Thursday, March 21, 2013

China To Modernize And Upgrade Pakistan's Reactors, Nuclear Weapons Arsenal

This is the most important news story you'll read today.

China has reached an agreement with Pakistan to construct a third nuclear reactor located at Chashma and to modernize Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, including development of a new warhead for Pakistan’s missile arsenal.

According to U.S. intelligence and diplomatic officials, the secret agreement for the Chashma 3 reactor was signed in Beijing during the visit by a delegation from the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission from Feb. 15 to 18.

The agreement calls for the state-run China National Nuclear Corp. (CNNC) to construct a 1,000-megawatt power plant at Chashma, located in the northern province of Punjab, where two earlier Chinese reactors were built.

China’s government last month issued an internal notice to officials within its nuclear establishment and to regional political leaders urging care to avoid any leaks of information about the nuclear sale that Beijing expects will be controversial, said officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The reactor deal had been in the works for several years and prompted high-level U.S. government efforts to block the sale because of concerns it will boost Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program.

The CNNC is China’s main nuclear weapons producer and has been linked in the past to Pakistan’s nuclear arms program by U.S. intelligence agencies. CNNC sold thousands of ring magnets to Pakistan during the 1990s that were used in centrifuges that produced highly enriched uranium for weapons.

According to the Obama Administration, China's actions violate an international accord against proliferation.

In 2004, China joined the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a voluntary association that seeks international cooperation in stopping the spread of nuclear weapons. China agreed at the time not to not to sell additional reactors to Pakistan beyond the two reactors it sold Pakistan earlier, and member states pledge not to sell any nuclear materials to any state not a a member of the International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA).

Pakistan not only isn't a member, it has a shameful history of aiding and abetting illegal proliferation.

It was AQ Khan who not only created Pakistan's nuclear weapons but set up what amounted to an illegal supermarket in nuclear weapons technology for some of the world's worst actors. Among Khan's customers were Iran, Libya and Saddam Hussein's Iraq, and the Pakistanis also acted as brokers for North Korean missile technology.

For the Chinese to provide up to date nuclear hardware for this unstable Muslim nation is incredibly dangerous, short sighted and foolish. Some of that nuclear technology could find its way to the jihadis Pakistan collaborates with like Lashkar e Tiaba or the Taliban and end up sparking a nuclear war between India and Pakistan.

And it might not stop there. Have the Chinese forgotten they have their own Muslim insurgency to deal with in Western China with the Uighers - just over the China Pakistan border?

It will be interesting to see what, if anything the Obama Administration does about this.


Anonymous said...

Forgive me for being blunt, but I, & many, many other writers at this site, in past years, have tried to warn you about the duplicitous nature of Red China/Mainland China/Peking. Just ask Tibet ( 1950 : independence stolen by Peking ) , Vietnam ( 1979 : land stolen by Peking ) , Cambodia ( the brutal puppets of Peking, the Khmer Rouge, murdered more than 2 million people ) , The Cultural Revolution ( more people were murdered by Mao Tse-Tung than Hitler plus Stalin combined ) , the Tiananmen Square Massacre , the attempts to grab all the S China oil reserves ( threatening Taiwan/Formosa, Vietnam, Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei ) . If this has lifted the scales from your eyes, then, great, but why did it have to come to this juncture in order to sound the alarm ?

Off subject : brilliant new article by Krauthammer in the Wash Post which details a clever plan to curb entitlement spending ( 21 March 2013, Wash Post : ' The Fifty Per Cent Solution ' ) .


Rob said...

Enfin, DD.

Agreed, Mao and the CR murdered millions (although probably not as many as Hitler and Stalin combined).

But simply put, to answer your question the Chinese are essentially rational actors. This isn't their usual MO, historically.

Pakistan with upgraded nukes has a lot more potential to harm them than America. Remember they share borders with India and Pakistan and a nuclear exchange there has a lot more dangerous potential for them than us.

Not only that, but what if Pakistan (or more likely one of the Muslim terrorist groups Pakistan is so enamored of) decides to wage a little uranium fueled jihad via China's dissident Muslims?

It just surprises me to see the Chinese make the same mistake Putin is making with Iran.

Especially since both countries have what amounts to terminal demographic problems and neither native Han Chinese or ethnic Russians are even producing close to replacement rates and both are going to have problems with Islam.

Nice to have you back by the way DD.


Rob said...

BTW, As far as I'm concerned the genocide committed by the Khmer Rouge was a product of Left Wing post Watergate Democrats who controlled Congress during the Ford administration and who broke our pledged word to the Lon Nol government by refusing to fund aid to them in the event of communist aggression.

I believe we've discussed this before, n'est pa mon ami?

Anonymous said...

1) The numbers would depend on whether you are including or excluding Mao's Famine ( 1958 - 1962 ) . I had a great reference titled ' Death By Government ' ( by Rummel ) in the 1990s but donated it to a library during one move. There was also an excellent summary on the internet which I can no longer locate. I have discovered a site, www dot hawaii dot edu /powerkills/20TH>HTM, which collates much of this info. The tables normally assign the numbers to regimes & not to specific individuals, but, at some point, the preliminary numbers ( before the Red Chinese update ) were Stalin at 42.6 million, Mao at 37.8 million, & Hitler at 20.9 million. When you add the Famine update, the Red Chinese numbers soar to 76.7 million, of which Mao was the culprit. In fact, these are very conservative numbers in Mao's case, for Germany's archives were secured by the Allies, & the Soviet Archives were opened during Yeltsin's government, but no such access has been afforded to scholars investigating Mao's crimes.

2) The Khmer Rouge were deposed by the Vietnamese. The Vietnamese were recovering from a war. Had there not been that war, the Khmer Rouge & their Peking backers would have been thwarted beforehand. We did discuss this, as you mention, 2 or 3 years ago, when you printed a post with a title to the effect of ' How Nixon Saved Israel ' ( correct title ? ) I recall that I mentioned supporting Lon Nol. I also recall mentioning that the unrepentant Vietnam War hawks were still obsessed primarily with Vietnam, thereby blunting any message from their ranks ( a la the Aesop tale of the kid which had cried wolf too often ) .


sharon said...

fuck u . Israeli monkey...

Anonymous said...

@ ' sharon ' , I am disgusted & bored & tired of you silly yobs on the ' web ' with your inane, juvenile, vandalistic comments. If you can't engage in civilised, polite behaviour, & if you dislike the West, then why don't you emigrate to one of your so-called ' paradises ' , eg, Saudi Arabia, Iran, or Pakistan, & leave the rest of us alone to engage in civilised, polite argument & debate. If you disagree with joshuapundit, who comports himself as a gentleman, then propound an argument or counter-argument to jp in reply. ( Jp enjoys a civil argument ; in fact, we were just arguing, supra, but we argued like grown-ups. ) This visual, print heckling is in poor taste. As some of my acquaintances would say to their children, ' You can go to your room without supper & consider your poor behaviour ! ' Leave my jp alone ! Roar !