Tuesday, March 25, 2008

America: The Confused Fuse Ersatz

The United States government is one of the most relentless advocates of halting the proliferation of nuclear weapons, their components and the ballistic missiles to carry them, and has made public cases against potential adversaries like North Korea and Iran. It has even criticized partners like Russia for not sufficiently safeguarding its stockpile of weapons
.WASHINGTON — Instead of sending helicopter batteries, the United States shipped four electrical fuses for Minuteman nuclear missile warheads to Taiwan, a mistake that was discovered only last week — a year and a half after the erroneous shipment, Pentagon officials disclosed on Tuesday.

The U.S. Air Force mistakenly shipped fuses that are used in nuclear weapons to Taiwan in 2006, believing the crates contained helicopter batteries, officials at the Pentagon announced this morning.The error -- undetected by the United States until last week, despite repeated inquiries by Taiwan -- raises questions about how carefully the Pentagon safeguards its weapons systems. It also exposes the United States to criticism from China, a staunch opponent of a militarized Taiwan. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/03/25/AR2008032501309.htmlTaiwan.

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