Stimson on Pakistan

Unsurprisingly, Stimson has published another “report”: about South Asia. I’ve only skimmed it so far, but the report, co-edited by Michael Krepon and Nate Cohn and titled “Crises in South Asia: Trends and Potential Consequences,” has a bunch of good material about the role of nuclear weapons in the region.

As one who’s always looking for primary source material about India and Pakistan, I was struck by the footnote to a paragraph which cites the well-known _New Yorker_ “piece”: about the 1990 India-Pakistan crisis:

bq. The US intelligence community appears to have been more alarmed by the potential for nuclear weapons’ use. Richard J. Kerr, the deputy director of the C.I.A. during this crisis, was quoted by Seymour Hersh as saying, “It was the most dangerous nuclear situation we have ever faced since I’ve been in the US government. It may be as close as we’ve come to a nuclear exchange. It was far more frightening than the Cuban missile crisis.”

We have heard this before, but check out the footnote:

bq. The author [M Krepon], attended an event with Kerr after Hersh’s article appeared and asked whether he was quoted properly. Kerr answered affirmatively. When asked whether he really believed that that 1990 crisis was second only to the Cuban missile crisis in terms of nuclear danger, Kerr allowed as how *he might have exaggerated this point.*

Doesn’t quite put paid to the metaphor, but a useful addition to the record.

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