Search This Blog

Monday, June 21, 2010

Burma's bomb?

It seems incredible given Myanmar's isolation and poverty, but I've seen several recent reports suggesting that Burma may be pursuing nuclear weapons. On Duck of Minera less than 10 days ago, colleague Vikash Yadav noted an allegation from Democratic Voice of Burma that has apparently sparked an IAEA investigation.

Earlier this year, the Institute for Science and International Security arrived at a similar conclusion (though I suppose it is possible that one report sparked the other). Joshua Kurlantzick reported their worries in the May/June Washington Monthly:
...over the past two years the international community has grown concerned that the junta may indeed have nuclear ambitions (though nuclear experts doubt it has anywhere near the capabilities it needs to actually build a bomb). A comprehensive study released in January by the Institute for Science and International Security, a respected nonprofit that conducts research on science and policy, documents a web of worrying new military links between Burma and North Korea and suspicious construction of potential nuclear facilities in Burma. "No one can ignore the possibility of significant North Korean nuclear assistance to this enigmatic military regime," the report concludes. "Burma is seeking abroad a large quantity of top-notch highly sophisticated goods with potential missile and nuclear uses."
Kurlantzick notes that Burma might not be able to control its nuclear material if the state implodes. In that way, it is not unlike North Korea or Pakistan.

Visit this blog's homepage.

No comments:

Post a Comment