Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 3, 2004
By: Kevin Drum

PAKISTAN'S SHOW TRIAL....Pakistan's "Father of the Bomb" says that yes, he did provide nuclear help to Iran and North Korea, but that it wasn't exactly a secret:

Pakistan's top nuclear scientist, Abdul Qadeer Khan, has told investigators that he helped North Korea design and equip facilities for making weapons-grade uranium with the knowledge of senior military commanders, including Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan's president, according to a friend of Khan's and a senior Pakistani investigator.

Khan also has told investigators that Gen. Mirza Aslam Beg, the Pakistani army chief of staff from 1988 to 1991, was aware of assistance Khan was providing to Iran's nuclear program and that two other army chiefs, in addition to Musharraf, knew and approved of his efforts on behalf of North Korea, the same individuals said Monday.

This whole thing is pretty obviously a show trial of some kind, since there's simply no way that Khan did what he did without the knowledge and approval of a long succession of rulers and military chiefs. The question is, why?

Are they holding these "investigations" in order to placate the U.S.? That hardly seems credible since surely we've known all about this for a long time. Is it for internal political reasons? Or perhaps some kind of weird bureaucratic hardball?

I wonder what's really going on?

Kevin Drum 10:58 AM Permalink | Trackbacks

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