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Pakistani scientists offered Osama nukes before 9/11: Book
Rediff ^ | 14 December, 2008 | Rediff

Posted on 12/14/2008 8:37:55 AM PST by MyTwoCopperCoins

Barely a month before the 9/11 terror attacks, two Pakistani nuclear scientists, said to be close to disgraced Abdul Qadeer Khan, met up with al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and offered to supply him with atomic weapons, according to a newly released book.

Chaudiri Abdul Majeed and Sultan Bashiruddin Mahmood, who held a series of senior posts in Pakistani nuke programme, went to Taliban [Images] headquarters in Kandahar in mid-August 2001 and spent three days with bin Laden who was keen on acquiring weapons of mass destruction, the book says.

In fact, Mahmood was said to be more close to Khan, the 'Father of the Islamic bomb' and the mastermind behind a vast clandestine enterprise which sold nuclear secrets to rogue states like Iran, North Korea and Libya. He also set up the pilot plant for Pakistan's uranium-enrichment programme.

However, the so-called deal did not materialise as the meeting between the Pakistani nuclear scientists and bin Laden ended inconclusively when the al-Qaeda leader, along with some of his senior associates, had abruptly left for the mountains of northwestern Afghanistan.

And, according to the book, The Man From Pakistan -- the true story of the world's most dangerous nuclear smuggler AQ Khan -- before leaving, bin Laden had told his followers that "something great was going to happen, and Muslims around the world were going to join them in the holy war". A couple of weeks later, the twin towers in New York were brought down.

The 414-page book is authored by two investigative journalists--Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins.What's more revealing is that a year before they met bin Laden in Kandahar, the two Pakistani nuke scientists had set up a non-profit organisation, Ummah Tameer-e-Nau, to carry out relief work in Afghanistan, including advising the Taliban on scientific matters.

And, on the board of the organisation were several Pakistani Army generals sympathetic to the Taliban cause, and it was one of the few non-government groups that the Taliban leader, Mullah Omar, had allowed to operate in Afghanistan, the book says.

"(But) not long after opening their office in a house in Kabul, the scientists met with Mullah Omar and bin Laden, and the conversation had shifted from relief work to weapons development. At one point, during his visits to Afghanistan, Mahmood provided Osama bin Laden's associates in Kabul with information about the construction of a nuclear weapon," the authors write.

However, post-9/11 attacks that shook the US, as part of his crackdown on terror groups operating in Pakistan, the then Chief Executive General Pervez Musharraf [Images] forced Mahmood to opt for an early retirement as "he had expressed sympathies for the Taliban and other Islamic extremists".

In fact, in his writings and speeches, Mahmood had advocated sharing Pakistan's nuclear weapons technology with other Islamic nations to hasten the "end of days", which he believed would give rise to Muslim dominance in the world, according to the book which the Los Angeles Times says is a "richly reported" one. Not only Mahmood, former Pakistani President Musharraf had subsequently forced AQ Khan into taking retirement though he was a bit worried over a possible domestic backlash as the nuclear scientist was considered a "hero" in Pakistan. So, he had offered him not only a graceful exit but also a ceremonial position as an advisor to him, post retirement.

"Musharraf didn't want a domestic backlash, and he didn't want to belittle Khan. But Musharraf was determined to get Pakistan back into the international community, and he could not tolerate Khan's behaviour. Nuclear deterrence was in place, the delivery system was in place. Now it's time to stop this dirty business," a former general close to the former Pakistani leader was quoted by the book as saying.

Musharraf was forced to act against Khan and his close associates to appease the US after the 9/11 attacks, which had accused the disgraced scientist of smuggling nuclear materials into rogue nations.

In fact, on one occasion, America had even threatened to bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age unless it cooperated in going after the "nuclear smugglers" and the al-Qaeda hiding in Pakistan, which was, however, denied by US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage later, according to the book.

Khan, who had subsequently admitted to passing on nuke secrets to other countries, was given a presidential pardon by Musharraf, though he was placed under house arrest. However, according to the book, Khan's loose-knit organisation was and still may be a nuclear Wal-Mart, selling weapons blueprints, parts, and the expertise to assemble the works into a do-it-yourself bomb kit.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 200108; 911; alqaeda; aqkhan; aqkhannetwork; armitage; binladen; geopoliitics; globaljihad; islam; jihad; mahmood; majeed; mohammedanism; mohammedanism1208; mohammedanism122008; mullahomar; nuclear; pakistan; proliferation; richardarmitage; ummahtameerenau; utn

1 posted on 12/14/2008 8:37:55 AM PST by MyTwoCopperCoins
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; F15Eagle; GOPJ; Munz; Quix; SandRat; SJackson; SolidWood; ExTexasRedhead

ping


2 posted on 12/14/2008 8:48:25 AM PST by Perdogg (01-20-2013 Obama's last day - If we survive)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins
How Each Nuclear-Capable Country Got Its Bombs, Visualized




 

 

 

As the NY Times point out in their review of two upcoming histories of The Bomb, Robbert Oppenheimer originally assumed that little could stop anyone from developing nuclear weapons. Thankfully, he was wrong.

With a geek's typical hubris, Oppenheimer assumed that since the laws of physics were universal, very little could stop anyone in getting a nuclear weapon, given the time and resources. Alas, the time and resources needed are indeed scarce, so to this day, only nine countries are nuclear-equipped—the United States, Russia, United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel. Here we see these links visualized, starting with the Manhattan project and fanning out over the last six decades (click here for the full-size popup).

Instead, three proliferation experts demonstrate how nuclear capabilities were passed as political bargaining chips, stolen via espionage, and limited with diplomacy. Both books seem like fascinating reads. Check out much more at the Times: [NYTimes]



FROM NYT:


 

The book, in a main disclosure, discusses how China in 1982 made a policy decision to flood the developing world with atomic know-how. Its identified clients include Algeria, Pakistan and North Korea.

Alarmingly, the authors say one of China’s bombs was created as an “export design” that nearly “anybody could build.” The blueprint for the simple plan has traveled from Pakistan to Libya and, the authors say, Iran. That path is widely assumed among intelligence officials, but Tehran has repeatedly denied the charge.

The book sees a quiet repercussion of China’s proliferation policy in the Algerian desert. Built in secrecy, the reactor there now makes enough plutonium each year to fuel one atom bomb and is ringed by antiaircraft missiles, the book says.

China’s deck also held a wild card: its aid to Pakistan helped A.Q. Khan, a rogue Pakistani metallurgist who sold nuclear gear on the global black market. The authors compare Dr. Khan to “a used-car dealer” happy to sell his complex machinery to suckers who had no idea how hard it was to make fuel for a bomb.

Why did Beijing spread its atomic knowledge so freely? The authors speculate that it either wanted to strengthen the enemies of China’s enemies (for instance, Pakistan as a counterweight to India) or, more chillingly, to encourage nuclear wars or terror in foreign lands from which Beijing would emerge as the “last man standing.”

3 posted on 12/14/2008 8:50:46 AM PST by MyTwoCopperCoins
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To: Perdogg
Khan, who had subsequently admitted to passing on nuke secrets to other countries, was given a presidential pardon by Musharraf, though he was placed under house arrest. However, according to the book, Khan's loose-knit organisation was and still may be a nuclear Wal-Mart, selling weapons blueprints, parts, and the expertise to assemble the works into a do-it-yourself bomb kit.

Khan and his entire network needs SANCTIONED WITH EXTREME PREJUDICE.

4 posted on 12/14/2008 8:53:40 AM PST by SandRat (Duty, Honor, Country! What else needs said?)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

“With a geek’s typical hubris, Oppenheimer assumed that since the laws of physics were universal, very little could stop anyone in getting a nuclear weapon, given the time and resources.”

I have to agree with Oppenheimer. Anyone with the time and resource (and determination) can develop a nuclear weapon. As Isaac Asimov said: “There is a single light of science and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere.”


5 posted on 12/14/2008 9:02:59 AM PST by samson1097
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

bttt


6 posted on 12/14/2008 9:19:53 AM PST by RebelTex (:^D)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

I’m stunned that NYT admits of a major role for the Commie spy Fuchs — or are they so secure in the new ascendancy of Socialism that they are free to admit it?


7 posted on 12/14/2008 10:02:00 AM PST by Paine in the Neck (Nepolean fries the idea powder)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

Why did Beijing spread its atomic knowledge so freely? The authors speculate that it either wanted to strengthen the enemies of China’s enemies (for instance, Pakistan as a counterweight to India) or, more chillingly, to encourage nuclear wars or terror in foreign lands from which Beijing would emerge as the “last man standing.”


What makes them so sure that little strategy won’t backfire?


8 posted on 12/14/2008 11:27:12 AM PST by bioqubit
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To: Perdogg; G8 Diplomat; NormsRevenge; Allegra; Marine_Uncle; Straight Vermonter; Dog; Cap Huff

Just damn!


9 posted on 12/14/2008 3:27:11 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach (No Burkas for my Grandaughters!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; AdmSmith; Berosus; Convert from ECUSA; dervish; Fred Nerks; george76; ...
Thanks Ernest_at_the_Beach.

The Man from Pakistan: The True Story of the World's Most Dangerous Nuclear Smuggler The Man from Pakistan:
The True Story of the World's
Most Dangerous Nuclear Smuggler

by Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins


10 posted on 12/14/2008 4:15:17 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/_______Profile finally updated Saturday, December 6, 2008 !!!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

We may end up having to still bomb Pakistan back into the stone age. The jerks are not doing very well at addressing the huge jihadist problem they have. Meanwhile the American retail stores continued to be stocked with China’s exports.


11 posted on 12/14/2008 4:27:23 PM PST by Marine_Uncle (Duncan Hunter was our best choice.)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

The UAE, Qatar, and Turkey should be on the aspiring list. Jordan was at one point, too. They all want nuclear programs... “for energy.” Why do the oil-rich UAE and Qatar need nuclear energy? Either they’re running out of oil or they’re up to no good....or both.


12 posted on 12/14/2008 5:22:26 PM PST by G8 Diplomat (The Middle East: We put the OIL in TURMOIL!)
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To: 31R1O; PapaBear3625; publana; RadioCirca1970; TheBlueMax; WLR; iThinkBig; Molly K.; bayouranger; ...

Pakistan ۋﮧ۱م

FReepmail if you want on or off

13 posted on 12/14/2008 5:23:32 PM PST by G8 Diplomat (The Middle East: We put the OIL in TURMOIL!)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

Obama will protect us from Osama. I have complete confidence in his national security credentials. /sarcasm tag


14 posted on 12/14/2008 6:38:04 PM PST by rdl6989
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins
to hasten the "end of days", which he believed would give rise to Muslim dominance in the world

That's not right... I thought the Lord would crush all the armies against Israel. Is the Koran saying different?

15 posted on 12/14/2008 8:06:28 PM PST by John123 (The US may be going down the drain, but everyone else will drown first...)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins; Cindy
2000 : (PAKISTAN : NUCLEAR SCIENTIST SULTAN BASHIRUDDIN MAHMOOD RETIRES , AND THEN STARTS NGO FOR RELIEF WORK IN AFGHANISTAN WITH NUCLEAR SCIENTIST MAJID; THE NGO IS TIED WITH THE TALIBAN AND SOON DRAWS THE ATTENTION OF THE USA'S INTEL AGENCIES-- See PLUTONIUM) ...Proliferation experts in Washington say Mahmood and Majid are experts on plutonium technology. Mahmood is known for his contribution in setting up Pakistan's first "unsafeguarded" plutonium reactor in Khushab in central Pakistan. Majid is one of the few Pakistani scientists who had been trained at a plutonium facility in Belgium in the 1960s.
Majid worked with Mahmood for years, and they were both senior scientists in the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission. Mahmood, who was project director of Pakistan's nuclear programme before its 1998 tests, reportedly resigned in protest against Pakistan considering signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Majid, who went on to become Director of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, retired last year [2000].
Following their exit from the Pakistani nuclear establishment, the duo set up a non-governmental organisation for relief work and investment in Afghanistan. The NGO had close ties with the Taliban. The links had drawn the attention of US intelligence agencies that in turn alerted the Musharraf regime, which has been doing its best in recent months to convince Washington that its nuclear assets are safe.
-------- "US wakes up to Osama's nuke dreams," by CHIDANAND RAJGHATTA, TIMES NEWS NETWORK, The Times of India, 10/26/01
..........
The role of Pakistani scientists has been less clear, although US experts have speculated about links between Islamabad and the Iraqi nuclear program. In Islamabad yesterday, Pakistani spokesman Major General Rashid Qureshi said "authorities were only investigating [Sultan Bashiruddin] Mahmood for his links with the Taliban through his relief agency, and not over concerns he may have passed on any government nuclear secrets."
-------- "US wakes up to Osama's nuke dreams," by CHIDANAND RAJGHATTA, TIMES NEWS NETWORK, The Times of India, 10/26/01

2001 OR EARLIER, BEFORE FALL OF THE TALIBAN: (PAKISTANI NUKE SCIENTISTS MET WITH BIN LADEN & MULLAH OMAR SEVERAL TIMES) WASHINGTON – As the Pakistani nuclear proliferation story widens [IN 2004], U.S. intelligence officials say top atomic scientists from that country met with Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar in Afghanistan. Two former senior Pakistani nuclear scientists who were based in the Afghan town of Kandahar met Mullah Omar and Osama bin Laden several times before the fall of the Taliban. They were later detained and questioned on their return to Pakistan. -
---------- "Bin Laden met nuke scientists -- 'Nuclear bazaar' story out of Pakistan gets more bizarre," by Joseph Farah, Worldnetdaily, 2.8.2004

OCTOBER 2001 : (SCIENTIST ROUNDUP --See MEHMOOD aka MAHMOOD & MAJID) Two of Pakistan's top atomic scientists were grilled yesterday about possible contacts with Afghanistan's Taliban rulers amid reports Osama Bin Laden had obtained nuclear material. Sultan Bashiru-Din Mehmood, one of the founders of the country's nuclear program, was detained Tuesday in Lahore, Interior Ministry officials said on condition of anonymity. They said Abdul Majid, a scientist who worked with Mehmood at the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, also was being held.
"The investigation has nothing to do with the nuclear program," said Rashid Qureshi, a Pakistani military spokesman.
However, the Interior Ministry officials said the men were questioned about possible links to Afghan officials, including Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar. Neither had been charged with a crime.
In Britain, The Times newspaper and Channel Four television news quoted Western intelligence sources as saying Bin Laden, a Saudi-born terrorism mastermind, had obtained nuclear material from Pakistan. Citing an informed source, the Times said Bin Laden appeared to have amassed a "terrifying" range of weapons.
The Taliban, who have given refuge to Bin Laden since 1996, were put in power by Pakistan and have had close ties with its intelligence agencies.
The Western sources said Bin Laden and his Al Qaeda network did not have the technology to make a nuclear bomb. But they said they were worried Bin Laden could produce a "dirty bomb" — one that would disperse radioactive material across a small urban area rather than creating a nuclear explosion — killing hundreds or thousands rather than millions.
---------Nuke Experts Detained/Pakistan probes 2 scientists' ties to Taliban, RICHARD WHITBY, New York Daily News ^ | 10/26/01 |

16 posted on 12/15/2008 12:19:30 AM PST by piasa
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To: piasa

Thank you for the ping and additional info piasa.
I appreciate it.


17 posted on 12/15/2008 1:11:58 AM PST by Cindy
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

Bookmark!


18 posted on 12/15/2008 7:20:05 AM PST by penelopesire ("The only CHANGE you will get with the Democrats is the CHANGE left in your pocket")
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