The Atomic Bazaar; The Rise of the Nuclear Poor

Greg Martin (Author photograph) New York: Farrar , Straus and Giroux, 2007. First Edition [Stated], First Printing [Stated]. Hardcover. Format is approximately 5.75 inches by 8.5 inches. vi, [2], 181, [1] pages. Map. Acronyms. Signed by the author sticker on DJ. Signed on title page. William Langewiesche (born June 12, 1955) is an American author and journalist who was also a professional airplane pilot for many years. Since 2019 he has been a writer at large for The New York Times Magazine. Prior to that he was a correspondent for The Atlantic and Vanity Fair magazines for twenty-nine years. He is the author of nine books and the winner of two National Magazine Awards. William Langewiesche is currently a writer at large for The New York Times Magazine. From 2006-2019 he was an international correspondent for Vanity Fair magazine. Prior to that, he was the national correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly magazine where he was nominated for eight consecutive National Magazine Awards. He has written articles covering a wide range of topics from shipbreaking, wine critics, the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, modern ocean piracy, nuclear proliferation, and the World Trade Center cleanup. Langewiesche received a degree in cultural anthropology from Stanford University. The Atlantic sent Langewiesche to many parts of the world and increasingly into conflict zones. In 2006, while living in Baghdad to cover the Iraq war, Langewiesche went to work for Vanity Fair. After the attacks of 9/11, Langewiesche was the only journalist given full unrestricted access to the World Trade Center site. He produced "American Ground", serialized in The Atlantic Monthly. "American Ground" became a New York Times national bestselling book. In his shocking and revelatory new work, the celebrated journalist William Langewiesche investigates the burgeoning global threat of nuclear weapons production. This is the story of the inexorable drift of nuclear weapons technology from the hands of the rich into the hands of the poor. As more unstable and undeveloped nations find ways of acquiring the ultimate arms, the stakes of state-sponsored nuclear activity have soared to frightening heights. Even more disturbing is the likelihood of such weapons being manufactured and deployed by guerrilla non-state terrorists. Langewiesche also recounts the recent history of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist at the forefront of nuclear development and trade in the Middle East who masterminded the theft and sale of centrifuge designs that helped to build Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, and who single-handedly peddled nuclear plans to North Korea, Iran, and other potentially hostile countries. He then examines in dramatic and tangible detail the chances for nuclear terrorism. From Hiroshima to the present day, Langewiesche describes a reality of urgent consequence to us all. This searing, provocative, and timely report is a triumph of investigative journalism, and a masterful laying out of the most critical political problem the world now faces. Derived from a Kirkus review: Langewiesche takes a hard look at nuclear proliferation and explains why the problem isn’t going away. Opening with a description of a nuclear explosion’s effects—the fireball, the shock waves, the radiation, the high-pressure winds that fan any flames into a firestorm after the initial blast—the author extrapolates to estimate the casualties and other damage that would result from such an explosion in a modern urban setting like Times Square. As if that weren’t chilling enough, he then considers how sufficiently motivated terrorists might attempt to steal the materials needed for a nuke at various sites in the former Soviet Union. The good news, he concludes, is that, despite rampant corruption and inefficiency, the odds are against such an attempt succeeding. The bad news is that the technical means to build a bomb are for sale to anyone with the money. The book’s second half follows A.Q. Khan, who did much to create this atomic bazaar, from his student days to his rise as a national hero in Pakistan and his eventual downfall. His country became a nuclear power through his efforts, but Khan’s willingness to deal with the likes of North Korea and Iran made him a handy scapegoat when Pakistan needed to placate an angry United States. Many European countries turned a blind eye to Khan’s purchase of technology when Pakistan was building its bomb. Even the U.S. eased its pressure on Pakistan when Chinese and Soviet power grew too threatening. His blunt summary of this sorry history pulls no punches and offers very little consolation. Depressing but essential reading. Condition: Very good / Very good.

Keywords: Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Nuclear Technology, Terrorism, Abdul Qadeer Khan, A. Q. Khan, Nuclear Exports, Nuclear Materials, Nonproliferation

ISBN: 9780374106782

[Book #88126]

Price: $75.00