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Nuclear Thread - 2
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Jaswant's call of honour: We must not kowtow US</b>
Arati R Jerath
Monday, July 24, 2006  23:44 IST
NEW DELHI: The leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Jaswant Singh, has stirred a hornet's nest with his new book, "A Call to Honour".

He spoke to DNA on Monday about the ongoing controversy over the so-called mole in former Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao's PMO and various turbulent events during the NDA's six years in government.

<i>Q. Why have you chosen to talk about the presence of an American mole in Narasimha Rao's PMO now, after all these years?</i>

A. I have mentioned the context in my book. It has to do with the charge levelled against India, when my dear friend Madeline Albright (Clinton's Secretary of State) told me in a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of ASEAN (soon after the NDA government conducted a nuclear test), "Jaswant, you lied to us.''

It was wrong of the US to say that it was not aware of the progress of India's nuclear plans. The excerpt I have quoted makes it clear that the Americans knew what was going on. They also knew, as they admitted, that the BJP was committed to testing.

<i>Q. If you knew that someone was passing on nuclear secrets to the US, why did the NDA government not take action against that person or order an investigation when it assumed office?</i>

A. In my judgment, it served no national interest. The people concerned were no longer on the scene. The purpose of the NDA government was to conduct a nuclear test. That was achieved by us.

We saw no purpose in pursuing the politics of vendetta. It is not unusual for countries to wish to find out what is happening in the country to which they assign their people. The US is doing it today.

Just the other day, a US embassy official was asked to leave because of this. It is a given of international conduct. I don't condone it. But there is no condemnation of the previous government.

<i>Q. There is some disquiet in the BJP over the timing of the book and the revelations you have made about the Kargil War, the Kandahaar hijacking episode and so on. Comment.</i>

A. The author writes and hands over the manuscript to the publisher. It's like giving birth to a child. It comes from inside you and then you have to trust the publisher with your creation. The date of release is determined by the publisher. Who had any idea that my book would be preceded by the Mumbai blasts?

<i>Q. You seem to be in agreement with LK Advani on Jinnah. Why have you repeated something that burnt him and the party?</i>

A. I don't agree that Mr Advani or the BJP were burnt. What I have said about Jinnah are facts. Mohd Ali Jinnah started his political life as an ardent Congressman and he remained a committed Congressman till 1936. In his personal life, his habits can hardly be called shining examples of a person committed to Islam.

But as a person who gave a call for a separate Islamic state and talked of the two-nation theory, how can you term that secular? Look, it's a book. You can't take one word or one sentence out of context. Please read what I have written in its entirety.

<i>Q. You were one of the chief architects of the rapprochement between India and the US, which led to the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership and ultimately, the nuclear deal. Yet, today, you and your party are critical of the deal. Why have you changed your position?</i>

A. There is no change. We are cautioning the country and the government. We must continue the strategic partnership but we must not make ourselves subservient to US interests. The nuclear deal is questionable in its details, which defeat the original purpose. We have serious fears that India is in danger of losing our strategic autonomy (if the deal goes through in its current form). We must preserve this autonomy at all costs.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Nuclear deal is without techno-economic merit in  </b>   
- By Bharat Karnad
Asian Age, July 27, 2006

As always, it is the Americans themselves who reveal the nitty-gritty of the bargains they strike, confident that this will in no way harm the US getting its way. Ashley J. Tellis, the Washington security specialist whose services have been extensively utilised by the George W. Bush administration in forging the nuclear deal with India, has confessed that the Congress Party government has given "more" to make it possible in contrast to the Vajpayee government, which "gave nothing in return."

<b>What this "more" is, is no secret — a nuclear de-fanged India. The BJP external affairs minister Jaswant Singh in his memoirs — Call to Honour: In Service of Emergent India — discloses this as the end-state his "strategic dialogue" partner, the US deputy secretary Strobe Talbott, was after. The Vajpayee government, however, decided against signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty directly or via the backdoor, as this deal attempts to do, by making the "voluntary" test moratorium a legally binding commitment, which would restrict the Indian arsenal to the only proven and reliable armament in the Indian inventory — the 20 kiloton "firecracker," or getting hustled into joining a Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty that would ensure the Indian deterrent remained forever small-sized. </b>

It is on these two counts, contained in the July 18, 2005 Joint Statement, as <b>Tellis has confirmed, that the Manmohan Singh regime compromised. The grievous flaws are then in the basic document itself as much with the conditionalities inserted especially in the Senate version of the amended draft US law, which has yet to be voted on.</b>

Having "negotiated" a rotten fish of a deal, Manmohan Singh seems to have now woken up to the stink. Whence his complaining to the US President at the G-8 meeting about the many provocative new conditions extraneous to the July 18 accord strapped on by the US Congress. Much good this bellyaching will do, considering these impositions had the consent of the Bush administration. Senator Richard G. Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee steering the legislative process, has advised the Indian PM not to be "adamant" and warned that non-acceptance of these "constructive changes" would kill the nuclear deal.

But foreign secretary Shyam Saran and the media trumpeters continue to brush aside new Congressional conditions in the House Bill, in particular, as only "preambular" in nature and, by way of rationalisation, refer to China’s ignoring similar Congressional terms on the trade-related "most favoured nation" issue. They need to be reminded that China — unlike India — has forced its way into the senior nuclear league, commands respect, and cannot be trifled with by the US. And, that the US Congress is not Indian Parliament, which rubberstamps any deal the government makes however much it may harm the national interest.

The nuclear deal encompassed in the July 18 statement has been ballyhooed as fetching India an energy-cum-technology windfall. This is a lie based on three myths that have been propagated.

No.1 Myth: India has limited natural uranium resources and will have to rely on the US to ease the Nuclear Suppliers Group guidelines allowing India to buy the ore ("yellow cake") on the world market. But this claim is wrong and does not take into account the proven reserves and the uranium ore-bearing regions of the country that remain unmined. This analyst had pointed out earlier (Desperate for a nuclear deal, The Op-ed Page, January 17, 2006) that the uranium shortage is mostly self-created because of bad futures planning by the Department of Atomic Energy, compounded by a strange reluctance on the part of the Indian government to exploit the ore locally available in considerable quantities. Tellis in his Carnegie report — Atoms for War: The US-Indian Civilian Nuclear Cooperation and India’s Nuclear Arsenal — released last month, reached the same conclusion, saying "India has all the natural uranium it needs to produce as many nuclear weapons it may wish without any assistance from the outside, while being able to generate up to 480 GWe (Giga Watt) years of electricity" and that the shortage is entirely short-term and will last only so long as the DAE and Indian government don’t get their act together. Tellis’ study apparently deflated the arguments of the non-proliferation lobby in the US.

But what Tellis and the Bush White House cannot do is remove the enriched uranium fuel-baited trap set for an India bent on importing reactors, the July 18 Statement conceived and the US Congress has now realised. A condition in one of the enabling Bills in the US Congress requires the US President to dissuade all NSG countries, should India break its vow and test again, from supplying enriched uranium fuel for these power plants, which directly contravenes the undertaking by President Bush in the July 18 Statement to facilitate such supply from other NSG countries if the US is unable to do so for any reason.

The Congressional requirement means that India, without assured fuel supply, will be stuck with a host of inactive reactors and hundreds of billions of dollars in dead investment. Further, reactor technology is about the extent of civilian nuclear wherewithal this country will be permitted to obtain from the NSG states, whence a nyet to importing American reprocessing, enrichment and heavy water production technologies by India.

No. 2 Myth: With the fictional uranium shortage as premise, the purchase by India of enriched uranium-fuelled reactors is mooted as a short-cut to meeting at least some of the energy deficit by 2020. But the fact of plentiful uranium in India has led to a recalibrated objective. The proposed deal, Tellis told a luncheon meeting last week, merely offers India "the option," energy economics permitting, to go in for high capacity (1,000 MWe plus) reactors available abroad. 

But one reason why the 220 MWe capacity level for pressurised heavy water reactors has been persisted with, is because of the poor state of the national grid. A large quantum of power surging through the grid can stabilise electricity supply. Equally, a sudden loss of a vast quantity of power owing to a breakdown of grid infrastructure, can have crippling downstream economic consequences. 220 MW going off-line is bad enough; imagine instantly losing 2,000 MW from a single two 1,000 MWe reactors source!

No. 3 Myth: The case for India’s importing enriched uranium-fuelled reactors rests principally on the American conviction, predictably shared by Manmohan Singh’s "gang that can’t think straight," that the three-stage Bhabha plan of natural uranium reactors in the first stage leading to plutonium-fuelled breeder reactors in the second stage, in turn, providing the feedstock for the third stage thorium-fuelled power plants, is way beyond India’s technical grasp.

If the last is true then why is the "unsafeguarded breeder" programme again agitating American legislators, which may lead to yet another unacceptable condition being inserted when a final Bill is moved in the US Congress? The Bhabha plan is infeasible, Tellis implied, because of the belief that "breeders don’t breed." He pointed to France which after years of effort attained a "breeding ratio" of 1.5. The trouble is Tellis misrepresented France’s experience and doubted the success of India’s breeder programme. He did so partially on the basis of a recent article by V.S. Arunachalam, former science adviser to the defence minister, who has lately been in the news.

The French Super-Phenix breeder was shut down, not because of any problems with the reactor itself, but because of secondary reasons — a leak of liquid sodium coolant in the adjoining fuel bay. It was not revived because of the plenitude of enriched uranium but, mainly, because President Jimmy Carter’s Nuclear Fuel Cycle initiative in the mid-Seventies arm-twisted France, as it did other advanced countries, into abandoning the development of breeder reactors owing to Washington’s fear that this reactor type can efficiently convert spent fuel to weapon-grade fissile material.

India has experience of the 40 MW fast breeder test reactor generating some 100,000 MW of power per ton of carbide fuel — unmatched by any other state — and, the upscaled 500 MW breeder under construction, is expected to achieve a breeding ratio of 1.5. This means that the reactor can breed a full fuel load of fissile material every five years which, incidentally, is no mean achievement.
With the series of fast breeders as stepping stone, full-fledged thorium reactors are eminently realisable. In fact, a small experimental reactor, Kamini, running on Uranium 233 produced by irradiating thorium, has been functioning for many years now and will help in developing thorium utilisation technologies.

Indian scientists, moreover, are strongly against any kind of cooperation with the US under the aegis of the GNEP (Global Nuclear Energy Project) as promised by the nuclear deal, because of their fear the US will milk the Indian breeder programme dry of its technical data and insights and then deliberately "mislead" the Indian scientists into pursuing technically dead-end solutions or try and demoralise them by talking of the technological complexity involved, and persuading Indian leaders to give up on the indigenous effort and grab the "easier" option of importing uranium reactors. 

In fact, so pronounced has the government’s tendency been uncritically to accept external diktat and direction detrimental to national interest and to pressurise the Atomic Energy Commission chairman into doing what it wants him to do, that it is time, as this writer has been advocating for some years, to establish a counterpart of the American "Jason Committee," except that it should be answerable to Parliament. Stalwart Indian nuclear scientists, reputed physicists in the academia, and renowned technologists — all chosen for their probity and eminence, thereby putting them beyond the pale of political pressure — should constitute this committee. It should be tasked with evaluating nuclear R&D schemes, pronouncing on weapons designs, verifying test data, and independently advising Parliament, in camera, on the technical aspects of nuclear and strategic programmes. It will compel the chairman, Atomic Energy Commission, to be more objective in his advice to the Prime Minister.

Be that as it may, considering the upward curve of the indigenous breeder and follow-on thorium technology development, instead of seeking nuclear servitude what the Manmohan Singh government ought to have aggressively demanded as priority is resolution of the Tarapur spent fuel problem. Some 1,800-2,400 tons of spent fuel accumulated over the last 30 years from the two safeguarded light water reactors in Tarapur, are proving a serious space and safety risk. The US neither wants to take the spent fuel back to add to its "nuclear waste" nor approves of India reprocessing it for use in the Indian CANDU reactors.

The 1963 Tarapur agreement was valid for only 25 years and any strong-minded Indian government after 1988 could have forced Washington’s hand, given it an ultimatum to lift the spent fuel, failing which ordered the entire stock of spent fuel rods to be reprocessed and, as per the original contract, without any downstream safeguards obligations on India’s part. But successive Indian governments, covering up their timidity with the rhetoric of "responsible behaviour" have, instead, pursued a policy of endless pleading. This was also the course followed when the US violated contractual obligations and stopped fuel supply to Tarapur in 1974 and New Delhi could have approached the International Court for relief, but did not.

Diffidence and absence of self-respect have characterised the Indian government in its dealings with the US and the West. But the country had every right to expect that, in line with its unchained economic prowess, an assertive 21st century India would propel itself to the great power ranks rather than, as the Manmohan Singh regime would have it, get reduced to an American appendage.

Bharat Karnad is Professor at the Centre for Policy Research and author of Nuclear Weapons and Indian Security, 2nd edition<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>N-experts' worry valid, says govt </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->NEW DELHI: Government has taken an indulgent view of apprehensions about the India-US nuclear deal raised by top scientists who have been associated with India's nuclear programme, confident that it will be able to address issues in the light of the civilian-military separation plan and key agreements being negotiated with US.

Confronted by opposition from eight former high priests of the Indian nuclear establishment, who have tactically issued a statement ahead of a Parliament discussion on the deal, government views the sentiments expressed as expressions of "broad brush" unease. Their anxiety is not seen to be unexpected or unwarranted.

Aware that the points of view raised by the scientists would feed into Left as well as opposition BJP arguments that India's nuclear scientists had lost faith in government or worse, the Prime Minister, government is keen to avoid imparting the impression that it is on collision course with the former nuclear bosses.

"They are naturally anxious," said top level officials. Their insecurities have a lot to do with the experiences of the scientists who, during the years that they were at the helm of India's nuclear affairs, had to contend with a world busy tightening the nuclear noose around India.
Link: http://www.flonnet.com/stories/20060825001007500.htm


U.S. espionage in India


The book is a comprehensive survey of U.S. intelligence on the bomb in countries including India, Pakistan, the USSR and Israel. 

<b>INDIANS take a strange view of intelligence. Spy stories are chased energetically; their implications are ignored.</b> The Anderson Papers excited many as proof of American perfidy, which they were not. Our policies, each formed in the respective national interest, clashed. But absent was any comment on how reports of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's talks with the Soviet Ambassador Pegov, at the height of the Bangladesh War in 1971, landed on Henry Kissinger's desk 48 hours later.

Thomas Powers, who wrote a book on the then Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) director, was precise. The CIA had "an agent" in the Indian Cabinet. Anderson called him "a source close to Mrs. Gandhi". He "whispered darkly that India might launch a major offensive against West Pakistan". Defence Minister Jagjivan Ram said as much publicly on January 18, 1972 in Patna.

Indira Gandhi herself played politics on matters of intelligence. She said at Kanpur on November 9, 1979 that Kissinger had told her that a member of her Cabinet had leaked out information about a possible attack on Pakistan in 1971 and that this had been confirmed in Thomas Powers' book on CIA chief Richard Helms, The Man Who Kept the Secrets, which was published recently. <b>She professed not to know who he was. This, of course, was untrue. No one was sacked. Kissinger had met her in Delhi in October 1974. </b>

Detailed reports of the Soviet Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily Kuznetsov's talks with "Indian officials" in New Delhi, on December 12, 1971, while the war was on, reached the CIA. How?

Anderson's disclosures were lapped up. His conclusions did not cause a ripple: "The fact was that the CIA had penetrated the Indian government at every level and these `independent sources' sent a steady stream of reports back to Washington on troop movements, logistics, strategy and even some of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's secret conversations" (emphasis added throughout).

No small achievement, then, that the CIA was taken unawares by the nuclear tests at Pokhran - May 18, 1974 and May 11 and 13, 1998. These are sad days for American intelligence after the fiasco of the absent WMDs (weapons of mass destruction) in Iraq, the rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan and the situation in Iran. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair did worse than not seek actionable intelligence intelligently. They suborned the intelligence services as well as legal advisers.

Intelligence was sought to confirm predetermined policy, not to shape it. It is a common human failing to shut one's eyes to unpleasant realities, especially among men charged with hubris. B.N. Mullick wrote a whole book to establish that the Intelligence Bureau reported on Chinese movements on the border. But from July 1, 1954, if not earlier, Nehru was set on a confrontationist course. Which is why he preferred the advice of K.M. Panikkar, whom he despised, to that of Girija Shankar Bajpai and the views of S. Gopal to those of his predecessor as head of the Ministry of External Affairs' (MEA) Historical Division, K. Zachariah. In 1979, the U.S. ignored the warnings of its charge d'affaires Brucelainger in Teheran based on those by Parsa Kia of the Foreign Office that dire consequences would follow if the Shah were allowed to enter the U.S. They did in the seizure of the U.S. Embassy. The fiercely independent National Security Archive in Washington, D.C. has rendered yeoman service in the pursuit of historical truth. On April 13, 2006, it posted an Electronic Briefing Book No. 187 on "U.S. Intelligence and the Indian Bomb" comprising a stimulating Introduction and texts of 40 documents. They are of varying degrees of significance. The Archive's forte are two-fold - skilful use of the Freedom of Information Act plus scholarly analysis. Scholars at the Archive carefully analyse the documents they procure. In India, documents obtained from the National Archives are offloaded on an uncritical public by sloppy researchers and dignified as "scholarly research".

News agencies have reported brief snippets from the Book. The documents should be studied along with the mass of material already in the public domain.<b> What follows here are extracts which reveal that the United States carefully followed India's nuclear programme and that the analyses of its drift and of Indian policies were not wrong.</b> <i> <b>{Confirms Jaswant Singh's hypothesis no?}</b></i> One learns a good deal from the documents despite heavy excisions before declassification; for example on American perceptions of the Sangh Parivar.

<b>The CIA reported from India as early as on October 22, 1964:</b> "The Government of India (GOI) has all of the elements necessary to produce a nuclear weapon and it has the capability to assemble a bomb quickly. India does not plan to commence work on the bomb as yet because the GOI is convinced the CHICOMS [Chinese Communists] will not have an offensive nuclear capability for at least five years. In the meantime, should the situation change, India is relying on President Johnson's assurances to come to the aid of any nation menaced by China. (Source comment: When Parliament reconvenes early in November the GOI expects pressure from some deputies for India to produce a bomb. However, the GOI plans to resist these pressures.)"

<i><b>{So there is a gap in the knowledge of PRC preparations as the PRC route to weapons is still shrouded in mystery.}</b></i>

<b>Another cable reporting "Indian military views" in December 1964 </b>is heavily censored. It remarked: <b>"One consequence of an Indian program is that one more national state, India, could some day be able to attack the United States with nuclear weapons. In time, the Indians will gain access to rocket technology (perhaps through an earth satellite program) that would give them some delivery capability against us. Secondly, one more national state would have the capacity for starting nuclear actions with a fair chance of spreading and involving the United States." The deletions are in the original. Evidently, some army brass talked freely to American diplomats or CIA agents. "... <i>t follows from the above that there would be a reduction in our [U.S.] power to influence events in South Asia and to some extent throughout the world. India's economic development would suffer - and possibly at serious costs to the Indian social structure. Pressures for further proliferation in Asia would grow. Most notably in Pakistan.</b>

<b>"A Soviet offer of retaliation against China if India is attacked</b> would very probably not be made at this time. Although the basic hostility between Russia and China and the harm done to Russian long-term interests from nuclear spread would seem to support such a guarantee being given to India, <b>the Russians will probably judge the costs among the Communist parties to be too great."</b>

The CIA reported on October 18, 1965 that it would take India a year "to develop nuclear weapons" after a decision to do so. "They could probably produce a weapon deliverable by the Canberra light bomber about two years after a first test." India could produce "about a dozen weapons in the 20 KT range by 1970".

<b>A Special National Intelligence Estimate was produced three days later on "India's Nuclear Weapons Policy".</b> Its opening page read thus: "The Problem: To estimate India's nuclear weapons policy over the next few years. Conclusions: <b>A. India has the capability to develop nuclear weapons. It probably already has sufficient plutonium for a first device, and could explode it about a year after a decision to develop one. [Paras 1-3]. B. The proponents of a nuclear weapons program have been strengthened by the Indo-Pakistani war, but the main political result has been a strengthening of Prime Minister Shastri's position. We believe that he does not now wish to start a program and that he is capable of making this decision stick for the time being. [Paras 4-14]. C. However, we do not believe that India will hold to this policy indefinitely. All things considered, we believe that within the next few years India probably will detonate a nuclear device and proceed to develop nuclear weapons [Paras 15-20]." </b>In 1974 the prediction came true.

<b>[i]{Hence the NPT cut-off date of before 1968 was chosen to keep India out also}</i></b>

In 1966, the U.S. Embassy was directed to keep a close watch on nuclear-related activities. Pokhran I in 1974 came as a humiliating shock to the CIA. Its Director asked "the Intelligence-Community Staff to assess" its own performance. How far was Pokhran I anticipated "both in a technical and political sense". The Report, produced in July 1974, is drastically cut.

One assessment read: "Some Indians have argued, however, that possession of even rudimentary weapons and a delivery system would provide a deterrent against China and reduce Indian dependence on the Soviet Union. The timing of the test may also have been keyed to boost sagging Indian morale in the face of increasing domestic economic problems and political discontent. Most Indians probably favoured the test, but might view the cost of acquiring a weapons and delivery system less enthusiastically... the Soviets share our concern about proliferation."

Four weeks later, an Intelligence Note reported a decline in the euphoria: "One Congress M.P. [Member of Parliament] told Embassy New Delhi that he did not take very seriously the government's claims about the exclusively peaceful purposes of the explosion, and he speculated that most of his colleagues shared his private scepticism. Military officers at the National Defence College expressed certainty that India would develop a weapons capability. An official of the Ministry of External Affairs, while acknowledging that nuclear explosions had few peaceful uses, worried that India's credibility would be eroded if no such uses were found. <b>K. Subrahmanyam,</b> Director of the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, alleged that no peaceful uses were considered possible before 1990, and that there was a tacit assumption among many Indians that the government's assertions were merely a public relations stand. Therefore, he <b>argued, the erosion of India's credibility might prove to be more harmful than a declared nuclear weapons policy</b>."

In January 1980 Indira Gandhi returned to power and was faced with the problem of supply of enriched uranium for the Tarapore Atomic Power Stations. Pokhran had disrupted the supplies of fuel, affected the Rajasthan APS and made nuclear non-proliferation a major international issue. Both Pokhran I and II were staged for domestic political gains. A.B. Vajpayee, significantly, sought to stage the tests in 1996 when his regime had no chance of surviving a vote of confidence in the Lok Sabha.

In May 1982 Indira Gandhi visited the U.S., determined to establish rapport with the U.S. "Will avoid a confrontation during her visit", the CIA reported in December 1981. India came close to rescinding the 1963 Tarapur agreement. <b>U.S. pressure, conveyed through Ambassador Harry Barnes' "Non-papers", forced her to reconsider her plans.</b> These records were obtained by the Archive's Senior Fellow Jeffrey T. Richelson while conducting research for his book. Richelson has written extensively on the CIA and on espionage. The book, published on April 21 this year, is a comprehensive survey of U.S. intelligence on the bomb in other countries - Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, China, France, Israel, South Africa, Taiwan, Iraq, Libya, Iran, North Korea and, of course, India and Pakistan. The author relies on published works, interviews and archival material.

On India he relies on the definitive work - India's Nuclear Bomb by George Perkovich and Weapons of Peace by Raj Chengappa, a respected journalist. Although the main thrust of U.S. intelligence on India and Pakistan's nuclear programmes is well known, the book reveals some significant facts. Time there was when, in 1961, George McGhee in the State Department advocated helping India to build a bomb to counter China. He was rebuffed by Secretary of State Dean Rusk.

<b>In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson directed an all-out effort to get intelligence on India's nuclear programme.</b> The U.S. Embassy in New Delhi was very active in reporting the developments. It was the same story in Islamabad. "It did not take such secret intelligence to keep the Indian nuclear weapons problem in front of key decision-makers such as President Richard Nixon, or his national security adviser, Henry Kissinger. <b>Kissinger had been cautioning Indira Gandhi against a test since 1970, when press reports suggested, prematurely, that India was considering conducting a nuclear test. The State Department, then under the command of William Rogers, informed India that employment of the plutonium from the CIRUS reactor for a test would be considered a violation of India's pledge of peaceful uses of the heavy water that had been provided by the United States. </b>

"<b>On May 18, 1972, Kissinger, in Nixon's name, commissioned another study of Indian nuclear developments.</b> The resulting study, by an NSC interdepartmental group, again noted that India's nuclear energy program afforded the country the ability to conduct a test on short notice and `of mounting a rudimentary weapons program on short notice'. <b>The group also wrote, six days before Indira Gandhi's visit to Trombay, that `there is no firm intelligence that Mrs. Gandhi has given a political go-ahead for detonating an underground nuclear device (which the Indians would undoubtedly label a peaceful nuclear device)'. It further reported that `our intelligence assessment is that over the next several years the chances are about even that India will detonate a nuclear device'." </b>


U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in New Delhi in 1974.

In Pakistan Robert Gallucci's trip was not wasted. He was able to accomplish more than serving as a delivery boy for highly classified satellite photographs. A bit of subterfuge allowed him to bring back some ground-level photographs of Kahuta. He managed to persuade U.S. ambassador Arthur Hummel to let him take a drive near the facility. He had first raised the idea with the embassy's political officer, who said he would go only if ordered by the ambassador. Gallucci then told Hummel that the political officer wanted to go, and Hummel gave the order. They took along an INR representative, who came equipped with a camera that was put to good use. Presidential waivers were made despite full knowledge of Pakistan's nuclear programme. They were stopped once Pakistan had served American interests in Afghanistan and Soviet troops withdrew. The author cites details of U.S.-Pakistan meetings on the subject.

Morarji Desai was not the Gandhian he made himself out to be. Soon after he was sworn in as Prime Minister in March 1977, he convened a meeting of his Cabinet's political affairs committee to discuss Indian nuclear strategy. Although no test was approved, Desai, according to Homi Sethna, gave him the "green signal to refine the design (of the explosive device)", which involved reducing the weight and diameter of the device through miniaturisation.

<b>"Intelligence about Desai's instructions to Sethna apparently reached U.S. officials, since in May 1977 President Carter hurriedly appointed Robert Goheen as U.S. ambassador and requested he meet with Desai immediately and ask him to restrain India's nuclear weapons program. When the two met, Desai pledged, `I will never develop a bomb.'"</b>

<b><i>{Thats right. He was refining the already developed design. This accounts for the bomb design refiniements in the late 1970s when the light weight design was developed pe Perkovich. Thanks Morarji bhai sorry for not understanding your role and falling for the propoganda of the DIE.  }</i></b> :oops:

Apparently, "both the CIA and NSA probably also reported, later in the 1980s on India's covert acquisition of heavy water from foreign sources, including Norway. The CIA detected an illegal shipment of beryllium from West Germany to India late in the decade. In May 1989 director of Central Intelligence [Agency] William Webster told the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs that one of the indicators to the CIA of a country's interest in developing thermonuclear weapons was the acquisition of beryllium, which he explained was `usually used in enhancing fission reaction'. In addition, the CIA had noted a number of other indicators of Indian interest in developing a hydrogen bomb including purification of lithium, which is needed to produce the tritium used in thermonuclear explosions, and the separation of lithium isotopes."

Note what the author discloses: "India's success in preventing U.S. spy satellites from seeing signs of the planned tests days to weeks in advance was matched by its success in preventing acquisition of other types of intelligence. India's Intelligence Bureau ran an aggressive counterintelligence program, and the CIA, despite a large station in New Delhi, was unable to recruit a single Indian with information about the Vajpayee government's nuclear plans. Instead, the deputy chief of the CIA station in New Delhi was expelled after a botched try at recruiting the chief of Indian counterintelligence operations. Former ambassador Frank Wisner recalled that `we didn't have... the humans who would have given us an insight into their intentions'." Ambassadors do not keep aloof from the CIA's work, evidently. Their denials are false.

NSA's eavesdropping activities did not detect test preparations. "It's a tough problem," one nuclear intelligence expert told investigative journalist Seymour Hersh. India's nuclear weapons establishment would communicate via encrypted digital messages relayed via small dishes through satellites, using a system known as VSAT (very small aperture terminal), "a two-way version of the system used by satellite television companies". Good show. At the end of the day, Americans admitted that even if they had been better informed, they could not have prevented Pokhran II just as they could not deter Pakistan from staging its tests at Chagai.
Can be x-posted in the nuke thread also. Lots of good info with need for analysis of Indo-US relationship. Hats off to Acharya for his insight about the NPT timing.
<b>Why our scientists have (unwittingly) succumbed to the lure of popular politics</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Speaking as a citizen, I am disappointed. I believe that our distinguished scientists have (unwittingly) succumbed to the lure of popular politics.

We all need to know that in India, unlike in the US, there is no separation of powers between the Executive and the Legislature. The Government is made up of elected representatives of the people and represents the will of the people; they are, of course, always accountable to Parliament.

This concept of accountability does not and cannot extend to giving instructions or guidelines to the Executive, or to fetter the Executive on matters that fall solely within its purview. As the Constitution stands, this would clearly violate its letter and spirit.
<!--emo&:blow--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/blow.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='blow.gif' /><!--endemo--> <b>BJP sees chance for Centre-Left wedge </b>
Pradeep KaushalPosted online: Thursday, August 17, 2006 at 0000 hrs
NEW DELHI, AUGUST 16:BJP leader Jaswant Singh might have engaged Strobe Talbott in a strategic dialogue during the NDA rule to work out something similar to the India-US nuclear deal, but once on the other side of the fence, priorities obviously change.

By raising suspicions against the agreement, the BJP is seeking to occupy a high moral ground as a guardian of national interest on the one hand and project the Manmohan Singh government as a US stooge on the other. Once this impression gains ground, the party believes, the Congress will lose support among Muslims. The BJP is counting on the Muslim hostility towards both the US and George Bush.

BJP parliamentary party spokesman Vijay Kumar Malhotra said here today the agreement compromised national interests. Therefore, the BJP and its NDA partners would oppose the pact in the Rajya Sabha tomorrow.

Sources in the party claimed the credibility of the UPA government would be certainly dented once people realised that the agreement would cap India’s nuclear programme and shackle it to US laws. The sources said the BJP was under no illusion of getting Muslim votes. However, its goal would be partly served if the Muslim vote drifted away from the Congress.

Given the level of antipathy the US and Bush evoked among Indian Muslims, the sources felt the BJP just had to work a little harder to see the Congress party closely identified with the US. The rest would be taken care of by parties like the SP. The unusual interest shown by the SP in the matter can be traced to this strategy.

The BJP had initially got into secret parleys with the Left to press for a “sense of Parliament” resolution on the accord, hoping that it would lead to a face-off between the UPA and Left parties. The party broke ranks with the Left and petitioned President APJ Kalam against the agreement, once reports hinting at an understanding between the Left and the government on the issue started pouring in.

The BJP would now strive to needle the Left, challenging it to stand up and be counted against the deal by asking for a “sense of Parliament” resolution. If the Left obliges, fissures in the UPA-Left arrangement will widen. If it does not, the Left’s sincerity in opposing the US hegemony will come under question.

The BJP is in an upbeat mood after a joint statement by several scientists against the agreement. Malhotra also underlined this development. The reason is simple — the BJP believes the statement reinforces the party view.

<!--emo&:blink:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/blink.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='blink.gif' /><!--endemo--> Parliament debates Indo-US nuke deal
Source: NDTV. Image Source: NDTV

New Delhi, August 17: The debate on the Indo-US nuclear deal which has become the centre of controversy has begun in Parliament.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will make the government's stand clear in the Parliament on the issue at 4:30 pm (IST).

<!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo-->

In response to the BJP's protests, Minister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma pointed out that it was the BJP which laid the groundwork for the nuclear deal and that there was no reason for them to paint a "gloomy picture" for it.

Shifting goalposts?

The Left has accused the government of shifting the goalposts on the deal and moving away from the original statement made by the Prime Minister in July last year.

Articulating their stand in the nuclear debate, CPM's Sitaram Yechury said that while there need not be a resolution - the Left's original demand - there should be some reflection of what Parliament's stand is.

The Left claims that there have been several points of departure on the nuclear deal on which they want a point-by-point reply.
<!--emo&:clapping--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/clap.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='clap.gif' /><!--endemo--> Parliament debates Indo-US nuke deal
Source: NDTV. Image Source: NDTV

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'><span style='font-family:Geneva'>However, judging by the BJP's opening arguments, it's going to be a contentious debate. BJP leader Yashwant Sinha has demanded a resolution, which will reflect "a sense of the House".

Such a demand is unprecedented. Never before has the Parliament ever been asked to give parameters for any bilateral deal.(Thrust of msg got omitted.)</span></span>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Link: http://news.monstersandcritics.com/india...191317.php
From Monsters and Critics.com
India Features
<b>Walker`s World: India`s scientists revolt </b>
By Martin Walker
Aug 17, 2006, 19:00 GMT

PARIS, France (UPI) -- The long-simmering revolt by India`s top nuclear scientists against the controversial nuclear deal with the United States now threatens to sink the landmark agreement signed last year between President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The real question is whether it will also sink the emerging strategic alliance between the United States and India -- intended by both countries to be a keystone of Asia`s security architecture in the coming century.

The revolt by the scientists has been simmering for months. They never liked the deal, reckoning that India was selling itself and its nuclear capabilities too cheaply, and putting too high a price on the return to nuclear respectability that the deal embodies. India, which has never signed the non-proliferation treaty, has been a nuclear pariah, excluded from the usual technical cooperation between the nuclear powers in the Nuclear Suppliers` Group and thus also from access to key supplies like enriched uranium.

In return for bringing India back into the nuclear club, the United States obtained a number of important concessions. India agreed to open most (14 out of 22) of its reactors and nuclear research labs to international inspection and to abide by the terms of the U.S. deal 'in perpetuity.' India`s top nuclear scientists, known as the G8, have now publicly declared: 'We find that the Indo-U.S. deal, in the form approved by the U.S. House of Representatives, infringes on our independence for carrying out indigenous research and development in nuclear science & technology. Our R&D should not be hampered by external supervision or control, or by the need to satisfy any international body. Research and technology development are the sovereign rights of any nation. This is especially true when they concern strategic national defense and energy self-sufficiency.'

This statement by the scientists has provided cover for the political opponents of the deal to rally against it. <b>The Communist Party allies of Prime Minister Singh`s government, guided as much by anti-Americanism as by nuclear concerns, are to the fore, but Congress party leader Sonya Gandhi is now also wavering, and the BJP opposition party have seen a chance to hand the Singh government a stinging defeat.</b>

The opposition to the deal has been made easier by the way in which the U.S. Congress tinkered with the initial terms of the deal as the price of their own support. They did so in response to strong pressure from the domestic and international lobbies, who argue (with some justice) that the deal drives a coach and horses through the terms of the NPT and sets a dangerous precedent -- just as the world is trying to rein in Iran`s nuclear ambitions.

The scientists have further support inside India`s national security community. India inhabits a dangerous neighborhood, with Russia and China and Pakistan all nuclear powers and Iran close to joining them. A lot of generals, diplomats, intelligence officials and senior advisers warn that the deal could inhibit India`s freedom of strategic action.

A new memorandum being circulated among Indian nuclear scientists, claiming to rebut the government`s defense of the deal, and obtained by United Press International, says: 'Following the passage of the Bill through the two Houses of Representatives, in the event of a nuclear test carried out by India which has not been 'allowed' by the U.S., the president will seek to prevent the transfer of technology or materials from other governments participating in the NSG or from any other source. India could in effect be denied fuel from any country if the U.S. withdrew. Worse still, our bureaucrats seem to have forgotten that in-perpetuity agreements without an exit clause also invite long term sanctions and invite worse forms of `nuclear apartheid` than currently exist as a result of being outside the NPT fence.'

<b>The Indian scientists are trying to protect the crown jewels of India`s nuclear program; its own design of new fast-breeder reactors and its pioneering use of thorium (of which India has a large share of the world`s reserves) as a nuclear fuel</b>. And they claim that the new terms to the deal inserted by U.S. Congress leaves these technologies open to inspectors, both American and international, through the International Atomic Energy Agency.

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>'It has now emerged that not only will IAEA safeguards apply, but Indian entities will attract separate monitoring by three independent U.S. agencies,' says the new memo from the scientists. 'Such a situation is obviously completely unacceptable,' they add. </span>

<b>Will this unholy alliance between nuclear scientists, anti-American leftists and nationalist security officials be enough to stop the deal? Probably not, although it will certainly delay and complicate it.</b> Prime Minister Singh has negotiated his way around similar opposition in the past, and even the BJP opposition party agrees with the basic Singh strategy that India should cement its strategic alliance with the United States.

The bottom line for India is that the country fears being left standing dangerously alone and vulnerable on a railway line, with two trains rushing upon it from different directions. One train is the rise of China and the other is Islamic extremism, and India justifiably fears being run over by each of them simultaneously.

That is why both the last BJP government and the current Congress-led coalition have sought to end fifty years of Indian neutrality and forge a strategic relationship with the United States. That decision has been made long since. The question now is the price India is prepared to pay to secure it, and how far the United States will go to meet the Indian concerns, while crafting a deal that can get the support of the other nuclear powers in the Nuclear Suppliers` Group.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International
© Copyright 2003 - 2005 by monstersandcritics.com.
This notice cannot be removed without permission
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->PTI reports
<b> PM says national interest paramount, warns US against changes in N-pact </b>
Thursday, August 17, 2006 21:18 IST
NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday ruled out the possibility of accepting anything that undermines the country's nuclear programme. He said that the government would not accept any conditionalities that go beyond the last year's deal with the US or this year's separation plans.

<b>"If something is enforced on us in separation (plans of nuclear facilities) or other areas government will draw the necessary conclusion consistent with India's national interests,"</b> he said in his reply lasting more than an hour winding up a day-long discussion in the Rajya Sabha.

He, however, did not elaborate what the conclusion will be.

Allaying concerns of the members of the Opposition and the allied Left parties and the nuclear scientific community of threats to the indigenous nuclear programme, the Prime Minister repeatedly emphasised that nothing would be done to sacrifice its independent nuclear programme or the country's sovereign foreign policy.

He also made it clear to Washington that India would oppose any move to impose annual certification by the American President for implementation of the deal.

"We will not accept any condition that goes beyond the parameters of July 18,2005 joint statement and the March 2, 2006, Separation Plan agreed to between India and the US," he said in a speech-tinged with emotion.

<b>"If the US legislation or the nuclear suppliers group impose extraneous conditions, government will draw the necessary conclusion consistent with my commitments to Parliament and the people,"</b> he said.

On the question of annual certification by the US President, <b>Singh said "we have made it clear to the US our opposition to it... There is also an element of uncertainty and, therefore, it is not acceptable to us."</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> <b>Divided Establishment</b>
<i>All parties must prevent the further weakening of the Centre.</i>
17 August 2006: On Monday, in an Independence Day-eve piece, we wrote about the vanishing of the Establishment as it was. This is taking on stranger dimensions. Sections of the Establishment are rebelling against other sections, and whether or not the rebellion is justified, it is weakening the Establishment as a whole, weakening the Centre, and weakening the office of the prime minister. This is not to the good.

Two constituents of the Establishment, the judiciary and the free press, have traditionally an adversarial role. How adversarial though they are changes with the situation and the ruling regime. A regime which has its moral lights clear and shining will face fewer adversaries than one guided by the basest instincts. This is fairly obvious.

But apart from the judiciary and the media, the rest of the executive Establishment works as a united whole. A combination of events though has weakened the forces that bind the Establishment, and produced differences within. The events are also fairly obvious. A general election produced a fractured verdict. The resultant coalition politics and a politically weak PM have crippled the powers of the Centre.

It is the differences within the executive, however, that are harder to reconcile. Earlier, for example, <b>the PMO had one view on Siachen, it was inching towards an agreement with Pakistan for troops’ withdrawal. The NSA, M.K.Narayanan, was fairly keen, and the PM’s visit to Pakistan in mid-June was slated to conclude the agreement or progress it. The army said no. Its condition was unless the present Indian-held positions on the glacier were accepted by Pakistan, there would be no pullout. Since this would have constituted recognition of India’s occupation of the glacier, Pakistan refused. </b>

<b>On this, the army was right. The PMO was forced to accept</b> it. Anyhow, relations with Pakistan rapidly deteriorated, and the PM finger-pointed Pakistani terrorism in his Independence Day speech. As an institution, the army had every reason to protect its interests. But the point is it got to a situation where it almost had to defy the PMO.

There is another more recent incident, as old as yesterday’s.<b> The PM’s scientific advisor, C.N.R.Rao, was quoted to say any shifting of goalposts in the Indo-US nuclear deal was unacceptable.</b> Like with the Siachen withdrawal, one can’t dispute Rao’s stand, but see the threat behind it, the stentorian tone<b>. Should one section of the Establishment battle another so publicly, so cussedly? </b>

Our position has been that it is to the good that institutions of the executive are safeguarding their interests and exercising freedom to protect themselves. That remains our view. But this process should not lead to a conflicted Establishment, where everyone is tearing into everyone else. <b>If the Central Establishment weakens, the country weakens</b>. There is no escape from that.

There is a breakdown of Establishment consensus, and this must be repaired. The stage is past for the blame game, that the PMO did not heed the army’s position on Siachen until it took a rigid stand. <b>Or that on the nuke deal, the PMO went on a different course from what the nuclear scientists were urging</b>. On all these issues, a settled position has to be reached, and only then can Parliament reach a position on it.

Some things cannot be changed. We cannot hope for a change of PM. The Congress party is not going to oblige. And frankly, why should it, if it further weakens its position in the government? So Manmohan Singh, with all his political weaknesses, has to be accepted and permitted to function. <b>But the PM must also recognize that his position is weak, and that the Establishment is splintered</b>. Within the Establishment, therefore, there has to be give and take, and this must later spread to the political Establishment as a whole.

We are not taking any new position on the issues that have split the Establishment. Our positions are known. But we hold the further splintering of the Establishment must be contained. Democracy does not mean the Establishment speaks in different voices. That damages us, and hurts our international position and prestige.

<b>There are many who would blame the PM for a splintered Establishment and a weakened Centre, but the blame game has gone on too long. If un-repaired, the splits could grow, and become permanent, which would be destructive for future governments. While all the legitimate institutional interests should be protected, no entity must be permitted to hijack the Establishment. </b>

In a parliamentary democracy, the PM is the head of the government, the chief executive, as it were. He has to be trusted in the conduct of his official duties, and if he cannot be trusted, then he must either resign, or be removed. It has almost come to that situation, where the PM is no longer trusted on the nuclear deal, and parliamentary oversight is demanded. Worse for the PM, sections of the executive are opposing him on the deal.

As said earlier, this is an unprecedented situation. <b>This lack of trust is evident in another quarter. President Abdul Kalam has not moved on the office of profit bill even after the Union cabinet has reconsidered it and approved it. Nobody can fault the President for his reservations about the bill. The constitutional lawyer, Fali Nariman, calls it a “lawless law”</b>. A constitutional impasse is in the making there.

A round up of all the contentious issues suggests the PM must back down from some of his commitments. He cannot, for example, turn away from the demand for a sense of Parliament resolution on the nuclear deal. But equally, any resolution must not carry a sting that the PM is untrustworthy, or that his section of the Establishment has sold out. The nuclear controversy has carried on too long and gone too far. It must be brought to a closure before it divides the Establishment further. It devolves on the political Establishment not to weaken the executive and the Centre any more.

Give and take is the only solution. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>I am prepared to take risks for India: Manmohan</b>?

He is gambling with India's future generation.
He is not even elected.
His previous acts failed to give me any confidence. He is run by some external force. Who is that external party?
Should we risk one man risk which may cost Billion of Indians in future?

What a false ego this man have?
<b>Another Gorbachov in the making.</b>..<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Madhulika </b>from Santa Clara, USA too had apprehensions.  <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

"Well, if his gamble fails, whole of India and future generations will suffer. Should we trust Manmohan Singh? "
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>The questions PM did not answer</b>
- By Yashwant Sinha
Asian Age, Aug 20, 2006

For some of us who have been striving to ensure that the one-sided India-US nuclear deal does not pass muster in Indian Parliament, August 17, 2006 when the Rajya Sabha debated the issue, was a day of partial satisfaction, of partial victory. I have no doubt in my mind that if we, in the various political parties, other writers, commentators and editors, and the nuclear scientists had not expressed our reservations against the deal, the Prime Minister would not have been compelled to offer the clarifications he offered in Rajya Sabha on that day. Let us not forget that when the House of Representatives of the US Congress passed the Bill, there was no official response from the government of India. In fact, through background briefings of a section of the media which is blindly supporting the deal, the government sent out a message that it was happy at the outcome.

August 17 is a victory of sorts because the Prime Minister has been forced to dismount from his high horse. But a large number of questions remain, which the Prime Minister deliberately ducked that day. Even when I put some of these questions to him directly and pointedly at the end of the debate, he decided to remain glued to his seat and chose not to respond to them. If we want an equal and mutually beneficial deal with the US, these questions must be answered satisfactorily. And until that happens, we must not give up.

The Prime Minister reiterated once again that there will be no shifting of the goalposts from the July 18, 2005 statement. I had, in my intervention in Rajya Sabha, made the point that some of the goalposts had already been shifted from July 18. I even listed them point-wise. But the Prime Minister chose to ignore these questions. The following is the list of questions asked to the Prime Minister and which he deliberately chose to ignore in his reply:

1. I challenged the basis of the deal, namely energy security. I quoted facts and figures to prove how the approach was fundamentally flawed. I asked the Prime Minister to share with the House his understanding of the economics of nuclear energy compared to other sources of energy. He did not reply to this point. I also asked him to state the kind of investment which was needed even to have a meagre 20,000 MW of nuclear energy by 2020. He again did not reply.

2. I asked him to share with the House the financial cost of the separation of our nuclear facilities between civilian and military. I reminded him that at no stage has the government taken Parliament into confidence with regard to this cost which some have estimated at US $40 billion. He once again chose not to share this information with Parliament.

3. He did not explain why his interpretation of the deal and the US interpretation of the deal have remained so diametrically opposed to each other all these 13 months.

4. I asked him why we have accepted a water-tight separation plan which does not apply to nuclear weapon states. As is well known, nuclear weapon states accept only voluntary, revocable safeguards while perpetual inspections by the IAEA apply solely to non-nuclear weapon states. He kept quiet.

5. I asked him why the fast breeder programme, which is based entirely on our own technology, has been offered for safeguards in future in the separation plan when he had assured the nation that it will not be brought within the safeguards. He kept quiet.

<b>6. I asked him why the Cirus experimental reactor, which as Arun Shourie said, produced a third of our weapons grade plutonium, had been included in the list of civilian facilities and the fuel core of Apsara was being sought to be shifted from its present location. He ducked this question.</b>

7. I quoted the US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice's testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on April 5, 2006 where she said, "We have been very clear with the Indians that the permanence of the safeguards is permanence of the safeguards, without condition. In fact, we reserve the right, should India test, as it has agreed not to, or should India violate in any way IAEA safeguard agreement to which it would be adhering, that the deal from our point of view would at that point be off."<b> The Prime Minister told the House that India would not accept any obligation in the bilateral agreement not to test. Secretary Rice has said the opposite and has asserted as highlighted earlier that we have already agreed not to test. Who should we believe?</b>

<b>8. I asked the Prime Minister specifically whether the US actually opposed the supply of fuel for Tarapur by the Russians recently despite their commitment in the July 18 agreement to facilitate such supply. He did not reply.</b>

9. My colleague Arun Shourie asked him pointedly about the Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty. In the July 18, 2005 statement, we have agreed to "work with" the US for the conclusion of this treaty. The question is has the US agreed to work with us or does it expect us to toe whatever line it enunciates? This is exactly what has happened. Reliable verification is a key issue of this treaty.

Our consistent position has been that observance of obligations under the treaty must be verifiable. Yet, the draft which the US has presented to the Committee on Disarmament does not contain any such provision. Arun Shourie wanted to know what government of India's position on this issue was. It was met with resounding silence.

The principles of reciprocity, parity and sequencing of the various steps as enunciated in the July 18, 2005 statement have already been violated by the US with impunity. Thus, based on what has already happened, not on what is likely to happen, the July 18 statement is in tatters. What is going to happen to it when the final Bill is adopted by the US Congress is horrendous from our point of view. And yet, we choose to bury our head in the sand in the face of the gathering storm and pretend that all is well.

I was disappointed when Sitaram Yechury rose in Rajya Sabha at the end of the Prime Minister's speech, even after I had expressed my reservations about it, and suggested that the Prime Minister's reply should be taken as the Sense of the House. I immediately disagreed with his suggestion. But I must note here that there is a fundamental difference between our position and the position of the CPI(M). The CPI(M) had criticised the 1998 nuclear tests. They are against India becoming a nuclear weapon state. So, their concerns did not include concerns relating to the weapons programme, which incidentally is our basic concern. The CPI(M) also accepts the July 18, 2005 statement about which we have reservations. They are also reconciled to the deviations and departures which have already taken place from the July 18 statement.

I began my speech in Rajya Sabha with these words, "I propose to approach this task not in a partisan manner, but in as objective a manner, as fair a manner as possible, and I expect that those who will respond from the government's side will also keep this in mind and respond to our concerns taking this as an issue of supreme national importance." I was disappointed, therefore, when the three speakers from the Congress Party including the minister of state for external affairs, Anand Sharma, indulged in "tu tu main main."

But the Prime Minister was even more disappointing. He gave the House an overdose of his biography which was entirely unnecessary because nobody had attacked him personally. Was he responding to his friends in his own party? His remark that he inherited a bankrupt economy from me in 1991 was in poor taste. Dr Manmohan Singh was the economic adviser to the then Prime Minister, Mr Chandrashekhar. In that capacity he used to not only attend all Cabinet meetings but was also fully involved in economic management. Nobody, therefore, should know better than him what we had inherited when we came into office in November 1990.

His mentor and the famous economist I.G. Patel in a lecture delivered at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore on October 28, 1991 had this to say: <b>"If the present crisis is the greatest that we have faced since independence … it is because successive governments in the Eighties chose to abdicate their responsibilities to the nation for the sake of short-term partisan political gains and indeed out of sheer political cynicism." He went on to blame the Rajiv Gandhi regime directly for this crisis. He called the Chandrashekhar government feckless but added that, "The Chandrashekhar government began to behave more responsibly than most people had expected." It would have been better, therefore, if the Prime Minister had shown greater intellectual honesty than he did while making this entirely uncalled for remark</b>.

We have only partially succeeded in dissuading the Prime Minister from treading the dangerous path of the India-US nuclear deal. The struggle is far from over. I hope Lok Sabha will keep up the pressure when it debates the nuclear deal. I hope the scientists who issued the statement will keep up the pressure when they meet the Prime Minister on August 26, 2006. I have already said in Rajya Sabha that if the deal goes through in the shape that the Americans have given it and even if this government accepts such a deal, it cannot bind India in future.

Yashwant Sinha is a former Union minister for finance and for external affairs<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>Rescued from the abyss</b>
<i>In the first of a three-part analysis of the Indo-US nuclear deal, Arun Shourie argues that credibility has passed from the political class to professionals and entrepreneurs. And that the prime minister was wise to engage with the scientists’ misgivings </i>
<!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<span style='color:green'><span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>Deccan Herald » State » Detailed Story

India sitting pretty on alternate nuclear fuel

DH News Service Bangalore:

Do you know that India is sitting on the world’s largest reserve of thorium, a nuclear fuel, sufficient to meet the country’s energy requirements for centuries?

Do you know that India is sitting on the world’s largest reserve of thorium, a nuclear fuel, sufficient to meet the country’s energy requirements for centuries?

In fact, nearly a third of the world’s thorium is in India. However, thorium, unlike uranium, cannot be directly used in a nuclear reactor to produce energy. It will first have to be converted into uranium-233, in a reactor. And, for large-scale generation of nuclear energy, India must shift focus towards utilisation of thorium.

“That is what we are doing. We are planning to build second-generation of fast breeder reactors that can utilise thorium to produce power,” said Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) Director Srikumar Banerjee in his talk on “Nuclear Energy Programme in India and its Societal Impact”, organised by Samvaada Trust on Sunday.

Most nations that are advanced in nuclear technology have access to sufficiently large quantities of uranium reserves. Hence, the technologies needed to exploit thorium have a much higher priority for India, he pointed out. The research and development challenges involved in pursuing the thorium path “have to be met indigenously without much benefit from the knowledge base available elsewhere”.

Water reactors

Dr Banerjee pointed out that India had all along built heavy-water reactors that use natural uranium. But India’s uranium reserves are meagre and cannot be sustained for long-term utilisation. Moreover, supply of the nuclear material has been embargoed by uranium-producing countries as India is not a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty.

However, its known reserves of thorium can easily fulfil India’s needs during the next century and beyond. Further, “uranium-233 converted from thorium and can be used for any type of reactors, thermal or fast, thus freeing us from any type of restrictions from the point of view of resources”, he added.

Using the new technology, India’s first 500-MW Prototype Fast-Breeder Reactor (PFBR) at Kalpakkam is expected to be ready in 2009.

With installation of fast-breeder power generating reactors, India plans to increase its nuclear power capacity to 20,000 MW by 2020. </span></span>
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Aug 21 2006, 10:00 PM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Aug 21 2006, 10:00 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Rescued from the abyss</b>
<i>In the first of a three-part analysis of the Indo-US nuclear deal, Arun Shourie argues that credibility has passed from the political class to professionals and entrepreneurs. And that the prime minister was wise to engage with the scientists’ misgivings </i>

Great articles as always. Where is C Raja Mohan these days ? Havent heard from that fellow in a while.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>US N-deal equates India with  Pakistan</b>

New  Delhi, Aug. 21: Despite the Bush administration claiming the nuclear
deal  symbolises a special relationship with New Delhi, a last-minute amendment 
inserted in the recently passed bill by the US House of Representatives
equates  India with Pakistan and directs Washington to collaborate with both
countries  and also get involved in matters between the two. That is one of the
numerous  conditionalities tagged on to the deal by the US House.

Yet, in his speech in the Rajya Sabha, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh  skirted
any reference to such conditionalities in the US House bill. In fact, he  did
not identify a single area of concern in the House bill, <b>which has shifted 
15 different nuclear benchmarks, making the original deal look barely 
recognisable. </b>

The 11th-hour amendment linking India  with Pakistan in the House bill was
inserted as Section 2(8). Named as the  Jackson Lee Amendment after its sponsor, the section mandates that the United  States should continue its policy of
engagement, collaboration and exchanges  with and between India and Pakistan. 

In a speech full of generalisations  and assurances (including some already
broken), Dr Singh cited only one specific  concern, that too in the proposed
Senate Bill which unlike the House Bill, has  yet to be passed. That concern
related to the requirement for annual  certification by the US President for
continuation of nuclear cooperation with  India.

The Prime Minister had nothing to say about  the Fortenberry Amendment to
Section 4(j) of the House bill that decrees annual  public hearings involving
government and non-government witnesses on the  growth in India's
nuclear weapons material stockpile, or the same bill's  provision to perpetually hang the threat of termination over India's head, or  the lack of any exit clause
for India, or even the assorted preconditions  demanding New Delhi's full
compliance with various demands before the deal can  take effect.

The PM, however, said there has been  no shift at least in one of his
positions: international inspections will  follow, not predate, the lifting of
all restrictions against India. All  restrictions are not going to be lifted,
as US officials have made clear. But if  the Bush administration can persuade
the US Congress to keep certain  nuclear-technology sanctions against India at
the policy level rather than  specify them in the legislation, as senior
official John C. Rood has suggested,  Dr Singh will be able to open Indian
facilities to outside inspectors despite a  lack of full cooperation.

Significantly, the <b>PM  did not mention even one of his broken assurances,
including that India would be  treated at par with the other nuclear-weapons
states, enjoying the same rights  and benefits as them and undertaking
only the same obligations. Instead, his  speech focused on reiterating assurances
not yet broken. </b>

Dr Singh said India has still some concerns about joining the  controversial
Proliferation Security Initiative, but he did not utter a word on  the
Australia Group and the Wassennaar Arrangement, two other <b>US-led cartels to 
which the House bill demands India's unilateral adherence as a precondition, 
although these regimes were not mentioned in the original deal. </b>

The Jackson Lee Amendment has to be seen against the backdrop of the  Bush
administration's persistent efforts to prop up the Pakistani military 
dictatorship, showering it with multi-billion-dollar economic and military aid. 
Washington has begun rearming Pakistan with lethal, India-directed offensive 
weapons that whittle away at India's military edge and embolden Islamabad in
its  sponsorship of cross-border terror.

The latest US  arms package for Pakistan is also the largest ever a $5.1
billion present.  Earlier this year, during his first trip to New Delhi as the
new US assistant  secretary of state for South and Central Asia, <b>Mr Richard
Boucher publicly  demanded that India define its deterrent only in relation to
Pakistan and also  that it enter into mutual understandings with Islamabad
in both conventional  and nuclear areas. </b>

The US government and Congress  are both seeking to reinforce India's pairing
with Pakistan even as US officials  claim to have de-hyphenated the two
countries in US policy. In fact, no sooner  had the US initiated the Next Steps
in Strategic Partnership with India in early  2004 than it caught Delhi
unawares by designating Pakistan as a Major Non-Nato  Ally.

The nuclear deal threatens to do in the  nuclear realm what the US arms
supply to Islamabad has sought to achieve in the  conventional military field
erode India's edge. While the US and Pakistani  governments have confirmed
that Pakistan is building a second plutonium  production reactor at Khushab, Dr
Singh refused to clarify in the Rajya Sabha  <b>why he unilaterally agreed to
dismantle by 2010 one of the only two  plutonium-production reactors India has</b>.

Pakistan is  pleased that the <b>Indo-US deal reduces to less than one-third the
number of  Indian facilities available to generate weapons-usable fissile
material.</b> While  Dr Singh again claimed that the deal does not adversely
affect Indian nuclear  military capability, Mr Joseph R. Biden, the ranking
Democrat on the Senate  foreign relations committee, has said that the deal
imposes qualitative and  quantitative ceilings that limit the size and sophistication
of India's  nuclear-weapons programme.

In his speech, Dr Singh  put the <b>number of reactors being opened to perpetual
international inspections  at only 14, when in actual fact he has agreed to
open up 35 nuclear facilities</b>  and establishments as well as rip down two
research reactors Cirus and  Apsara.
Sense and nonsense of the N debate - By M.D. Nalapat
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->DECCAN CHRONICLE
<b>Scientists still have doubts, ask PM to spell out strategy</b>

New Delhi, Aug. 27: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was urged by the countrys top nuclear scientists at their recent meeting with him to formulate an adequate Indian response as they had serious doubts that the US Congress would accept the concerns of the nation on this sensitive issue.

Dr A. Gopalakrishnan, a former chairman of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, told this newspaper when contacted that I had mentioned to the PM that he has comprehensively covered in his recent speeches in Parliament most of the concerns pointed out earlier by the scientists, the Opposition parties and the strategic analysts.

However, I also expressed my serious doubt whether the US Congress would take into account every one of the Indian requirements as spelt out by the PM. Therefore, it was my suggestion that the government must anticipate this and plan the type of response India should give the US . The government has started a strong campaign through its missions across the world to project the Indo-US nuclear deal.

Heads of Indian missions have been instructed to engage not just governments but civil society in discussions on this issue to gather support for the nuclear deal and allay suspicions about the strategic component of the India-US nuclear understanding, particularly in the developing world. Foreign secretary Shyam Sarans visit to the Scandinavian countries is just one part of the larger exercise directed at winning over maximum support for the deal as it stands at the moment.

Dr Gopalakrishnan was particularly worried about the views expressed by a senior official of the Planning Commission to US businessmen in Washington earlier this year. He refused to identify the member, but his reference was clearly to Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia, who has been actively lobbying for the nuclear deal. Dr Gopalakrishnan, on his communicating concerns to Dr Manmohan Singh, told this newspaper: <b>The Prime Minister assured the scientists that establishing energy security in the country would be primarily on the basis of indigenous technology development and nationally-available primary energy resources. I pointed out that there is a contradiction between this assurance of the PM and the briefings that a senior official of the Planning Commission gave to an American business group in Washington on April 19, 2006, the transcript of which is still available at the website of the Indian embassy in Washington .</b>

Dr Ahluwalia had claimed that on nuclear energy, without access to foreign uranium supplies, the Indian nuclear power programme will peak at 10,000 MW and flatten out at that level for about 30 years, until the thorium breeder reactor is developed. <b>Dr Gopalakrishnan pointed out that the official concerned seems to be totally misinformed of our three-stage nuclear power programme, which will require the building of several Pu-depleted uranium first-generation breeder reactors to produce electricity and also the U-233 needed to fuel the subsequent thorium breeders. </b>

Dr Gopalakrishnan made it clear that what was referred to as plain nuclear reactors are the PHWRs, developed entirely by Indian scientists and engineers against all the obstacles and sanctions imposed by US since 1974. Dr Ahluwalia also claimed that India was not doing enough work on the utilisation of high ash coals and he hoped to persuade the US to devote some intellectual energy to solving this problem for us.

<b>Dr Gopalakrishnan pointed out that this assertion contradicts the findings of four Indo-US joint technical evaluations on the applicability of US clean-coal technologies to our type of coals. All these evaluations established that Indian coals cannot be utilised through US clean-coal technologies. </b>

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