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War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Abdus Salam, 1986

Part of War and Peace in the Nuclear Age.


Abdus Salam was an early member of Pakistan’s Atomic Energy Commission and a Nobel Laureate in Physics, 1979. In the interview he describes the development of Pakistan’s Atomic Energy Commission. He explains that Pakistan had no training programs in the basic sciences in the late 1950s; therefore, the commission had to train many people in the sciences to enhance the country’s research capabilities. He describes the Geneva Conferences on Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy of the 1950s as “amazing,” especially speeches given by Niels Bohr and Homi Bhabha. He also discusses the future of nuclear energy in Pakistan.

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War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
Carter's New World
Program Number



Interview with Abdus Salam, 1986

Series Description

The first atomic explosion in the New Mexico desert on July 16, 1945, changed the world forever. This series chronicles these changes and the history of a new era. It traces the development of nuclear weapons, the evolution of nuclear strategy, and the politics of a world with the power to destroy itself.

In thirteen one-hour programs that combine historic footage and recent interviews with key American, Soviet, and European participants, the nuclear age unfolds: the origin and evolution of nuclear weapons; the people of the past who have shaped the events of the present; the ideas and issues that political leaders, scientists, and the public at large must confront, and the prospects for the future. Nuclear Age highlights the profound changes in contemporary thinking imposed by the advent of nuclear weapons. Series release date: 1/1989

Program Description

President Carter comes to office determined to reduce the number of nuclear weapons and to improve relations with the Soviet Union. His frustrations are as grand as his intentions.

Carter had hoped the United States and the Soviet Union would reduce their reliance on nuclear weapons. He stopped production of the B-1 bomber. He believed the SALT II negotiations would be a step toward eliminating nuclear weapons. But his intentions were frustrated by Soviet actions and by a lack of consensus among his own advisors, including Chief SALT II negotiator Paul Warnke and national security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski (who was dubious about arms control). Carter balanced Soviet aggression in Africa by improving American relations with China. He withdrew SALT II treaty from Senate consideration but its terms continued to serve as general limits on strategic nuclear force levels for both the United States and the Soviet Union.



Asset Type

Raw video

Media Type


Teller, Edward, 1908-2003
Bhabha, Homi Jehangir, 1909-1966
Nuclear energy
Nuclear fusion
Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969
Bohr, Niels, 1885-1962
Chernobyl Nuclear Accident, Chornobyl, Ukraine, 1986
London, UK
Global Affairs
War and Conflict
Salam, Abdus, 1926- (Interviewee)
Publication Information
WGBH Educational Foundation
Chicago: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Abdus Salam, 1986,” 12/15/1986, GBH Archives, accessed July 21, 2024,
MLA: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Abdus Salam, 1986.” 12/15/1986. GBH Archives. Web. July 21, 2024. <>.
APA: War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Abdus Salam, 1986. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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