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"[Arms Control Today] has become indispensable! I think it is the combination of the critical period we are in and the quality of the product. I found myself reading the May issue from cover to cover."

– Frank von Hippel
Co-Director of Program on Science and Global Security, Princeton University
June 1, 2018
Arms Control Association

Use for factsheets and other jointly written or anonymous content

Ban Ki-Moon Calls for CTBT Entry into Force by 2012

Last Friday, to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon became the first sitting Secretary General to attend the memorial service for the bombing, where he called for the entry into force of the CTBT by 2012 . "Now is the time...The time for rapid entry into force of the (CTBT). Let us set the goal of 2012," he said. Members of the United States, French and British governments also attended the ceremony for the first time. Ban Ki-Moon also announced at the service that he will convene an annual high-level meeting in September to...

Utah's Mike Lee Gets CTBT Facts Wrong

Utah Republican candidate for the Senate Mike Lee has reversed his earlier common-sense position against renewed nuclear testing, and is now indicating that if elected, he would not support the CTBT. In May , Lee announced that he would most likely vote for CTBT ratification. At the time, Lee remarked that, "I don't think we need [nuclear testing] and I think, on the whole, we as Americans would be safer if the treaty were in place." The Salt Lake Tribune reported that Lee's deputy campaign manager Dan Hauser said last Thursday, "[The treaty is] basically [stating] you could never use a...

Generous EU Contribution Bolsters CTBT Verification

The European Union Council has provided a contribution of €5,280,000 as part of their EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction, the CTBTO announced last week. The contribution marks the largest ever voluntary contribution by the EU to the CTBTO, and is more than €5 million beyond the EU Member States' assessed annual contribution. A CTBTO press release states that the EU contribution will directly fund work related to the CTBTO auxiliary seismic station, strengthening on site inspections and the monitoring of noble gases and providing technical assistant to African,...

U.S. CTBT Ratification: What Russia Can Do to Help

Published in June, former CTBT deputy chief negotiator for Russia, Victor Slipchenko has written an especially useful VERTIC Occasional Paper on the challenges facing U.S. ratification of the test ban, and considers what the United States' main counterpoint, Russia, could do to help its prospects. If you haven't done so already, it's certainly worth the read. "The Obama administration will need as much help as it can get from other CTBT supporters - Russia in particular - if entry into force is ever to become reality," he writes. Slipchenko identifies two criticisms of the treaty that are...

ACA Issue Brief on U.S. Nuclear Stockpile Modernization

This week, ACA Executive Director Daryl Kimball published an Issue Brief responding to lingering questions and doubts regarding the United States' ability to maintain its nuclear stockpile into the indefinite future. While these issues are an important part of the current ratification debate of New START, they have lasting repercussions on any future conversation on nuclear arms control, namely consideration of the CTBT. As such, these misconceptions should be dispensed with promptly. Daryl refutes the standard treaty-skeptic talking points, positing that the "existing strategy for warhead...

More Military Leaders Voice Support for CTBT

The Consensus for American Security , sponsored by the American Security Project , officially launched its website yesterday. The Consensus is a non-partisan group of retired military officials and national security experts who are "motivated by a sense of urgency to improve America's nuclear security, reduce the likelihood of terrorists obtaining nuclear materials, and confront the proliferation of nuclear weapons." Toward that end, the group of 33 high-level officials have united behind a few key policies to achieve a safer and more secure world. The Consensus for American Security...

The Trinity Test's 65th Anniversary

Sixty-five years ago today, 210 miles south of Lost Alamos, Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, Lieutenant General Leslie Groves and others gathered in the remote corner of the Alamagordo Desert to detonate a simple plutonium implosion device, nicknamed "The Gadget." At exactly 5:30 AM on Monday, July 16, 1945, the first nuclear weapons test explosion was conducted. According to participants of the Manhattan Project, the initial euphoria and relief that the bomb worked gave way to worry, dread, and regret. Test director Kenneth Bainbridge called the sight was a "foul and awesome display." "We waited...

Nonproliferation and the CTBT

The 2010 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference concluded on May 28 with a consensus document that commits states parties to universalize norms against nuclear nonproliferation, strengthen safeguards, respond quickly to cases of noncompliance and treaty withdrawal, and take further steps on nuclear disarmament. The NPT states parties agreed to very strong and specific action steps on the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Most importantly, the final document calls for nuclear weapon states to ratify the accord "with all expediency." In addition to calling for Annex 2 states to...

Utah Senate Hopeful Supports CTBT

A Republican candidate for the Utah Senate seat, Mike Lee, announced Wednesday that if elected, he would likely vote to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, The Salt Lake Tribune reported yesterday . "I don't think we need [nuclear testing] and I think, on the whole, we as Americans would be safer if the treaty were in place," Lee said. Lee also cited the "supreme national interest" clause, which allows the United States to withdraw from the treaty in the very rare case that it decides nuclear testing is necessary, as a key element of his support. "I don't think we currently have any...

Nuclear Testing Debate Emerges in Utah

Two Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate set off a state-wide debate about the whether to resume nuclear weapons testing, leading to calls from key opinion leaders for them to reverse their position. The Salt Lake Tribune reported last Thursday that Mike Lee and Tim Bridgewater, the two Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate in Utah, indicated possible support for future underground nuclear testing. Mike Lee signed a "Peace Through Strength" pledge, organized by conservative think-tanks, which supports, "a robust defense posture including a safe, reliable, effective nuclear deterrent...

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