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The Latin American experience reveals two fundamental strategies for controlling such social movements. The first consists of "establishing or reinforcing a social and political pact [uniting] labour organizations, governments, political parties, the military and the bourgeoisie". Such a policy can be seen in countries such as Venezuela, Mexico and Colombia, "where more or less democratic governments exist and where Social Democratic or Christian Democratic parties have great influence both in government and in labour organizations". On the other hand, the second strategy for controlling social movements consists of "establishing authoritarian regimes such as [those] in Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil".
When viewed within the general dynamics of world politics today, neither of these strategies is "intrinsically stable". As stated above, the world is at present undergoing not only an economic transformation, but "also a political transformation... which is perhaps as important as or even more important than the economic transformation". In line with his general views on the dynamics of the historical process, Dr Silva Michelena explained the nature of this political transformation as follows. "Since the mid-1950s (and the emergence of the nuclear stalemate or 'mutual superiority' between the United States and the USSR, the locus of confrontation between the great powers shifted from the equilibrium zones (especially Europe) to the periphery. From then on, any war of liberation or revolutionary war emerging in the underdeveloped countries of the world was likely to be transformed into an indirect confrontation between the above-mentioned Great Powers, provided that massive logistic support could be given by both of them. Since the US could do so around the world since 1945, the matter was reduced to the increasing capacity of the other Great Power to give logistic support to popular movements. Apparently, the Soviet Union today is able to give logistic support to revolutionary movements in Asia, the Middle East and Africa. These are the 'hot zones' of the world today... Simultaneously, multipolarisation of the world has increased both economically and politically, thus making it possible to establish new alliances and pacts in order to take better advantage of the new social division of labour on a world scale."
It is within the context of these general tendencies that one can explain recent events such as "the increasing inability of the United States to enforce the applicability of post-war pacts such as CENTO, SEATO, etc." and "the emergence of an organization such as OPEC" ("... a phenomenon made possible by the strategic nature of oil, by the will of OPEC nations to back the organization and, last but not least, by the increase in the profits of the transnational oil corporations"). Furthermore, apparently overlooking the example of alignments before and during World War II, Dr Silva Michelena cited "the rift between China and the Soviet Union" as the factor which "made possible the formation of cross-ideological alliances" such as those which emerged into view during the Indo-Pakistani war and the Angolan revolution. Moreover, the case of the "intervention" of Vietnam in Cambodia "revealed that conflicts between underdeveloped socialist countries can also happen. Along these lines, it is not surprising that closer links... are growing between the US and China. One cannot even rule out new and perhaps more formerly unthinkable ententes"; and "even a new entente between the Soviet Union and West Germany... may be guise possible within this rearrangement of the world".
At present "the most significant" element in world politics is "the expanding capability of the USSR to give massive logistic support. In the last 30 years, the Soviet Union has gone from supporting Korea to backing Angola and Eritrea with the help of Cubans. Whether it will continue to expand towards Latin America is yet to be seen, so far, the compromise reached during the missile crisis in Cuba still seems to be operative. However, one can hypothesise that it may not be so by the end of the century." In short, from these general trends Dr Silva Michelena drew the conclusions "that underdeveloped countries will continue to suffer political instability and that the probability of revolutionary successes in the 'hot zones' is increasing".
"It is obvious that, in the face of such trends, dominant capitalist countries need to foster new means of legitimising the present situation in order to reinforce the more orthodox ways of economic, military and political domination. We [would] like to advance the hypothesis that one such means is the creation of a new myth which could both revive and make more credible the idea that under developed countries can, in effect, develop within the capitalist system. It seems that science and technology are to play a key role within this new developmentalist ideology." As noted by Dr H. Vessuri at the ACAST international colloquium in Vienna, such a myth could usefully fulfil three functions: "(a) the process of qualitative intensification of technological dependence, which predominates in most of the developing countries, could be conveniently disguised; (b) neutralisation and progressive obstruction of the few attempts of underdeveloped countries to control technology imports and direct investments, such as... the Andean pact regulations, could be hidden; (c) the strategies of 'global planned obsolescence' and technological domination developed by a few multinational corporations of some of the main OECD countries could be efficiently legitimized".
Likewise, "concepts such as 'appropriate technology', 'increasing capacity to negotiate', 'technology transfer', etc., which appear profusely in the jargon of developmentalist ideologists, are but good ways of obscuring the basic facts that: (1) the true obstacle to satisfying the basic needs of the masses lies in the present system of domination; (2) local bourgeoisies, allied with the transnational corporations, are using technology to increase control and domination of their populations rather than to better their standards of living; (3) the industrialized countries are, in fact, less inclined to share on an equal basis the fruits of scientific and technological development; [and] (4) experience shows that industrialized countries treat science and technology as commodities to be exchanged in the market of underdeveloped countries on an unequal basis".
What, then, can the underdeveloped countries do to change this situation? According to Dr Silva Michelena, as long as problems of science and technology "continue to be negotiated only at inter-State forums,... we can only expect millimetrical progress or no progress at all" - if only because such discussions leave out "the most important factor... the transnational corporations". Therefore, "it seems to us that the time is ripe either to create a [new] specific organisation or [to designate] an existing organization [such as the Group of 77 or the non-aligned movement] to adopt as a priority the objectives of dealing directly with the transnational corporations in a global way. Then and only then can a more substantive context be given to common efforts to increase capacities to negotiate, to create an information bank, to foster managerial capabilities, to create multinationals of the developed countries, etc. One reason why we think such an operation may work is that transnational corporations, as in the case of OPEC, may also derive benefits from it. Among other things, uncertainty could be reduced; and therefore they could plan future ventures and profits in a more reliable way."
Undoubtedly one of the most stimulating papers prepared for the conference was that by Dr Zoran Vidakocic, entitled The technology of repression and repressive technology: the social bearers and the cultural consequences. Unfortunately, Dr Vidakovic was quite ill when the conference took place, and he was thus unable to address any of its working sessions.
Dr Vidakovic began his paper by observing that one of the great cultural phenomena of our time is perception of the fact that "the social functions of science and technology have been mystified, refracted through the prism of the [dominant] ideologies and stated in the fetishised frameworks of productivism, economic 'growth', 'promotion of civilization', 'technological solutions' to social contradictions", etc. This basic perception is the result of continuing socio-economic crises and of social struggles both in the Third World and in the industrialized societies. Dr Vidakovic's paper is an attempt to elaborate on this perception in regard specifically to "the technology of repression, i.e. (1) armaments and their scientific, research and technological potentials, (2) the para-military sectors (nuclear energy, outer space research, etc.) and (3) the 'reserve potentials' of totalitarian control over man and society (biogenetic, psychological, meteorological, nutritional, etc.)".
By way of introduction, the basic points of this elaboration can be summarised as follows, in a series of seven theses. First of all, "together with militarized science and technology in the service of force and violence, science and technology geared towards greater exploitation of natural resources and towards economic, socio-political and cultural hegemony in international relations [all] comprise a unified organically linked structure of repressive function". Secondly, "the main machinery of exploitation and rule within individual societies in international relations is decisively moving towards combining the monopoly of the technology of repression in the narrow sense with other forms of scientific and technological monopoly geared towards repressive functions". At the socio-political level, the ruling classes are tending to regroup themselves in a hegemonistic nucleus which expresses and makes possible the combination of both forms of repressive technology and which tends to consist of the military hierarchy, the military-industrial technocracy, the managerial nucleus of the transnational corporations, and the corresponding political and banking oligarchies. Thirdly, the bearers of hegemony continue to guide scientific and technological development "towards the expanded reproduction of the total conditions and factors of such hegemony". They are thus exerting "an ever more intensive effect... on the social character of the productive forces of labour", while absorbing a predominant part of the total potential of the scientific-technological institutions and leaving "a decisive socio-economic, political and cultural mark on the majority of scientific work and the technological application of its results". Fourthly, socio-political restructuring "globally conditions decision-making", in such a way that "the effectiveness of repression becomes a top priority"; and "the scientific-technological complexes in industry, agriculture, communications, medicine, urbanism, etc.... [actually] thwart the investigation and realisation of alternatives urgently needed for the material progress of human life.... Grandiose, diabolical scientific and technological selection is carried out systematically at the expense of the primary needs and historically formed progressive values of humanity." Fifthly, a monopoly of political power alone is not enough to legitimate such a selection: also necessary is "a specific socio-cultural articulation", according to which the interests, values and motives of "organised knowledge" are established and structured as functions of the scientific and technological advancement of effective repression. Concomitantly, in order "to legitimise scientific and technological monopolies and their repressive aims", ideological and theoretical forms have been developed in the social sciences (e.g. "the functional systems theory of society..., neo-Malthusian crises theories, 'socio-biology' as defined by Wilson and Trivers, etc."). Sixthly, "in 'developing countries', inasmuch as the process of their emancipation has not prevailed, technology placed under the guidance of metropolitan monopolies takes on multiple and potent repressive functions; [it] becomes an essential and may become the decisive factor in conditioning their structural dependence. 'The transfer of technology' is transformed into the implantation of military-technical, techno-economic, socio-political and cultural instruments for extending and continuing dependency and underdevelopment. With the help of these instruments, a fundamental technological inhibition is established in the development of these countries: a fundamental and radical frustration of scientific research and technological advancements that would be oriented towards primary needs and development possibilities. The repressive scientific-technological monopoly is constructed in a dependent society as an armature of international and, consequently, internal relations of exploitation; [it is] an armature geared to overcoming strivings and efforts towards economic and political emancipation. As a lever for ensuring the continuance of dependency, [it] is built not only into the material-technical structure of production, but also into the class-structure of dependent societies. Local oligarchies and 'Úlites' regroup... in function of military-political and techno-economic transmission; [and they tend] to impregnate the 'cultural assimilation' of the authorised parts of the dependent society with the mystification of the scientific monopoly and repressive technology." Seventhly, exposure and abolition of the repressive functions of science and technology is undisputably a "common denominator" linking efforts for "progressive transformation in otherwise differing societies and in regions with materially unequal and culturally specific possibilities, priorities and choices. This common denominator is the global, international premise for the emancipated and autonomous, progressive and creative, contribution of all parts of the world" not only to their own scientific-technological progress, but also to the realization of such progress on a world scale.
Analytically based, socially motivated and culturally articulated criticism of the repressive functions of science and technology can serve as the basis for deriving a profound long-term strategy for progressive transformation and development, a strategy that will aim at giving "the totality of scientific and technological development a significantly different quality". But one should harbour no illusions that such a multifaceted transformation can be realised without protracted efforts, both creative and preventive; its realization will undoubtedly require "an entire historical epic". Our strategy today, however, "must begin with criticism and removal of those negative characteristics of scientific and technological development in which are condensed the most extreme... defects of [those] antagonistic structures that are, at the same time, the constitutive obstacles to the investigation and realisation of socio-cultural alternatives". Although it might be argued that repressive characteristics are interwoven into every aspect of the fabric of modern science and technology, the approach here adopted will be justified if it can single out the essential bearers and expressions of repressive functions, thereby putting the struggle into a historical relation by focusing on that which it is both "possible and necessary to subject to criticism and change" in our times.
Within this focus, three key tendencies towards scientific-technological repression can be distinguished: (1) the growing tendency for scientific-technological development to be oriented primarily towards goals of military force and totalitarian control of society, and the inclusion of such development into the international system of accumulation and distribution of surplus value; (2) the growth of 'a scientific-technological monopoly' in the hands of metropolitan centres which dictates not only the direction of basic research, but also the application of results to industry, agriculture, etc. - specifically for the purpose of consolidating their "economic and social hegemony in international and interregional relations"; (3) the determination of scientific priorities and technological selection in production according to the aims of increasing "forced exploitation and repressive control of the behaviour of the labour-force". The mutual interaction of these three phenomena constitutes "the dynamic of the expansion of the repressive, exploitative and destructive effects of science and technology".
One can in turn enumerate five main aspects of this dynamic:
(1) "The military-repressive orientation of science is transformed into an essential economic factor of hegemonistic expansion and exploitation in international relations", since "the linkage of military and scientific resources creates an exceptional economic advantage: the metropolitan centres that gain this advantage will continue to expand resources and to control an ever-greater part of world accumulation."
(2) "The economic mechanism of international hegemony and exploitation... is established and functions in the presence of the international machinery of non-economic compulsion that in part ensures the reproduction of the social conditions for monopolistic accumulation...."
(3) In the face of social movements for the emancipation of subordinated countries, "a specific scientific-technological control apparatus becomes increasingly important" as a means for protecting the threatened international order of hegemonistic expansion and exploitation; and this apparatus likewise "leads to profound inversion and distortion of science and technology with regard to the primary needs and developmental possibilities of societies".
(4) There consequently ensues a division of the economy into sectors with essentially different priorities for reproduction. Those sectors that do not enjoy the advantages of militarization their structurally limited possibilities for research and innovation "directed primarily towards the development of means of labour, of the technical organization of the labour process, and of technological approaches that enable intensive exploitation", especially of unskilled labour. "In this way, the orientation of technology as an instrument of increased exploitation of labour is strengthened", while "backward and repressive technology in the production of goods is the other side of a system of production and accumulation that favours rising technological and scientific development in the production of arms and other means of repression".
(5) Together with other factors, monopolistic technological control of the dependent countries determines a situation in which "the development and use of science and technology are carried out within the framework" and for the explicit purpose of "the super-exploitation of the labour force of the dependent countries".
Taken all together, these five aspects form a vicious circle in which "the economic function of the production of arms stimulates the scientific-technological revolution in the military-industrial sectors, reduces the accumulative capability and the possibility of essential technical innovations in other sectors and orients [the existing] technology [in these sectors] towards forced exploitation of the labour force".
One of the most important manifestations of this dynamic is to be found in its effects on the structure of the international division of labour. "If the possibility for... exploitation of labour in metropolitan societies is limited, sectors of production whose capacity for accumulation is in danger move to countries in which they can create the conditions for more intensive exploitation." This exportation of sectors is effected from the developed countries towards the developing countries; but it also occurs from the more powerful to less powerful industrialized countries. Worsening conditions, in turn, lead to opposition and resistance both in the Third World and in the second-class industrialized in both cases, "the bearers of international hegemony react by strengthening the repressive apparatus" (in ways 'appropriate' to the conditions of each country).
Frequently "mystified as a scientific and technological 'gap' between developed and developing countries", the international scientific-technological monopoly is in reality "an essential part of the system of international monopolistic accumulation and control of the conditions of production, exchange, distribution and consumption"; and "the repressive functions of science and technology are directly based on the monopoly of scientific research, the monopolistic private ownership of scientific knowledge and the exclusive control of its technological applications".
But all this is only part of the story. "For more complete knowledge it is necessary to shed some light on the totality of class, socio-political and cultural phenomena" both in the hegemonistic centres and in dominated social environments. In this respect, "the international scientific-technological monopoly is formed and carries out its repressive action especially by means of two basic social figures which represent a condensation of the international totality of antagonistic social reproduction: the metropolitan monopolistic technocracy, and its subordinate [satellite] local 'oligarchies' and 'Úlites' in dependent societies". The monopolistic technocracy "synthesizes interests, motives, values and goals, forms of social organization and a hierarchy of functions and positions that inspire intellectual production...; at the same time, [it] directs this production towards investigation and selection of the optimal possibilities for exploitation and repressive action". It likewise "interiorises the repressive functions of science and technology and these functions determine its 'maximum consciousness"'. The other social component of the international scientific-technological monopoly consists (in the subordinated countries) of dependent groups in symbiotic relationships with the metropoles and characterized by a "socio-cultural lobotomy", i.e. by a "subordination of interests and motives, an incapacity for research and knowledge beyond the framework of the hegemonistic interests and the models that are the incarnation of these interests...., [by] a caricature-like imitation of metropolitan status and cultural patterns, a basic insensitivity to the interests of the working masses in their countries and a scorn for the native culture of these masses, for their creative and productive potentials... ".
The metropolitan technocracy was called into being by the militarization of the economy and of science; and one can even say that the corporations in the technologically leading branches of production (aeronautics, electronics, nuclear technology, industrial computers and information systems, chemical industry, etc.) served as the birthplace of this technocracy. "Galbraith's image of the concentric circles of the 'technostructure' [in fact] most closely corresponds to the leading corporations in the militarized economy." Such corporations are characterized by the high organic content of their capital, by a high concentration of scientific potential and educated technical personnel - and thus by "profits that devour a lion's share of the surplus value". In these corporations were found the greatest possibilities for the social integration of a relatively broad circle of participants under the hegemony of technocratically reorganised leading groups which mediate between financial centres, State military programmes and the resulting subsidised development of science and universities. In order to constantly exploit new scientific-technological resources and thus to permanently maintain military orders, these corporations "introduce the appropriate technology of power and management, bring their managerial groups into conformity with these demands, and... construct a new symbiosis of class interests and status between ownership and technocratic management". Furthermore, "the consequences of the symbiosis of the military repressive system and the authorised monopoly [e.g. of science and technology] are well known with respect to the personal union and rotation of leading managerial groups on both sides, with respect to their combined influence on fiscal and economic policy in the interests of a militarized economy and a global military-political strategy, [as well as] with respect to the entire political process in the metropolis".
Although the technology of violence and death actually becomes the main concern of the leading metropolitan corporations, these militarized corporations nevertheless extend their domination over the totality of social production. Power over death and power over life are concentrated in the same hands; they are made to serve an identical purpose, and they are judged by identical criteria. The only difference between the two is that the use of their power for destruction and death is "significantly more effective" than its use for furthering survival and the relief of those human problems that are, in fact, consequences of this whole system of production itself. Within this context, it can also be pointed out that the militarized apparatus of production was the original laboratory for perfecting the so-called "scientific-systematic" and technocratic forms of rationality; and from it also was inherited "the basic irresponsibility and superficial 'political neutrality' of researchers and technical operators".
Within subordinated societies, on the other hand, there are two main generators for the formation of 'technocratic Úlites'. The first is "the local repressive apparatus (primarily military...)". This apparatus maintains itself "under the influence and control of metropolitan systems, thus carrying out perhaps the most important transfer of [military] technology and contributing to the formation of a specifically authoritarian-technocratic ideology", which "postulates total repression as the sine qua non for the survival and development of [any given] 'backward' society...". The second generator of local 'technocratic Úlites' is "a complex of 'technical aid' projects" which are "carried out within the global strategy of the metropolitan monopolistic centres". The selection, education and indoctrination of the cadres for such projects is performed either by "metropolitan educational and research factories" (and their local branches in the Third World) under the auspices of "superficially independent foundations" or by the transnational corporations themselves within their own personnel-training programmer.
These two types of local Úlites typically remain on their own separate lines of development until a crisis hits. Thereafter, unless such a crisis results in liberation from the metropolitan system, the two tend to merge into a single restructured class-fraction: "these two components - the military group and the social arm of the transnational corporations - produce the local force that becomes the interested, politically and culturally conforming recipient of (scientific-technological and) total hegemony. Between these two components there develops a symbiosis of power and interests, an osmosis of ideas, values and orientations. The ideology of total repression unites with the ideology of technological and cultural dependence and assimilation; and in this union, repression gains strength as the condition for all (dependent) economic growth, technological progress and 'modernization of the society', as a circle of insurmountable dependency based on the importation of prefabricated knowledge (together with technical and consumerist models) is closed up by the ambitions of the protagonists of authoritarian rule."
In presenting his paper entitled Nuclear energy in Latin America: the Brazilian case, Dr Luiz Pinguelli Rosa first of all made clear his general ideas about what constitutes the most suitable sort of general energy policy for developing countries. Dr Pinguelli Rosa observed that "an effective energy policy cannot be limited [merely] to meeting demand, nor can it be guided solely by the search for a minimum price. [It] must also orient energy demand so as to make it consistent with the global objectives of the country." In the case of a country with an inadequately articulated industrial base, but with an energy sector controlled by the Government, a correct energy policy can be a key factor in reducing the importance of foreign-dominated sectors and of balancing the general structure of production. Since energy enterprises are responsible for a substantial share of all purchases of equipment and since they likewise influence industrial costs by means of pricing, a correct energy policy can be an important driving mechanism both in national and in regional industrialization. Such a policy in a developing country must as much as possible shift energy consumption towards indigenous energy resources, in terms both of technology and of supply. By this means, foreign currency can be consented and security of energy supply safeguarded.
On the other hand, "energy consumption is nowadays large enough and concentrated enough to produce serious effects on the ecological equilibrium of certain regions. This entails a social cost which can be large, but which has in most cases been overlooked." Any adequate policy, however, must take this social cost into account: "otherwise the country will sooner or later have to pay for it".
Even apart from its ecological implications, it is clear that "energy policy is closely linked to social and economic policy. There is no way to separate it from the national planning we have in mind for the future. Either we will maintain a high concentration of revenue, socially and regionally, or we will try to reach a more reasonable distribution of the national revenue. This is not a rhetorical or an idealistic point. [On the contrary,] it would be unrealistic to separate the technical and political discussion about energy from its economic and social context." Institutional changes in the direction of democratization and decentralisation are necessary here as elsewhere, and working people must make their voices heard in discussions about energy policy. In this regard, it should be noted that at present the domestic consumption of energy for different social classes is highly unequal ("sophisticated goods incorporated typically into the middle-class standard of living have a high energy content"), while means of public transportation are insufficient and their services poor ("the private car has all the privileges"). Social discrimination is also to be witnessed in the consumption of energy within the industrial sector, "which produces goods for a relatively small part of the population or for export, while neglecting the needs of the majority of the people almost completely". For these reasons, "the reorientation of energy demand is the basic condition for an effective energy policy in Brazil", as well as in many other Third World countries.
It is within the context of these general considerations that specific energy policies of given developing countries can be evaluated and guidelines for the formation of policy drawn up.
As a practical example, Dr Pinguelli Rosa analysed the case of the Brazilian nuclear energy programme, for which a certain amount of background information should be kept in mind. For example, "Brazil has a hydroelectric potential of 200 GW, of which only 25 GW is at present utilised; and it is expected that 150 GW will be used by the year 2000. In spite of the great distances between many of the waterfalls and the big cities, it is possible to transmit electrical energy with final cost of a hydroelectric kW at less than half of the nuclear kW cost. Besides this, there is coal in the south of the country. Therefore, nuclear energy is not an economic necessity to Brazil yet."
Nevertheless, "the Brazilian nuclear programme foresees the construction of eight light-water PWR-KWU reactors of 1300 MW each" by 1990, in addition to the 627 MW Westinghouse reactor now in the final stage of construction. Furthermore, according to a treaty signed with West Germany in 1975, Brazil has undertaken the establishment of an industrial base for the production of heavy equipment for reactors and for enriching and reprocessing nuclear fuel. Why does a developing country implement such an 'ambitious' programme? There are, in fact, a number of reasons. Some of them are "related to the long-term security of the country's energy supply, after the exhaustion of the hydroelectric potential and of other sources"; but there are also other reasons "related to the myth of nuclear power as a magic key for the progress of the nation...".
According to Dr Pinguelli Rosa, "nuclear energy may be necessary to the economy of the less developed countries in the future"; and within thirty years it will probably have to play an important role in supplying Brazil's energy. "No matter how great the Brazilian hydroelectric potential may be, the day will inevitably come when this consumption will exceed that potential. Thus, Brazil cannot ignore nuclear technology, because it may need it in the future." This becomes all the more clear when one considers that an economical utilization solar energy for generating electricity on a large scale is "improbable at medium term". Likewise, "the myth that the developing countries have to concentrate on intermediate technologies" would here imply "the absolute priority of renewable resources and of rustic ways of energy generation", whose development still requires much time and investment. Such a choice would, naturally, be quite dangerous, for, among other things, it would mean abandoning native petrochemical and nuclear resources to exploitation by the rich countries alone.
On the other hand, however, usage of nuclear energy is a subject that demands a careful assessment of prospective risks and benefits and "a political evaluation that transcends the technical aspects". For such an evaluation, "the [proper] instrument is democratic discussion; and for this political discussion to be well-founded, the participation of the technical-scientific community is essential". Moreover, the Three Mile Island accident has highlighted the risks of accidents on reactors and the question of nuclear safety, while the problem of "the storage of radioactive wastes... stands without a final solution". Such problems "tend to be worst in less developed countries, for three basic reasons: (1) the necessity of adopting nuclear standards and requirements from other countries and sometimes from more than one country...; (2) the weakness of the national licensing authorities, which not only have small budgets, but also do not have the necessary independence and authority to fulfil some of their intended functions; and (3) the lack of well-established public opinion groups which could force the government into giving more attention to safety-related matters".
It should be stressed that "nowadays the acquisition of sophisticated equipment from the developed countries may not [always] be the most appropriate way to assure control of nuclear technology for the future". In this regard, the acquisition by the Brazilian Government of the German nuclear technology deserves to be severely criticized. Not only was this technology purchased at a very high price at a time when the country was by no means in urgent need of it, but also the project was badly adapted to Brazilian conditions and internal resources; in particular, it ignored the Brazilian scientific community "almost completely". In addition, the treaty governing the establishment of the nuclear-energy industry "fatally requires the importation of the equipment" from Germany; and even if eventually such equipment is partially made in Brazil, it "will be made by foreign companies or in joint ventures with them". Thus, despite the fact that the technology has been well-known for decades, the industrial production of equipment for the generation of electricity will see its already grave dependence on multinational companies intensified; and the foreign debt will be aggravated.
On the other hand, the nuclear power industry within the country will be under national control only when Brazil possesses all elements of the nuclear fuel cycle: "from this point of view the country must have both enrichment and reprocessing plants". Here arises the snag, however, for the plutonium produced by such plants is the essential material for making a nuclear weapon; and, on the grounds of restricting the proliferation of nuclear weapons, the USA is "trying to avoid the sale of a reprocessing plant to Brazil". Brazil now finds herself threatened with the abrogation, under US pressure, of the final stages of the Brazilian-German treaty. If these stages are not carried out, she "may find herself in the position of having bought the reactors and afterwards of not having any guarantee of fuel supply", while "relying upon an imported fuel (namely, enriched uranium, which may become more critical than oil) for a substantial part of [her] electrical energy".
Raising once again the question of collective self-reliance and advancing the proposals of the 1978 Interciencia Symposium, Dr Pinguelli Rosa suggested that in the face of such circumstances "countries at a comparable industrial and economic stage (such as Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Mexico) [should] unite themselves to develop a nuclear programme, eventually including other countries as soon as the latter need this kind of energy.... Continental co-operation would bring the enormous advantage of eliminating the possibility of a senseless nuclear race, with military implications. However, this co-operation would permit a rational internationalisation, at the South American level, of certain processes proper to nuclear industry, particularly the fuel cycle." "The USA, on the other hand, has proposed [another form oft internationalisation of the nuclear fuel cycle, in order to avoid the proliferation of such technology and the dissemination of plutonium." This internationalisation "under the hegemony of the countries already possessing nuclear technology", fails to inspire confidence, because of the "historical tradition of political and economic domination implicit in technological and industrial dependence. However, internationalisation at a Latin American level could be feasible and would overcome the objections currently made by the North Americans in relation to the fuel cycle. It would also make joint efforts possible, giving an adequate position to nuclear enterprises and strengthening the Latin American bloc in negotiations with the proprietors of nuclear technology." In fact (and at least partially in response to the attempts at obstruction by the USA), the development of a Latin American consortium to develop nuclear power "appears to be in the making". The USA has already been "virtually excluded from some South American nuclear markets" and is "still not considered a reliable supplier of fuel enrichment services and reactors". On the positive side, the consortium aims at linking the uranium resources of Latin America, the technical experience and expertise of Spain and Argentina, and the technologies available from Europe and Canada.
The question of the proliferation of nuclear weapons is, of course, an extremely important one, but it is imperative to place it within a proper context. It is true that the non-proliferation treaty has not been signed by many countries (including Brazil), who allege that it will only legitimate an unacceptable distribution of power, "by restricting the control of the pacific uses" of nuclear energy "without imposing any obstacle on the growth of the nuclear weapons of the military world powers." On the other hand, Brazil has signed the treaty of Tlatelolco, which "forbids the production or possession of nuclear weapons and forbids the storage in the territory of a signatory country of nuclear weapons" belonging to other countries. It should be understood that in scientific circles many domestic critics of the Brazilian nuclear programme have, in fact, supported the Government's position in regard to the non-proliferation treaty. Why? Because "the objective of the scientists is for the country to follow an energy policy which is suitable to its real means and which leads to greater autonomy". On the other hand, the purpose of much international pressure (such as that exerted by the Club of London) is "to limit the autonomy of the less developed countries"; international pressure groups for non-proliferation base their position on the hypothesis that if developing countries manage to master nuclear technology, their "political irresponsibility... will lead to a nuclear war". The underlying assumption here, of course, is that "the responsibility of the world's military nuclear powers is enough to guarantee that a nuclear war will not occur. The historical tradition of some of these world powers, responsible for the worst wars and devastation the world has suffered, provides examples which refute this assertion." The point here is "not to defend the nuclear militarization of Latin America, but to put the international question into its real context: the question of the nuclear disarmament of the world powers. From our point of view, the correct position is to repudiate the military use of nuclear technology in all countries of the world, while making clear that the great threat to the security of mankind lies in the nuclear weapons arsenal of the military world powers."
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