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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • April 09, 1981

    Special Assistant for NPI, NFAC, CIA, to Resource Management Staff, Office of Program Assessment et al, 'Request for Review of Draft Paper on the Security Dimension of Non-Proliferation'

    Just a few months into President Reagan’s first term his administration wanted to make its own mark on nonproliferation policy. The report suggests building “broader bilateral relationship[s]” and offering political and security incentives could persuade states considering developing nuclear weapons to cease these efforts.

  • July, 1982

    National Intelligence Estimate, NIE-4-82, 'Nuclear Proliferation Trends Through 1987'

    With proliferation becoming a “greater threat to US interests over the next five years,” intelligence analysts believed that the “disruptive aspect of the proliferation phenomenon will constitute the greater threat to the United States.” While the estimators saw “low potential” for terrorist acquisition of nuclear weapons, the likelihood of terrorist/extortionist hoaxes was on the upswing. Significant portions of the NIE are excised, especially the estimate of Israel’s nuclear arsenal and its impact in the Middle East. Nevertheless, much information remains on the countries of greatest concern: Iraq and Libya in the Near East, India and Pakistan in South Asia, Brazil and Argentina in Latin America, and the Republic of South Africa, as well as those of lesser concern: Iran, Egypt, Taiwan and the two Koreas.

  • March, 1985

    Central Intelligence Agency, Directorate of Intelligence, 'The Libyan Nuclear Program: A Technical Perspective'

    For years, U.S. intelligence agencies did not take seriously Muammar Gaddafi’s efforts to develop a Libyan nuclear capability and this report provides early evidence of the perspective that the Libyan program “did not know what it was doing.” According to the CIA, the program’s “serious deficiencies,” including “poor leadership” and lack of both “coherent planning” and trained personnel made it “highly unlikely the Libyans will achieve a nuclear weapons capability within the next 10 years.” The Libyan effort was in such a “rudimentary stage” that they were trying to acquire any technology that would be relevant to producing plutonium or enriched uranium.