China Builds the Bomb

John W. Lewis, Author, Xue Litai, Author, Litai Xue, Author Stanford University Press $70 (352p) ISBN 978-0-8047-1452-5
Based on newly released material (``How much the Chinese elected to publish truly surprised us,'' the authors remark in the preface), this important work of scholarship reveals how the decision was made in China in 1955 to build an atomic bomb, how the project was organized, its leadership and management methods, how uranium was found, mined and processed, how the bomb itself was designed, built and successfully tested at Lop Nur on October 16, 1964. Though the Soviets played a critical role in the initial stages of the effort, the Chinese accomplished the greater part of the task without foreign assistance. It was a remarkable feat, carried out in a poor nation just recovering from three wars during a time of enormous political turmoil. Lewis is chairman of the International Strategic Institute at Stanford; Xue Litai is a researcher at the Center for International Security and Arms Control at Stanford. (July)
Reviewed on: 07/27/1988
Release date: 08/01/1988
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-0-8047-1841-7
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