On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the nuclear age, it is time for [President Obama] to rejuvenate U.S. leadership on nonproliferation and disarmament.
In a major disarmament step, Russia and the United States appear poised to negotiate a significant new agreement on strategic arms reduction as the clock ticks toward the December 2009 expiration of the 1991 START. At the same time, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office issued a report detailing proposed steps for an eventual ban on all nuclear weapons. (Continue)
In recent public statements and congressional hearings, Obama administration officials have indicated that they will reverse Bush-era policies on a number of major arms control issues. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and other Obama appointees have said that they will actively pursue ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) as well as a new strategic arms agreement with Russia and have revised the U.S. approach to negotiations on a treaty banning the production of fissile material for use in nuclear weapons. (Continue)
Several weeks after the Russian-Georgian military conflict and several weeks before the United States elects a new president, formal U.S.-Russian talks on nuclear weapons and anti-missile systems are languishing. Neither Moscow nor Washington seem eager to change the pace, suggesting the two capitals might be content simply to let the dialogue linger until the next U.S. administration takes power. (Continue)
Meeting for their final time as presidents, George W. Bush and Vladimir Putin extolled their efforts to move the United States and Russia beyond their Cold War confrontation. Yet, the two leaders left unresolved arms disputes rooted in that competition that have been a constant source of friction for their two administrations. (Continue)
One divisive issue in U.S.-Russian talks on a future strategic weapons treaty is Russia's interest in having that agreement limit long-range missiles and delivery systems armed with non-nuclear warheads. The Bush administration is seeking such weapons to expand U.S. quick-strike options against targets around the world, but Congress and a recent government watchdog report have raised some concerns about the initiative. (Continue)
Top U.S. and Russian officials accentuated the positive after a recent high-level meeting, but the two sides remain deeply divided on developing anti-missile systems and managing their future nuclear weapons relationship. (Continue)