A Nuclear Supermarket
‘Oxygen’is basic to life, and one does not debate its desirability; the nuclear “deterrence” has assumed that life-saving property for Pakistan.
— General Mirza Aslam Beg, Chief of Staff of the Pakistan
Army from 1988 to 19911
Dr. A. Q. Khan and his scientists have given the country a credible deterrent for a paltry sum of money. What they have in their accounts is what I call gold dust — they have not taken the government's money. If a scientist is given 10 million dollars to get the equipment, how would he do it? He will not carry the money in his bag. He will put the money in a foreign bank account in somebody's name. The money lies in the account for some time, and the mark-up that it fetches may probably have gone into his account. It is a fringe benefit.
—General M. A. Beg2
In the spring of 1969, I received word that my appointment as a Ford Foundation Visiting Professor of Physics at the University of Islamabad had been cleared by the government of Pakistan. I had actually...