Editor's Note

Daniel Horner

The face-off over Iran’s nuclear program has been running for more than six years. On the basis of that history, it would be foolish to look into the near future and claim to see a turning point ahead. There have been too many false starts and disappointments for that.

Nevertheless, it is difficult to avoid the sense that the decisions made in the next several weeks will set the course of events for quite a while. In this issue, three articles thoughtfully address the situation and come to different conclusions on how the United States and its allies should proceed. David Albright and Jacqueline Shire provide a technical assessment of the situation and conclude that, at least in the short term, a form of containment may be the best approach. Orde Kittrie argues that tough sanctions should be part of the strategy, and Jim Walsh, Thomas Pickering, and William Luers stress the importance of continuing to seek a negotiated solution.

In our final feature, Dennis M. Gormley provides a reminder that missile proliferation is an area that should draw policymakers’ attention. A key part of his analysis is that stronger controls on the spread of cruise missile capabilities are needed.

With the new year, there will be some changes in Arms Control Today. Most of you have received information about the new digital edition of the magazine, which is in full color and available earlier in the month than the print edition is. (For further information, see our Web site, www.armscontrol.org.)

In both the digital and print editions, certain parts of Arms Control Today will have a new look. In particular, the table of contents will be larger and more eye-catching, providing more information about what awaits you in each issue.

We have put a lot of thought and effort into these refinements. However, as we implement them, I keep thinking of one letter to the editor after The Washington Post put in place similar but much more extensive changes in its design. With brevity and verve that any journalist would have to admire, the Post reader wrote, “Your opinions still stink. But they are easier to read in the new format.”

I take that as a reminder that, although Arms Control Today’s appearance is important, the focus must always be on the quality of the magazine’s articles. Please continue to let us know how we are doing on that score, and what you think of the new look, by contacting me at [email protected].