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"I actually have a pretty good collection of Arms Control Today, which I have read throughout my career. It's one of the few really serious publications on arms control issues."
– Gary Samore
Former White House Coordinator for Arms Control and WMD Terrorism
Arms Control NOW

Controversy Over Nuclear Safety Board Scope and Size

Overlooked but significant controversies have been simmering about an independent government board in charge of overseeing safety standards and practices at the Department of Energy’s nuclear weapons complex, and the battle for independent oversight between the board and the agency. These issues are made all the more concerning against the backdrop of the Trump administration’s costly and expanding plans to recapitalize the U.S. nuclear weapons complex and increase the production of plutonium cores for nuclear weapons. In May 2018, the Energy Department issued Order 140.1 , which would change...

The P4+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert, Feb. 25, 2019

Pence Calls on Europeans to Leave JCPOA U.S. Vice President Mike Pence explicitly called on “our European partners to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal” in remarks at the Feb. 13-14 Warsaw summit on peace and security in the Middle East and at the Munich Security Conference Feb. 16. Pence’s criticism of the Iran deal did not appear to gain any traction with the major European powers, some of whom put forward a robust defense of their Iran policy and the nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). In separate remarks at the Munich conference, German Minister...

A peace treaty could be essential to North Korean denuclearization

This op-ed originally appeared in Axios , Feb. 25, 2019. As the second summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un approaches, the U.S. continues to focus its attention on the dismantlement of North Korea’s nuclear program. Yes, but: If Trump is serious about denuclearizing North Korea, he should also use the summit with Kim Jong-un to take steps toward negotiating a peace agreement and formally ending the Korean War, noting the diplomatic engagements that have taken place between North and South Korea in 2017 that help to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula. Why it...

U.S.-Russian Nuclear Arms Control Watch | INAUGURAL ISSUE, Feb 21, 2019

INF Treaty Suspension Opens the Door to New Missile Pursuits The United States and Russia formally suspended their obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty Feb. 2. The United States formally informed the other parties to the treaty that it would withdraw in six months if Russia did not eliminate its nuclear-capable 9M729 ground-launched cruise missile, which the United States intelligence community assesses can fly beyond the 500-kilometer range limit set by the treaty. The announcement opens the door to accelerated work by the United States on research and...

Congress should block rule changes for firearm exports

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill , February 20, 2019. As the nation is reminded of the tragic consequences of gun violence with the one-year anniversary of the Parkland school shooting, the Trump administration is pushing forward with plans to expedite the export abroad of the same kind of military-style weapons used in many of the mass shootings that have taken place in recent years. These are not the commodities that the United States should make easier to export. Congress can and should stop the changes, which would put the Department of Commerce in charge of regulating these...

Two Ideas That Might Stop a Post-INF Arms Race, and One That Won’t

This op-ed originally appeared in Defense One on Feb. 11, 2019. Barring an 11th-hour diplomatic breakthrough that resolves Russian and U.S. concerns about the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, new arms control arrangements will be needed to avert a dangerous and costly new missile race in Europe. On Feb. 2, both sides announced that they will suspend their obligations under the three-decade-old treaty, and will likely withdraw on August 2. This will scuttle the agreement that led to the verifiable elimination of 2,692 Soviet and U.S. missiles, helped end the Cold War, and paved the...

Trump Is Launching a New, Terrifying Arms Race

This op-ed originally appeared in The Nation , Feb. 8, 2019. Ostensibly, President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty , announced on February 1, is intended to coerce Russia into admitting that it has violated the accord and then to destroy any weapons so identified. But the closer one looks, the more obvious it becomes that administration hawks, led by National Security Adviser John Bolton, have no interest in preserving the arms-control agreement but rather seek to embark on an arms race with Russia and China—a dynamic that will take us into...

Select Reactions to the INF Treaty Crisis

The Trump administration’s sudden decision and announcement Oct. 20 to “terminate” the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty due to Russian violations of the treaty has been met with bipartisan and international concern. On Dec. 4 , Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declared Russia to be in "material breach" of the treaty, and announced that the United States plans to suspend U.S. obligations under the treaty in 60 days (anticipated Feb. 2) unless Russia returns to compliance. On Feb. 1, the administration confirmed that the United States would simultaneously suspend its obligations...

How Can Norway, Sweden and Switzerland Stay Engaged with the TPNW?

Reports commissioned by Norway , Sweden * and Switzerland each recommended against signing and ratifying the 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). These government-mandated inquiries may advise against ratification, but that should not be the end of each country’s engagement with the TPNW. The reports requested by Norway, Sweden and Switzerland rejected ratification of the TPNW in part because of a concern that ratifying would prevent them from continuing to play a bridge-building role between nuclear-weapon states and non-nuclear-weapon states, largely due to nuclear-...

U.S. Global Summit on Iran Faces Pushback | The P4+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert, January 24, 2019

U.S. Global Summit on Iran Faces Pushback The United States and Poland are co-hosting a summit on Middle East stability with a particular focus on countering Iran, although several European foreign ministers are planning to skip the event. The ministerial-level meeting is scheduled for Feb. 13-14 in Warsaw. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News Jan. 11 that the summit will “focus on Middle East stability and peace, freedom and security here in this region, and that includes an important element of making sure that Iran is not a destabilizing influence." The Polish Ministry of...

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