Blame Saskatchewan

Ran across this interesting little tidbit from the April 19 Wall Street Journal:

WASHINGTON — The Bush administration has given up its push for an international ban on sales of uranium-enrichment technology to nonnuclear states, a move that will complicate its nuclear diplomacy toward both Iran and India, and could open the way for a wave of new entrants into the enrichment club.

The concession was made under heavy pressure from Canada, which wants the right to build uranium-enrichment plants to export the lucrative enriched fuel for nuclear-power plants. It marks an about-face for President Bush, who called in February 2004 for a ban on new countries becoming enrichment powers. The U.S. then persuaded Canada and other reluctant members of the Group of Eight top industrialized countries to agree to a nuclear-sales moratorium, a ban the group has renewed every year since.

Apparently the outlook is that Canada [in an effort spearheaded by Saskatchewan, which produces a goodly chunk of the world’s uranium] aims to produce an indigenous enrichment facility – something that we have not previously had – and may even wish ultimately to export the technology [!].

A couple related policy thoughts: a) let’s not emplace the cascades in a hardened facility, b) make comments about whether other countries ought to vanish from the pages of time, or c) elect any demagogic leaders that hew to the belief that righteous earthly authority is currently in occultation.

Some of these suggestions may need more work than others…