From The New York Times :
Over the past six years, the Bush administration has spent almost $100 million on a highly classified program to help Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan’s president, secure his country’s nuclear weapons, according to current and former senior administration officials.
Haraz N. Ghanbari/Associated Press
But with the future of that country’s leadership in doubt, debate is intensifying about whether Washington has done enough to help protect the warheads and laboratories, and whether Pakistan’s reluctance to reveal critical details about its arsenal has undercut the effectiveness of the continuing security effort. The aid, buried in secret portions of the federal budget, paid for the training of Pakistani personnel in the United States and the construction of a nuclear security training center in Pakistan, a facility that American officials say is nowhere near completion, even though it was supposed to be in operation this year.
A raft of equipment — from helicopters to night-vision goggles to nuclear detection equipment — was given to Pakistan to help secure its nuclear material, its warheads, and the laboratories that were the site of the worst known case of nuclear proliferation in the atomic age.
While American officials say that they believe the arsenal is safe at the moment, and that they take at face value Pakistani assurances that security is vastly improved, in many cases the Pakistani government has been reluctant to show American officials how or where the gear is actually used.
That is because the Pakistanis do not want to reveal the locations of their weapons or the amount or type of new bomb-grade fuel the country is now producing.
It’s nice to see that Bu$hco has been aware that his buddy and pawn Musharraf has been on increasingly shaky ground for the past couple of years. The relatively few Americans who are actually aware of global events have wondered about when Musharraf got overthrown and the extremists took over what would happen to the country’s nukes.
I’m not too confident about this plan either and I’m not happy about $100 million petrodollars getting siphoned for this project, but hey, that’s just a drop in the proverbial bucket! I just hope there’s at least a few competent people doing this job!
Middle East policy for like it seems forever has been a series of debacles, one right after the other since the 1920s. Of course oil is the central feature and the control thereof. The various peoples in the region have been pawns, cannon fodder, terrorists and despots for over eighty years and it’s coming to a head where these people are saying, ” Enough is enough!” And as Peak Oil approaches (and the Saudis know this) and the quest to control a dwindling resource creeps northward toward Central Asia, (i.e., American missile “defense” bordering Russia) different players are involved. Namely China and India. Two ancient nations who aspire to greatness once again.
So much for The Project For A New American Century.