Nuke dimension to Pakistan policies
November 21: Pakistan remains the focus of international attention today. Its propensity for international terrorism was exposed when Osama bin Laden was found to be living comfortably with his wives, children and grandchildren in the heart of the Abbottabad cantonment.
Pakistan’s readiness to even resort to nuclear terrorism was earlier exposed when its nuclear scientists such as Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood and Chaudhri Abdul Majeed were detained after the 9/11 terrorist strikes and charged with helping Al Qaeda to acquire nuclear and biological weapons.
Shortly thereafter, A.Q. Khan’s role in transferring nuclear weapons designs and knowhow to Iran, Iraq, Libya and Saudi Arabia became public, though the Americans deliberately avoided implicating Khan’s bosses in the Pakistan army.
While concerns about Pakistan’s nuclear weapons falling into the hands of terrorists remain, international attention is now focused on the fact that with an arsenal of over 100 nuclear weapons, Pakistan today has the fastest growing nuclear weapons programme in the world, and the third largest nuclear arsenal.
It is not, however, any Pakistani General who has displayed the ability to explain why and how all this is happening. This responsibility has been left to Pakistan’s most savvy and hardnosed lady journalist turned diplomat, Maleeha Lodi, known for her close links with the Pakistan military establishment.