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"In my home there are few publications that we actually get hard copies of, but [Arms Control Today] is one and it's the only one my husband and I fight over who gets to read it first."

– Suzanne DiMaggio
Senior Fellow, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
April 15, 2019
EU / NATO

Senator Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.)

Karen Yourish
Political Career
Connecticut Senate, 1971-81; candidate for Connecticut lieutenant governor, 1978; Democratic nominee for U.S. House of Representatives, 1980; Connecticut attorney general, 1983-88; U.S. Senate, 1989-present; Democratic nominee for vice president, 2000

Education
Yale University, B.A., 1964; LL.B., 1967

Military Service
None

Profession
Lawyer

Foreign Policy Advisers
Exclusive adviser: Colonel Fred Downey (U.S. Army, Ret.); also consults with Sandy Berger, Ashton Carter, Martin Indyk, Kenneth Pollack


Campaign Website
www.joe2004.com


 

 

 

 

Joe Lieberman is determined not to be painted by Republicans as soft on defense; he has expressed strong support for several military actions. During the first Bush administration, he served as lead Democratic co-sponsor of the 1991 Gulf War Resolution. In 1998 he teamed up with Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) to enact the Iraq Liberation Act, which stated that regime change in Iraq was U.S. policy. In the fall of 2002, Lieberman was a lead sponsor of a resolution authorizing the president to use force, if necessary, to enforce UN Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq. The senior senator from Connecticut is also a firm supporter of strategic and theater missile defense, believing that “any defense in the face of a nuclear missile attack is worth having.” The ranking Democrat on the Armed Services Airland Subcommittee has endorsed President George W. Bush’s decision to deploy a limited Ground-Based Midcourse Missile Defense (GMD) but thinks additional flight and program tests are needed. He opposed Bush’s 2001 decision to abrogate the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.

On other issues, Lieberman falls comfortably in the middle of his Democratic brethren. He strongly supported ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and proposed a bipartisan review of the CTBT as a last-ditch compromise after the treaty was rejected by the Senate in 1999. He also disagrees with Bush administration proposals for researching, building, and possibly testing a new generation of nuclear weapons. In particular, during the fiscal year 2004 defense authorization process, he opposed repealing restrictions on research that might lead to the development of low-yield nuclear weapons and argues that any attempts to lower the nuclear threshold are ill advised. “In addition to undermining our international nonproliferation efforts, a new generation of nuclear weapons, especially the low-yield variety envisioned by the administration, will blur the bright lines between conventional and nuclear capabilities, and raise the likelihood of resorting to the latter,” Lieberman stated Sept. 16 on the Senate floor during debate over the authorization bill.

Believing that a nuclear explosion on the U.S. homeland represents the single biggest threat to the United States, the senator is a strong proponent of using arms control treaties and other nonproliferation regimes as tools for preventing the spread of weapons of mass destruction. He is also an enthusiastic supporter of programs to reduce Russia’s stock of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and, if elected president, promises to double U.S. investment in those programs. Yet, as he wrote in the March/April 2003 issue of Foreign Policy, “[P]reventative efforts might fail, so an effective missile defense system is also necessary.”

In dealing with foreign threats, Lieberman disagrees with Bush’s moves to include the use of pre-emptive military force in its formal strategic doctrine, although he believes it should remain an option in the president’s toolbox. Instead, he stresses the need to give states incentives as well as disincentives to forswear weapons of mass destruction. Nevertheless, he remains supportive of Bush’s decision to invade Iraq. “I don’t have any second thoughts about supporting the war,” he said Sept. 10, 2003, at the Council on Foreign Relations. “It was the right thing to do, and we are safer as a result of it.”

Unlike the Bush administration, which prefers multilateral talks, Lieberman favors direct negotiations to end Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons program. Lieberman would use a two-part strategy to test North Korea’s assertions that it is willing to renounce nuclear weapons if its security concerns are addressed. First, he would offer North Korea security guarantees if and when Pyongyang pledges to tear up its entire nuclear weapons program. Then, if North Korea fulfilled these commitments, Lieberman would provide Pyongyang with economic aid and other assistance. Lieberman supported the 1994 Agreed Framework that the Clinton administration negotiated with Pyongyang and says that he would support similar measures again.

Lieberman supports giving India and Pakistan “fail-safe” technologies that would allow them to manage their nuclear arsenals better. Proliferation experts contend that such assistance could violate the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which prohibits assistance to other nations in obtaining nuclear arms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

France's Deterrence Policy in Question

French President Jacques Chirac has denied an Oct. 27 report published in the French newspaper Libération that he plans to modify the country’s current policy of nuclear deterrence to “target what the Americans call rogue states.” The paper cites an unidentified French senior military official and indicates that the strategy may evolve over the long term to address a possible threat from China as well.

Chirac’s office issued a statement Oct. 28 stating that his country’s nuclear use policy has not shifted from the deterrence doctrine he outlined in a June 2001 speech at the Institut des Hautes Études de Défense Nationale. However, according to Reuters, French General Bernard Norlain commented Oct. 27 on French LCI television that “there is of course a need to adapt” France’s nuclear policy in light of new threats.

In addition, Libération reported Oct. 28 that France may also examine the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review’s endorsement in January 2002 of low-yield, earth-penetrating nuclear weapons that could be used to destroy underground facilities housing weapons of mass destruction. (See ACT, April 2002.)

With Deadline Looming, European Foreign Ministers Strike Deal to Restrict Iran's Nuclear Program

Paul Kerr

In a joint statement with three European foreign ministers, Iran agreed Oct. 21 to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) demands that it cooperate with the agency’s efforts to allay fears that Tehran is pursuing a nuclear weapons program. For now, the statement ends weeks of speculation over whether Tehran would cooperate by an Oct. 31 deadline set out in a September IAEA resolution. But Iran must still follow through on its commitments to the agency.

According to the joint statement with the foreign ministers of France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, Iran agreed to take three steps which, if followed, will meet the IAEA’s demands: cooperate with the IAEA “to address and resolve…all requirements and outstanding [IAEA] issues,” sign and ratify an Additional Protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement, and “suspend all uranium enrichment and reprocessing activities as defined by the IAEA.”

The IAEA Board of Governors adopted the resolution after months of agency investigations uncovered increasingly disturbing details about Iran’s uranium- and plutonium-based nuclear programs. (See ACT July/August 2003.) Although most of these activities were technically permitted under Iran’s IAEA safeguards agreement, public revelations about Iran’s extensive progress on these programs raised concerns that the country was pursuing nuclear weapons in violation of its commitments under the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).

Safeguards agreements are required under the NPT to ensure that member states do not divert civilian nuclear programs to military purposes. An additional protocol allows the IAEA to conduct more rigorous inspections, including visits to facilities that countries have not declared, in order to check for clandestine nuclear programs. Iran continues to deny ever pursuing nuclear weapons.

IAEA Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei issued a report in June summarizing the agency’s investigation into Iran’s nuclear programs that concluded Iran had violated its safeguards agreements. An August report revealed inconsistencies in previous Iranian statements to the agency, raising more questions about Tehran’s nuclear intentions. Both reports also stated that Iran had delayed giving IAEA inspectors access to a suspect facility. (See ACT, September 2003 and October 2003.)

The Agreement

Before the Oct. 21 joint statement, Iran had been sending mixed signals as to whether it would comply with the deadline. ElBaradei said Oct. 13 that Iran had not yet provided “full and complete information” about its nuclear programs, although inspectors had been allowed to visit the requested sites, according to an IAEA statement. Additionally, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamdireza Assefi implied Oct. 19 that Iran might not meet the deadline. Iran has also been hesitant about concluding an Additional Protocol, although it has suggested for months that it would do so.

The IAEA has asked for Iran’s cooperation in several areas. The September resolution called on Iran to provide the necessary information about its programs and “unrestricted access” to IAEA inspectors. The agency has been particularly interested in Iran’s uranium enrichment program, which consists of a gas centrifuge pilot plant and a much larger facility that could hold centrifuges to produce low-enriched uranium (LEU) to fuel civilian nuclear power reactors, as well as enough fissile material for 25 nuclear weapons per year.

The mere possession of the facility did not constitute a violation of Iran’s safeguards agreement, but the IAEA believes Iran tested the centrifuges with nuclear material without informing the agency—an action that would violate its agreement. Agency inspectors have found highly-enriched uranium (HEU) in at least two locations in Iran, possible evidence that Iran conducted prohibited tests of its centrifuges as a step towards covertly making nuclear devices. Yet, Iran has denied producing HEU, blaming its presence at the two sites on contaminated components it acquired through “foreign intermediaries.”
ElBaradei told reporters Oct. 23 that Iran had provided the IAEA with a new declaration regarding its nuclear programs. Iran’s representative to the IAEA, Ali Akbar Salehi, said the declaration was complete, the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported Oct. 23. But in an Oct. 24 Associated Press report, Salehi said Iran has been unable to determine the imported components’ origins.

The September resolution also called on Iran to “suspend all further uranium enrichment related activities.” Iran introduced nuclear materials into the Natanz facility’s centrifuges under IAEA safeguards in June, although the Board of Governors issued a June statement encouraging Iran not to do so. Tehran accelerated its tests in August.

The joint statement, however, does not specify a date for Iran to suspend its enrichment activities and Iran has not yet actually done so. A government spokesman stated Oct. 27 that Iran had not set a date for suspending enrichment, according to IRNA. Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazzi said Iran was resolving “technical” issues associated with suspending enrichment, IRNA reported Oct. 28.
Moreover, Iran’s compliance will likely be insufficient to resolve fully concerns about its enrichment program. Iranian officials have said numerous times that Iran will not give up its “right” to enrich uranium—an activity which is allowed under the NPT—and Assefi told reporters Oct. 26 that suspension is only “temporary” and Iran will resume enrichment “whenever…it is necessary.”

The September resolution also reiterated the IAEA’s June request that Iran conclude an additional protocol. An IAEA spokesperson told Arms Control Today Oct. 28 that Iran is expected to send the agency a required letter of intent regarding the protocol. ElBaradei will notify the Board of Governors for its Nov. 20 meeting. ElBaradei and Iran can sign the protocol after the Board’s authorization.
Once signed, the Iranian parliament will have to ratify the protocol, Assefi said Oct. 26. Whether to sign the protocol has been a controversial issue in Iran, with Iranian officials expressing concerns that it gives the IAEA too much inspection power and threatens Iranian sovereignty. Until it is ratified, Iran will comply with the IAEA “in accordance with the protocol,” according to the joint statement.

The joint statement said that Iran’s cooperation would “enable” the IAEA to resolve the “immediate situation” and addressed some of Iran’s stated concerns about the IAEA’s demands. According to the statement, the three governments “recognize” Iran’s right to have a peaceful nuclear program, adding that Iran’s compliance can “open the way to a dialogue …for long term cooperation.” Furthermore, Iran “could expect easier access to modern technology…in a range of areas” when concerns about its nuclear programs “are fully resolved,” the statement says.

Iran had previously resisted signing the protocol unless it was assured of gaining access to peaceful nuclear technology, complaining that many nuclear supplier states have refused to do business with them. The NPT states that states-parties “have the right to participate in” technical exchanges “for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.”

Looking Ahead


ElBaradei told Arms Control Today Oct. 21 (See ElBaradei interview) that the IAEA needs to review and verify Iran’s declaration. He will report his findings to the agency’s Board of Governors prior to its November meeting, the IAEA spokesperson said. Secretary of State Colin Powell stated Oct. 22 that the joint statement is “welcome,” but Washington would wait to assess Iran’s “performance.”

The United States said in September that the Oct. 31 deadline represented a “last chance” for Iran to comply and the IAEA should refer the matter to the United Nations Security Council if Iran did not do so. The IAEA has an obligation to refer the issue to the Security Council if it finds a country in violation of its safeguards agreement. So far, the Board has said only that Iran has failed to meet some of its safeguards obligations.

The IAEA may still refer the issue to the Security Council even if Iran follows through on the Oct. 21 agreement, however. A State Department official interviewed Oct. 28 said a complete declaration from Iran will likely contain “incriminating information” proving it was in violation of its safeguards agreements. The IAEA would then have a “statutory obligation to find Iran in non-compliance” and refer the issue to the council, the official said. The official conceded that the United States would face an “uphill battle” in persuading the Board of Governors to do so.

The Security Council would not necessarily have to take “punitive” action against Iran in this case, but the State Department official said that it would be “important to draw a line under Iran’s noncompliance.”

 

The Declaration

The following is the text of the declaration on Iran’s nuclear program agreed upon by the Iranian government and visiting EU foreign ministers Oct. 21:

1. Upon the invitation of the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran the Foreign Ministers of Britain, France and Germany paid a visit to Tehran on October 21, 2003. The Iranian authorities and the Ministers, following extensive consultations, agreed on measures aimed at the settlement of all outstanding IAEA issues with regard to the Iranian nuclear programme and at enhancing confidence for peaceful cooperation in the nuclear field.

2. The Iranian authorities reaffirmed that nuclear weapons have no place in Iran’s defence doctrine and that its nuclear programme and activities have been exclusively in the peaceful domain. They reiterated Iran’s commitment to the nuclear non-proliferation regime and informed the Ministers that:

a) The Iranian government has decided to engage in full cooperation with the IAEA to address and resolve, through full transparency, all requirements and outstanding issues of the agency, and clarify and correct any possible failures and deficiencies within the IAEA.

b) To promote confidence with a view to removing existing barriers for cooperation in the nuclear field:

i) Having received the necessary clarifications, the Iranian government has decided to sign the IAEA Additional Protocol, and commence ratification procedures. As a confirmation of its good intentions,the Iranian government will continue to cooperate with the agency in accordance with the protocol in advance of its ratification;

ii) While Iran has a right within the nuclear non-proliferation regime to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, it has decided voluntarily to suspend all uranium enrichment and reprocessing activities as defined by the IAEA.

3. The Foreign Ministers of Britain, France and Germany welcomed the decisions of the Iranian government and informed the Iranian authorities that:

a) Their Governments recognise the right of Iran to enjoy peaceful use of nuclear energy in accordance with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty;

b) In their view, the Additional Protocol is in no way intended to undermine the sovereignty, national dignity or national security of its State Parties;

c) In their view, full implementation of Iran’s decisions, confirmed by the IAEA’s director general, should enable the immediate situation to be resolved by the IAEA board;

d) The three Governments believe that this will open the way to a dialogue on a basis for longer term cooperation which will provide all parties with satisfactory assurances relating to Iran’s nuclear power generation programme. Once international concerns, including those of the three Governments, are fully resolved Iran could expect easier access to modern technology and supplies in a range of areas.

e) They will co-operate with Iran to promote security and stability in the region, including the
establishment of a zone free from weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East in accordance with the objectives of the United Nations.

 

 

 

In a joint statement with three European foreign ministers, Iran agreed Oct. 21 to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) demands that it cooperate with the agency’s efforts to allay...

The Emergence of a European 'Strategic Personality'

Joanna Spear

Is the sound of banging we hear the mending of fences between Europe and the United States or the nailing closed of doors? As has been widely acknowledged on both sides of the Atlantic, the rift between the allies over Iraq has been significant and worrying.1 The crisis has highlighted a key strategic dispute concerning the imminence of threats posed by weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and the wider issue of the adequacy of arms control regimes and diplomacy to deal preventively with these threats. Yet, as serious as these quarrels are, they only scratch the surface of the profound and growing differences between the emerging “strategic personality” of the European Union (EU) and that of the United States.

Over the last few years, the EU has developed its own strategic personality, or a specifically European way of viewing, interpreting, and acting on perceived threats and diplomatic opportunities. This is particularly the case in dealing with threats caused by WMD proliferation. Although the United Kingdom, Italy, and Spain supported the invasion of Iraq, despite the opposition of most other EU member states, there is now a growing European-wide consensus on these concerns. Member states have agreed on policies to deal with WMD proliferation that point to the realization of a common approach to this issue, an approach that emphasizes multilateral, carrot-based diplomacy. This codification of European policy puts the EU increasingly and overtly at odds with the U.S. inclination for coercive, stick-based diplomacy in the form of military force or economic sanctions.

Developments in Europe

The EU has been working to build a Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the institutions to implement that policy since the signing of the Maastricht Treaty in 1992. Ironically, the institutional developments within the EU were the original catalyst for serious thinking about common approaches to dealing with security problems (rather than the reverse).2 Yet, for a long time, there was little more than a rhetorical commitment to reaching common positions on international issues, with the debate over what a European defense entity should do masked by “constructive ambiguity.”3 It was only recently that international events stripped away the mask and forced Europe to be more explicit about what its CFSP would be and the types of security issues it would address.4 As late as 2001, the EU had not directly and systematically addressed the major strategic challenges in the international system, including that of WMD proliferation.5

In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks, the EU began to consider wider strategic issues. Developing responses to terrorist threats and WMD proliferation were given priority. While these internal deliberations went on, however, international events, particularly Iraq, caused very public schisms between EU members, such as France and Germany, opposed to the Bush administration’s strategy and wartime allies such as the United Kingdom. The crisis over Iraq may have initially stymied the EU, but it has subsequently energized it. In April 2003, Sweden put forward the idea of developing a common position on WMD proliferation, which was accepted by EU member states. More dramatically, Javier Solana, high representative for the CFSP, presented the draft of the first security strategy in the EU’s history to EU leaders at the Thessaloniki summit in June 2003.

In A Secure Europe in a Better World, Solana outlined the three pillars of the common strategy, making clear that the nature of today’s threats means that the EU can no longer limit its attention to its immediate region.6 First, he called for extending the security zone around Europe by bringing stability to areas on the periphery. Second, he urged that the United Nations be reaffirmed as the fundamental framework of international relations, while acknowledging that the institution might have to be defended pre-emptively. Third, the EU security strategy called for new policies to respond to the twin threats of terrorism and WMD proliferation—polices that reflected Europe’s strategic personality.

The Evolving European Strategic Personality


Explaining the notion of a strategic personality, Caroline Ziemke, a pioneer of this approach, wrote:

A state’s historical experience
shapes how it sees itself, how it
views the outside world, and how
it makes its strategic decisions. To
make use of their historical
experience, nations tend to focus
most on those aspects of their
history that have the most
meaning and tell them the most
about who they are and what they
aspire to be.7

The outline of a European strategic personality has emerged through the process of developing institutions for the CFSP and formulating European policy preferences, as well as through interactions with international events and key states. This personality is informed by a wider understanding of European history and the region’s place in the system.

Europe’s historical and cultural proclivities in dealing with threats and diplomatic problems; the issues it pays most attention to; and the way it prioritizes and interprets international events, evolving military planning, and the public statements of EU leaders all provide evidence of “personality traits.” In the case of the EU, we are dealing with a more diverse entity than a state, with a short, intense history. A number of key EU personality facets can nevertheless be identified:

· The sweep of European history is seen as providing evidence that there are better ways to resolve differences than by resorting to force.
· Through the EU’s short history, member states have developed a positive sense of the benefits of international cooperation, multilateralism, and confidence-building measures as the means for addressing potential threats.
· The EU is an entity borne out of a positive experience of multilateral treaties. Even in key areas of potential insecurity such as nuclear programs, the Europeans created a multilateral confidence-building institution, EURATOM, which allowed them to overcome these fears gradually.8
· The EU personality is also informed by a tradition of compromise, of using diplomacy to solve problems. The EU has a habit of seeking agreement, and the search for consensus is the mode of operation in most areas of EU work.9
· There is also particular respect for the rule of law, the institutions that enforce it, and a desire to build global norms to expand international law. As Solana explained, “The development of a stronger international society, well-functioning international institutions, and a rule-based international order should be our objectives.”10
· The EU is a proponent of soft power, of providing economic and political incentives to ensure good behavior, of considering issues holistically, and of progress in one area spilling over into progress in others. Political and economic engagement is favored over confrontation.
· The strategy emphasizes measures to achieve peace and security without the use of force. However, the EU on occasion has endorsed the use of force in protection of core values, often focused on the protection of international institutions or upholding the rule of law.
· The EU adopts a root-causes approach to understanding conflicts and uses a variety of policy tools to try and deal with base problems.

As the EU has been developing, the United States has been moving toward a different position, which leverages its current structural dominance to forsake the international compromises required of those with insufficient power. To be sure, as Robert Kagan has pointed out, the emergence of this new U.S. strategic personality has been an important element in pushing the EU to define itself and abandon constructive ambiguity. In playing to an American audience, however, Kagan understates the extent to which the EU has become more intentionally European through positive choices and not just weakness.11 What we are witnessing is the process of the EU developing a distinct strategic personality.

On the issue of proliferation, the gap in transatlantic relations has widened since the end of the Cold War. Cleavages have opened up resulting from different attitudes toward the use of force and the ability of regimes to solve WMD problems. These divisions were first exposed by the Clinton administration’s announcement of a Defense Counterproliferation Policy (which explicitly mentioned pre-emption) and the European hostility to that short-lived initiative.12 There was also disquiet in the EU over the U.S. refusal to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and the Ottawa Convention banning anti-personnel landmines.

Yet, those concerns were somewhat muffled under the Clinton administration and have only become full-throated cries with the Bush team. The Europeans perceived the ending of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty as undermining strategic stability, and they have expressed a similarly negative view of U.S. plans to deploy some form of ballistic missile defenses, which are seen as more destabilizing than the original problem. President George W. Bush’s lack of support for burgeoning regimes designed to deal with biological weapons threats and small arms and light weapons problems have all added to EU concerns about U.S. behavior. More fundamentally, the Bush administration’s 2002 National Security Strategy compounded many of the fears of those in Europe about the changing strategic personality of the United States and the consequences of that on the rules and norms of the international system.

The EU’s WMD Proliferation Policies


Yet, at first blush, the EU appears to have closed ranks with the United States. Its recently released “Basic Principles for an EU Strategy Against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction” moves beyond traditional European approaches to the problem of WMD proliferation by acknowledging for the first time that there may be occasions when it is necessary to resort to force. By itself, this apparent philosophical shift should have pleased Bush administration policymakers, who could tout the change as evidence that their views are winning converts on the Continent.

Any pleasure would likely be short lived, however, given the details of the policy in terms of when and how decisions to use force should be taken. The document makes it clear that the Europeans continue to view force as a last resort, following various gradations of coercive action. Additionally, the EU clarifies what it considers to be the only acceptable route for such action:

When these measures (including
political dialogue and diplomatic
pressure) have failed, coercive
measures under Chapter VII of
the UN Charter and international
law (sanctions, selective or global,
interceptions of shipments and,
as appropriate, the use of force)
could be envisioned. The UN
Security Council should play a
central role.13

Thus, the EU reaffirms its commitment to “effective multilateralism” and seeks to ensure that a European veto remains possible over the use of force against a WMD threat. Solana has subsequently been quite explicit that the EU would not undertake any U.S.-style strategy of pre-emptive military action.14 By contrast, the EU espouses pre-emptive engagement, to stop the problem before it becomes acute.

Despite their very public differences over Iraq, in the Basic Principles all the EU members have accepted a number of policies that are more than the “lowest common denominator,” indeed, they explicitly sought to move beyond that. Moreover, they have shown a clear intent for moving beyond rhetoric, approving an associated Action Plan that sets out what the EU is going to do, a timetable for actions, and the associated costs.15

The Basic Principles document declares that WMD proliferation “constitutes a threat to international peace and security,” immediately putting the issue into the language of the UN and international law. It further stresses multilateral action, baldly stating, “The EU is committed to the multilateral system. We will pursue the implementation and universalisation of the existing disarmament and non-proliferation norms.”16 Indeed, the EU specifically recommends the strengthening of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) through working to ensure “concrete outcomes” from the work of the expert groups.17 This is in direct contrast to the Bush administration’s stance on that treaty. One of the means by which the EU intends to increase the credibility of existing regimes is by preventing cheating through effective verification by “enhancing the detectability of significant violations and strengthening the enforcement of the norms established by this treaty regime.”18 This is an attempt to head off potential U.S. criticisms of the EU’s continued attachment to regimes.

One of the most important advances is a commitment to developing common European threat assessments rather than national or NATO analyses. In the past, the EU gave the idea of establishing such common assessments short shrift, partly to avoid explicitly contradicting NATO—where the United States has a heavy input into policy— and also to avoid the internal arguments that would arise between EU members in very different geostrategic situations. So glaring was this absence that a number of institutions and individuals had jumped into the fray, offering their own assessments.19 Several U.S. commentators also urged the EU to develop its own intelligence and threat assessment capabilities on the assumption that EU judgments would vindicate U.S. threat assessments.20

The EU now has a Situation Center to prepare and continuously update threat assessments.21 Moreover, the plan is also to have a Monitoring Center on WMD Disarmament and Non-Proliferation to ensure that the Action Plan is implemented, collate information and intelligence, liaise with international bodies, and propose measures to prevent and combat WMD proliferation.22 Thus, at least in principle, the EU should soon have a common threat assessment methodology as the basis for forming policies to deal with specific threats as they arise.

The Basic Principles and the Action Plan also show the intention of “mainstreaming non-proliferation policies into the EU’s wider relations with third countries,” including the use of cooperation agreements and assistance programs. The EU will use conditionality via the “carrots” of improving trade, aid, and economic relations with third countries. This is more evidence of the EU preference for soft-power tools and recognition of the role of such tools in addressing the root causes of proliferation problems.

Many of the elements of the new EU policies on WMD proliferation are familiar. For example, the Action Plan also makes much of strengthening export controls. The EU “will take the lead in efforts to strengthen regulations on trade with material that can be used for the production of biological weapons.”23 Although this is a codification of existing EU policies and builds on the efforts of the BWC and Australia Group, it does mark an increased commitment to such approaches.

According to a senior European diplomat, “Essentially, the [United States] and Europeans do not differ about the ends, we differ over the means. We have now set out a credible alternative, anchored on the multilateral system to stop WMD proliferation.”24 What the new documents do is to make more explicit European approaches to the issues. This is important as a coherent statement of EU approaches also gives them a solidity that they have previously lacked. It also marks a more explicit commitment to these policies. They have become the policies that the EU member states and those seeking to join the union—maybe even other states in the system—will coalesce around.

The EU policy on WMD proliferation is informed by its own developing strategic personality and in reaction to and defense against the U.S. abandonment of more traditional approaches to solving the proliferation problem. As the Financial Times noted, this “is the first time the EU has spelt out a systematic alternative to U.S. policy on WMD.”25

Are the EU WMD Policies Taken Seriously?


This is really the million-dollar (or million-euro) question. WMD policies were borne out of the EU’s disagreements over Iraq and were an attempt to ensure that such divisions did not happen again. Are they likely to succeed? As yet, the policies are untested, but some important bits of evidence can be identified.

As the EU moves to tackle the most difficult aspects of the Basic Principles and the Action Plan, the challenge will be keeping together the disparate member states, with nuclear states such as France and the United Kingdom trying to protect their own arsenals while more pacifist states such as Sweden and Ireland are keen to pursue a WMD disarmament agenda. One of the most ambitious aspects of the policy is the intention to re-invigorate the nonproliferation regimes (in the face of U.S. skepticism). A potential first test of this is coming up soon, at the 2005 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference in Ireland. The Irish are reportedly keen to show progress on the issue and concerned that it will be difficult to carry the whole of the EU with them.

There are, however, indications that member states are seriously committed. First, the new approach to dealing with WMD proliferation is intended to be the first of a number of action plans to tackle key security problems. Therefore, this policy cannot be allowed to fail. Second, the issue is being driven forward at the ambassadorial level in Brussels. This high-level attention is keeping the issue at the top of member states agendas and maintaining its political momentum. Third, the responsible desk officers in the EU offices of the Commission, Council Secretariat, and Military Staff have a “relatively civilized relationship and an understood division of labor,” so the issue is being constructively handled.26 Fourth, we are already witnessing the implementation of some elements of the policy: the EU is sponsoring an Inter-Parliamentary Conference on Cooperative Threat Reduction in Russia, the EU Presidency is currently circulating a draft document on challenge inspections (which apparently draws on previous British work for the Chemical Weapons Convention), and the EU is cooperating with the Proliferation Security Initiative. Finally, the next two states to hold the EU Presidency, Ireland and the Netherlands, are both pro-arms control and the Irish in particular are keen to have positive outcomes from their tenure.

Another intriguing “straw in the wind” concerns the issue of Iran. The ability of foreign ministers Jack Straw of the United Kingdom, Dominique de Villepin of France, and Joschka Fischer of Germany to strike a deal with Tehran surely marked a signal day in Europe’s arms control efforts, whether or not it is ultimately successful in halting Iran’s nuclear program. As De Villepin remarked to reporters to conclude, “[I]t is an important day for Europe because we are dealing with a major issue.”27

Less noted, but potentially more important for the long-term, is the position that the United Kingdom is playing in that crisis, which is in very stark contrast to the position it took over Iraq’s WMD program. During the Iraq crisis, Prime Minister Tony Blair was criticized for “freelancing,” failing to discuss issues with his European partners before flying to Washington to agree on strategies. Ultimately, to the chagrin of several states in Europe, the United Kingdom sided with the United States rather than with the key players in the EU.

In dealing with Iran, however, the United Kingdom is very much the loyal European player, stating that it will not contemplate the use of force against the state and backing the EU strategy of engagement rather than the policy of isolation that the United States has been prosecuting.28 Blair stated that his government is in harmony with the European approach to the issue: “It has always been, and continues to be, the policy of this government to seek to resolve issues of this nature through dialogue.”29 Moreover, in the last month, the British have significantly changed their position on a European Defense Policy, bringing them much closer to France and Germany and healing some of the wounds of the Iraq crisis.30

Iran had been a difficult case for the EU because of the close ties of some member states to the Iranian government. Nevertheless, over the last few months, the EU stance toward Iran hardened, emphasizing compliance with tough International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) standards. This was not, however, the first outcome from the EU’s own threat assessment procedure (which is hardly up and running) but was based on the assessments of the IAEA, which is increasingly concerned about Iranian behavior.

In its policies toward Iran, the EU has already been applying its Basic Principles, emphasizing the role of politics and economics in dealing with proliferation threats. Thus, the EU General Affairs Council concluded that “progress in these [WMD proliferation] matters and strengthening dialogue and cooperation are interdependent, essential and mutually reinforcing elements of EU-Iran relations.”31 The commitment to engagement is clear, but engagement itself now is conditional. As a European diplomat acknowledged, “If we want to be serious when it comes to Iran’s noncompliance with its nonproliferation treaty obligations, we have to show we have carrots and sticks at our disposal.”32

The EU is actively using both these tools. The EU threatened Iran in July that it might halt political and economic talks if it failed to cooperate with the IAEA. Subsequently, the EU deferred a review of relations with Iran (which was to consider new economic and political agreements) for a month in order to gauge how Tehran responded to the IAEA deadline set for the end of October. In parallel to the “sticks,” the United Kingdom, France, and Germany offered a number of incentives to Iran if it gave up its nuclear program.33 These were followed up by the October visit of the foreign ministers to Tehran to press the case for abiding by IAEA demands. The mission seems to be a success, with Iran pledging “full cooperation” with the IAEA and halting its enriching and reprocessing of uranium as a confidence-building measure.

It is worth noting that it was not the EU’s high representative who flew to Tehran, but its national ministers, indicating that the EU has still got some way to go in terms of institutional clout. Nevertheless, their collective action signals that the EU policies on WMD proliferation may hold the union together when faced with anything less than extreme threats.

Implications for the Transatlantic Relationship

Iran is unlikely to be a unique phenomenon. Rather, it signals the blossoming of a new European assertiveness in picking and choosing how and when the EU will cooperate with U.S. nonproliferation policies. In some cases, such as Iran, the United States and Europe will diverge on means even if they agree on goals. In other cases, such as European support for last year’s establishment of a Code of Conduct to supplement the existing Missile Technology Control Regime and their participation in the U.S.-led Proliferation Security Initiative, there is still room for cooperation with the United States tactically and strategically.34

The Iran example seems to indicate a satisfactory division of labor available here, with the United States as the “bad cop” and the EU as the “good cop.” However, this has been suggested in the past only to be met by U.S. criticisms that this arrangement allows Europe to do too little and undermines a concerted approach to WMD proliferators. Depending on how the United States wants to tackle a particular proliferation problem, this division of labor and EU preference for soft-power solutions will either be seen as help or hindrance. In the case of Iraq, the approach of some EU states was seen as problematic, but Bush described EU initiatives with Iran as “an effective approach.”35

The most fundamental difference between the two continents in coming years will be in how they perceive the value of multinational institutions and regimes in preserving global security and the need for alternative strategies such as pre-emption. The premise of the Bush administration’s policies is that most institutions and regimes are not guaranteeing global security, which is why the administration is advocating proactive policies such as pre-emption. The White House has adopted a policy of neglect toward most of the regimes and institutions and is only currently expending energy and resources on those it considers useful, such as the IAEA. EU member states, on the other hand, view these institutions and regimes as guarantors of stability and security and believe the new EU policies may provide a rallying point for defense of the regimes from those within the United States disturbed by the current thrust of administration counterproliferation polices and from other states and civil society groups looking for alternative leadership on this issue. This is certainly not an outcome that would be welcomed by the Bush team.

In particular, debates over the pre-emptive use of force are likely to continue to divide the allies. In the future, however, especially as the EU grows to include the candidate countries of central and eastern Europe, the debate is less likely to pit “old Europe” against “New Europe” than Europeans against Americans. The EU has put down a marker that it will not contemplate pre-emption in the way that is embodied in current U.S. policy. So, although the development of a coherent policy has healed some of the internal rifts of the EU, transatlantic harmony is unlikely to be the outcome. The European hope may be that the United States recognizes that there is another major player in the ring and steps back to let them operate, but this seems an unlikely outcome to this European.


How U.S. and EU National Security Strategies Differ

Excerpts taken from Basic Principles for An EU Strategy Against Proliferation of
Weapons of Mass Destruction
(June 2003), National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass
Destruction
(December 2002), and National Security Strategy (September 2002).

On...
U.S. National Security Strategy
EU Basic Principles
The Perceived Threat
We will not permit the world’s most dangerous regimes and terrorists to threaten us with the world’s most destructive weapons. We must accord the highest priority to the protection of the United States, our forces, and our friends and allies from the existing and growing WMD threat. The proliferation of all weapons of mass destruction...and means of delivery such as ballistic missiles constitutes a threat to international peace and security. These weapons are different from other weapons not only because of their capacity to cause death on a large scale but also because they could destabilise the international system.
The Use of Force
While the United States will constantly strive to enlist the support of the international community, we will not hesitate to act alone, if necessary, to exercise our right of self-defense by acting preemptively against such terrorists, to prevent them from doing harm against our people and our country...[T]he United States can no longer solely rely on a reactive posture as we have in the past. To address the new threats, a broad approach is needed. Political and diplomatic preventative measures...and resort to the competent international organisations...form the first line of defence. When these measures...have failed, coercive measures under Chapter VII of the UN Charter and international law (sanctions, selective or global, interceptions of shipments and, as appropriate, the use of force) could be envisioned. The UN Security Council should play a central role.
Fundamental Principles
Our National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction has three principal pillars: Counterproliferation to Combat WMD Use… Strengthened Nonproliferation to Combat WMD Proliferation…[and] Consequence Management to Respond to WMD Use… The three pillars of the U.S. national strategy to combat WMD are seamless elements of a comprehensive approach. The EU is committed to the multilateral system. We will pursue the implementation and universalisation of the existing disarmament and non-proliferation norms. With regard to biological and chemical weapons, we will work towards declaring the bans on these weapons to be universally binding rules of international law.
Stopping the Spread of WMD
One of the most difficult challenges we face is to prevent, deter, and defend against the acquisition and use of WMD by terrorist groups. The current and potential future linkages between terrorist groups and state sponsors of terrorism are particularly dangerous and require priority attention. The full range of counterproliferation, nonproliferation, and consequence management measures must be brought to bear against the WMD terrorist threat…
The best solution to the problem of proliferation of WMD is that countries should no longer feel they need them. If possible, political solutions should be found to the problems which lead them to seek WMD. The more secure countries feel, the more likely they are to abandon programmes: disarmament measures can lead to a virtuous circle just as weapons programmes can lead to an arms race.



NOTES
1. Philip H. Gordon, “Bridging the Atlantic Divide,” Foreign Affairs 82, no. 1 (January/February 2003).
2. Ian Black, “First Bridgehead for EU Military Staff—Their Own HQ,” The Guardian, May 10, 2001, available at http://www.guardian.co.uk/Print/0,3858,4183972,00.html.
3. See Francoise Heisbourg, “Europe’s Strategic Ambitions: The Limits of Ambiguity,” Survival 42, no. 2 (Summer 2000).
4. Paul Cornish and Geoffrey Edwards, “Beyond the EU/NATO Dichotomy: The Beginnings of a European Strategic Culture,” International Affairs 77, no. 3 (July 2001), pp. 587-603.
5. The EU had, however, undertaken a number of Joint Actions designed to shore up the regimes and arms control agreements designed to prevent WMD proliferation.
6. For a very insightful comparison of EU and U.S. strategic concepts, see Alyson Bailes, “EU and U.S. Strategic Concepts: Facing New International Realities,” International Spectator (forthcoming) (Journal of the Instituto Affari Internazionali, Rome).
7. Caroline F. Ziemke, “The National Myth and Strategic Personality of Iran: A Counterproliferation Perspective,” in The Coming Crisis: Nuclear Proliferation, U.S. Interests, and World Order, ed. Victor A. Utgoff (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000), p. 88.
8. Darryl A. Howlett, Euratom and Nuclear Safeguards (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 1990).
9. Helen Wallace, “Making Multilateral Negotiations Work,” in The Dynamics of European Integration, ed. Helen Wallace (London: Royal Institute for International Affairs/Pinter, 1991).
10. Javier Solana, A Secure Europe in a Better World, European Council, Thessaloniki, June 20, 2003, p. 8.
11. Robert Kagan, Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2003).
12. Joanna Spear, “A European View of Non-Proliferation Policy,” in United States Non-Proliferation Policy, eds. Bernard Finel and Jan Nolan (New York: Century Foundation, forthcoming).
13. “Basic Principles for an EU Strategy Against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction” (Doc. 10352/03 PESC 315 CONOP 18 CODUN 13 COTER 24), para. 4 (hereinafter Basic Principles).
14. Gerrard Quille, “Making Multilateralism Matter: The EU Security Strategy,” European Security Review no. 18 (July 2003), p. 2.
15. Basic Principles; “Action Plan for the Implementation of the Basic Principles for an EU Strategy Against the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction” (Doc. 10352/03 PESC 316 CONOP 19 CODUN 14 COTER 25).
16. Basic Principles, para. 5.
17. Action Plan, para. 17.
18. Basic Principles, para. 6.
19. See Harald Müller, Terrorism, Proliferation: A European Threat Assessment, Chaillot Paper No. 58 (Paris: Institute for Security Studies, March 2003); Gustav Lindström and Burkhard Schmitt, Towards a European Non-Proliferation Strategy, Institute Note, May 23, 2003 (Paris: Institute for Security Studies, 2003).
20. Kori N. Schake and Jeffrey Simon, “Europe” in Strategic Challenges for the Bush Administration: Perspectives from the Institute for National Strategic Studies (Washington, DC: National Defense University Press, 2001), p. 17.
21. Basic Principles, para. 3.
22. Action Plan, para. 14.
23. Action Plan, para. 17.
24. Judy Dempsey, “EU Foreign Ministers Agree WMDJ Policy,” Financial Times, June 17, 2003, p. 9.
25. Ibid.
26. Interview with author, October 22, 2003.
27. Glenn Frankel, “Iran Vows to Curb Nuclear Activities,” The Washington Post, October 22, 2003.
28. Marc Champion and Scott Miller, “Europe Learns Lessons From Failures Over Iraq,” Wall Street Journal, June 19, 2003.
29. House of Commons, Hansard, Written Answers, Prime Minister, June 23, 2003, col. 615W (written response of Prime Minister Tony Blair to a question from Llew Smith MP).
30. Ian Black and Patrick Wintour, “UK Backs Down on European Defence,” The Guardian, September 23, 2003.
31. House of Commons, Hansard, Written Answers, Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, June 24, 2003, col. 702W (written response by Minister of State Mr. Rammell to a question from Mr. Soames MP).
32. Dempsey, “EU Foreign Ministers Agree WMD Policy,” p. 9.
33. Paul Taylor and Louis Charbonneau, “Defying U.S., European Nations Engage Iran on Nuclear Program,” The Washington Post, September 20, 2003.
34. The Proliferation Security Initiative seeks to block the transfer of missile technologies abroad by states outside of the Missile Technology Control Regime. See Wade Boese, “U.S. Pushes Initiative to Block Shipments of WMD, Missiles,” Arms Control Today 33, no. 6 (July/August 2003), p. 26; “U.S.: Interdiction Effort May Affect North Korea,” The Washington Post, August 19, 2003, p. A5.
35. Joby Warrick, “Iran Still Has Nuclear Deadline, U.S. Says,” The Washington Post, October 23, 2003.

 

 


Joanna Spear is director of the United States Foreign Policy Institute, The Elliott School of International Affairs, The George Washington University. She was previously a senior lecturer in the Department of War Studies, King’s College, London.

 

 

Russia Finishes Destroying Tanks

 

Fulfilling a commitment made a dozen years ago, Russia announced June 7 that it had completed the destruction of thousands of tanks moved east of the Ural Mountains in 1989 and 1990. The United States and its NATO allies confirmed and welcomed the Russian announcement.

In June 1991, Moscow pledged to destroy or convert to civilian equipment 6,000 tanks, 1,500 armored combat vehicles (ACVs), and 7,000 heavy artillery pieces to ease Western criticism over its repositioning of some 57,000 of these weapons east of the Urals. If Moscow had not moved the weapons, it would have had to destroy most of them under the terms of the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty then being negotiated with NATO. Although Russia’s relocation of the weapons did not violate any of its international commitments, NATO saw it as contrary to the spirit of the CFE talks.

The CFE Treaty aimed to balance the conventional armed forces of NATO and those of the Soviet Union and its allies in Europe. The treaty’s weapons limits applied only to arms in Europe, which was defined as ending at the Urals. Any weapons east of the Urals would not have been counted against the Soviet Union’s limits.

Originally, the Kremlin was supposed to finish its reduction activities before the end of 1995, but it failed to do so. Russia then agreed in 1996 to complete the task by 2000.

Yet, NATO and Russia recognized that completing the tank obligation by the 2000 deadline might not be possible. As a stopgap measure, the two sides agreed that Russia could temporarily meet its reduction goals by substituting up to 2,300 ACVs in lieu of tanks. This agreement, however, did not obviate Russia’s original requirement to make militarily unusable 6,000 total tanks but simply gave Moscow more time to do it—a task it finally accomplished this month.

 

NATO-Russia TMD Cooperation In New Phase

The 19-member NATO alliance and Russia will begin trading technical information on their various systems to counter short- and medium-range ballistic missiles to see if the defenses could possibly work together or operate side by side in battle. NATO Secretary-General Lord Robertson announced the new cooperation at a May 13 meeting in Moscow.

This new “interoperability” study is expected to take months, not years, and will cost approximately one to two million dollars, according to a NATO spokesperson. The objective is not for NATO and Russia to build a joint system, but to assess how their separate systems might function together.

A NATO-Russia Council ad hoc working group on theater missile defenses (TMD) will conduct the study. TMD systems do not include defenses against long-range ballistic missiles. Created in June 2002, the group recently completed a compendium of approximately 250 common terms for air and missile defenses in English, French, and Russian.

Lord Robertson expressed optimism about the new study, predicting that it would be “enormously productive in the future.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin first proposed the creation of a European TMD system in mid-2000. Russia later presented a vague proposal on the subject to NATO in February 2001. Some commentators interpreted Moscow’s efforts as an attempt to undercut the U.S. push to win acceptance of its strategic missile defense plans.

Senate Approves NATO Expansion For Seven New Members

Wade Boese

What a difference five years makes. The last time the U.S. Senate weighed extending NATO membership to new countries in 1998, senators debated for four days about how Russia might respond and how much adding new members might cost. But no such concerns marked the debate preceding the Senate’s unanimous May 8 vote endorsing alliance membership for seven additional countries.

With the foreign ministers of the seven candidate countries looking on from the Senate balcony, senators by a 96-0 vote approved the expansion of the 19-member alliance to include Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia. In 1998 the Senate backed the memberships of the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland by an 80-19 vote.

This latest expansion moved the alliance even further east toward Russia and, for the first time, included countries that were part of the former Soviet Union—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Yet, Moscow barely batted an eyelash, unlike the previous round when it protested vehemently. The Kremlin’s subdued response to the growth of its Cold War-era foe reflects in part its warming relations with the West and the May 2002 creation of the NATO-Russia Council, which cemented a closer, more formal NATO-Russia relationship.

Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania also soothed Russian concerns by pledging to accede to an updated version of the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty once it enters into force. Moscow had repeatedly stated over the last few years that the three countries should not be admitted to NATO without being parties to the CFE Treaty, which limits the amount and location of heavy weaponry, such as tanks, that its states-parties can deploy.

Russia’s mollified stance was reflected in the Senate debate. In 1998, several senators warned that NATO’s expansion would end rapprochement between Russia and the West and lead Moscow to increase its reliance on nuclear forces. This time, no senator voiced such worries. In fact, Russia was barely mentioned.

Instead, senators indicated that they are more concerned about problems posed to NATO from within rather than from outside. Several senators, led by Carl Levin (D-MI) and John Warner (R-VA), expressed concern that as the alliance grows it will become harder for the alliance to act because it makes decisions by consensus. Senator Jim Jeffords (I-VT) made the strongest statement, declaring, “I am concerned that the alliance has expanded to the point of becoming inefficient and unwieldy.”

Reflecting these concerns, the Senate passed a nonbinding amendment calling on the president to initiate a discussion at NATO on the consensus decision-making rule.

Underlying this Senate initiative, in part, was lingering resentment over the failure of some NATO members to stand firmly with the United States in confronting Iraq over its disarmament. Belgium, France, and Germany strongly opposed U.S.-led military action against Iraq, and Turkey did not grant the United States the use of Turkish territory for launching a northern invasion.

The amendment also called for the president to raise the “merits” of creating a process for suspending a country’s alliance membership if it “no longer complies with NATO principles of democracy, individual liberty, and the rule of law.” The process would potentially be applied to a country that became a dictatorship.

The amendment does not specify a U.S. position on either the consensus rule or the suspension issue but only suggests they be brought up for discussion.

Some senators acknowledged that the seven aspiring countries will not contribute much military manpower or might to the alliance, but they expressed confidence that the countries would be able to fill capability niches, such as detecting weapons of mass destruction and demining. They also said they hope the new members will reinvigorate the spirit of the alliance as a club of free-market democracies.

All NATO’s existing members must approve the seven countries’ bids to join the alliance. The United States was the third country to do so, following Canada and Norway. All NATO members agreed last November to extend invitations to the seven countries to join, and they are all expected to approve the seven states’ accession.

The Senate also declared that NATO’s door remains open and that these seven “will not be the last.” Albania, Croatia, and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia have applied for NATO membership.

 

What a difference five years makes. The last time the U.S. Senate weighed extending NATO membership to new countries in 1998, senators debated for four days about how Russia...

Albania Has Chemical Arms; CWC Review Conference Meets

Kerry Boyd

While the United States invaded Iraq and sent its troops around that country on a so-far fruitless search for chemical and biological weapons, a European state quietly announced that it has chemical weapons. During a meeting of states belonging to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) in mid-March, Albania stated that it possesses chemical weapons. A month later, 110 of the 151 CWC member states gathered to review the treaty, which bans all chemical weapons and requires their destruction, and agreed on several steps to enhance the treaty’s implementation.

Albania will soon start destroying its stockpile, according to Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) Director-General Rogelio Pfirter. Further information on the size and content of the country’s chemical stockpile is not yet publicly available, according to the OPCW.

A month after Albania’s declaration, CWC member states met in The Hague from April 28 to May 9 for the treaty’s first review conference since the treaty entered into force in 1997. At the end of the conference, states agreed both to a final declaration and a political declaration; the ability of states to agree to such declarations is often considered a sign of success for a conference.

The declarations released at the end of the conference reaffirm the states’ commitment to the convention’s goals and the importance of expanding the treaty’s membership to include countries that might have chemical weapons and are not party to the CWC. Thus, the conference accomplished two of the main tasks suggested in advance by Pfirter and several leading countries, such as the United States.

The final documents also emphasize the importance of improving the efficiency of the inspection regime mandated by the CWC. One of the United States’ primary goals at the conference was making inspections more cost effective. The OPCW expects the number of sites used to destroy chemical weapons to increase dramatically starting this year as the United States and Russia plan to open more demilitarization sites, and the organization has decided it must find ways to make inspections more efficient in order to fulfill its inspection responsibilities.

Delegates also agreed that national implementation of the treaty’s provisions is key to the convention’s effectiveness. Each state-party is required to adopt certain measures, such as enacting penal legislation, to implement the treaty on its own territory. States are supposed to inform the OPCW of such measures, but many have failed to do so. According to British delegate Denis MacShane, only one-quarter of member states have “implemented the necessary legislation covering all the key areas for enforcement” of CWC provisions.

The U.S. and British delegates urged states to implement national provisions required by the treaty, particularly penal legislation, arguing that such legislation is key to preventing terrorism involving chemical agents. MacShane spoke of suspected terrorist activity in the United Kingdom last winter that involved the development of the toxin ricin and the role British penal law played in helping to apprehend and prosecute the alleged terrorists.

The final declaration calls on member states that are lagging behind to submit information on national implementation measures by the next regular session of the Conference of the States-Parties, a decision-making body comprised of all CWC member states.

The states also agreed on the importance of assistance to help states protect themselves from chemical attack and emphasized the need for increased international cooperation in chemical science and technology—issues of particular importance to non-Western states.

Outstanding Issues

The final documents, however, do not address several concerns that states and nongovernmental organizations had going into the conference. At an open forum where nongovernmental experts spoke, concerns were raised about the increasing interest of certain states in so-called nonlethal chemical weapons, ranging from riot control agents to chemical incapacitants designed to render targets unconscious. A note from Pfirter to the review conference, released April 17, said states might want to discuss concerns related to nonlethal weapons. “These issues need to be carefully analysed so as to prevent any potential harm to the Convention,” the note says. At least two states-parties raised the issue of nonlethal weapons in their speeches at the conference, but neither the final declaration nor the political statement refers to the issue directly.

Another issue is Russia’s request for an extension on the 2007 deadline for destroying its entire chemical weapons stockpile—the largest in the world. On April 26, Russia finished destroying 1 percent of its stockpile, after receiving an extension on the original April 2000 deadline. (See ACT, June 2003.) Russia has said it will miss the April 2007 deadline for total destruction of Category 1 stockpiles—the most dangerous weapons. The treaty allows states to request an extension until 2012. The final declaration did not directly address Russia’s difficulty meeting deadlines, but it reaffirmed that possessor states are responsible for destroying their chemical weapons. It also, however, called on states with the ability to provide assistance to do so.

The United States is also not expected to meet the 2007 deadline, although, so far, it has met its interim deadlines and it has not yet requested an extension. “Since entry into force, we have met every treaty milestone, and to date have destroyed over 22 percent of our stockpile,” said Stephen Rademaker, U.S. assistant secretary of state for arms control. He also noted that destroying the entire U.S. chemical weapons arsenal is expected to cost a total of $24 billion.

Confronting Problem States

Rademaker’s statement to the conference reflected the Bush administration’s approach to weapons of mass destruction: drawing attention to a few problem states and showing little interest in using inspection provisions. He listed Syria, Libya, and North Korea as states outside the treaty that are developing chemical weapons. “One step we must collectively take is to provide powerful incentives—both positive and negative—to those states remaining outside the Chemical Weapons Convention to join,” Rademaker said.

Continuing a Bush administration trend of breaking the diplomatic taboo against “naming names,” Rademaker also accused Iran, a CWC state-party, of stockpiling “blister, blood, and choking agents” and possibly making nerve agents. In response, the Iranian delegate called Rademaker’s statements “baseless allegations” and noted that, although Iran acquired some chemical weapons capability at the end of its war with Iraq in the 1980s, it has dismantled its production facilities under OPCW supervision. He reiterated Iran’s full support for the convention, highlighting Iran’s own tragic experience with Iraqi chemical attacks.

Rademaker also said the United States is working with Sudan to address U.S. concerns that the country has attempted to obtain the capability to produce chemical weapons.

He did not name any other states-parties but said more than a “dozen countries currently possess or are actively pursuing chemical weapons. While some…are not Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention, others have representatives here in this room.”

Rademaker urged the organization to be bold in confronting states that are violating the convention and added that the United States has “made extensive use” of CWC provisions that allow countries to discuss concerns bilaterally. The United States, however, has not used the provisions allowed under the treaty to call for a challenge inspection of Iran or any other country it suspects of developing chemical weapons.

U.S. Upgrades Presence at OPCW

Rademaker also announced that the United States has appointed Ambassador Eric Javits as the U.S. representative to the OPCW, upgrading U.S. representation to permanent resident status. Javits was previously the representative to the Conference on Disarmament, and his reassignment is both a sign of U.S. annoyance at the impasse in that conference and an expression of U.S. support for the OPCW’s new director-general. The United States had led a campaign to oust the organization’s first leader, José Bustani, and successfully won a vote that removed him in April 2002. Pfirter became the new director-general in July 2002. (See ACT, September 2002.)

 

While the United States invaded Iraq and sent its troops around that country on a so-far fruitless search for chemical and biological weapons, a European state quietly announced that it has chemical weapons.

Senators, Scientists Say Congress Should Reject Bush Administration's Proposals for New Nuclear Weapons

Sections:

Body: 

For Immediate Release: May 1, 2003

Press Contacts: Daryl Kimball, (202) 277-3478 or Christine Kucia, (202) 463-8270 x103

Washington, D.C.): The diplomatic and security costs of the Bush administration's proposals to explore new nuclear weapons far outweigh any marginal benefits such arms might yield, an expert panel led by Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA) warned April 29. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) issued a statement with the same message in conjunction with the panel discussion, sponsored by the Arms Control Association.

The Bush administration is asking Congress to continue funding research on modifying existing types of nuclear weapons to enable them to destroy deeply buried and hardened targets. It is also seeking a repeal of a 10-year-old prohibition, known as the Spratt-Furse Amendment, against research and development leading to the production of low-yield nuclear weapons.

Kennedy took issue with both of the administration's proposals. He noted that the "bunker buster" currently being researched would have a destructive potential 10 times that of the blast that destroyed Hiroshima and could "spew tons of radioactive waste into the atmosphere, with a devastating plume that could poison huge areas in its path." Kennedy also dismissed the concept of low-yield weapons, saying, "The precision-guided munitions and standoff weapons we have today make these mini-nukes unnecessary. They would be no more effective than conventional munitions, and would be far more dangerous to our troops."

Led by Kennedy, the panel warned that the administration's proposals send the wrong message to the rest of the world that the United States believes nuclear weapons have a battlefield role. The proposals threaten to breakdown the long-standing firewall between conventional arms and nuclear weapons and jeopardize what has become an international norm of the non-use of nuclear weapons, according to the panel.

Kennedy declared, "A nuclear weapon is not just another item in our arsenal, and it's wrong to treat it like it is."

Feinstein asked, "How can we effectively seek to dissuade others from developing nuclear weapons while we are going forward with the development of new nuclear weapons ourselves?" She cautioned, "If we are not careful, our own nuclear posture could provoke the very nuclear proliferation activities we are seeking to prevent."

Dr. Sidney Drell, professor emeritus at Stanford University, said that using nuclear weapons, either to respond to a chemical or biological attack or in a tactical situation against a deeply buried bunker is a "terrible idea." He added, "I think that's the most dangerous idea in the world that we face."

The administration contends that making nuclear weapons more "usable," by reducing their potential for causing civilian casualties or improving their effectiveness in destroying sites buried deep below the Earth's surface, would enhance the deterrent value of the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

Drell and Dr. Matthew McKinzie of the Natural Resources Defense Council contested the notion that a nuclear weapon could be developed to destroy a deeply buried target, yet cause little collateral damage. Drell said the concept is a "physical myth." Both physicists noted a nuclear weapon exploded just beneath the Earth's surface would actually create more fallout than one detonated above the target because the former casts more radioactive dirt and particles into the air. Drell noted that for a five-kiloton weapon to produce no fallout, it would have to be detonated about 350 feet deep, but "we don't know how to go below 50 [feet]."

Drell argued that instead of investing in new nuclear weapons, the United States would benefit more by improving its conventional weapons capabilities and means to gather accurate information and target suspected sites of concern.

Instead of approving the Bush administration's initiatives to explore new nuclear weapons, Daryl G. Kimball, the executive director of the Arms Control Association, recommended four other actions:

  • Maintain the current prohibition on low-yield nuclear weapons research.
  • Shift nuclear bunker buster funding to non-nuclear munitions research.
  • Reaffirm the U.S. nuclear test moratorium and focus stockpile stewardship efforts on surveillance and maintenance activities most useful to ensuring the reliability of the existing U.S. nuclear arsenal.
  • Clarify that as long as the United States possesses nuclear weapons, their role is limited to the deterrence of nuclear attack by other states.

These four recommendations are further detailed in "New Nuclear Policies, New Weapons, New Dangers"—a new Arms Control Association report on the Bush administration's misdirected approach to nuclear weapons. The report is available online at http://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/newnuclearweaponsissuebrief.asp.
(Also available as a PDF file, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

A full transcript of the briefing with Senator Kennedy is also available online at http://www.armscontrol.org/events/newnuclearweapons_apr03.asp.

Senator Dianne Feinstein's (D-CA) statement is available at http://feinstein.senate.gov/03Releases/r-arms.htm.

# # #

The Arms Control Association is an independent, nonprofit membership organization dedicated to promoting public understanding of and support for effective arms control policies to address security threats posed by nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, as well as conventional arms.

 

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An Extra Year for Russian Withdrawal from Moldova

Wade Boese

Acknowledging that Russia would not meet its end-of- 2002 deadline to withdraw all of its military equipment and troops from Moldova, the 55-member Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) took note December 8 of a Russian pledge to finish the task within the coming year.

Russia committed in November 1999 to withdraw all of its heavy weaponry limited by the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty from Moldova by the end of 2001 and to remove the rest of its military forces from the country by the close of 2002. Moscow completed the first part of its withdrawal on time, but implementation of the second has barely been started. (See ACT, September 2002.)

By the end of 2002, Russia had shipped a total of eight trainloads of weapons and equipment out of Moldova. Approximately another 100 trainloads of weapons, ammunition, and other military equipment remain. Equipment to help destroy some of the more than 40,000 tons of stockpiled ammunition is still sitting at a local airport after arriving in Moldova last April and June.

Moscow contends that it is not to blame for the lagging withdrawal. Russian military forces in Moldova are located in the Transdniestria region, which is an enclave of ethnic Russian separatists. The Kremlin claims that the separatists are blocking their withdrawal and demanding that Russia compensate them for removal of the weaponry and equipment, in part by writing off a $100 million gas debt owed by the region to Russia.

Russia’s failure to withdraw its forces from Moldova, as well as its lingering dispute with Georgia over how long Russia has to abandon two bases in that country, are holding up entry into force of a 1999 revision of the CFE Treaty. NATO countries insist that Russia fulfill its withdrawal commitments in Moldova and Georgia before the 19 members of the alliance ratify the updated treaty, which requires ratification by all 30 CFE states-parties for it to become legally binding.

The adapted CFE Treaty is designed to limit the amount of heavy conventional weaponry allowed on each of its states-parties’ territory rather than balancing the arsenals of NATO and the now-defunct Warsaw Pact, as did the original treaty, which was signed in 1990.

Acknowledging that Russia would not meet its end-of- 2002 deadline to withdraw all of its military equipment and troops from Moldova, the 55-member...

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