Digests and Blog

Authored by Daryl Kimball, Kathy Crandall Robinson, and Tony Fleming

Inside the Arms Control AssociationJuly 2024Today, we are facing a growing and unprecedented array of nuclear weapons dangers. At the same time, this year’s presidential election is also unprecedented, unpredictable, and extremely consequential. History shows that U.S. presidential leadership is one of the most important factors determining whether the nuclear danger will rise or fall. Perhaps the most fundamental responsibility of a U.S. president, who has the sole authority to order the use of nuclear weapons, is to avoid events that could lead to a nuclear war.Unfortunately, mainstream…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

Iran’s president-elect Masoud Pezeshkian called for improving ties with the West and expressed support for nuclear negotiations during his campaign but said that Tehran cannot be pressured into rolling back its nuclear activities. It is not clear, however, how much space the Supreme Leader will give Pezeshkian to pursue engagement over the country’s nuclear program.Pezeshkian, a member of parliament since 2006 and a former health minister, beat the hard-line, former nuclear negotiator and deputy foreign minister Saeed Jalili in a July 5 runoff. Pezeshkian was the sole reformist amongst the…

Authored by Vann H. Van Diepen

By Vann H. Van DiepenOn July 8, House Republicans posted draft legislation that would require the United States to drop controls on exports to Australia, Canada, and the UK of Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) items controlled on the U.S. Munitions List (USML)—undoing a requirement to retain such controls enacted by Congress in December 2023.This proposal comes in the wake of an April 2024 decision by the Commerce Department to remove export controls to Australia and the UK on dual-use MTCR items. All of these actions have been justified in the name of implementing the Australia,…

Authored by Daryl Kimball, Kathy Crandall Robinson, and Tony Fleming

Inside the Arms Control Association    June 2024This year’s edition of ACA’s Annual Meeting raised national and international awareness about the problems posed by nuclear weapons, what’s at stake, the policy choices ahead, and the important role for concerned people in the United States and beyond.The June 7 conference, titled “Moving Back from the Nuclear Brink,” featured a special video message from UN Secretary-General António Guterres, in which he warned that:“Humanity is on a knife's edge, the risk of a nuclear weapon being used has reached heights not seen since the Cold War. States…

Authored by Xiaodon Liang, Shizuka Kuramitsu, Libby Flatoff

Nuclear Disarmament MonitorMay 2024As efforts by the United States to engage with Russia in talks on nuclear risk reduction and a new nuclear arms control framework remain on hold, a group of Democratic lawmakers in the House and the Senate are urging President Joe Biden to prioritize efforts to engage Russia in bilateral talks on nuclear arms control, and to continue bilateral nuclear risk reduction talks with China, warning of growing risks of nuclear instability.On May 17, a dozen House and Senate Democrats wrote a bicameral letter to Biden on the need for renewed arms control talks amid…

Authored by Daryl Kimball, Kathy Crandall Robinson, and Tony Fleming

Inside the Arms Control Association            May 2024This year at ACA’s annual meeting, we will delve into some of the most pressing arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament challenges facing the nation and the world today.We are honored to announce that UN Secretary-General António Guterres will deliver special remarks via video on the nuclear threat and critical steps to reduce nuclear dangers.One of the leading proponents of effective nuclear arms control and more sensible U.S. nuclear weapons policies, Congressman John Garamendi (D-Calif.), will deliver the opening keynote…

Authored by By Daryl Kimball, Tony Fleming, and Kathy Crandall Robinson

Inside the Arms Control Association    April 2024Today, nearly 80 years after the start of the nuclear age, the United States has more than 5,000 nuclear warheads, including some 1,770 thermonuclear warheads deployed on 660 powerful, long-range missiles on land and at sea, and on strategic bombers. In addition, the United States retains some 200 "tactical" nuclear bombs on shorter-range aircraft. Use of just a fraction of these weapons, most of which are deployed on a prompt launch status, would lead to catastrophic devastation on a global scale.As we reported in Arms Control Today this month…

As the Israeli government considers its response to Iran’s April 13 retaliatory attack, a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities should be off the table. Targeting Iranian nuclear sites in reaction to a drone and missile attack that did minimal damage to Israel would be a reckless and irresponsible escalation that increases the risk of a wider regional war. Furthermore, a large-scale attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities is more likely to push Tehran to decide that developing nuclear weapons is necessary to deter future attacks.While the U.S. military rightly helped Israel shoot down the wave…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

Iran avoided a censure during the March meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) Board of Governors despite Tehran’s failure to cooperate with a yearslong agency investigation into past undeclared nuclear activities. The United States and the E3 (France, Germany, and the United Kingdom) denounced Iran’s stonewalling during the quarterly board meeting and suggested that they will push for action at the June meeting if Iran does not cooperate with the agency.In a March 6 statement, the E3 said that “the need for the Board to hold Iran accountable to its legal obligations is…

Authored by Daryl Kimball, Tony Fleming, and Kathy Crandall Robinson

Inside the Arms Control Association    March 2024Last month speaking in Geneva, UN Secretary-General António Guterres issued a stark warning: “The nuclear shadow that loomed over humanity last century has returned with a vengeance.  The nuclear risk is higher than at any moment since the depths of the Cold War.”“Some statesmen regularly imply that they are fully prepared to unleash nuclear hell — an outrageous threat that the world must condemn with clarity and force.  And the vital norms and standards against the proliferation, testing, and use of nuclear weapons are being eroded,” he said.…