Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Did Japan try to acquire the nuclear bomb?

According to a senior government official in Tokyo, Japan is to investigate a report that it considered arming itself with nuclear weapons in the late 1960s despite its pacifist vow to shun them. Public broadcaster NHK reports that Japan secretly considered going nuclear and sought advice from what was then West Germany in meetings with foreign ministry officials in February 1969 in the Japanese resort of Hakone.

The explosive report cited confidential West German foreign ministry documents. In the secret talks, the Japanese side said it had sufficient technology to produce nuclear weapons to guard itself against the "nuclearisation" of the region after China conducted a nuclear test in 1964.

Seen as an answer to Chinese successful test?

Indeed China exploded an atomic bomb at 15:00 hours on October 16, 1964, successfully carrying out its first nuclear test. At that time, Chinese propaganda wrote: "The Chinese Government pointed out long ago that the treaty on the partial halting of nuclear tests signed in Moscow in July 1963 by the United States, Britain and the Soviet Union was a big fraud to fool the people of the world, that it was an attempt to consolidate the nuclear monopoly of the three nuclear powers."

History is source of learning...

Sources: Break the Nuclear Monopoly, Eliminate Nuclear Weapons (Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965), pp. 1-5." NHK, Afp, Reporter's notes.

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