Feeds

US mistakenly sent nuke-ICBM parts to Taiwan in 2006

They only wanted some batteries, apparently

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

US officials admitted today that "nose cone assemblies" for nuclear missiles had been mistakenly sent to Taiwan in 2006, but sought to calm fears by saying that they had now "regained control" of the bits.

AP quoted US Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne as saying "we're very concerned".

It appears that Taiwan had actually ordered a number of batteries for use in US-supplied helicopters, but instead received electrical fuse assemblies for use in the noses of Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missiles.

"This could not be construed as being nuclear material. It is a component for the fuse in the nosecone for a nuclear system," said Wynne at a press briefing this afternoon.

Pentagon and White House officials told reporters that America had learned of the problem after the Taiwanese recipients of the nuke fuses told them. US investigators have thus far established that the items were shipped from a US airbase in Wyoming to a warehouse in Utah during 2005, and then on to Taiwan in 2006. The sequence of events after that was "unclear".

There seems to be no suggestion that the nosecone assemblies were radiological or nuclear materials as such. Even so, their export by mistake is plainly a matter of concern to a government with strict rules for overseas sales of military or dual-use technologies.

However, officials did say that the Minuteman missile - of 1960s vintage - was "quite dated". ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.