“Israeli interest in destroying Pakistan’s Kahuta reactor to scuttle the “Islamic bomb” was blocked by India’s refusal to grant landing and refuelling rights to

Israeli warplanes in 1982.”

–McNair paper #41 published by USAF Air University, India Thwarts Israeli Destruction of Pakistan’s “Islamic Bomb”, 1995.



This had been India’s policy for all foreign military planes/ships. Israel, on its part wanted this to be a joint Indian-Israeli strike to avoid being solely held responsible. At the time, sense prevailed and India did not allow itself to be used against Pakistan.

Iraq was not the only nuclear peril to Israel that it saw in the early 1980s. Israel feared the Pakistani nuclear effort because Israeli intelligence had found evidence that Libya and other Muslim states were helping Pakistan, supplying both money and uranium to their effort.

India expected that any first strike by India against Kahuta would be swiftly followed by a Pakistani attack. Such an exchange would leave India worse off, since any potential deterrent capability against China would thereby be eliminated. An attack against Pakistan would cause not only great death and destruction to Pakistan, but could blow radioactive fall-out back over India. Such an attack against Pakistan would also alienate the Muslim Middle Eastern states whose amity India has assiduously cultivated. Thus in 1991, India and Pakistan signed a treaty pledging that neither would preemptively attack the nuclear facilities of the other.