US Nukes in Iran

Iran may have the weapons-grade uranium out of three
nuclear warheads dumped out of a B-52 back in 1991. Or so at least the
US government might have some reason to believe, according to a seemingly
well-informed person talking to CounterPunch last week.

On February 3, 1991, this particular B-52G had been deployed to circle
around Baghdad. It was armed with 3 SRAM missiles armed with nuclear warheads
and fitted with rocket drives to push them 100 miles to the rear of the
B-52 before detonating.

The B-52 was heading off to refuel when it developed very serious electrical
problems, including the loss of navigational equipment.

Hoping to limp back to base on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian
Ocean, the crew were heading the plane south just off the coast of Somalia
when fires in five of the engines threatened to detonate the heat sensitive
fuse mechanisms of the SRAMS. Thinking they would plummet into deep water
the crew dumped the nuclear bombs, and the B-52 crashed not long thereafter.
Some members of the crew died, others survived and were picked up.

But, our informant tells us, the warheads in fact landed in shallow water,
on Somalia’s continental shelf. Three months later, in mid-May of 1991,
they were allegedly retrieved and passed into the hands of an arms dealer
involved in other covert transactions in Somalia at the time.

The dimension of each warhead was 30" x 18" x 18", weighing
560 pounds. Because of sea-water contamination only the weapons grade uranium
would be usable, either in a "dirty" bomb, or as the warhead
for a new missile.

As the three warheads entered international arms-smuggling loops, the Bush-One
and subsequently Clinton administrations dispatched various covert units
to recover them, with no success.

from Alexander Cockburn at Counterpunch

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