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"I find hope in the work of long-established groups such as the Arms Control Association...[and] I find hope in younger anti-nuclear activists and the movement around the world to formally ban the bomb."

– Vincent Intondi
Professor of History, Montgomery College
July 1, 2020
Arms Control NOW

U.S., Russia Discuss Threats of Nuclear Use

The U.S. intelligence community assessed in October that some senior Russian officials, not including Russian President Vladimir Putin, have discussed the potential use of tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine, though Russia denies the assessment. The U.S. National Intelligence Council circulated the assessment within the Biden administration in mid-October, according to multiple senior U.S. officials who spoke with The New York Times . CNN also described the division among U.S. officials over the implications of the analysis, with some believing the Russian discussions might signal genuine...

Biden and Xi Skirt the Abyss

Admittedly, expectations for the November 4 meeting between Presidents Biden of the United States and Xi of China were not particularly high, so no one should be surprised that little of real substance emerged from their encounter in Bali, Indonesia. Both leaders laid out their concerns about the other side’s behavior while promising to contain their mutual antagonisms at a level below that of armed conflict. They also agreed to increase high-level contacts—Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit Beijing early next year as part of this process—and to resume formal talks over climate...

The Prospect of Nuclear Armageddon 

Inside the Arms Control Association November 2022 On September 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued another round of thinly veiled nuclear threats in the context of his ongoing military assault on the people of Ukraine. On October 6, President Biden called the “prospect of Armageddon'' the highest since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. The President is justifiably alarmed and people in the United States and around the globe are far more aware and concerned about the risk of nuclear war. In response, our Arms Control Association team has been working overtime. In the face of global...

EXCERPT: The Art of the Possible: Minimizing Risks as a New European Order Takes Shape

The following is an excerpt from the FPRI report, " The Art of the Possible: Minimizing Risks as a New European Order Takes Shape ," co-authored by ACA research associate Gabriela Iveliz Rosa-Hernandez . N ote: Research for this analysis was completed on October 13, 2022. The text does not reflect events since that date. INTRODUCTION Europe, a seeming bastion of stability since the end of the Balkan wars of the 1990s, has once again grown dangerous. Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, which had followed eight years of lower-grade conflict, has brought the heaviest...

Despite challenges, US-Russian nuclear arms control has its benefits

Securing a new US-Russian nuclear arms control arrangement that can supersede the current treaty has been an endeavor that has stood on shaky, fractured ground for years, with Russia’s renewed invasion of Ukraine earlier this year making the future for nuclear arms control and disarmament all the more uncertain. But there yet remains a sliver of opportunity for the two countries to agree to a new arms control framework that would help ensure that the possibility of an outbreak of nuclear war, whether intentional or inadvertent, is minimized. In early 2021, US President Joe Biden and Russian...

Ukraine isn't the world's only nuclear flashpoint: Taiwan crisis is getting ugly

Thanks to Vladimir Putin's recent implicit threat to employ nuclear weapons if the U.S. and its NATO allies continue to arm Ukraine — "This is not a bluff," he insisted on Sept. 21 — the perils in the Russo-Ukrainian conflict once again hit the headlines. And it's entirely possible, as ever more powerful U.S. weapons pour into Ukraine and Russian forces suffer yet more defeats , that the Russian president might indeed believe that the season for threats is ending and only the detonation of a nuclear weapon will convince the Western powers to back off. If so, the war in Ukraine could prove...

Iran Nuclear Deal Talks Stall Again

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said he does not have “anything more to propose” to break the impasse between the United States and Iran over an agreement to restore the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Momentum toward a deal to restore the JCPOA flagged in late August after Iran demanded additional changes to draft accord. Borrell said Sept. 14 that the two sides had been converging toward a deal, but that the “last proposals from the Iranians were not helping.” He expects the stalemate to persist given the “political situation” in the United...

50 Years of Bilateral Nuclear Arms Control and Much More to Be Done

Inside the Arms Control Association September 2022 Five decades ago, the first bilateral nuclear arms control agreements between the United States and the Soviet Union were concluded: the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty and the Interim Agreement on Strategic Arms Limitations (SALT), the latter being approved by a joint Congressional resolution and signed by President Richard Nixon in September 1972. “This is not an agreement which guarantees that there will be no war,” Nixon said. “But it is the beginning of a process that is enormously important, that will limit now and, we hope, later...

U.S., Russia Agree to Call for Negotiating New START Successor

The United States and Russia committed to a statement expressing the need for the world’s two largest nuclear-weapon states to negotiate a follow-on arms control arrangement to the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ), which expires in under four years. This commitment came during the monthlong 10 th review conference for the 1968 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty ( NPT ) held in August, at which U.S. President Joe Biden stated that his administration stands prepared to begin such arms control talks. “The Russian Federation and the United States commit to the full...

UN Member State Reactions at the Close of the 2022 NPT Review Conference

The 10th Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) ended without consensus Aug. 26, 2022, after four weeks of contentious negotiations. Conference President Gustavo Zlauvinen of Argentina presented a consolidated 35-page draft final outcome document for adoption by consensus Aug. 25. But Russia decided to block consensus due to wording in paras 34 and 187.50 regarding nuclear safety matters at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, which Russia has occupied since March 2022. Many other states expressed disappointment about the lack...

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