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former IAEA Director-General

Retired General James Cartwright Voted 2012 "Arms Control Person of the Year"
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For immediate release: January 8, 2013

Press contact: Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x 107

(Washington, D.C.) General James Cartwright garnered the highest number of votes in an online poll to determine the "2012 Arms Control Person of the Year." Nine other individuals and institutions were nominated by the staff of the Arms Control Association for their achievements and contributions.

Cartwright, former commander of U.S. Strategic Command and former vice-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was nominated for calling on the United States to: reduce nuclear forces to 900 total warheads; scale back multi-billion-dollar plans to modernize the nuclear triad; and reduce the alert status of deployed nuclear weapons.

A May 2012 report chaired by Cartwright concludes that the current U.S. and Russian arsenals "vastly exceed what is needed to satisfy reasonable requirements of deterrence," and that there is "no conceivable situation" in which nuclear weapons would be used by either side. As the possibility of automatic cuts looms over the ongoing debate on reducing U.S. defense spending, Cartwright also called for cutting the nuclear weapons budget by roughly $120 billion over the next two decades.

"General Cartwright has helped change the debate in Washington on the appropriate size and cost of U.S. nuclear forces in the post-Cold War era," said Daryl G. Kimball, executive director of ACA.

The runner-up for the 2012 distinction was the National Academy of Sciences experts panel that released an authoritative 2012 report describing the technical issues concerning the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which President Obama says he wants the U.S. Senate to approve.

Second runner-up were the Foreign Ministers of Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, Finland, Japan, Kenya, and the United Kingdom who successfully advanced a proposal at the UN to hold a final diplomatic conference for a global Arms Trade Treaty in March 2013.

The online poll was open between Dec. 18, 2012 to Jan. 5, 2013. The list of all 2012 nominees is available online.

Past winners of the "Arms Control Person of the Year" are: Reporter and activist Kathi Lynn Austin (2011), Kazakhstan's Deputy Foreign Minister Kairat Umarov and Thomas D'Agostino, U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration Administrator (2010); Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) (2009), Norway's Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre and his ministry's Director-General for Security Policy and the High North Steffen Kongstad (2008), and U.S. Congressmen Peter Visclosky (D-Ind.) and David Hobson (R-Ohio) (2007).

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Posted: January 8, 2013