Interview with Munir Khan, 1987
- Interview with Munir Khan, 1987
Dr. Munir Ahmad Khan was a nuclear engineer, who chaired the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission from 1972-1991. The interview opens with his background and the early years of Pakistans nuclear program. He recalls the period around the Atoms for Peace speech and the 1950s generally as an era of great expectations. Proliferation, he notes, was not an issue then or in the early 1960s, until the Chinese test. Even more significant was Indias test in 1974, which came as a shock and which, he remarks, destroyed the trust between suppliers and recipient states. This had a major impact on the Pakistani program because suppliers began to renege on existing agreements. Further pressure came in 1976 when Kissinger and Ford prevailed on France to cut off its agreement to assist Pakistans program. Canada also decided to curtail its assistance. International entities such as the London Suppliers Group and the International Fuel Cycle Evaluation Group made their mark on Pakistan, as did Jimmy Carters non-proliferation policy. The last, in his view, was wholly counterproductive. He denies there has been any nuclear cooperation with Libya or with any other Moslem state, calling the concept of an Islamic bomb a pure fabrication. He describes the uranium enrichment project as part of an effort to gain a measure of self-sufficiency, noting that Pakistan remains dependent on outside countries for assistance in certain areas. There has been no cooperation with China, he states, commenting that China is not very advanced in the field. He insists Pakistan has no interest in acquiring a bomb.
- Khan, Munir Ahmad, 1926-1999
February 8, 1987
- Collection (local):
WGBH Open Vault
War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
Treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (1968)
International Atomic Energy Agency
International Nuclear Fuel Cycle Evaluation
United States. Nuclear Nonproliferation Act of 1978
Nuclear Suppliers Group
Bhutto, Zulfikar Ali
Ford, Gerald R., 1913-2006
Kissinger, Henry, 1923-
Carter, Jimmy, 1924-
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