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Nuclear Thread - 2
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Cong has made a somersault on N-deal, says BJP </b>
PTI | New Delhi
Posted online: October 12, 2007
BJP on Friday dubbed as "somersault" Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's 'not the end of life' talk on the Nuclear deal, alleging that the<b> Congress has developed cold feet over the prospect of mid-term polls.</b>

The main Opposition party said <b>it will "renegotiate" the civil nuclear deal with the US if it comes to power and amend the "anti-national clauses" that are part of the controversial agreement.</b>

"This Government has become a Government of U-turn. First the Prime Minister said the deal is non-negotiable. Then Sonia Gandhi dubbed those opposing the nuclear deal as enemies of development. The Congress and its leadership have now developed cold feet. They are afraid of losing polls and facing elections," senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu said reacting to the Prime Minister and Congress chief's comments on snap polls.

The Congress, including its chief and the Prime Minister, had staked their prestige on the deal and now "they have made a somersault," he said, adding<b> the people of the country will ensure that this Government is a government of no return</b>.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Jaswant Singh calls for renegotiation of N-deal </b>
PTI | New York
Posted online: October 13, 2007
Senior BJP leader Jaswant Singh has sought renegotiation and revision of the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal to ensure that the country's "strategic autonomy," especially in defence sector, is maintained under all circumstances.

<b>"We cannot have decision making authority concerning India's security being arrogated to itself by any other power," </b>the former External Affairs Minister told a press conference here on Saturday.

Replying to a question, Singh said his party stands for strategic relations with the United States in all fields but "strategic partnership is not strategic subservient."

The BJP veteran rejected the suggestion that the stand of BJP and Left parties, which are also opposing the deal, is similar.

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>"Our approaches are fundamentally apart. The Communists are persuaded by foundational anti-Americanism. But we have no such ailment. We want strategic relationship with the United States" but also wanted to ensure that it would not affect India's autonomy to take its own decisions," </span>he said, while calling for renegotiation and revision of the nuclear deal.

The major problem with the deal is that it was announced in a hurry and both Indian and US governments "made the mistake" of not taking lawmakers into confidence, he said, adding that all issues could have been sorted if that had been done.
<b>Dr Singh says it is not the end of life. Which is true enough, but it could be the end of Manmohan Singh,"</b> the Business Standard wrote in an editorial titled "A hostage in office".

<b>"There is life after the nuclear deal? Sure," echoed the Indian Express. "But what kind of life?" </b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>DEAL IN DEEP FREEZE </b>
Singh, said Thapar and others, faced the remainder of his term with his credibility seriously diminished, with the government's credibility in Washington -- and in other foreign capitals where it had lobbied hard for the deal -- seriously undermined.

<b>"All this casts serious doubt over what the Manmohan Singh government can now engage in," the Mint business newspaper wrote in an editorial entitled "Nuclear dodo" on Monday. </b>

<b>"With a near-death experience, the pressure to indulge in populism will become inexorable," it said, adding: "Investors may have doubts about India again." </b>

But can the nuclear deal still be saved?

The left's opposition to the deal seems implacable, and time is running out fast to win them round. The agreement still needs to get through the IAEA, the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group and get to the US Congress before next year's presidential election sweeps everything else off the table.

<b>A Democrat in the White House is unlikely to push the deal through in its current shape after those elections, most analysts argue.
That gives the government a matter of weeks at the most.</b>

Columnist Vir Sanghvi, writing in the Hindustan Times, wondered if the left still could be convinced now the government has taken a more conciliatory, less confrontational approach.

And in the Times of India, columnist K. Subrahmanyam wondered if Singh really meant what he said.

Rather like a finance minister denying a currency would have to be devalued, right up to the announcement of a devaluation, he argued, Singh was duty bound to stick publicly to his coalition partners -- right until the moment he pulled the plug.

But right now, that interpretation is not widely shared.

The nuclear deal is in "the deep freezer", the Times of India wrote in an editorial, describing it as a blow to India's global aspirations and a diminution of its international stature.

"By backing down after raising the bar so high the government has signalled, in effect, that it is weak and open to blackmail on any issue by any pressure group in parliament.

<b>"With one and a half years remaining for polls, and the Left demonstrating it holds the whip hand over government, hopes for economic reform are dim."</b>
I think the lifafas are coming fast and furious. MMS is definitely hurt but it is mostly self inflicted. He and his goons in PMO have done their utmost to the sci community and the political process by denying a debate in the Lok & Rajya Sabha. Even as late as last week Mrs. G Ver2.0 was caulmning those opposed to the deal.

We should gather up the positives and negatives exposed over the last two years of the deal and summarize them.
They deserve it. Babus were pushing this deal without debate. These guys don't understand democracy, Congress is not a party with 2/3 majority, but they were behaving like one. Fascism is gone long time back but it still exist in ruling Govt.
150 Babus who were behind this deal will lose nothing, during next round they can collect more frequent flier miles, more shopping, for some it may delay job in international body or foundation or organization. lifafas are doing their job, now they have to wait for new round of financing.

Who cares about nation or Tax money? None.
Debate was must and Moron Singh failed India, he is spineless, he is doing what he was instructed to do.
C Uday Bhaskar
"BJP must step in and save N deal"
Left's calling the shot on nuke deal. Manmohan seems to be caving in.
PM risks losing nuclear deal, and credibility
By Simon Denyer - Reuter
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>UPA has touched its lowest depth, says Advani </b>
Pioneer News Service | New Delhi
The BJP on Tuesday fired yet another salvo at the UPA Government on the India-<b>US nuclear deal, saying the difficulties faced by it in operationalising the agreement reflected the very nature of the "opportunistic alliance". </b>

A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told US President George W Bush about hurdles in implementing the deal, Leader of the Opposition LK Advani insisted that the nuclear standoff was "the lowest point of the UPA Government".

<b>"It is a reflection of the nature of this alliance which has parties with diametrically opposite views on foreign and economic policies. It is bound to happen in an opportunistic alliance,"</b> Advani said.

He was replying to a question on the Prime Minister's late night telephonic talk with Bush during which Singh talked about difficulties being faced by his Government in proceeding with the deal.

Advani said the deal with the US was "uncalled for and undesirable" as it surrenders India's strategic freedom by bringing the country into the nuclear non-proliferation regime.

"No Government in the past ever agreed to it. Indira Gandhi had rejected it. The Vajpayee Government conducted Pokhran II (nuclear tests) despite displeasure from the US Government," he noted.

The veteran BJP leader asserted that the BJP will "renegotiate" the deal taking into consideration the national interests if it comes to power at the Centre.

Though the crisis over the deal appears to have blown over, the BJP is still not ruling out the possibility of mid-term polls as it feels the Government has not abandoned the agreement altogether. The top leadership of the saffron party is of the view that the Congress-led UPA Government is buying time and will eventually push through the deal, leading to withdrawal of support by the Left parties.

In an informal chat with mediapersons here, BJP president Rajnath Singh refused to read much into the telephonic conversation between the Prime Minister and the US President late on Monday night.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>US disappointed, but hopes against hope </b>
S Rajagopalan | Washington
It may be all over bar the shouting at the New Delhi end, but the United States, concealing its disappointment over the sharp setback to the civil nuclear deal, has sought to send out strong signals that it is still hopeful of seeing the arrangement through.

Hours after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh informed President George W Bush on Monday that "certain difficulties" have arisen over operationalisation of the deal, the State Department refrained from taking a pessimistic view of the impasse.

<b>"I think we're going to continue to work on our part and we assume they (India) are going to continue to work on theirs and it'll be done in a time that is appropriate for both sides," </b>State Department's deputy spokesman Tom Casey said.

All through his briefing that was dominated by searching questions on the fate of a deal that has all along been viewed as one of Bush's few foreign policy successes, Casey sought to convey the US assessment that the deal is still doable and that it has strong bipartisan support in the US Congress.

In private, however, US officials appeared to be less enthusiastic. Without citing names, The Washington Post reported that "US officials acknowledged deep disappointment with the abrupt (Indian) decision, which they described as unexpected".

After the Prime Minister's remarks in New Delhi on Friday, virtually putting the deal on the backburner, Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns and other senior administration officials reportedly scrambled over the weekend to try to revive the deal.

Anxious not to ruffle any political feathers in India, the State Department spokesman was careful in his responses. Asked if the deal was slipping away and New Delhi was not pushing the issue hard enough, he said he would <b>"leave it to Indian officials to talk about their own internal political discussions", but stressed that the deal was a good one for both India and the US and for the broader efforts of non-proliferation.</b>

When a reporter asked if the US was not becoming "a little impatient with the Indians", Casey commented: <b>"Look, you know, each one of these agreements is complicated. They've got a whole variety of things associated with them. I'm not going to try and tell the Indians how to manage their own internal process on this. We certainly think this is again an arrangement that's positive for both countries and the broader international community and we'd like to see it done as soon as possible, but that's within the context of what each country has to do and has to accomplish."</b>

Questioned about his "rosy" approach, looking at the deal "as glass half-full instead of as glass half-empty," the spokesman remarked: "As Undersecretary (Nicholas) Burns has told you, as diplomats we are always hopeful."

On the US side, the next step is to work out an appropriate arrangement with the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers' Group, but this is to be gone through after India finalises its safeguards pact with the International Atomic Energy Agency. Pending that, Washington has had "a number of good conversations with some of the individual nations", Casey said.

A statement issued by National Security Council spokesman Gordon Johndroe on the Bush-Singh telephone conversation gave no details about what transpired between the two on the nuclear deal.

Congressman Gary Ackerman, the former Democratic co-chair of the India Caucus, said the deal was too important to die.<b> "I would suspect there might be a delay because of the political situation in India, but don't count this deal out," </b>he said.

<b>There is a feeling here that Washington's powerful non-proliferation lobby will use the current opportunity to further its opposition to the arrangement worked out between the two countries. </b>Daryl Kimball of the Arms Control Association, who has been in the forefront of this opposition, commented: "<b>I would not say the deal is dead. It's in the hospital in intensive care. The reason it's in intensive care is that there is a tight timeline that the US and India have to keep to follow through on all the steps."</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->'<b>Betrayed' </b>
Professor Anupam Srivastava of Georgia University says it's now or never.

"If a Democrat regime comes into power, the non-proliferation lobby would successfully insert amendments and conditionalities that will be clearly unacceptable to Indian scientists," says Professor Srivastava, who has been closely associated with the agreement since its conception.

He laments that the deal is stuck after so much hard work.

"If you do a referendum in India on this deal it will win, if you do a vote in the parliament it will fall," he says.

These sentiments are echoed by Swadesh Chatterjee of the Indo-US Friendship Council, a group that lobbied hard for the deal. He says he feels "betrayed" by domestic politics in India.

<b>"I personally made 66 trips from North Carolina to Washington for this deal. I feel now the Indian government's credibility is at stake," </b>he says. 

100 MPs strong Chinese Lobby in Parliament
by on Oct 16, 2007 01:56 PM | Hide replies

The Chinese lobby of over 100 left MPs in India has achieved its biggest victory till date. Even at the height of the cold war, Indian communist leaders used to claim that the super power Soviet Union did not follow true communism but only China did.(then just marginally better off than India on several economic parameters). Looks like they have not lost their China love one bit even today when China has become totally capitalistic. The hippocrites are more loyal than even the Chinese.

Now that they have made the Central Government capitulate on a important deal about which China felt threatened, they can flex their muscle some more and try do achieve more things for their anti-development and anti-national front. Here are the possible next items for their agenda :

1.Complete rollback of economic reforms started in 1991.
2.Handover Arunachal to China, etc.

Achievements of the UPA [Useless Politicians Alliance]...
by Vikas Bhatt on Oct 16, 2007 02:09 PM | Hide replies

Increasing Terrorism, Muslim Appeassement, The Lord Ram affadavits that hurt all Hindus, Increasing farmer suicides, Inflation, Rampant corruption, Increasing Bangaldeshi influx, a weak Government totally at mercy of gundas like Left and DMK, No politcial will to tackle terrorism and initiatives needed just to appease muslims, Failing law & order situations, The recourse to get things done through courts for everything, the increasing resistance to judicial decisions meant for people's benefit by the parliamentarians, Police and Army all tied up & losing the war against terror, bomb blasts in every Indian city on a daily basis now, Increasing caste politics, Absolute failures in power and infrastructure sectors, Increasing pays and perks of non-performing government work force, Communalising everything from vande Mataram to number of muslims in army, Kicking out a man of honesty and integrity like Kalam from president's post for political reasons [They talk of muslim upliftment & kick out a Muslim President], Subverting democracy in Jharkhand, Bihar, Goa etc by misusing parliament speakers and governors to prevent majority rival governments from forming & functioning, increase in corruption in PDS, increasing jawan suicides, a frustrated & disllusioned army and police force - exactly what is so good about UPA? Useless Politicians Alliance is more like it...For every step they took we went 10 steps backwards!

From Telegraph, 17 Oct., 2007
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Extempore plea to save N-deal
Washington, Oct. 16: <b>It was like a political requiem for the Indo-US nuclear deal </b>which has dominated the relationship between Washington and New Delhi for two years and three months.

<b>None other than Gary Ackerman,</b> a founding member and two-time co-chairman of the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans, <b>performed it.</b>

Perhaps ironically, he was addressing a group of visiting Indian MPs, several of whom belong to parties opposed to the deal.

<b>“Do not let the radical few hijack what is in your nation’s best interest,” </b>Ackerman said in an emotional outburst that would have stalled Parliament tomorrow in response if it had been in session.

<i>{In other words <b>US Congressman</b> knows whats in India's national interests but visitng Indian MPS dont!}</i> Confusedhock:

“I say to my American and Indian friends, in order for progress to be made, courage needs to be shown.”

<b>Ackerman threw away his prepared speech </b>as word drifted in at the lunch in honour of the MPs that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had told Bush in a telephone conversation that “certain difficulties have arisen with respect to the operationalisation” of the nuclear deal.

<i>{Should he be nominated for diplomatic Oscar?}</i>

Speaking extempore because “we have been overtaken by events”, Ackerman told those in charge in New Delhi: “Do not cave in.… The ball is back in your court.”

<b>He furiously lammed into the Left parties. </b>“To those who would try to bully from a minority position, <b>to tell the majority of people what is in their national interests and that if they do not do as that group says, that they are being bullied, are themselves the bullies.”</b>

<i>{Wow Again. And he is leader of India caucus? He wants the proverbial Indian Brahmin to walk back into the cage!!! For those who dont know read The brahmin and the tiger  in the Panchatantra}</i>

<b>Ackerman’s bitterness and sense of disappointment, political in nature, was in sharp contrast to the sanguine attitude at the state department, where the pointman for the deal, Nicholas Burns, also met Indian MPs yesterday.</b>

<i>{Looks like good cop bad cop drama. Its not Hollywood alone that should get best acting and screenplay Oscars.}</i>

Tom Casey, the department’s deputy spokesman, took a practical view of the agreements to be negotiated with the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Nuclear Suppliers Group. “Each one of these agreements is complicated. They have got a whole variety of things associated with them. <b>I am not going to try and tell the Indians how to manage their own internal process on this,” Casey said.</b>

“We are going to continue to work on our part and we assume they are going to continue to work on theirs and it (the deal) will be done in a time that is appropriate for both sides.”

<b>The venue for the political requiem held infinite symbolism. It was the large Hall of Flags of the US-India Business Council (USIBC), where many strategy sessions were held — including one attended by US Vice-President Dick Cheney and another by secretary of state Condoleezza Rice — on how to take forward the nuclear deal.</b>

<i>{So even the stage and venue was dramatic! How touching and poignant!}</i>

Appropriately, <b>Ackerman had a good word for American multinational corporations who are USIBC members, without whose lobbying the deal would never have got past the US Congress during its first stage.</b>

<b><i>{Otherwise they want their money back!}</i></b>  8)

Aiming his thrust at those who accuse US businesses of self-interest in promoting the deal, he said: <b>“The business people who are among us today — under whose umbrella we assemble today — are not just financial mercenaries. They do have the interests of their peoples in mind. There is money to be made in progress, there is also peace and security to be made in progress, if progress is made the right way.”</b>

<i>{President Grover Cleveland was the one who  said "The Business of America is Business" and folks thought he was a country bumpkin!}</i>

<b>Ackerman was joined by several businessmen who spoke of their disappointment over yesterday’s developments. </b>

Michael Gadbaw, vice-president and counsel for General Electric, regretted that “the crowning achievement” in Indo-US relations “hangs in a delicate balance as politics complicates consideration” of the deal.

<b>“From what I can tell of the debate, the party of Jyoti Basu — whom I came to know while he was chief minister of West Bengal and who has done so much for his state — that party has failed to appreciate the importance and significance of this agreement to the future and prosperity of our two countries,” he said.</b>

<i>{One good thing that might come out of this is that uncle will stop funding the Lefties with scholarships and education trips to massaland for them and their kinfolks. Most of the Lefties kids are in Massaland at Ivy league schools and get jobs on Wall street or Sand Hill Road. }</i>

The atmosphere was so charged that B.J. Panda, the mild-mannered and suave co-chairman of the India-US Forum of Parliamentarians (IUFP) tried to cool the temperature by pointing to other bright spots in New Delhi’s ties with Washington.

The MPs’ team has been put together by the IUFP and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

<b>Trade had doubled and the US is now India’s biggest trading partner, Panda pointed out. It was not a one-issue relationship with Washington, he said.</b>

Polite as he was, <b>Panda was not taking anything lying down. He firmly defended India’s right to determine the nature and content of its ties with Iran. In an implied dig at Washington’s protection of Pakistan, Panda said India was the second biggest contributor to development in Afghanistan after the US. But with Pakistan blocking India’s access to Afghanistan, the only route for Indian supplies to that country was through Iran.</b>

<i>{Panda might get his cumuppence he carries on too much. Look at poor Hsu who is now a political untouchable. But proud of him for retorting while Indian MEA was supine and silent. A true self made man and not a lifafa bearer.}</i>

<b>Samajwadi Party’s Shahid Siddiqui came to the defence of the Left parties </b>although he pointed out that he was not one of them. Siddiqui said he shared some of the concerns of the Left about the Hyde Act, adding that <b>India would rather work with China in the interest of regional peace than confront it</b>.

<b>To that extent, he said, there were genuine worries about the implications of the Hyde Act on India’s diplomatic freedom. </b>

<i>{So Left concerns are only in the diplomatic sphere and not anything else. One way out is if the objectionable passages in Hyde Act are dropped and some Presidential action about the irrelevance of those passages might allow the Left to support the UPA in signing up. So kep the cork on the champagne. The foolish Brahmin might still believe the tiger.}</i>


This also belongs here:
The man who knew too much

He was the CIA's expert on Pakistan's nuclear secrets, but Rich Barlow was thrown out and disgraced when he blew the whistle on a US cover-up. Now he's to have his day in court. Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark report

Saturday October 13, 2007
The Guardian

Rich Barlow idles outside his silver trailer on a remote campsite in Montana - itinerant and unemployed, with only his hunting dogs and a borrowed computer for company. He dips into a pouch of American Spirit tobacco to roll another cigarette. It is hard to imagine that he was once a covert operative at the CIA, the recognised, much lauded expert in the trade in Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD).

He prepared briefs for Dick Cheney, when Cheney was at the Pentagon, for the upper echelons of the CIA and even for the Oval Office. But when he uncovered a political scandal - a conspiracy to enable a rogue nation to get the nuclear bomb - he found himself a marked man.

Article continues
In the late 80s, in the course of tracking down smugglers of WMD components, Barlow uncovered reams of material that related to Pakistan. It was known the Islamic Republic had been covertly striving to acquire nuclear weapons since India's explosion of a device in 1974 and the prospect terrified the west - especially given the instability of a nation that had had three military coups in less than 30 years . Straddling deep ethnic, religious and political fault-lines, it was also a country regularly rocked by inter-communal violence. "Pakistan was the kind of place where technology could slip out of control," Barlow says.

He soon discovered, however, that senior officials in government were taking quite the opposite view: they were breaking US and international non-proliferation protocols to shelter Pakistan's ambitions and even sell it banned WMD technology. In the closing years of the cold war, Pakistan was considered to have great strategic importance. It provided Washington with a springboard into neighbouring Afghanistan - a route for passing US weapons and cash to the mujahideen, who were battling to oust the Soviet army that had invaded in 1979. Barlow says, "We had to buddy-up to regimes we didn't see eye-to-eye with, but I could not believe we would actually give Pakistan the bomb.

How could any US administration set such short-term gains against the long-term safety of the world?" Next he discovered that the Pentagon was preparing to sell Pakistan jet fighters that could be used to drop a nuclear bomb.

Barlow was relentless in exposing what he saw as US complicity, and in the end he was sacked and smeared as disloyal, mad, a drunk and a philanderer. If he had been listened to, many believe Pakistan might never have got its nuclear bomb; south Asia might not have been pitched into three near-nuclear conflagrations; and the nuclear weapons programmes of Iran, Libya and North Korea - which British and American intelligence now acknowledge were all secretly enabled by Pakistan - would never have got off the ground. "None of this need have happened," Robert Gallucci, special adviser on WMD to both Clinton and George W Bush, told us. "The vanquishing of Barlow and the erasing of his case kicked off a chain of events that led to all the nuclear-tinged stand-offs we face today. Pakistan is the number one threat to the world, and if it all goes off - a nuclear bomb in a US or European city- I'm sure we will find ourselves looking in Pakistan's direction."

US aid to Pakistan tapered off when the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan. Dejected and impoverished, in 1987 Pakistan's ruling military responded by selling its nuclear hardware and know-how for cash, something that would have been obvious to all if the intelligence had been properly analysed. "But the George HW Bush administration was not looking at Pakistan," Barlow says. "It had new crises to deal with in the Persian Gulf where Saddam Hussein had invaded Kuwait."

As the first Gulf war came to an end with no regime change in Iraq, a group of neoconservatives led by Paul Wolfowitz, Dick Cheney, Lewis "Scooter" Libby and Donald Rumsfeld were already lobbying to finish what that campaign had started and dislodge Saddam. Even as the CIA amassed evidence showing that Pakistan, a state that sponsored Islamist terrorism and made its money by selling proscribed WMD technology, was the number one threat, they earmarked Iraq as the chief target.

When these neocons came to power in 2001, under President George W Bush, Pakistan was indemnified again, this time in return for signing up to the "war on terror". Condoleezza Rice backed the line, as did Rumsfeld, too. Pakistan, although suspected by all of them to be at the epicentre of global instability, was hailed as a friend. All energies were devoted to building up the case against Iraq.

It is only now, amid the recriminations about the war in Iraq and reassessments of where the real danger lies, that Barlow - the despised bringer of bad news about Pakistan - is finally to get a hearing. More than 20 years after this saga began, his case, filed on Capitol Hill, is coming to court later this month. His lawyers are seeking millions of dollars in compensation for Barlow as well as the reinstatement of his $80,000 a year government pension. Evidence will highlight what happened when ideologues took control of intelligence in three separate US administrations - those of Reagan, and of the two Bushes - and how a CIA analyst who would not give up his pursuit for the truth became a fall guy.

Born in Upper Manhattan, New York, the son of an army surgeon, Barlow went to an Ivy League feeder school before attending Western Washington University on America's northwest tip. Even then he was an idealist and an internationalist, obsessively following world events. He majored in political science, and his thesis was on counter-proliferation intelligence; he was concerned that the burgeoning black markets in nuclear weapons technology threatened peace in the west. "I got my material from newspapers and books," he recalls. "I went to congressional hearings in Washington and discovered that there was tonnes of intelligence about countries procuring nuclear materials." After graduation in 1981, shortly after Reagan became president - avowedly committed to the non proliferation of nuclear weapons - Barlow won an internship at the State Department's Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA), which had been established by John F Kennedy in the 60s.

At first Barlow thought he was helping safeguard the world. "I just loved it," he says. His focus from the start was Pakistan, at the time suspected of clandestinely seeking nuclear weapons in a programme initiated by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, the father of Benazir. "Everywhere I looked I kept coming up against intelligence about Pakistan's WMD programme," Barlow says. "I thought I was telling them what they needed to hear, but the White House seemed oblivious." Immersed in the minutiae of his investigations, he didn't appreciate the bigger picture: that Pakistan had, within days of Reagan's inauguration in 1981, gone from being an outcast nation that had outraged the west by hanging Bhutto to a major US ally in the proxy war in Afghanistan.

Within months Barlow was out of a job. A small band of Republican hawks, including Paul Wolfowitz, had convinced the president that America needed a new strategy against potential nuclear threats, since long-term policies such as détente and containment were not working. Reagan was urged to remilitarise, launch his Star Wars programme and neutralise ACDA. When the agency's staff was cut by one third, Barlow found himself out of Washington and stacking shelves in a food store in Connecticut, where he married his girlfriend, Cindy. He was not on hand in 1984 when intelligence reached the ACDA and the CIA that Pakistan had joined the nuclear club (the declared nuclear powers were Britain, France, the US, China and Russia) after China detonated a device on Pakistan's behalf.

Soon after, Barlow was re-employed to work as an analyst, specialising in Pakistan, at the Office of Scientific and Weapons Research (OSWR). The CIA was pursuing the Pakistan programme vigorously even though Reagan was turning a blind eye - indeed, Reagan's secretary of state, George Schultz, claimed in 1985: "We have full faith in [Pakistan's] assurance that they will not make the bomb."

Back on a government salary, Barlow, aged 31, moved to Virginia with his wife Cindy, also a CIA agent. From day one, he was given access to the most highly classified material. He learned about the workings of the vast grey global market in dual-use components - the tools and equipment that could be put to use in a nuclear weapons programme but that could also be ascribed to other domestic purposes, making the trade in them hard to spot or regulate. "There was tonnes of it and most of it was ending up in Islamabad," he says. "Pakistan had a vast network of procurers, operating all over the world." A secret nuclear facility near Islamabad, known as the Khan Research Laboratories, was being fitted out with components imported from Europe and America "under the wire". But the CIA obtained photographs. Floor plans. Bomb designs. Sensors picked up evidence of high levels of enriched uranium in the air and in the dust clinging to the lorries plying the road to the laboratories. Barlow was in his element.

However, burrowing through cables and files, he began to realise that the State Department had intelligence it was not sharing - in particular the identities of key Pakistani procurement agents, who were active in the US. Without this information, the US Commerce Department (which approved export licences) and US Customs (which enforced them) were hamstrung.

Barlow came to the conclusion that a small group of senior officials was physically aiding the Pakistan programme. "They were issuing scores of approvals for the Pakistan embassy in Washington to export hi-tech equipment that was critical for their nuclear bomb programme and that the US Commerce Department had refused to license," he says. Dismayed, he approached his boss at the CIA, Richard Kerr, the deputy director for intelligence, who summoned senior State Department officials to a meeting at CIA headquarters in Langley. Barlow recalls: "Kerr tried to do it as nicely as he could. He said he understood the State Department had to keep Pakistan on side - the State Department guaranteed it would stop working against us."

Then a Pakistani nuclear smuggler walked into a trap sprung by the CIA - and the Reagan administration's commitment to rid the world of nuclear weapons was put to the test.

US foreign aid legislation stipulated that if Pakistan was shown to be procuring weapons of mass destruction or was in possession of a nuclear bomb, all assistance would be halted. This, in turn, would have threatened the US-funded war in Afghanistan. So there were conflicting interests at work when Barlow got a call from the Department of Energy. "I was told that a Pakistani businessman had contacted Carpenter Steel, a company in Pennsylvania, asking to buy a specific type of metal normally used only in constructing centrifuges to enrich uranium. His name was Arshad Pervez and his handler, Inam ul-Haq, a retired brigadier from the Pakistan army, had been known to us for many years as a key Pakistan government operative." Barlow and US customs set up a sting. "Pervez arrived to a do a deal at a hotel we had rigged out and was arrested," Barlow says. "But ul-Haq, our main target, never showed."

Trawling through piles of cables, he found evidence that two high-ranking US officials extremely close to the White House had tipped off Islamabad about the CIA operation. Furious, Barlow called his superiors. "The CIA went mad. These were criminal offences," Barlow says. The State Department's lawyers considered their position. They argued that an inquiry would necessitate the spilling of state secrets. The investigation was abandoned just as Reagan made his annual statement to Congress, testifying that "Pakistan does not possess a nuclear explosive device."

But the Pervez case would not go away. Congressman Stephen Solarz, a Democrat from New Jersey, demanded a closed congressional hearing to vet the intelligence concerning Pakistan's bomb programme. Barlow was detailed to "backbench" at the meeting, if necessary offering advice to the White House representative, General David Einsel (who had been chosen by Reagan to head his Star Wars programme). An armed guard stood outside the room where the hearing was held.

Barlow recalls that Solarz got straight to the point: "Were Pervez and ul-Haq agents of the Pakistan government?" Without flinching, Einsel barked back: "It is not cut and dried." It was a criminal offence to lie to Congress, as other hearings happening on the same day down the corridor were spelling out to Colonel Oliver North, the alleged mastermind behind Iran-Contra. Barlow froze. "These congressmen had no idea what was really going on in Pakistan and what had been coming across my desk about its WMD programme," he says. "They did not know that Pakistan already had a bomb and was shopping for more with US help. All of it had been hushed up."

Then Solarz called on Barlow to speak. "I told the truth. I said it was clear Pervez was an agent for Pakistan's nuclear programme. Everyone started shouting. General Einsel screamed, 'Barlow doesn't know what he's talking about.' Solarz asked if there had been any other cases involving the Pakistan government and Einsel said, 'No'." Barlow recalls thinking, " 'Oh no, here we go again.' They asked me and I said, 'Yes, there have been scores of other cases.' "

The meeting broke up. Barlow was bundled into a CIA car that sped for Langley. It was a bad time to be the US's foremost expert on Pakistan's nuclear programme when the administration was desperate to prove it didn't exist. Shortly after, Barlow left the CIA, claiming that Einsel had made his job impossible.

Later that year, Reagan would tell the US Congress: "There is no diminution in the president's commitment to restraining the spread of nuclear weapons in the Indian subcontinent or elsewhere."

Once again, Barlow was able to bounce back. In January 1989, he was recruited by the Office of the Secretary of Defence (OSD) at the Pentagon to become its first intelligence analyst in WMD. For a man uncomfortable with political pragmatism, it was a strange move: he was now in a department that was steeped in realpolitik, balancing the commercial needs of the US military industry against America's international obligations. Within weeks, he had again built a stack of evidence about Pakistan's WMD programme, including intelligence that the Pakistan army was experimenting with a delivery system for its nuclear bomb, using US-provided technology. "Our side was at it again," Barlow says.

Still optimistic, still perhaps naive and still committed to the ideal of thwarting the Pakistan programme, Barlow convinced himself that his experience in the CIA was untypical, the work of a handful of political figures who would now not be able to reach him. When he was commissioned to write an intelligence assessment for Dick Cheney, defence secretary, giving a snapshot of the Pakistan WMD programme, he thought he was making headway. Barlow's report was stark. He concluded that the US had sold 40 F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan in the mid-80s - it had been a precondition of the sale that none of the jets could be adapted to drop a nuclear bomb. He was convinced that all of them had been configured to do just that. He concluded that Pakistan was still shopping for its WMD programme and the chances were extremely high that it would also begin selling this technology to other nations. Unbeknown to Barlow, the Pentagon had just approved the sale of another 60 F-16s to Pakistan in a deal worth $1.4bn, supposedly with the same provison as before.

"Officials at the OSD kept pressurising me to change my conclusions," Barlow says. He refused and soon after noticed files going missing. A secretary tipped him off that a senior official had been intercepting his papers. In July 1989, Barlow was hauled before one of the Pentagon's top military salesmen, who accused him of sabotaging the new F-16 deal. Eight days later, when Congress asked if the jet could be adapted by Pakistan to drop a nuclear bomb, the Defence Department said, "None of the F-16s Pakistan already owns or is about to purchase is configured for nuclear delivery." Barlow was horrified.

On August 4 1989, he was fired. "They told me they had received credible information that I was a security risk." Barlow demanded to know how and why. "They said they could not tell me as the information was classified." All they would say was that "senior Defence Department officials", whose identities were also classified, had supplied "plenty of evidence". The rumour going around the office was that Barlow was a Soviet spy. Barlow went home to Cindy. "We were in marriage counselling following my fall-out at the CIA. We were getting our relationship back on track. And now I had to explain that I was being fired from the Pentagon."

Barlow still would not give up. His almost pathological tenacity was one of the characteristics that made him a great analyst. With no salary and few savings, he found a lawyer who agreed to represent him pro-bono. At this point, more documents surfaced linking several familiar names to Barlow's sacking and its aftermath; these included Cheney's chief of staff, Libby, and two officials working for Wolfowitz. Through his lawyer, Barlow discovered that he was being described as a tax evader, an alcoholic and an adulterer, who had been fired from all previous government jobs. It was alleged that his marriage counselling was a cover for a course of psychiatric care, and he was put under pressure to permit investigators to interview his marriage guidance adviser. "I had to explain to Cindy that her private fears were to be trawled by the OSD. She moved out. My life, professionally and personally, was destroyed. Cindy filed for divorce."

Barlow's lawyers stuck by him, winning a combined inquiry by the three inspector generals acting for the Defence Department, the CIA and the State Department (inspector generals are the equivalent of ombudsmen in Britain). By September 1993, the lead inspector, Sherman Funk, concluded that the accusation of treachery was "an error not supported by a scintilla of evidence. The truth about Barlow's termination is, simply put, that it was unfair and unwarranted." The whole affair, Funk said, was "Kafka-like" - Barlow was sacrificed for "refusing to accede to policies which he knew to be wrong".

It seemed Barlow had been vindicated. However, when the report was published it had been completely rewritten by someone at the Pentagon. Funk was appalled. When Barlow's lawyers called the Pentagon, they were told it was the department that had been exonerated. Now it was official: Pakistan was nuclear-free, and did not have the capability of dropping a bomb from an American-supplied F-16 jet and the reputation of the only man who claimed otherwise was destroyed. Later, Barlow's lawyers would find his brief to Cheney had been rewritten, too, clearing Pakistan and concluding that continued US aid would ensure that the country would desist from its WMD programme.

The Pentagon officials who were responsible for Barlow's downfall would all be out of government by 1993, when Bill Clinton came into the White House. In opposition they began pursuing an aggressive political agenda, canvassing for war in Iraq rather than restraining nuclear-armed Pakistan. Their number now included Congressman Donald Rumsfeld, a former Republican defence secretary, and several others who would go on to take key positions under George Bush, including Richard Armitage, Richard Perle and John Bolton.

Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz headed the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States, which concluded in July 1998 that the chief threat - far greater than the CIA and other intelligence agencies had so far reported - was posed by Iran, Iraq and North Korea: the future Axis of Evil powers. Pakistan was not on the list, even though just two months earlier it had put an end to the dissembling by detonating five nuclear blasts in the deserts of Balochistan.

It was also difficult not to conclude that Islamist terrorism was escalating and that its epicentre was Pakistan. The camps that had once been used to train the US-backed mujahideen had, since the Soviet retreat from Afghanistan, morphed into training facilities for fighters pitted against the west. Many were filled by jihadis and were funded with cash from the Pakistan military.

It was made clear to the new president, Bill Clinton, that US policy on Pakistan had failed. The US had provided Islamabad with a nuclear bomb and had no leverage to stop the country's leaders from using it. When he was contacted by lawyers for Barlow, Clinton was shocked both by the treatment Barlow had received, and the implications for US policy on Pakistan. He signed off $1m in compensation. But Barlow never received it as the deal had to be ratified by Congress and, falling foul of procedural hurdles, it was kicked into the Court of Federal Claims to be reviewed as Clinton left office.

When the George Bush came to power, his administration quashed the case. CIA director George Tenet and Michael Hayden, director of the National Security Agency, asserted "state secrets privilege" over Barlow's entire legal claim. With no evidence to offer, the claim collapsed. Destroyed and penniless, the former CIA golden boy spent his last savings on a second-hand silver Avion trailer, packed up his life and drove off to Bear Canyon campground in Bozeman, Montana, where he still lives today.

Even with Barlow out of the picture, there were still analysts in Washington - and in the Bush administration - who were wary of Pakistan. They warned that al-Qaida had a natural affinity with Pakistan, geographically and religiously, and that its affiliates were seeking nuclear weapons. Some elements of the Pakistan military were sympathetic and in place to help. But those arguing that Pakistan posed the highest risk were isolated. Cheney, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz were in the ascendant, and they returned to the old agenda, lobbying for a war in Iraq and, in a repeat of 1981 and the Reagan years, signed up Pakistan as the key ally in the war against terror.

Contrary advice was not welcome. And Bush's team set about dismantling the government agency that was giving the most trouble - the State Department's Nonproliferation Bureau. Norm Wulf, who recently retired as deputy assistant secretary of state for non-proliferation, told us: "They met in secret, deciding who to employ, displacing career civil servants with more than 30 years on the job in favour of young, like-thinking people, rightwingers who would toe the administration line." And the administration line was to do away with any evidence that pointed to Pakistan as a threat to global stability, refocusing all attention on Iraq.

The same tactics used to disgrace Barlow and discredit his evidence were used again in 2003, this time against Joseph Wilson, a former US ambassador whom the Bush administration had sent to Africa with a mission to substantiate the story that Saddam Hussein was seeking to buy material to manufacture WMD. When Wilson refused to comply, he found himself the subject of a smear campaign, while his wife, Valerie Plame, was outed as a CIA agent. Libby would subsequently be jailed for leaking Plame's identity (although released on a presidential pardon). Plame and Wilson's careers and marriage would survive. Barlow and his wife, Cindy's, would not - and no one would be held to account. Until now.

When the Republicans lost control of both houses of Congress in 2006, Barlow's indefatigable lawyers sensed an opportunity, lodging a compensation claim on Capitol Hill that is to be heard later this month. This time, with supporters of the Iraq war in retreat and with Pakistan, too, having lost many friends in Washington, Barlow hopes he will receive what he is due. "But this final hearing cannot indict any of those who hounded me, or misshaped the intelligence product," he says. "And it is too late to contain the flow of doomsday technology that Pakistan unleashed on the world."
<b>Mulford meets foreign secretary over N-deal</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->With Prime Minister Manmohan Singh indicating that he had not given up hopes on the nuclear deal, US Ambassador to India David Mulford today met Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon in New Delhi to discuss the fate of the agreement.

<b>Mulford, is understood to have conveyed the US‘ displeasure over uncertainty that has come to surround the crucial initiative between the two countries.</b>

In his third meeting in four days with leaders and officials here, the US envoy is believed to have sought to know what the government is planning to do to push the deal that is being vigorously opposed by the ruling coalition’s Left allies.

The meeting came a day after Singh said the “process of evolving a meaningful consensus” on the deal is still on, indicating that he had still not lost hope on it.

The comment came less than a week after Singh said that failure of the deal would not be “the end of life” and that his was “not a one-issue government”.

The statement caused disappointment in the Bush administration which hoped that the UPA government would continue to push the deal.

Three days ago, US President George W Bush called up Singh, who was in Nigeria, and the Prime Minister told him that “difficulties” had arisen in operationalisation of the deal.

The US envoy had earlier met External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Joint Secretary (Americas) in the Ministry to convey his country’s disappointment. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Manmohan has lost his mental balance, says BJP
Posted online: Friday , October 19, 2007 at 12:00:00
Updated: Friday , October 19, 2007 at 02:26:08
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New Delhi, October 19: The BJP hit back at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh calling his attack on it as ‘desperate rattling’ of a ‘much weakened’ leader who neither has authority in the Cabinet nor enjoys the backing of the Congress and supporting parties.

Launching a fresh personal offensive against the Prime Minister, the main Opposition party countered the charges levelled by him against the NDA-led government on Thursday one by one and rubbished them as a ‘creeky response of a crumbling government’.

"The tirade by the Prime Minister against BJP is not only condemnable but outrageous. It is a desperate rattling of a Prime Minister who is much weakened and who does not enjoy authority in the cabinet, backing of his party and supporting parties," BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

He said the Prime Minister has ‘lost his mental balance’ when he styles Agra summit as a ‘fiasco’ as the talks were unsuccessful because of the Vajpayee government's ‘determined stand’ that there will not be any compromise on cross-border terrorism.

"Vajpayee government's foreign policy proved to be successful in January, 2004 when Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf pledged not to allow terrorist activities from his soil. We lost this success when Prime Minister Singh dubbed Pakistan as a victim of terrorism," Prasad added.

The BJP also took objection to Prime Minister's assertion that senior BJP leader L K Advani as Home Minister had given a clean chit to the Narendra Modi government over the 2002 ‘holocaust’, a reference to the post-Godhra riots.

"Singh is a late entrant in politics by accident. He has developed selective amnesia. He has described the unfortunate riots in Gujarat as a holocaust. Then we would like to know his views on the selective, gruesome and targeted killings of Sikhs in 1984," Prasad asked.

He claimed that Singh, who was a civil servant at the time of the anti-Sikh riots, had not even registered his protest then and now the CBI, which functions under him, has also given a ‘questionable report’ in favour of Jagdish Tytler who ‘played a key role in the killings’.

Replying to the Prime Minister's reference to the Kargil war, Prasad said in Kargil ‘each and every inch of land was reclaimed, whereas during wars under the Congress rule in 1962 and 1965 India lost territory in Jammu and Kashmir and Northeast’.

"The fiasco, Mr Singh, is Congress' sadistic communalism and patronisation of terror elements," he said adding the Prime Minister's ‘tirade’ against the BJP was a ‘creeky response of a crumbling government’.

He also trained his guns at Singh on the Indo-US nuclear deal issue, saying he did not even think for a minute before making a U-turn on the agreement.

<b>Government mulls Hyde Act-like law to salvage n-deal</b>
<b>US may raise the child labour bogey again to block Indian exports </b>


Miffed by the non-operationalisation of the nuclear deal, the US is beginning to flex its muscles in areas that might directly impinge on India's exports. Earlier this month, the US Department of Labour ominously issued a public notice eliciting comments on 'procedural guidelines' for the development of a public list of goods from countries that employ child and forced labour in contravention of global labour standards.
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Oct 20 2007, 01:11 AM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Oct 20 2007, 01:11 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Miffed by the non-operationalisation of the nuclear deal, the US is beginning to flex its muscles in areas that might directly impinge on India's exports.

India can show that it is truly a nation that can be taken seriously only if we have NEW NUCLEAR TESTS; a show of the biggest BOMBS and long range missiles is a must (anyone following the news will know why). Else we can happily retain our slave position for the foreseeable future. It is only the quintessential blind deracinated Indian, who is shorn of all Hindu spirit, who fails to see all the little East India companies set shop. But sadly such Hindus are the majority eating chat and watching false heroes of Bollywood on the big screen.

It is good if he N-deal is buried for good in the shmashAna of kAshi -- like the Babri Masjid it will come to be the next sign of slavery - like the doctrine of lapse of the Britons.
<b>N-deal: Mulford meets Advani; seeks BJP’s support </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->New Delhi, Oct 25: With the government virtually putting the nuclear deal in the cold storage, a disappointed US has started reaching out to parties opposing the agreement in an attempt to garner support.

US Ambassador David C Mulford met leader of the opposition L K Advani here and is understood to have sought BJP's support for the deal, which is mired in a political controversy.

Mulford is believed to have attempted to assuage BJP's concerns over the agreement. <b>Advani gave him a patient hearing but made no commitments on support to the deal,</b> sources said.

<b>The BJP, while favouring a closer strategic relationship with the US, is opposed to the deal as it feels it will affect India's indigenous military nuclear programme and independent foreign policy. </b>

comment under this news is also interesting
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Congress has no face to approach BJP for support as they have humiliated them inside and outside the Parliament. They have finally realized that only B J P can save their sinking boat. It is a shame that they should beg BJP support through Mulford . They should have guts to face the Parliament. Why America is so much interested because the 123 Agreement is equal lent to India signing the NPT . - Krishana<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
HH, Is MMS taking revenge on INC and India for the 1984 riots? Also read his book written in 1964. Looks like he swallowed is thoughts and bided his time to implement his agenda. He seems to be the perfect Manchurian Candidate.

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