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"The Arms Control Association’s work is an important resource to legislators and policymakers when contemplating a new policy direction or decision."

– General John Shalikashvili
former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Arms Control NOW

Can Biden ‘Build Back Better’ on Arms Control?

President-elect Joe Biden possesses a strong personal commitment to effective nuclear arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament that dates back to his early days in the Senate. In 1979, during the height of the Cold War, then-Sen. Biden spoke at the Arms Control Association Annual Dinner about “ The Necessity of Nuclear Arms Control ,” noting that “pursuing arms control is not a luxury or a sign of weakness, but an international responsibility and a national necessity.” He wrote a feature article for Arms Control Today in 1986 titled “ The Five Myths of Reagan Arms Control ,”...

Iran’s Accumulation of Enriched Uranium Slows

Although the troubling growth of Iran’s uranium enrichment stockpile continues, the most recent report from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) indicates that Tehran’s accumulation of enriched uranium slowed over the past quarter. It is concerning that Iran continues to breach limits set by the nuclear deal, but the slower stockpile growth and no indication of new violations suggests Tehran is showing restraint so as not to cross any red lines that might imperil a U.S. re-entry into the nuclear deal and return to full compliance by all parties down the road. Iran’s stockpile of...

Restoring Leadership on Arms Control

Wow. We did not expect 2020 to go the way it did. It has been a tragic, challenging, and stressful year. Now, as we look towards 2021, we have a chance to turn the page in some important areas. The election of Joe Biden creates the potential for significant progress on arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament. But meaningful and durable changes will not come easily. And the next U.S. administration and other world leaders will need to move quickly to make decisions on a range of issues. These decisions and outcomes—and the efforts we make to influence them—will shape the international...

UN Restrictions on Iran’s Arms Trade Expire

UN Restrictions on Iran’s Arms Trade Expire Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif described the expiration of UN restrictions on Iran’s conventional arms trade as “momentous,” but said Tehran will not go on a weapons “buying spree.” The UN arms embargo ended Oct. 18 under the terms of Resolution 2231 , which endorsed the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and modified UN sanctions on Iran. The United States sought to prevent the expiration of the UN measures by snapping back Security Council sanctions on Iran using a provision in Resolution 2231 that cannot be blocked by veto. However, the Security...

House, Senate Differ on Nuclear Testing Proposal

Members of Congress continue to push back against the Trump administration’s reported consideration of a nuclear weapons test as negotiators from the House and Senate soon meet to determine whether to allocate funds for such a potential test in next year’s defense bill. The Washington Post first reported in May that the administration had discussed that month whether to conduct a nuclear weapons test. U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Arms Control Marshall Billingslea said June 24 that he was “unaware of any particular reason to test at this stage,” but that the United States “[maintains]...

U.S., Russia Disagree on Prospect for Arms Control Deal

U.S., Russia Disagree on Prospect for Arms Control Deal Against the backdrop of the imminent U.S. presidential election and the impending expiration in less than four months of the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ), the Trump administration appears to have once again shifted its proposal for an arms control framework deal with Russia. But despite U.S. claims of progress in recent talks, Russia continues to strongly reject the proposed U.S. framework and to call for extending New START by five years without conditions as allowed by the treaty. U.S. Special Presidential...

A Hopeful New Step

Last Saturday, Oct. 24, Honduras became the 50th state to ratify the 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), which will trigger the treaty’s entry into force ninety days later, on January 22. Coming at a time when nuclear weapons risks are rising, the TPNW marks a new hopeful phase in the long-running struggle to prevent nuclear war and eliminate nuclear weapons. For the first time since the invention of the atomic bomb, nuclear weapons development, production, possession, use, the threat of use, and stationing of another country’s nuclear weapons on a state party's national...

UN Defies United States on Sanctions Snapback

UN Defies United States on Sanctions Snapback The United States threatened to penalize any country that fails to enforce UN sanctions on Iran that the Trump administration claims were reimposed Sept. 19, but UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the Security Council that he would not take steps to implement the UN measures, which were lifted as a result of the 2015 nuclear deal. In a letter to the Security Council reported on by Reuters, Guterres said there is “uncertainty” over the status of the sanctions and that “pending clarification,” he will not take any action. Despite...

U.S. Shifts Arms Control Strategy with Russia

U.S. Shifts Arms Control Strategy with Russia The Trump administration has softened its demand that China immediately participate in trilateral nuclear arms control talks with the United States and Russia and says it is now seeking an interim step of a politically binding framework with Moscow. But the administration continues to reject Russia’s offer of a clean five-year extension of the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ) and has said that President Trump will not consider an extension until several conditions are met. According to Trump administration officials, the...

After November, There Is Work to Be Done

Donald Trump came into the presidency without a clear plan for reducing the nuclear danger. In one breath, he would threaten to “win” a new nuclear arms race; in the next, he would declare hope for arms control deals to constrain adversaries. Under Trump, no new nuclear deals have been struck and key agreements to reduce nuclear dangers have been abandoned or, like New START, are in jeopardy. The U.S. nuclear weapons budget is growing. New, more “usable” types of nuclear warheads have been deployed and there has been talk of resuming nuclear weapons test explosions. Worse yet, U.S. arms sales...

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