Login/Logout

*
*  

ACA’s journal, Arms Control Today, remains the best in the market. Well focused. Solidly researched. Prudent.

– Hans Blix,
former IAEA Director-General

Published Op-eds

The opinion pieces and editorials below are those authored by Arms Control Association staff and leadership published in major U.S. and other media.


In the age of Trump, the global nuclear threat is too high

This article originally appeared on the website Left Foot Forward. Today, US and Russian nuclear stockpiles are down from their Cold War peaks, but the global nuclear threat remains far too high. The US and Russia are estimated to have 4,018 and 4,500 warheads stockpiled and assigned for military use. Under the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), each is limited to 1,550 deployed strategic nuclear weapons on as many as 700 nuclear delivery vehicles until 2021. If these weapons were used even in a ‘limited’ way, the result would be catastrophic. Even before the arrival of Donald...

Interview: Why Did Syria Still Have Chemical Weapons?

This op-ed originally appeared in NYMag.com. Late on Thursday night, Donald Trump launched the first military strike of his presidency, hitting a Syrian government air base with 59 missiles. It was the same air base from which Syria had dispatched a chemical-weapons attack against its own people earlier this week. Foreign-policy experts are only now beginning to debate whether the U.S. is at war with Syria; what happens next remains totally unclear. However, one thing is certain: Syria’s chemical weapons were supposed to be gone as of 2014, thanks to a removal plan the U.S. and Russia had...

On travel bans: Instead of refugees coming out, look at weapons going in

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill. The Trump administration's new executive order on immigration, replacing the currently-blocked “Muslim ban,” will be top-line news. Likely lost in the conversation will be the vast amount of weaponry the United States has supplied in and around the conflict zones from which refugees are fleeing. The United States remains the world’s top major arms dealer at a time when the volume of global arms transfers has reached its highest point since the Cold War , according to a report released Monday by the well-respected Stockholm International Peace...

Which nuclear threats should we worry most about?

This op-ed originally appeared in The Des Moines Register. During his 24-day reign as national security adviser, Michael Flynn put non-nuclear Iran “on notice” after it conducted a medium-range ballistic missile test in late January. Flynn directed no comparable warning to nuclear North Korea after it conducted a more significant missile test two weeks later. Meanwhile, no one had apparently put Flynn “on notice” about his multiple conversations with the Russian government concerning U.S. sanctions in the wake of Moscow’s interference in the U.S. elections. Between the internal politics of...

Drones: A Challenge to the Law of Armed Conflict

This op-ed originally appeared in The Cipher Brief . Over the last eight years, President Barack Obama’s counterterrorism policy has in large part been defined by drone strikes against a number of terrorist targets around the world. Indeed, the U.S. drone program is a global enterprise, with bases in at least 10 countries, lethal operations in at least seven countries, and coordination of drone operations with numerous partners and allies. But even as the U.S. drone program has become a cornerstone of counterterrorism policy, its implementation has raised a number of questions, particularly...

A Millennial's Vote to Ban the Bomb

This op-ed originally appeared in The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists On October 27, the First Committee of the United Nations General Assembly voted to begin negotiations next year on a legally binding international treaty to ban nuclear weapons. The historic resolution passed with the support of 123 member states, 38 opposed, and 16 abstaining—but has drawn sharp criticism from many of the world’s nuclear powers. The United States is a staunch opponent, calling the proposed resolution unrealistic and unverifiable, and reprimanding its supporters for attempting to dismantle the existing “...

The Case for No-First-Use

This op-ed originally appeared in The Cipher Brief. The conditions under which a U.S. president might use nuclear weapons has in recent weeks become a topic of national conversation. Toward the end of the first presidential debate on September 27, moderator Lester Holt asked Republican nominee Donald Trump if he supported the adoption of declared policy that the United States will not be the first to use nuclear weapons in a conflict, a policy proposal reportedly under consideration by President Barack Obama. Trump’s response , as has been the case with most policy issues, was self-...

It’s Time to Cut America’s Nuclear Arsenal

This op-ed originally appeared in The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. As he enters his final months in office, President Obama is still evaluating options to reduce the role and number of nuclear weapons in US strategy. His final decisions are expected before the end of October. In a recent article in the Bulletin , we argued that the president should declare that the United States would not be the first to use nuclear weapons. In addition, he should direct a reduction in the size of the US nuclear arsenal. Not only could America make significant cuts to its nuclear forces without harming...

Rethink Oldthink on No First Use

This op-ed originally appeared in The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. For the second time during his presidency, President Barack Obama and his top advisors are re-evaluating whether to adjust the declared role of nuclear weapons in US national security policy to meet the evolving global strategic environment and reduce the risk of nuclear war. Speaking at the annual meeting of the Arms Control Association on June 6, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications Benjamin Rhodes announced that the administration “will continue to review whether there are additional steps...

Reinforcing Nuclear-Test-Ban With Security Council Resolution

This article originally appeared in Indepth News. This article appears in cooperation with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) , as part of the initiative ‘Youth for CTBTO’. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the CTBTO. - Editor WASHINGTON. D.C. (IDN) - Following mass protests against Soviet nuclear weapons testing in Kazakhstan on August 29, 1991, the Kremlin was forced to close the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site, where over 460 nuclear tests were conducted, and declare a moratorium on nuclear testing. This, in turn...

Pages