South Africas Weapons of Mass Destruction

South Africa's Weapons of Mass Destruction
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Nuclear Weapons Origins

Horses Columnists Racing News. Your life Celebrities Food style Entertainment Soapies. Two test shafts were completed in and One shaft was metres deep, the other, metres.

In , the AEB established its own high-security weapons research and development facilities at Pelindaba , and during that year the program was transferred from Somchem to Pelindaba. Although the Y-Plant was operating, it had not yet produced enough weapons-grade uranium for a device. As has happened in programmes in other nations, the development of the devices had outpaced the production of the fissile material. Atomic Energy Commission officials say that a "cold test" a test without uranium was planned for August An Armscor official who was not involved at the time said that the test would have been a fully instrumented underground test, with a dummy core.

Its major purpose was to test the logistical plans for an actual detonation. How that test was cancelled has been well publicised. Soviet intelligence detected test preparations and in early August alerted the United States; US intelligence confirmed the existence of the test site with an overflight of a Lockheed SR spy plane. The Soviet and Western governments were convinced that South Africa was preparing for a full-scale nuclear test.

During the next two weeks in August, the Western nations pressed South Africa not to test. The French foreign minister warned on 22 August of "grave consequences" for French-South African relations. In , Wynand de Villiers said that when the test site was exposed, he ordered its immediate shutdown. The site was abandoned and the holes sealed.

One of the shafts was temporarily reopened in in preparation for another test, which did not take place; the move was intended to strengthen South Africa's bargaining position during negotiations to end the war with Angola and Cuba. Concerns about the vulnerability of the ageing aircraft to the Cuban anti-aircraft defence network in Angola subsequently led the SADF to investigate missile-based delivery systems. According to Al J Venter , author of How South Africa built six atom bombs, these missiles were incompatible with the available large South African nuclear warheads.

Three rockets had already been launched into suborbital trajectories in the late s in support of development of the RSA-3 launched Greensat Orbital Management System for commercial satellite applications of vehicle tracking and regional planning. Following the decision in to cancel the nuclear weapons program, the missile programs were allowed to continue until , when military funding ended, and all ballistic missile work was stopped by mid In order to join the Missile Technology Control Regime , the government had to allow American supervision of the destruction of key facilities applicable to both the long range missile and the space launch programmes.

David Albright and Chris McGreal have claimed that South African projects to develop nuclear weapons during the s and s were undertaken with some cooperation from Israel. In September , a US Vela satellite detected a double flash over the Indian Ocean that was suspected, but never confirmed, to be a nuclear test, despite extensive air sampling by WC aircraft of the United States Air Force.

South Africa and weapons of mass destruction

If the Vela Incident was a nuclear test, South Africa is one of the countries, possibly in collaboration with Israel, that is suspected of carrying it out. No official confirmation of its being a nuclear test has been made by South Africa. In , South African Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad stated that South Africa had conducted a test, but later retracted his statement as being a report of rumours. Although I was not directly involved in planning or carrying out the operation, I learned unofficially that the flash was produced by an Israeli-South African test code-named Operation Phoenix.

The explosion was clean and was not supposed to be detected. In , The Guardian released South African government documents that it alleged confirmed the existence of Israel's nuclear arsenal. According to The Guardian , the documents were associated with an Israeli offer to sell South Africa nuclear weapons in Israeli President Shimon Peres said that The Guardian article was based on "selective interpretation South African forces feared the threat of a " domino effect " in favour of communism , represented in southern Africa by Cuban proxy forces in Angola and threatening Namibia.

The pre-emptive elimination of nuclear weapons was expected to make a significant contribution toward regional stability and peace, and also to help restore South Africa's credibility in regional and international politics.

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Klerk disclosed the information about his weapons to the United States in an effort to get the weapons removed. South Africa ended its nuclear weapons programme in All the bombs six constructed and one under construction were dismantled and South Africa acceded to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons when South African Ambassador to the United States Harry Schwarz acceded to the treaty in On 19 August , after completing its inspection, the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA confirmed that one partially completed and six fully completed nuclear weapons had been dismantled.

As a result, the IAEA was satisfied that South Africa's nuclear programme had been converted to peaceful applications. South Africa played a leading role in the establishment of the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty also referred to as the Treaty of Pelindaba in , becoming one of the first members in The Treaty of Pelindaba came into effect on 15 July once it had been ratified by 28 countries.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

From the s to the s, South Africa pursued research into weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons. Six nuclear. African resistance to colonial rule. TIM STAPLETON. Trent University. South Africa's Weapons of Mass Destruction. By Helen E. Purkitt and. Stephen F. Burgess.

The African Commission on Nuclear Energy, in order to verify compliance with the treaty, has been established and will be headquartered in South Africa. As of , South Africa still possessed most of the weapons grade uranium extracted from its nuclear weapons, and had used some of it to produce medical isotopes.

In October , the report of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission included a chapter on Project Coast , a clandestine government chemical and biological warfare program conducted during the s and s. Project Coast started in , ostensibly to produce equipment for defensive purposes, including masks and protective suits.

Despite vehement assertions to the contrary, some testimony appeared to show that the programme went well beyond defensive purposes. Headed by Major General N.

Biological Weapons Prevention in South Africa

Nieuwoudt recruited South African cardiologist and army officer, Wouter Basson , to direct the program and ultimately Nieuwoudt and Basson recruited a large contingent of medical professionals and weapons specialists to take part. Many of these individuals who joined the project did so out of patriotism and the belief they were contributing to South Africa's national security, a view formed, in part, by Basson's charisma. Several front companies were created, notably the Delta G Scientific Company , and Roodeplaat Research Laboratories , to facilitate the research and development of chemical and biological weapons.

Several offensive weapons were created including anthrax in cigarettes, and paraoxon in whiskey. Several weapons created by Project Coast were used, such as the introduction of infertility toxin into black townships, and cholera into the water sources of some South African villages; it is also reported that South Africa supplied anthrax and cholera to government troops in Rhodesia now Zimbabwe , which it is alleged were used against guerrillas there.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. South Africa. Further information: Nuclear programme of South Africa. See also: Israel—South Africa Agreement. Nuclear Threat Initiatives.


At the same time, a separate group of intruders was prevented from breaking into another section of the facility. Please create a new list with a new name; move some items to a new or existing list; or delete some items. Stumpf put the operational date for the full cascade at March Offering a view of the secret development and voluntary disarmament of South Africa's nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons program, Project Coast, the authors explore how systems used for nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons in South Africa were acquired and established beyond the gaze of international and domestic political actors. Downdy, eds.

Archived from the original on 28 September Retrieved 13 March Pretoria: Litera. Archived from the original on 25 May Retrieved 15 May Chaudhry's article published at The Nation, Archived from the original on 8 July Retrieved 5 March The Sedalia Democrat. Archived from the original on 31 August Retrieved 31 August Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph.

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National Security Archive. Archived PDF from the original on 29 August Retrieved 26 August Arms Control Wonk. Archived from the original on 6 December Retrieved 6 December Military Involvement in Southern Africa. South End Press. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Jul July Valley News. James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies.

Archived PDF from the original on 7 April

Forgotten History - South Africa's Nuclear Weapons