Digests and Blog

Authored by Daryl Kimball and Tony Fleming

Inside the Arms Control AssociationAugust 2023At a time of increasing global tensions and growing risk of nuclear war, Christopher Nolan's mesmerizing, expertly-crafted, and sometimes disturbing feature-length film, Oppenheimer, provides a jolting, timely reminder for millions of moviegoers that nuclear weapons are anything but normal because they give the leaders of a few nations to power to destroy us all.The film biopic, which centers around the life of the director of the Manhattan Project, J. Robert Oppenheimer, explores many but not all of the key technical, political, and moral issues…

Authored by Daryl G. Kimball

It has been nearly 80 years since the world entered the nuclear age. But the complex story of the making of the first atomic bomb, the decisions US leaders made to use these terrible new weapons on cities, and the post-war policy missteps that opened the door to the dangerous Cold War arms race are all now starting to fade from public consciousness.The existence of nuclear weapons and the dangers they pose, while well-known and widely feared, are accepted by far too many of those living in one of the world’s nine nuclear-armed countries as part of their “normal” daily lives.A new survey …

Authored by Daryl G. Kimball

Russia’s brutal full-scale invasion of Ukraine has killed thousands of people and displaced millions of civilians. Ukrainian cities have been leveled and villages have been turned into wastelands. U.S. and allied diplomatic, military, and intelligence support to Ukraine, including over $40 billion in security assistance since the war began, is essential to its defense and an eventual end to the conflict. However, providing some types of lethal U.S. and European military assistance to Ukraine would be escalatory, counterproductive, and only further increase the dangers to civilians caught in…

Authored by Daryl Kimball, Kathy Crandall Robinson, Tony Fleming

Inside the Arms Control AssociationJune 2023Earlier this month, the Biden administration outlined a viable pathway for moving back from the nuclear brink.At ACA's annual meeting June 2, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan delivered a major policy address stating that the United States is ready to engage in nuclear arms control diplomacy with Russia, as well as the other nuclear-armed NPT states-parties "without preconditions."Sullivan criticized Russia's suspension of its implementation of New START but he noted that "Russia has publicly committed to adhere to the Treaty's central limits…

Authored by Shannon Bugos

Russia expressed a willingness to consider the proposal by U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan in June to engage in a bilateral dialogue on nuclear risk reduction and arms control "without preconditions."“Rather than waiting to resolve all of our bilateral differences,” said Sullivan in a June 2 address at the Arms Control Association’s annual forum in Washington, “the United States is ready to engage Russia now to manage nuclear risks and develop a post-2026 arms control framework.” The 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), the last remaining U.S.-Russian arms…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

Recent comments from U.S. and Iranian officials suggest that the space for negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program may be opening back up after talks broke down in August, but the two sides denied recent reports that an interim nuclear deal is on the table.Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Nasser Kanaani confirmed a June 9 Axios report that the United States and Iran held indirect talks in Oman in May. Kanaani told reporters that Iran conveyed messages to the United States regarding the lifting of sanctions. He also said Tehran remains focused on restoring the 2015 nuclear deal, known as…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

After months of ratcheting up its nuclear activities while negotiations remain stalled, Iran took a small, limited step toward deescalation in May. Iran’s recent willingness to work with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to increase transparency on its nuclear program could help open diplomatic space for additional steps toward decreasing tensions and rolling back Iran’s nuclear advances. The United States should take advantage of this limited window, given the growing risk posed by Iran’s nuclear program and the lack of progress in restoring the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action…

Centrum Balticum publishes a discussion forum, Baltic Rim Economies (BRE), which deals with the development of the Baltic Sea region. In the BRE review, high level public and corporate decision makers, representatives of Academia, as well as several other experts contribute to the discussion. The following contribution from Gabriela Iveliz Rosa Hernández appeared in the February 2023 issue. Russia’s unjustified war on Ukraine has unleashed much suffering, displaced millions, and wrecked any prospects of cooperative security for the foreseeable future.  Moscow’s revisionist actions have…

Authored by Daryl G. Kimball and Zia Mian

At a meeting of the G7 nations this week in Hiroshima, the first city destroyed by the bomb, President Joe Biden and other leaders have a chance to begin addressing the long-standing problem of states threatening to use nuclear weapons. Russia’s nuclear threats of the past year in support of its invasion of Ukraine have flashed for all to see a core purpose of nuclear arsenals: coercion and intimidation. At this historic gathering, Biden and his counterparts need to act on Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s proposal that the G7 “demonstrate a firm commitment to absolutely reject the…