CBS Evening News for Friday, Apr 29, 1977
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(Studio) President Carter's earlier request for stricter controls on shipment of uranium noted; today 9-yr.-old mystery with regard to such shipment is revealed. Former Senator staff member and nuclear expert Paul Levanthal, says ship, under W. German flag, left Antwerp, Belgium, in 1968 with load of uranium and disappeared, to reappear later with different name and crew and no uranium.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite
(DC) American officials say intelligence community has known of mystery; ship due to stop at Rotterdam, Netherlands, and Genova, Italy, but never arrived at either. Levanthal is interviewed today by reporter Susan Peterson. (Film shown.) [LEVANTHAL - cites dangers involved in not having strict controls on such shipments.] United States officials won't admit knowing if uranium went to Israel and Israeli officials deny it. United States Arms Control Agency officials say Israel operates research reactor in Negev desert under extreme secrecy, with unknown source of supply for uranium fuel. Reactor could produce enough plutonium per year to create Hiroshima-sized bomb and missing shipment could provide supply for 20 years (Israeli government film shown.) Former nuclear weapons designer Theodore Taylor says Israelis could have manufactured 12 bombs by now if they received shipment.
REPORTER: Robert Schakne
(Studio) Levanthal worked on staffs of Senators Jacob Javits and Abraham Ribicoff; is now writing book on nuclear proliferation on Ford Fndtn. grant. Press Secretary Jody Powell says incident illustrate's President's point with regard to stricter controls.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite
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