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‘Nuclear Sword of the Moslem World’?: the United States, Britain, Pakistan, and the ‘Islamic Bomb’, 1977–80

Craig, MM (2016) ‘Nuclear Sword of the Moslem World’?: the United States, Britain, Pakistan, and the ‘Islamic Bomb’, 1977–80. International History Review, 38 (5). pp. 857-879. ISSN 0707-5332

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There exists today considerable fear of nuclear proliferation across the ‘Islamic world.’ Despite this, an issue that - in part - set the tone for contemporary debates has largely gone under-examined in the scholarly literature. The emergence of the ‘Islamic bomb’ idea in the late 1970s created a meme that remains with us today. Analysing the roots of this meme allows us to examine its creation and the attitudes of governments towards this alleged emergent nuclear-proliferation threat. This analysis demonstrates that while the media portrayed the ‘Islamic world’ as violent, undifferentiated, and determined to gain nuclear capability, the US and British governments assessed matters evidentially and came to the conclusion that the ‘Islamic bomb’ represented a propaganda problem rather than an imminent nuclear-proliferation concern. Attitudes towards the ‘Islamic bomb’ highlight media and governmental attitudes towards the changing power balances in the Middle East and South Asia during a turbulent and troubled period.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in The International History Review on 29th July 2016, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/07075332.2016.1140670
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2103 Historical Studies
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D839 Post-war History, 1945 on
Divisions: Humanities & Social Science
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge): SSH Titles
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2016 11:16
Last Modified: 02 Aug 2022 14:09
DOI or ID number: 10.1080/07075332.2016.1140670
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/4612
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