Pakistan Pathway to Bomb, Ambitions, Politics and Rivalries
Dr. Mansoor Ahmed Khan
Even before the 1971 war and separation of East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), Pakistani establishment was thinking about a nuclear program. However, President General Ayub Khan turned down the proposal of his Foreign Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto to start a nuclear program for Pakistan.
Dr Abdus Salam, Dr Ishrat Usmani, Munir Ahmad Khan were founding figures of this nuclear program.
But 1971 war proved to be a catalyst for the Pakistani establishment both civil and military for starting their zealous struggle to have a nuclear bomb for Pakistan against the Indian Smiling Buddha. If in future India, larger to Pakistan in military and economic resources, again threatened its territorial integrity, they must not be a soft and easy target for the aggressor.
The learned author in the reviewed book dusts some of the myths and misconceptions about the Pakistan nuclear program.
How and why Pakistan pathway to Nuclearization is shrouded in mysteries and myths. One point may be that it was a deliberate and well-conceived attempt to save it from external pressure and also from the possible attacks of arch rival India.
Right from 1956 to 1998 when nuclear tests were conducted, 42 years history of the Pakistani nuclear program has been analysed by the author.
Interviewing those scientists and experts who contributed in this journey, analysing the primary resources still unknown to public, Professor Ahmad provides a fresh and detailed assessment of the Pakistan nuclear program. The unusual and something unpleasant at least for me is the departmental and professional rivalries, groupings and dodging at such a sensitive and strategic enclave of national security.
The 9 chapters book covers the birth of Pakistan nuclear program right from the bureaucratic red tapism to the command, control and testing of nuclear weapons of the country.
With 5 Appendixes attached this book is a good read for anyone interested in Pakistan history, nuclearization in South Asia and defence studies.
Murtaza Kaleem an educator, freelance writer, movie-watcher, melodious music listener and an avid reader about International Relations and World Politics with a decade long experience of education and teaching to students of different sociological and economic backgrounds. My social links are;