PD Smith

Shock & AWE

05 March 2009 | AWE, nuclear weapons | Post a comment

As a postscript to yesterday's piece about our nuclear future, it was announced last night that the Ministry of Defence's plans to modernise the Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), at Burghfield in Berkshire, have been given the go-ahead, despite the fact that it's in an area at risk of flooding.

The AWE facility is where Britain's nuclear warheads are produced. Last month it was revealed that the US military has been using Britain's atomic weapons factory to carry out research into its own warhead programme, according to evidence seen by the Guardian.

The Ministry of Defence has admitted it is working with the US on the UK's "existing nuclear warhead stockpile and the range of replacement options that might be available" but has declined to give any further information.

Although Congress halted the Bush administration's plans for a new generation of nuclear warhead known as the Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW), it seems the US military may have used facilities in the UK to get around the restrictions at home.

At a time of global recession, with job losses being reported every day, there is a silver lining to this story: apparently the nuclear arms industry is flourishing and indeed expanding in the UK. One website I found has two pages of current jobs on offer at AWE.

Leave a Reply

Name (required)
Mail (will not be published) (required)