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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Current Events > East Asia and the Pacific

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East Asia and the Pacific China - Japan - Australia and challenges throughout East Asia.

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  #16  
Old 18 Feb 14, 13:39
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I read that they're up to 150 tons...

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/opinion/.../#.UwOo5c6GfWI
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  #17  
Old 18 Feb 14, 13:57
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Originally Posted by GCoyote View Post
IIRC it was for fast breeder reactors. The idea being to consume militarily useful reactor waste and generate new reactor fuels at the same time.
Plausible.
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  #18  
Old 18 Feb 14, 15:36
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Originally Posted by Yono View Post
The reasons for China sticking their nose in this matter, are obvious.

What is interesting is the American perspective of all this. Isn't it within American interests for Japan to have a small nuclear arsenal in the face of Chinese aggression?
Which Chinese aggression are you referring to?
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  #19  
Old 18 Feb 14, 15:43
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Originally Posted by GCoyote View Post
Yes and no. A Japan that was not dependent on the US for nuclear deterrence would probably be taken more seriously by its neighbors. There has always been an open question as to whether or not the US would truly risk nuclear war on behalf of an ally. Having one's own 'bomb' eliminates that uncertainty.

The other side of the coin is that proliferation statistically increases the odds of a nuclear weapon eventually being used. The US has a powerful conventional forces and so has many other options to pursue before resorting to nukes. The smaller the nation, the more easily it might find itself threatened with unacceptable losses and therefore faced with the choice of capitulation or employing nuclear weapons.

The downside for the US is that we might still be drawn into the conflict but would no longer have final say in crossing the nuclear threshold.
Personally I find nukes as the absolute deterrent. If I'm going to be invaded and am going down anyway, no matter how numerous or advanced your forces are, they're going to be useless when nukes start flying. Which I think is more the reason why some nuke powers want to limit the nuke community. If there're only a few of us have guns walking and throwing our weight around, I don't want more people having guns mentality.
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  #20  
Old 18 Feb 14, 15:45
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Originally Posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
Plausible.
Yep, which is why they're not returning them...
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  #21  
Old 18 Feb 14, 15:48
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Originally Posted by GCoyote View Post
IIRC it was for fast breeder reactors. The idea being to consume militarily useful reactor waste and generate new reactor fuels at the same time.
Yep, and they did that without any (apparently) adequate guarantees for their return.
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  #22  
Old 18 Feb 14, 18:55
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Originally Posted by GMan88 View Post
Yep, and they did that without any (apparently) adequate guarantees for their return.
If the breeder program had gone as originally proposed, there would have been additional reactors to burn the resulting fuel that did not in turn breed more plutonium. So in theory, there would have been no material left to return. In actual practice, I don't think anyone ever built all the elements to run a national nuclear power program along these lines. By the time the technology got fairly mature there was too much political opposition and not enough economic justification. So the plutonium sits there still.

France has by far the most comprehensive nuclear power program. It might be interesting to see how they've managed.

As to your comments about the bomb, the North Koreans have unfortunately come to the same conclusion.
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  #23  
Old 18 Feb 14, 20:15
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Demanded back, or asked politely.

No.

Silence.

OK now, and just what, is on the enforcement table?
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  #24  
Old 18 Feb 14, 21:38
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Check the block.

We don't need it. We have plenty.
If we got it back we'd have to spend money storing and securing it.

I guess we are asking for it just because those were the terms. A pro forma diplomatic interlude?
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  #25  
Old 18 Feb 14, 22:17
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It's no coincidence that the U.S. suddenly want it back, they were pressured by China to do so. I am disappointed in the Obama administration for getting suckered into publicly siding with China by pressuring Japan since 2010. They seem to have no clue that previous administrations have permitted sensitive nuclear technology and materials to be transferred to Japan, despite laws and treaties preventing it.
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  #26  
Old 19 Feb 14, 00:35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HMS Jr. View Post
Demanded back, or asked politely.

No.

Silence.

OK now, and just what, is on the enforcement table?
Precisely my point. I don't think tthe drafters of such an important agreement would be so optimistic about the breeder program they'd overlook such a clause. Either that, or there's an understanding the material aren't going to be returned anymore...
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  #27  
Old 19 Feb 14, 00:38
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Originally Posted by Persephone View Post
It's no coincidence that the U.S. suddenly want it back, they were pressured by China to do so. I am disappointed in the Obama administration for getting suckered into publicly siding with China by pressuring Japan since 2010. They seem to have no clue that previous administrations have permitted sensitive nuclear technology and materials to be transferred to Japan, despite laws and treaties preventing it.
Well, if they're in breach of laws and treatires... shouldn't they abide by them? Unless the US wants to give china further precedents to be selective in which they want to abide...
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  #28  
Old 20 Feb 14, 05:01
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Originally Posted by Admiral View Post
[CENTER]I've had very little doubt over the last 20 years that Japan - if the world was eminently certain to descend into another global conflict - could assemble several nuclear weapons 'off the shelf' within a matter of a few hours.
That's an exaggeration, but Japan is definitely a "latent nuclear power". I would say 4-6 months is a more realistic time-frame for the production of a bomb after the order is given to start.
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  #29  
Old 28 Feb 14, 00:07
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That's an exaggeration, but Japan is definitely a "latent nuclear power". I would say 4-6 months is a more realistic time-frame for the production of a bomb after the order is given to start.
Thats assuming no such order has been given yet. Having bomb components is, after all, different from having a bomb, despite the fact that assembling (not manufacturing) will take a considerably shorter time than 4-6 months.
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