. Frustrated by his house arrest and legal limbo, Khan has repeatedly this year pressed for remedy by the courts.

    Khan was supposedly freed from house arrest in February, but the terms of that freedom were detailed in a secret “annexure A” of the court judgment, the final version of which Khan only saw later. One of the lines in the original draft that he was asked to sign was: “That in case Mr Simon Henderson or anyone else proceeds with the publication of any information or material anywhere in the world, I affirm that it would not be based on any input from me and I disown it.”

    That line was eventually deleted and replaced with a more general prohibition about unnamed “specific media personnel”. Despite the court judgment specifying that the contents of the annexure “shall not be issued to the press or made public in any manner”, a copy reached me in the West.

    Khan went back to court last month to challenge the terms of the annexure that he never accepted. Justice Ejaz Ahmed, the presiding judge at the Lahore high court, lifted all the curbs on his movement. “Dr Khan can come and go anywhere he pleases and no one should prevent him from doing this,” he ruled. “There should be no limitations.” Two days later another Pakistani court reimposed the ban.

    America is pressing hard for Khan’s continued confinement. Deprived by Pakistan of the opportunity to interrogate Khan, the US is concerned that he may revive his old networks. Echoing the official view, The New York Times called this month for restrictions to remain on Khan for his “heinous role as maestro of the world’s largest nuclear black market”.

    If Khan is free to travel and speak openly, there is a danger that he will give his own account of events, opening up a can of worms and complicating relations with Washington. Now his letter has been revealed, he hopes his story will be told differently.
     
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  3. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    This is an interesting issue we are discussing here, the nuclear proliferation. What Khan did was not any different or worst than what the Americans did after they literally abducted the German Scientists and put them on the Manhattan Project.

    Or when the Americans gave the know-how of the nuclear weapons to the United Kingdom.

    Or when the British gave the know-how of the nuclear weapons to the France.

    Or when the German-born British theoretical physicist Klaus Fuchs and the United States Government provided with the know-how of the nuclear weapons to Russia.

    Or when the Russians helped building an experimental nuclear reactor, facilities for processing uranium, a cyclotron, and some equipment for a gaseous diffusions plant in China.

    Or when the Canadians provided with the CIRUS reactor to India.

    What are we complaining here for?
     
  4. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    Firstly this cannot be compared to Manhattan project (that was not nuclear proliferation at all). Secondly, the spread of technology from US to UK and then to France cannot be held parallel either. Neither is a rogue state.

    As for reactor technology sharing, those are non-military, and everyone knows technology proliferation AQ's network has been carrying out was for anything but civilian nuclear technology.
     
  5. Vikramaditya

    Vikramaditya Regular Member

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    Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan Nuclear scandal,Stop giving excuses for everything and act against them........
    you guys have huge mine of excuses............
     
  6. ahmedsid

    ahmedsid Top Gun Senior Member

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    In all the cases above, some were done with state approval, some not. But none of them resulted in flip flopping like the AQ Khan issue as far as I know.

    The Govt knew very well what was going on, they should have owned up, they didnt, they made AQ Khan a scapegoat and the Army washed its hands off the mess! They betrayed him to be frank, and Mushy became a Saint!
     
  7. ahmedsid

    ahmedsid Top Gun Senior Member

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    Pak had nuke links with Iran, N Korea: A Q Khan

    In a damning revelation of Pakistan's nuclear proliferation, its disgraced scientist A Q Khan, the father of the country's nuclear weapons programme, has admitted to the Pakistani nexus in the controversial atomic programme of Iran and North Korea, a media report said on Sunday.

    The disgraced 74-year-old Khan, who has been dubbed as the maestro of the world's largest nuclear black market, has made the revelation in a four-page letter addressed to his Dutch wife Henny, the 'Sunday Times' reported today.

    The letter was written to his wife after Khan's arrest in 2003. In numbered paragraphs, the letter outlines Pakistan's nuclear links with China and its official support to the atomic programme of Iran and North Korea. The letter also mentions Libya.

    On Iran, the letter says, "Probably with the blessings of BB [Benazir Bhutto [ Images ], who became prime minister in 1988], General Imtiaz [Benazir's late defence adviser] asked me to give a set of drawings and some components to the Iranians. The names and addresses of suppliers were also given to the Iranians."

    The paper described the December 10, 2003 letter as extraordinary and claimed its contents have never been revealed before. The paper said that one of its journalists obtained a copy of the letter in 2007.

    The newspaper report said the letter was a damning indictment of a generation of Pakistan's political and military leadership, who used Khan's nuclear and missile skills to enhance Pakistan's diplomacy.

    On North Korea, the letter said, "[A now-retired general] took three million dollars through me from the North Koreans and asked me to give some drawings and machines."

    The newspaper report said the first customer for one of Pakistan's enrichment plants was China which had supplied Pakistan with enough highly enriched uranium for two nuclear bombs in the summer of 1982.

    "We put up a centrifuge plant at Hanzhong (250km southwest of Xian)," Khan's letter said. It went on, "The Chinese gave us drawings of the nuclear weapon, gave us 50 kg of enriched uranium, gave us 10 tonnes of UF6 (natural) and 5 tons of UF6 (3 pc)." (UF6 is uranium hexafluoride, the gaseous feedstock for an enrichment plant.)

    Khan became an idolised figure in Pakistan from the 1980s onwards because of his success in building a uranium-enrichment plant at Kahuta, near Islamabad [ Images ].

    In February 2004, three years after his retirement, he was accused of proliferating nuclear secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea. A centrifuge enrichment plant to make highly enriched uranium was the alternative route followed by Khan to an atomic bomb.

    Years earlier, the newspaper said, Khan had been warned about the Pakistan army [ Images ] by Li Chew, the senior minister who ran the Chinas nuclear-weapons programme. Visiting Kahuta, Li had said, "As long as they need the bomb, they will lick your balls. As soon as you have delivered the bomb, they will kick your balls."

    In the letter to his wife, Khan rephrased the statement, "The bastards first used us and are now playing dirty games with us."


    Pak had nuke links with Iran, N Korea: A Q Khan: Rediff.com news
     
  8. enlightened1

    enlightened1 Member of The Month JANUARY 2010

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    France 5 recently aired a documentary on Khan & Pakistan's attempts to proliferate nuclear tech. It had interviews of Dutch agents & scientists (some who had worked with Khan). It was very informative.

    Meanwhile, interesting documentary i found on Youtube...

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pmv7etoYkV0[/youtube]

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRI1wlvk7VI&feature=related[/youtube]

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJsag9wrZ8s&feature=related[/youtube]

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTPeLgA4P0w&feature=related[/youtube]

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xno05qWUaNs&feature=related[/youtube]
     
  9. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    To be fair, India's stand is that the NPT is a discriminatory treaty because it allows the P5 to have nukes in perpetuity and forbids others from having them. India, Pak and Israel are not party to the NPT. So in theory, there is nothing to stop them from proliferating nukes to other countries. If other countries have signed the NPT and yet have smuggled nuke designs in from Pak, it is their problem, not Pakistan's, since they never agreed to not proliferate.

    However, proliferating to countries with less than capable leaderships such as NK and Iran is irresponsible, and can heat up existing conflicts or lead to new conflicts/wars. So in practice, the previous argument wouldn't really stand up from a moral standpoint even if it does from a legal one.
     
  10. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    You surely have a point here. Lets start with your definition of ‘rogue’ state. Please tell me, what defines a state a ‘rogue state’?

    I would suggest you to put your Pakistan-hatred aside for a while. From where did you get in my reply that I was defending AQ Khan? I was neither defending AQ Khan nor the nuclear proliferation, but merely mentioning that this has been done in the past and at greater scale.

    And this was the point I was going to make next. How do we know it was not between the two states? Only because AQ Khan was made a scapegoat suggests that Pakistan as a state was not involved?
     
  11. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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  12. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    Hello Tarun,

    “Rogue state is a term applied by some international theorists to states considered threatening to the world's peace. This means meeting certain criteria, such as being ruled by authoritarian regimes that severely restrict human rights, sponsor terrorism, and seek to proliferate weapons of mass destruction.”

    So this is the definition as per the link you provided. You did not give your input so I understand you agree in full with this definition.

    The same link also mentions that following countries or states are rogue state:


    Presently considered “rogue states” by the United States:

    Iran
    Sudan

    States formerly considered "Rogue States" by the United States:

    Cuba
    Iraq
    North Korea
    Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan
    Libya
    Syria
    FR Yugoslavia

    If you agree with the contents, say ‘yes’ and I will move the discussion to the next level.
     
  13. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    Yes, I agree with that definition, I acknowledge that AQ's acts of proliferation have been with states that were defined 'rogue states' at the time of the acts of proliferation, and include states that are rogue states even today.

    Bring it on.
     
  14. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    The term ‘rogue states’ it not an internationally recognized term. It is not a term that is used by the United Nation. This very term is only used by the United States and her allies to gain political and strategically goals. Since this is a term that is coined and extensively used by the United States of America, we would have to analyze the United States of America whether it has been never been involved the activates needed to label a state as ‘rogue’ state or not.

    Criterion 1. Ruled by authoritarian regimes:

    What is an authoritarian regime? “Authoritarianism describes a form of government characterized by an emphasis on the authority of state in a republic or union. It is a political system controlled by typically non-elected rulers who usually permit some degree of individual freedom”. Please note the underlined “typically non-elected rulers”. The definition does not ‘exclude’ the elected rulers. Now let’s see if the Unites States Government is NOT an authoritarian regime.

    Hallmarks of totalitarian regimes have always included excessive reliance on secrecy, the deliberate stoking of fear in the general population, a preference for military rather than diplomatic solutions in foreign policy, the promotion of blind patriotism, the denial of human rights, the curtailment of the rule of law, hostility to a free press and the systematic invasion of the privacy of ordinary people”.

    --Bob Herbert

    The indications of authoritarianism in the United States:

    1. Presidential veto powers
    2. Market fundamentalism
    3. Religious fervor embraced by the US Government
    4. Destruction of critical education as a foundation for an engaged citizenry and a vibrant democracy
    5. Militarization of public life

    Please read this fine article by Henry A. Giroux here: (DV) Giroux: The New Authoritarianism in the United States

    Criterion 2. Severely restrict human rights:

    Lets have a look what the Amnesty International says about the human rights record of the Unites States of America:

    The US authorities continued to hold hundreds of foreign nationals at the US Naval Base in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, although more than 100 were transferred out of the facility during the year. Detainees in Guantánamo were held indefinitely, the vast majority of them without charge, and effectively without recourse to the US courts to challenge the legality of their detention. Most detainees in Guantánamo were held in isolation in maximum security facilities, heightening concerns for their physical and mental health. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) programme of secret detention and interrogation was re-authorized by President Bush in July. In December, the Director of the CIA revealed that the agency had destroyed videotapes of detainee interrogations.

    Soldiers refusing to serve in Iraq on grounds of conscience were imprisoned. Prisoners continued to experience ill-treatment at the hands of police officers and prison guards. Dozens of people died after police used tasers (electro-shock weapons) against them. There were serious failings in state, local and federal measures to address sexual violence against Native American women. Discrimination remained a concern in a variety of areas, including policing practices, the operation of the criminal justice system and housing rights. There were 42 executions during the year. In late September, the decision of the Supreme Court to review the constitutionality of lethal injections led to a de facto moratorium on executions by this method. In December, New Jersey became the first US state in more than four decades to legislate to abolish the death penalty
    .”

    Full report here: Human rights in USA 2008

    Criterion 3. Sponsor terrorism:That is my most favorite.

    A. Korean War: 25 June 1950 to 27 July 1953.

    Motive: To stop the spread of communism
    Results: Inconclusive
    Total civilians killed/wounded: 2.5 Million

    B. Vietnam War: 1959 to30 April 1975

    Motive: To stop the spread of communism
    Results: North Vietnamese Victory. Eventual communist takeover of South Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.
    South Vietnamese civilian dead: 1,581,000
    Cambodian civilian dead: ~700,000
    North Vietnamese civilian dead: ~2,000,000
    Laotian civilian dead: ~50,000

    C. Support of Polpot Regime in Cambodia: 1975–1979

    Motive: Unknown
    Results: Inconclusive
    Total civilians killed/wounded: 2.0 Million

    D. First Gulf War: 2 August 1990 – 28 February 1991 (officially ended 30 November 1995)

    Motive: To liberate Kuwait.
    Results: Kuwait liberated.
    Saddam Hussein remains in power
    Imposition of sanctions against Iraq
    Heavy Iraqi casualties and destruction of Iraqi and Kuwaiti infrastructure
    Internal rising against Saddam Hussein brutally suppressed
    Establishment of US military presence in Saudi Arabia
    Palestinian Expulsion from Kuwait
    Total civilians killed/wounded: 3,664. Two millions as per LANCET

    E. Second Gulf War (The Iraq War): March 20, 2003 – 2009 (ongoing)

    Motive: WMDs. Regime Change.
    Results: No WMDs found
    Regime toppled
    Total civilians killed/wounded: 1,339,711 as per LANCET May 2009.

    These are few very obvious examples. I have omitted the continued intervention of the United States in the Latin America and in the other parts of the world.

    Criterion 4. Seek to proliferate weapons of mass destruction (WMDs):

    1. Gave the knowhow and material of making the Atomic Bomb to the United Kingdom
    2. Provided the ICBMs, ALBMs, and SLBM to the United Kingdom, and Italy
    3. Provided cruise missiles to United Kingdom, and Spain
    4. Sold Chemical and Biological weapons to the Iraq
    5. Accounts for more than two-thirds of foreign weapons including the WMDs sales in 2008. Please see the definition of the WMDs as per the US Code Title 18.2332a here: US CODE: Title 18,2332a. Use of weapons of mass destruction

    Now, how seriously should we take the term ‘rogue state’ coined and extensively used by the United States of America?
     
  15. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    Hold on, you're not getting away with that argument. Standards apply differently between countries such as the US, former Soviet Union, and the Pakistan of today. It's takes commonsense to see the difference.

    The states USA and USSR proliferated its technologies to neither:
    • carried out large-scale human-rights violations against its populations (Iran, N. Korea, Libya did)
    • Sponsored terrorism
    • Proliferated nuclear technologies to known states that qualified the above criteria
    In the post-war era.
    If you choose to call 'war' state sponsored terrorism (which is incorrect, so I won't even bother), then by your definition, you're already siding a terrorist state that sponsored several conflicts on both its fronts, and is known to have carried out mass genocide, depopulation, and mass-rape.
    It doesn't matter if it was USA to coin the term, its acceptance in the larger context of the world is pretty universal. So yours is a moot point. Try to find a way through our argument, not around it.
     
  16. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    Millions were killed in major conflicts for no good reason and you are saying they are better than Iran, N-Korea and Libya? Indo-China conflict is not terrorism? Vietnam war does not look like a terrorism to you? Supporting ruthless dictators is no terrorism? Please tell me how many innocents are killed by these so called ‘rogue states’? How many regimes they have changed or toppled? How many dictators they have supported? How many false flag operations they have carried out?

    The argument that I have made is pretty clear for those who are willing to understand. It is really strange that the countries, the so called superpowers are single handedly involved in the killing of literally millions of the human beings around the world, who are involved in the proliferation of the WMDs, who by themselves are run by the authoritarian regimes are labeling others with ‘rogue states’, while they themselves fully qualify each and every criterion required to be called one.
     
  17. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    Right, and by proliferating to countries like Iran, Libya, and N. Korea, you are arming entities that are proven to be of no good (to their own populations, let alone in the global scene), who hold the potential to take even more lives of populations that don't even belong to them.

    Give me one good example of Britain or US mass-murdering its own people. I'll give you a pretty huge example of Pakistan mass-murdering its own, the 1971 East Pakistan/Bangladesh Atrocities.

    On the other hand the 'so called superpowers' you're trying to show contempt on established this world order. Lives were lost in the process of establishing it, but it ensures greater stability to the world as a whole, compared to the world of the 19th century, where any country in its might could colonize another, depopulate it, and spread its race. If you're trying to mix up meanings, then ponder about what each definition means once again. Don't try to justify Pakistan's proliferation with that of the US or the Soviets, there was no state at the receiving end of their technologies that was rogue, or that which threatened global security as a whole.

    Today any country which has a proven/demonstrable track record of 'minding its own business' and being 'responsible with its weapons' has been armed with nuclear weapons to protect itself. To whom is Pakistan doing any good by arming North Korea, except that it's blatant black-marketing?
     
  18. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    Lives of countless were not lost in the process of bringing any stability. What stability did you see after the Korean conflict? What stability did you see after the Vietnam war? What stability did you see after the Polpot regime in power? What stability did you see after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? What stability did you see after invasion of Iraq? And what stability you are seeing now after the recent invasion of Afghanistan? It was and still is a simple game of power that was and still being played ruthlessly by these superpowers. I had no idea that a life of a human being is so cheap in your view.

    Interesting, so killing own people is bad but killing others is all right. You have no idea how many people were literally massacred by the British, French, Spanish, and Dutch in their respective colonies. Do you know about the British oppression in the Scotland and Ireland and how old it is? Do you know what track record America has on treating the Native Americans and the Blacks? And do you have a clue how many people were killed by the Russians in Poland, in the Baltic, and the Central Asian States?

    I am not trying to mix up anything, rather telling you that matters are intertwined. We can not separate one from the other. Similarly, a criminal has no right to call another a criminal. First one has to improve himself, than only than he earns a moral right to call someone a criminal.

    Besides, I have said earlier in one of my replies that I am not justifying the proliferation by AQ Khan. But I am telling that it has been done before, not once not twice but several times. BTW, anybody who has access to a nuclear power plant is capable of making a nuclear device, a low power but lethal enough. AQ Khan’s network was not the only network that was responsible for smuggling of the nuclear knowhow. China benefited from a similar network, so did Israel, India and Pakistan.

    I am in full favor that AQ Khan should be questioned and all who are accomplice must be brought to justice. But I know it will never happen, because it is not only the Pakistani authorities who are involved but also many others.
     
  19. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    It's the stability you see today, where India is able to defend Arunachal from a stronger China, Pakistan Azad Kashmir from a stronger India. It's the stability in the Korean Peninsula, where followers of either political ideologies have been able to subscribe to them by moving-to/ aligning-with the North or South (during the war). It's the stability where under the protection of the United States, Vietnam, Taiwan, and Japan are insulated from any threat from the PRC. It's the stability where the Iraqis are freed of a certain never-ending dictatorship that would have only continued as a monarch/junta. Tomorrow's Iraqis get to choose their leaders. We'll never run out of examples.

    Although I hold reservations with your justifications, I agree that AQ Khan must be questioned and and all who accomplice be brought to justice.

    Right, and as I said nuclear armament of responsible states is to prevent exactly that from happening. Proliferation to states such as Iran, N. Korea, and Libya goes against the cause. Tomorrow one of these countries can concentrate a nuclear attack on anyone, you included. These countries can further give them away to non-state actors / terrorists. We all know how 'responsible' they are with their weapons.
     
  20. qsaark

    qsaark Regular Member

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    Stability in the Korean peninsula? Ongoing arms race you call stability? Vietnam is under no protection of the United States nor it has any problem with the PRC. Taiwan is a breakaway state which was always a part of the PRC. Heck, it is not even a member of the United Nations, but an artificial state being kept alive by the United States to keep the region in constant tension. And Japan under the protection of US from the PRC? Never once did China attack on Japan, however, Japan on the other hand has a history of invading the China. Ever heard of Manchuria and the horrible crimes Japan committed in the region between 1931-32? And you talk about Iraq? Saddam couldn’t manage to kill even a fraction of Iraqis during his three decades long totalitarian rule as compared to how many got killed during the US/Allied invasion. Iraqis were very prosperous under Saddam and now, they are beggars of the Middle East.

    There are no justifications but only a history lesson that this has happened before and all the present day nuclear powers have benefited from it.

    I have presented you with the track record of the Superpowers. Again you insist to call them responsible. At any rate, I am totally against the proliferation of nuclear knowhow in any form to any one.
     
  21. Sandrocottas

    Sandrocottas Regular Member

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    The release of the letter at this stage might be an attempt by Pak Govt. or the Pak military including possibly Pak backers in USA ( example Robin Raphael) to put all the blame on Mrs. Bhutto and one general ( who are both dead) and thereby close the chapter.
     

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