Feeds

US mistakenly sent nuke-ICBM parts to Taiwan in 2006

They only wanted some batteries, apparently

Top three mobile application threats

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". ®

SANS - Survey on application security programs

More from The Register

next story
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Banks slap Olympus with £160 MEEELLION lawsuit
Scandal hit camera maker just can't shake off its past
Reprieve for Weev: Court disowns AT&T hacker's conviction
Appeals court strikes down landmark sentence
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.