Digests and Blog

Authored by Gabriela Iveliz Rosa Hernández

Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine has inflicted much suffering, amplified international divisions, and made any attempt to build common security extremely difficult. Moscow’s war on Ukraine also hobbled several arms control and security agreements—including, now, the Vienna Document. Hosted by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the Vienna Document is a confidence- and security-building mechanism that allows participants to observe and notify each other about their military exercises and other relevant activities to prevent misinterpretation of each other’s…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency agreed March 4 to increase monitoring of the country’s nuclear program. While any additional transparency is a positive step, it is difficult to determine how beneficial the new measures will be as the details of the agreement remain to be negotiated.According to the statement released by the IAEA and the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), Tehran committed to allow the agency to “implement further appropriate verification and monitoring activities” on a “voluntary basis.” The agreement was reached during IAEA Director General Rafael…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s recent detection of uranium enriched to near weapons-grade levels in Iran should send a strong message to the United States and Europe that it is necessary to ratchet up diplomatic efforts to reduce the risk of a nuclear-armed Iran. While the spike in enrichment did lead the agency to begin negotiations on additional transparency measures with Iran, these steps alone are insufficient to mitigate the growing proliferation threat and stabilize the current crisis. It is imperative that the United States look to build on the positive momentum…

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

Inside the Arms Control AssociationMarch 2023In a rambling Feb. 21 speech attempting to justify Russia's illegal invasion of Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced his decision to “suspend” implementation of New START, the last remaining treaty limiting the world's two largest nuclear arsenals.While this does not mark the end of the treaty, Putin’s announcement makes it far more likely that, after New START expires Feb. 5, 2026, there will be no agreement limiting U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals for the first time since 1972.Despite Russia’s failure to comply with New…

Authored by Daryl G. Kimball and Frank von Hippel

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s calamitous invasion of Ukraine has killed at least tens of thousands, displaced millions, and disrupted countless lives around the globe. Putin’s implied threats to use nuclear weapons against any who would interfere, have also raised fears of a nuclear conflict in ways not seen since the end of the cold war. Now, Putin is backing away from the last remaining bilateral treaty capping Russian and U.S. nuclear arsenals, the world’s two largest. The decision could open the door to an unconstrained, destabilizing and dangerous global arms race involving Russia…

Authored by Shannon Bugos

Russia has failed to fully comply with the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) because of its refusal to allow on-site inspections and to reschedule a meeting to discuss treaty concerns, according to a U.S. assessment released in January. Senior Russian officials have accused the United States of “politicizing nuclear arms control,” saying that Washington “would have to adjust its policy towards Russia to move to a constructive arms control agenda.” In August, Moscow prohibited U.S. on-site inspections of its nuclear weapons-related facilities subject to the treaty over…

Authored by Kelsey Davenport

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell described efforts to revive the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran as “completely stalled” but argued that the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), is not dead. In a Jan. 30 article, the Financial Times quoted Borrell as saying that “if the Iranian regime is so bad… we have to try to avoid this kind of regime from having a nuclear bomb” and that “making the JCPOA work” is the only way to do that. Borrell's comments came during the EU debate over whether to designate the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist group. He…

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

Inside the Arms Control Association January 2023 Since Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine last February, our work to reduce and eliminate the dangers posed by nuclear weapons has become even more challenging. It is no wonder that our partners at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved their “Doomsday Clock” 10 seconds closer to midnight. Despite support from President Biden, U.S.-Russian nuclear risk reduction and arms control talks remain on hold. The last remaining bilateral nuclear arms control agreement, New START, will expire in just 1,106 days. Unless Washington and Moscow…

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

This past year, we have been reminded that the nuclear weapons threat still hangs over all of us. Nuclear competition is accelerating. The risk of military confrontation between the nuclear-armed states is rising. Nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament diplomacy is currently stalled.Russian President Vladimir Putin’s nuclear threats in the context of Russia’s illegal and brutal war on Ukraine underscore the growing dangers of nuclear war, the risks of nuclear deterrence-based strategies, and the unfinished business that lies ahead.Our collective actions today, as citizens, organizations,…

Authored by Gabriela Iveliz Rosa Hernádez

Since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Biden administration has committed over $22 billion in security assistance to Ukraine in less than a year. The United States and its allies have rushed to provide Ukraine with the capability to defend itself, retake its territory from Russian forces, and secure it. Entering the 10 month of a war of attrition, there is little to suggest that Russia will cease attacking Ukraine or that either side will seek a negotiated settlement in the near future. As a result, the Biden administration and allied governments will likely continue to…