January 24, 1996
State Department Telegram 012545 to Intsum Collective, 'Intsum: India: Nuclear Test Unlikely'
This document was made possible with support from Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY)
Provides an overview of preparations for the nuclear test as well as a discussion on the pressures weighing on Indian Prime Minister Rao to launch the test. Prepared by one of INR’s South Asia experts, Steven Ghitelman, it provides an overview of the test site preparations that began in November and decided described Prime Minister Rao as facing pressures to test from the BJP and from the nuclear establishment. The pressures were not insurmountable because other considerations were important, such as avoiding international sanctions, continuing steps toward economic liberalization, and pressures to support the CTBT. Ghitelman concluded that it would be “vintage Rao” for him to allow the scientists to prepare for a test “while not authorizing them to conduct one.” That is what happened.
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