Clinton likened AQ Khan to Bond villain, reveal leaked speeches | world news | Hindustan Times
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Clinton likened AQ Khan to Bond villain, reveal leaked speeches

Comments by Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton about the father of Pakistan’s atomic bomb seemed to reflect concern among leaders about the country's nuclear arsenal falling into the hands of militants.

world Updated: Oct 09, 2016 00:34 IST
Yashwant Raj
Yashwant Raj
Hindustan Times
AQ Khan,Pakistan,Hillary Clinton
WikiLeaks released documents on Friday that it claimed were Hillary Clinton campaign emails containing excerpts from her speeches that she gave at Wall Street banks and institutions(Reuters)

Hillary Clinton compared the man generally considered to be the father of Pakistan’s atomic bomb, Abdul Qadeer Khan, to a "creep guy" in a James Bond movie wanting to "bring the West to their knees" through nuclear blackmail and proliferation, in a speech she gave in London in 2013.

In another of the speeches Clinton gave since leaving office as secretary of state and before launching her presidential campaign, she called India's — and China's — earlier reluctance to agree to emission cuts as a "totally rational response".

This was in 2015, around which time India had come to embrace climate change fully and had become an early supporter of the ambitious climate change treaty in Paris.

Clinton’s comments about Khan, coming from a former secretary of state, reflect a persistent concern among leaders — and not just in the West — about Pakistan's nuclear arsenal falling into the hands of militants. The country is said to have the world's fastest growing nuclear arsenal. They also reflect concern about Pakistan’s proliferation record, driven by Khan and his nuclear proliferation ring.

WikiLeaks released documents on Friday it claimed were Clinton campaign emails containing excerpts from speeches she gave at Wall Street banks and institutions, for which she was paid millions of dollars, according to financial disclosures.

They showed Clinton more favourable to free trade and banks than she has been publicly. They also showed she was aware of security issues regarding electronic devices, and was not as naive as she has seemed in the controversy about her use of a private email server.

The Clinton campaign slammed the leaks as part of an ongoing effort by the Kremlin, which, it said, had "weaponised WikiLeaks to meddle in our election" to "benefit Donald Trump's candidacy". It refused to confirm the authenticity of the documents.

The leaks will bolster the impression of Clinton as a closet supporter of trade deals and banks, both of which she has since started opposing. She also admitted in one speech that she was disconnected from the middle class. "I am kind of far removed (from the struggles of the middle class) because of the life I've lived and the economic, you know, fortunes that my husband and I now enjoyed," she said.

The leaked documents revealed her thinking as a former secretary of state about South Asia, especially India and Pakistan, particularly in the context of ongoing tensions in the region following the terrorist strike at Uri in Kashmir.

Clinton said in speech in London in 2013, "And you know, it is like these terrible plots in James Bond movies where you have got some really creepy guy sitting around saying. 'I want to get hold of some nuclear material, and I can bring the West to their knees and they will have to give me a hundred billion dollars in my private account'."

She added: "Well unfortunately there are people like that. And we saw what happened with the Pakistani scientist, Mr Khan, who basically proliferated nuclear knowledge to as many countries as he could. He thought that was part of his religious mission to give the bomb to as many Muslim countries as he possibly could reach."

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