The Atomic Bazaar

The Atomic Bazaar

The Rise of the Nuclear Poor

Book - 2007
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Journalist Langewiesche investigates the burgeoning global threat of nuclear weapons production. This is the story of the inexorable drift of nuclear weapons technology from the hands of the rich into the hands of the poor. As more unstable and undeveloped nations find ways of acquiring the ultimate arms, the stakes of state-sponsored nuclear activity have soared to frightening heights. Even more disturbing is the likelihood of such weapons being manufactured and deployed by guerrilla non-state terrorists. Langewiesche also recounts the recent history of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist at the forefront of nuclear development and trade in the Middle East who masterminded the theft and sale of centrifuge designs that helped to build Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, and who single-handedly peddled nuclear plans to North Korea, Iran, and other potentially hostile countries. He then examines in dramatic and tangible detail the chances for nuclear terrorism.--From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780374106782
Characteristics: 179 p. : map ; 22 cm


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Good, quick read that is still timely though it is a decade old. THE ATOMIC BAZAAR deals with nuclear proliferation. The first part susses out the possibility of a non-state actor acquiring a bomb (not likely); the majority of the book deals with A.Q. Khan and how Pakistan was able to develop its "Muslim Bomb." One of the interesting takeaways is Langewiesche's assessment that the CIA knew what was happening the whole time. Langewiesche is silent about who were the principal backers, besides the state of Pakistan itself, of the Khan network, though he hints at the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.


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