Nuclear weapons are the elusive ‘toys’ of modern warfare and are hankered after by every Middle Eastern government. Although no Middle eastern government has formally admitted that the purpose of its investment in nuclear research is to develop weapons, it is certain that two countries, Israel and Pakistan, have mastered the technology for making nuclear bombs and that others are attempting to manipulate their nuclear hardware to this end. The combination of these nuclear ambitions, the large amounts of money that can be made available for research and the area’s political instability make the region a powerful example of both the drive towards, and the dangers of, nuclear proliferation. This book, first published in 1988, examines the evolution of nuclear research and development in the region. It shows that it is the product of a complex web of internal and external factors, fuelled by considerations of international prestige and local rivalries. Whilst concluding that it is probably no longer possible to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons technology to the Middle East, it suggests ways in which the rate of proliferation can be slowed down.

chapter |3 pages


‘I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds’ — J. Robert Oppenheimer on the first US nuclear test

chapter 2|16 pages

The Nuclear Fuel Cycle

chapter 3|13 pages


chapter 4|17 pages


chapter 5|8 pages


chapter 6|10 pages


chapter 7|5 pages


chapter 8|21 pages


chapter 9|5 pages