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"No one can solve this problem alone, but together we can change things for the better." 

– Setsuko Thurlow
Hiroshima Survivor
June 6, 2016
June 2008
Edition Date: 
Friday, June 6, 2008
Cover Image: 

Books of Note

Pakistan’s Nuclear Future: Worries Beyond War
Edited by Henry D. Sokolski, U.S. Army War College, 2008, 378 pp.

The contributing authors of this volume examine a range of security challenges stemming from Pakistan’s nuclear weapons and energy programs. They first examine the history of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program and explore whether the experience of nuclear proliferation from Pakistan through the black market network of Pakistani nuclear official Abdul Qadeer Khan may be repeated in the future. The volume then turns to questions regarding Pakistan’s nuclear force requirements and how Islamabad intends to match these requirements with its vague nuclear-use doctrine. In particular, the authors examine India’s nuclear and conventional superiority and consider how the impact of this imbalance may contribute to the size of Pakistan’s arsenal and the country’s reliance on nuclear deterrence. The last three authors focus on the issue of nuclear security, highlighting the risk that Pakistani nuclear facilities—housing nuclear and radioactive materials, or nuclear weapons—may be subject to attack. They stress the need for regulatory oversight and physical protection as precautionary measures.


Nuclear Logics: Contrasting Paths in East Asia and the Middle East
By Etel Solingen, Princeton University Press, 2007, 420 pp.

This book examines why nine countries in two regions have decided to pursue or renounce nuclear weapons. In East Asia, the author finds that a priority on economic openness and state continuity, rather than the fate of individual leaders, prompted Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan’s decision to ultimately refrain from building nuclear weapons. North Korea, a country that has acquired nuclear weapons, is the notable anomaly in the region. In the Middle East, a region whose leaders generally emphasize their own survival and who are less likely to support economic integration, pursuit of or ambiguity regarding nuclear weapons is more common, as evidenced in Iran, Iraq, Israel, and Libya. Here, Egypt is the anomaly, but the author warns that Egypt’s internationalizing model may be under strain. Solingen explicitly discounts the value of other theories that focus heavily on international considerations to explain nuclear behavior. Instead, she offers a set of policy implications that touch on the role of democracy, preventing inward-looking regimes from concentrating power, rewarding internationalization, and paying attention to energy resources in crafting sanctions and other nonproliferation mechanisms.

Banning Landmines: Disarmament, Citizen Diplomacy, and Human Security
Edited by Jody Williams, Stephen D. Goose, and Mary Wareham, Rowman & Littlefield, 2008, 348 pp.

Edited by Nobel Peace Prize winner Jody Williams and two other leading antilandmine activists, Banning Landmines chronicles progress in curbing the use of landmines since the implementation of the 1997 Ottawa Convention, or Mine Ban Treaty, which banned anti-personnel landmines. The book includes contributions from diplomatic negotiators, grassroots activists, arms experts, and mine survivors. Although some of the authors broaden the scope of the text at points to comment more generally on human security in a changing world, the driving focus of the book is on the evolution of landmine policy.


Are you interested in purchasing these books? You can help support the Arms Control Association by visiting one of our partners.

 

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Pakistan’s Nuclear Future: Worries Beyond War. Edited by Henry D. Sokolski, U.S. Army War College, 2008, 378 pp.

Nuclear Logics: Contrasting Paths in East Asia and the Middle East. By Etel Solingen, Princeton University Press, 2007, 420 pp.

Banning Landmines: Disarmament, Citizen Diplomacy, and Human Security. Edited by Jody Williams, Stephen D. Goose, and Mary Wareham, Rowman & Littlefield, 2008, 348 pp.

June 2008 Bibliography

Of Special Interest

Duncan, John, "Statement on Behalf of China, France, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America to the 2008 Non-Proliferation Treaty Preparatory Committee," May 9, 2008.

Kessler, Glenn, "State Department Asks Congress to Keep Quiet About Details of Deal," The Washington Post, May 9, 2008, p. A25.

Lugar, Richard, and Nunn, Sam, "Help Russia Help Us," The New York Times, May 30, 2008.

Tutu, Desmond, "Govern Global Trade in Weapons," The Australian, May 9, 2008.

I. Strategic Arms

Agence France-Presse, "Nuclear Missiles Parade Across Red Square," May 9, 2008.

Associated Press, "Arms Experts Say China Making Dramatic Improvements to Nuclear Arsenal," International Herald Tribune, May 8, 2008.

Blanchard, Ben, and Kang Lim, Benjamin, "China Shrugs Off Report of Tropical Nuclear Sub Base," Reuters, May 6, 2008.

Fleck, John, "Next Nuclear Weapons Are a Tough Sell for Labs," The Albuquerque Journal, May 25, 2008.

Garn, Jake, and Bennion, John W., "Curbing the Global Nuclear Threat," Salt Lake Tribune, May 24, 2008.

Grossman, Elaine M., "A Former Nuclear Commander Not Wild About Nukes," Global Security Newswire, May 24, 2008.

Hoffman, Michael, "Minot's 5th Bomber Wing Flunks Nuclear Inspection," The Air Force Times, May 30, 2008.

Medalia, Jonathan, The Reliable Replacement Warhead Program: Background and Current Developments, Congressional Research Service, May 19, 2008, 57 pp.

RIA Novosti, "Russia Scraps Another Batch of Topol Systems Under START I Treaty," May 29, 2008.

Schmitt, Gary, and Sokolski, Henry "Advice for the Nuclear Abolitionists," The Weekly Standard, May 12, 2008.

Shchedrov, Oleg, "Russia's Medvedev Vows Cash for Nuclear Deterrent," Reuters, May 15.

Sieff, Martin, "Medvedev's Missile Pledge," United Press International, May 20, 2008.

Tertrais, Bruno, France and Nuclear Disarmament: The Meaning of the Sarkozy Speech, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Proliferation Analysis, May 1, 2008, 2 pp.

Webb, Greg, "Disarmament Depends on Others, Nuclear Powers Say," Global Security Newswire, May 2, 2008.

II. Nuclear Proliferation

Cohen, Avner, and Spector, Leonard S., "Cloak and Stagger," Los Angeles Times, May 4, 2008.

The Economist, "Stopping the Wrong Sort of Chain Reaction," May 22, 2008.

Landau, Emily B., "Assessing Nuclear Activity in Syria and Iran: The Elusive Smoking Gun," INSS Insight, No. 54, May 4, 2008.

Warrick, Joby, "Spread of Nuclear Capability is Feared," The Washington Post, May 12, 2008, p. A1.

Warrick, Joby, and Wright, Robin, "Purchases Linked N. Korean to Syria," The Washington Post, May 11, 2008, p. A18.

India

Bidwai, Praful, "India/U.S.: Nuke Deal Set to Time Out," Inter Press Service, May 8, 2008.

Dombey, Daniel, and Yee, Amy, "India's Communists Keep Brake on Nuclear Deal," Financial Times, May 13, 2008.

Express India, "Mukherjee Tells Rice About Difficulties on N-deal," May 13, 2008, p. 1.

Indo-Asian News Service, "Left Denies Manmohan Gov't Go-Ahead on IAEA Pact," May 7, 2008.

Indrai, Bagchi, "N-deal Not Dead, India Tells NSG," The Times of India, May 27, 2008.

Jebaraj, Priscilla, "Nuclear Deal is Not Dead But Down to Last Days: Mulford," The Hindu, May 20, 2008.

Pradhan, Bibhudatta, "Indian Coalition, Communists Fail to End Atomic Accord Deadlock," Bloomberg, May 6, 2008.

Shah, Amita, "Left Nukes the Nuclear Deal," TNN, May 7, 2008.

Solomon, Jay, and Wonacott, Peter, "U.S.-Indian Nuclear Deal Faces Uncertain Future," The Wall Street Journal, May 15, 2008, p. A4.

Suroor, Hasan, "Fate of Nuclear Deal in Hands of Left: Minister," The Hindu, May 21, 2008.

The Times of India, "Left Forces UPA to Postpone May Meet," May 27, 2008.

The Times of India, "Indian Defense Scientists Seek to Develop ICBMs, SLBMs, Functional BMD by 2011," May 13, 2008.

The Times of India, "Gov't: Uranium Shortage has Hit N-power Plants," May 4, 2008.

Iran

Agence France-Presse, "Russian Urges Security Guarantees for Iran," May 14, 2008.

Agence France-Presse, "Russia Says Iranian Enrichment Freeze is Sole Demand," May 3, 2008.

Associated Press, "Iran Rejects Incentives Linked to Requirement that it Stop Enriching Uranium," May 11, 2008.

Associated Press, "Iran Rejects Intrusive Nuclear Inspection as Unfair in View of Israel," International Herald Tribune, May 5, 2008.

Blair, Edmund, "Iran Rules Out Halt to Sensitive Nuclear Work," Reuters, May 5, 2008.

DeYoung, Karen, "Gates: U.S. Should Engage Iran With Incentives, Pressure," The Washington Post, May 15, 2008, p. A4.

Dinmore, Guy, "Italy to Join ‘Very Firm' Approach on Iran," Financial Times, May 15, 2008.

Dombey, Daniel, "Iran on Track for Nuclear Milestone," Financial Times, May 29, 2008.

Fathi, Nazila, "Iran Seems to Reject West's Offer," The New York Times, May 5, 2008.

Hafezi, Parisa, "Iran Agrees to Solana's Nuclear Trip, No Date Set," Reuters, May 20, 2008.

Heinrich, Mark, "Iran's Pitch to Big Powers Sidesteps Atomic Concerns," Reuters, May 14, 2008.

Institute for Science and International Security, Text of Iranian Offer for "Constructive Negotiations," May 20, 2008, 9 pp.

International Atomic Energy Agency, Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement and relevant provisions of Security Council resolutions 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007) and 1803 (2008) in the Islamic Republic of Iran, May 26, 2008, 10 pp.

Jahn, George, "Diplomats Say IAEA Chief Urging More U.S. Flexibility on Iran," Associated Press, May 6, 2008.

Jordan, Mary and Wright, Robin, "Major Powers Offer Iran New Incentives," The Washington Post, May 3, 2008, p. A11.

Khaitous, Tariq, "Why Arab Leaders Worry About Iran's Nuclear Program," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Online, May 23, 2008.

Moore, Molly, "Iran Withholds Key Nuclear Documents: Program Still Peaceful, UN Agency Says," The Washington Post, May 26, 2008, p. A7.

Myers, Steven Lee, "Bush Team Criticizes New Report About Iran," The New York Times, May 21, 2008.

Sciolino, Elaine, "Big Powers Agree on New Bid for Iranian Nuclear Freeze," The New York Times, May 3, 2008.

Sweeney, Conor, "Russia Says ‘Six' Could Guarantee Iran Security," Reuters, May 14, 2008.

North Korea

Abramowitz, Morton, and Bosworth, Stephen, "Reaching Out to Pyongyang," Newsweek, May 12, 2008.

Bolton, John R., "Bush's North Korea Nuclear Abdication," The Wall Street Journal, May 8, 2008, p. A15.

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Keith Luse February 2008 DPRK Trip Report, May 13, 2008, 5 pp.

Cooper, Helene, "In Disclosure, North Korea Contradicts U.S. Intelligence on Its Plutonium Program," The New York Times, May 31, 2008.

Cooper, Helene, "North Korea Gives U.S. Files on Plutonium Efforts," The New York Times, May 9, 2008.

Gearan, Anne, "North Korean Nuclear Documents Unlikely to Dispel US Doubts About Weapons Program," Associated Press, May 13, 2008.

Harden, Blaine, "Japan Feeling Left Out as U.S. Talks to Pyongyang," The Washington Post, May 17, 2008, p. A14.

Kessler, Glenn, "Rice Says Policy on North Korea A Team Effort," The Washington Post, May 30, 2008, p. A11.

Kessler, Glenn, "Mid-Level Official Steered U.S. Shift on North Korea," The Washington Post, May 26, 2008, p. A1.

Kessler, Glenn, "U.S. Increases Estimate of N. Korean Plutonium," The Washington Post, May 14, 2008, p. A13.

Kessler, Glenn, "N. Korea Agrees to Blow Up Tower at Its Nuclear Facility," The Washington Post, May 2, 2008, p. A13.

Kirk, Donald, "U.S. to Mine N. Korea Papers for Answers, Progress," The Christian Science Monitor, May 12, 2008.

Sokolski, Henry, "North Korea Nuclear Threat: Not Worth the Price of Admission," National Review Online, May 30, 2008.

Strobel, Warren P., "Documents Cast Doubt on Estimated of Plutonium Stocks," McClatchy Newspapers, May 29, 2008.

The Wall Street Journal, "Vetoing the Verifiers," May 8, 2008, p. A14.

The Washington Times, "Bush's N. Korea Policy Draws Right Jab," May 4, 2008.

Pakistan

Agence France-Presse, "Pakistan Hails ‘Historic' Nuclear Tests 10 Years On," May 29, 2008.

The Guardian, "Disgraced Atomic Scientist Disowns Confession," May 30, 2008.

Indo-Asian News Service, "Going Nuclear Came at a Cost for Pakistan," May 11, 2008.

Syria

Agence France-Presse, "U.S. Extends Syria Sanctions," May 7, 2008.

Albright, David, and Brannan, Paul, The Al Kibar Reactor: Extraordinary Camouflage, Troubling Implications, Institute for Science and International Security, May 12, 2008, 30 pp.

Asculai, Ephraim, Inspecting Syria's Al-Kibar Site: A Technical Note, Institute for Science and International Security, May 12, 2008, 4 pp.

Associated Press, "U.S. Intelligence Official Defends U.S. Monitoring of Alleged Syrian Nuclear Reactor," May 30, 2008.

Simpson, Fiona, "The IAEA's Dilemma with Syria's Al Kibar Nuclear Site," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Online, May 6, 2008.

Warrick, Joby, "Experience with Syria Exemplifies Challenges that Detection Presents," The Washington Post, May 12, 2008, p. A16.

Warrick, Joby, and Wright, Robin, "Search is Urged for Syrian Nuclear Sites," The Washington Post, May 29, 2008, p. A14.

III. Nonproliferation

Agence France-Presse, "Washington Touts Success of Non-Proliferation Measure," May 28, 2008.

Agence France-Presse, "Croatia Hosts WMD Exercise," May 12, 2008.

Dupré, Bruno, Reinventing Nunn Lugar, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Proliferation Analysis, May 22, 2008, 2 pp.

Gienger, Viola, "Syria-Bound Missile-Related Gear Was Seized in 2007," Bloomberg, May 28, 2008.

James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, NWFZ Clearinghouse, May 13, 2008.

Mohammed, Arshad, "Missile-Related Shipment Stopped, U.S. Says," Reuters, May 29, 2008.

IV. Missiles and Missile Defense

Agence France-Presse, "NATO Secretary Supports US Missile Shield," May 5, 2008.

Agence France-Presse, "Gorbachev Fears New Cold War Over U.S. Missile Shield: Report," May 6, 2008.

Agence France-Presse, "US Says ‘Optimistic' on Missile Shield Deal with Poland," May 6, 2008.

Associated Press, "Foreign Minister: Poland Won't Interfere if US Seeks Other Location for Missile Defense Base," May 9, 2008.

Associated Press, "Bush's Missile Defense Plan Inches Forward in Congress," May 5, 2008.

BBC News, "Presidents Condemn US Shield Plan," May 23, 2008.

Capaccio, Tony, "Boeing Intercept Missile Test Delayed Again by Glitch," Bloomberg, May 14, 2008.

Cienski, Jan, "Czechs to Host US Missile Shield Amid Public Opposition," Financial Times, May 23, 2008.

DeMascio, Jen, "Missile Accomplished," Politico, May 5, 2008.

Interfax, "Russia Will Continue Missile Defense Talks with U.S., But Will Respond to Unilateral Steps: Medvedev," May 22, 2008.

Kumar, Hemanth, "Agni IV Ready to Take Off," newindpress.com, May 26, 2008.

Reuters, "India Tests Long-Range Nuclear-Capable Missile," May 7, 2008.

Rutherford, Emelie, "Democrats On Oversight Panel Question Missile Defense Investment," Defense Daily, May 1, 2008.

The Times of India, "Going Ballistic: India Looks to Join Elite Missile Club," May 13, 2008.

Wolf, Jim, "U.S. Looks Set to Offer Israel Powerful New Radar," Reuters, May 10, 2008.

Wolf, Jim, "Senate Panel OKs European Missile Defense Sites," Reuters, May 1, 2008.

Zaitsev, Yury, "Russia's Missile Defense Systems: Past, Present and Future," RIA Novosti, May 14, 2008.

V. Chemical and Biological Arms

Associated Press, "700 Mil. Yen ‘Wasted' on Disposal Plan; Cabinet Office Focused on Mechanized Arms Disposal in China Against Advice," May 8, 2008.

Associated Press, "Pine Bluff Arsenal Destroys First VX-Filled Landmine," May 5, 2008.

Dando, Malcolm, "Missed Opportunities at the Chemical Weapons Treaty Meeting," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Online, May 12, 2008.

Palmquist, Matt, "Bioterror in Context," Miller-McCune, May 19, 2008.

Smith, Stephen, "Scientists Call for Biolab Safety Study," The Boston Globe, May 3, 2008.

VI. Conventional Arms

Associated Press, "Cluster Bomb Ban Adopted; Talks Were Boycotted by U.S.," May 31, 2008.

BBC News, "US Charges Russian ‘Arms Dealer,'" May 6, 2008.

Gergely, Andras, "Global Cluster Munitions Ban Agreed," Reuters, May 29, 2008.

Reuters, "Canada Defends Clause Softening Impact of Cluster-Bomb Pact," The Toronto Star, May 31, 2008.

Shanker, Thom, "Gates Says New Arms Must Play Role Now," The New York Times, May 14, 2008.

Simon, Jeffrey, Taylor, Richard Norton, and Batty, David, "Cluster Bomb Treaty Follows UK Decision to Scrap Stockpiles," The Guardian, May 28, 2008.

United Press International, "Nations Sign Treaty Banning Cluster Bombs," May 30, 2008.

VII. U.S. Policy

Associated Press, "New Commission to Study WMDs Expected to Finish Report in Time for Next President," May 17, 2008.

Gaffney, Frank J. Jr., "Needed: A Proliferation of Straight Talk," National Review Online, May 29, 2008.

Grier, Peter, "McCain's Middle Way on Nuclear Weapons," The Christian Science Monitor, May 29, 2008.

Kessler, Glenn, "McCain Signals Desire to See Reduction in Nuclear Arms," The Washington Post, May 28, 2008, p. A4.

Mason, Jeff, "Nuclear Energy Heats Up Presidential Race," Reuters, May 6, 2008.

McCain, John, "Remarks on Nuclear Security," JohnMcCain.com, May 27, 2008.

Schoenfeld, Gabriel, "The Failed Theology of Arms Control," Los Angeles Times, May 24, 2008.

Williams, Dan, "Top U.S. Officials Say Would Prefer No War on Iran," Reuters, May 5, 2008.

VIII. Space

Carroll, James, "Preventing an Arms Race In Outer Space," The Boston Globe, May 12, 2008.

Moore, Mike, "Memo to the Next U.S. President: Keep Space Free of Weapons," San Jose Mercury News, May 9, 2008.

Morring Jr., Frank, and Butler, Amy, "China Appears to Regret ASAT Test," Aviation Week & Space Technology, May 12, 2008.

Yamaguchi, Mari, "Japan Parliament OKs Space Defense Bill," Associated Press, May 20, 2008.

IX. Other

Associated Press, "China Says Nuclear Facilities in Quake-Jolted Areas Confirmed to be Safe, Under Control," May 18, 2008.

Broad, William J., "Western Experts Monitor China's Nuclear Sites for Signs of Earthquake Damage," The New York Times, May 16, 2008.

Faulconbridge, Guy, "Russia, U.S. Sign Civilian Nuclear Pact," Reuters, May 6, 2008.

Finn, Peter, "U.S. Russia Signs Pact on Nuclear Cooperation," The Washington Post, May 7, 2008, p. A10.

Frommer, Frederic J., "U.S.-Russia Pact Faces Opposition in Congress," Associated Press, May 6, 2008.

Gusterson, Hugh, "The New Nuclear Abolitionists," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Online, May 13, 2008.

Hamilton, Tyler, "Nuclear Revival Bumps Against Atrophy," The Toronto Star, May 3, 2008.

Lindlaw, Scott, "US Nuke Official Tells AP Lab Security is Strong," Associated Press, May 20, 2008.

Podvig, Pavel, "Don't Block U.S.-Russian Nuclear Cooperation," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Online, May 22, 2008.

Ross, Dennis, "How to Have Successful Negotiations," The Wall Street Journal, May 24, 2008.

Sky News, "Al Qaeda Calls For WMD Attack on West," May 28, 2008.

Warrick, Joby, "U.S. Cites Big Gains Against Al-Qaeda," Washington Post, May 30, 2008.

Zagorin, Adam, "Security Flaws Exposed at Nuke Lab," Time, May 12, 2008.

June 2008 ACT Print Advertisers

Letters to the Editor

Closing Dimona and Tritium

Mark Fitzpatrick

Bennett Ramberg presents an interesting and well-researched analysis of the potential radiological hazards of a strike on Dimona and hence of a safety rational for closing down the reactor ("Should Israel Close Dimona?" May 2008). There are other reasons for considering mothballing Dimona, particularly if doing so could be part of a regional arms control agreement in which Israel received concessions of equivalent value to its national security. One such benefit might be an agreement for excluding uranium-enrichment and plutonium reprocessing facilities from the region.

Still, as Ramberg notes, closing down Dimona would have consequences, including for Israel's ability to produce boosted weapons using tritium. Although tritium could be produced in an accelerator, this would be very difficult on political grounds. The accelerator Israel is buying from Germany surely comes with end-use requirements that would rule out use for weapons purposes. Unlike France's role in the late 1950s in winking at the military intentions for the reactor and reprocessing plant it sold to Israel, Germany will not be at all inclined to ignore a violation of the accelerator end-use agreement. This and other aspects of Israel's nuclear activities are assessed in a just-published International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) strategic dossier entitled Nuclear Programmes in the Middle East: In the Shadow of Iran (May 2008).

Mark Fitzpatrick is senior fellow for nonproliferation at the IISS.


Time For More NUMEC Information

Victor Gilinsky

In a letter in the October 2007 issue of Arms Control Today, Henry Myers ("The Real Source of Israel's First Fissile Material") wrote about lingering suspicions that, in the early 1960s, Israel obtained bomb-grade uranium from the Nuclear Materials and Equipment Corporation (NUMEC) in Pennsylvania, which had performed work for the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). Myers said that, in the late 1960s, the suspicions were taken very seriously by top officials in the Central Intelligence Agency, and after a review during the Ford administration, they were again taken very seriously at the Justice Department and White House. Documents in the Gerald R. Ford Library, which I believe have never been discussed in print, appear to confirm Myers' view of the importance with which this matter was treated-and more.

In preparing congressional testimony on government accounting for nuclear materials, including those at NUMEC, Attorney General Edward H. Levi had the FBI prepare a report, dated April 22, 1976, on the NUMEC affair. The same day, with the FBI report attached, Levi sent a memorandum to President Gerald Ford. Under the heading "Possible Violation of Criminal Statutes," Levi-who would surely not have bothered the president with idle gossip-wrote the following:

The FBI did not conduct an investigation into the alleged discrepancy in nuclear materials at NUMEC because it was advised by the AEC that any loss likely was attributable to inadequate accounting procedures and that there was no evidence or suspicion of a violation of law. Since no investigation was undertaken, the Department of Justice cannot state that there is no evidence which would support a criminal charge. The facts available with respect to this matter indicate that the following criminal statutes may be involved...

Levi goes on to list 10 possible violations of the Atomic Energy Act and criminal statutes. Two of them, unauthorized dealing in special nuclear material and transportation of dangerous articles, point to suspicions on his part that enriched uranium was unlawfully removed from the NUMEC facility. Even more intriguing are the last three crimes listed: accessory after the fact; misprision of felony (that is, concealing knowledge, usually by an official, of a felony committed by another); and conspiracy. These violations appear to refer to someone in the federal government, and that can only mean at the AEC. Levi writes:

Because the statute of limitations may not have run with respect to any [of the three] offenses that may be involved and because of the responsibility to consider whether any dismissal or other disciplinary proceedings may be appropriate with respect to any persons presently employed as federal officials who may have participated in or concealed any offense, I believe it necessary to conduct an investigation. Section 2271 of the Atomic Energy Act provides that "the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the Department of Justice shall investigate all alleged or suspected criminal violations" of the Act.

The attorney general was telling the president there might at that time still have been persons employed by the federal government that may have earlier "participated in or concealed" offenses related to the misappropriation of nuclear material from NUMEC.

It is unclear whether the investigation Levi believed necessary ever took place. We do know that in 1977 the counselor to the outgoing Ford administration thought it important enough to pass to the head of President Jimmy Carter's transition team key classified NUMEC documents. They included a 1968 memorandum from CIA Director Richard Helms to Attorney General Ramsey Clark, a 1969 letter from FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover to Helms, a 1969 memorandum from Helms to President Richard Nixon, and a 1976 memorandum from CIA Deputy Director for Science and Technology Carl Duckett to Helms. It is time the public got a look at them. I have asked that the documents be declassified, but the answer so far has been "Items denied in full."

Victor Gilinsky is an energy consultant based in Santa Monica, California. He was a commissioner on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from 1975 to 1984.


Theory vs. Practice in Combating Nuclear Terrorism

Thomas B. Cochran and Matthew McKinzie

Michael Levi's book On Nuclear Terrorism begins where we at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) did on this topic: the ABC News nuclear smuggling experiments of 2002-2003 involving depleted uranium.[1] Yet, our perspectives diverge.

As noted in William Potter's review ("Using Murphy's Law Against Nuclear Terrorists," April 2008), two principal themes organize the presentation of narrative and data in Levi's book. One is confronting nuclear terrorism via a synergistic defensive system. Another is the utility of an exploratory approach to understanding terrorist decision-making and actions, seeking to think beyond what are judged to be the most likely scenarios. For proponents of a defensive system, the separate stages in a terrorist plot are met individually with an array of protective measures, each contributing some probability of defeat to the enemy. When the probabilities are multiplied together, what results is an overall low chance of success for the nuclear plotters. Judgments about the efficacy of a defensive system, in Levi's story, arise not just from the effectiveness of the parts of the system, but also from the ways in which the parts of the defensive system mutually support and inform one another. The exploratory aspect to On Nuclear Terrorism is an interesting read, delving cautiously into the technical aspects of constructing a terrorist nuclear device, such as the trade-offs in quality of fissile material and nuclear explosive yield. What emerges at the end of 152 pages is a post-September 11 "to do" list for policymakers nuanced by an emphasis on bringing into play non-nuclear tools and capabilities.

Yet, Levi's exploratory analysis of a defensive system against nuclear terrorism floats above the more problematic landscape of politics and contractor influence on the federal government. This was something NRDC experienced firsthand when we pointed out that neither the existing, first generation nor a planned second generation of radiation portal monitors can reliably detect highly enriched uranium, despite government claims to the contrary. NRDC's experience in the aftermath of the ABC News nuclear smuggling experiments were false statements by federal officials, the seizure and disposal of our depleted-uranium slug used in the experiments, and government harassment. In regard to the Department of Homeland Security's system of radiation portal monitors, the Government Accountability Office in 2006 and 2007 documented official complicity in contractor fraud during classified trials of the second generation of detectors, the Advanced Spectroscopic Portals, at the Nevada test site.[2] Where enormous government contracts are at stake, coupled with expenditures in specific congressional districts and competition between federal agencies for resources and political capital, the system can and has worked to emphasize parts at the expense of the whole. In light of these unfortunate but real world dynamics of a defensive system against nuclear terrorism, we advocate a far greater effort directed at securing and eliminating fissile material at its source.

Thomas B. Cochran is director of the nuclear program of the National Resources Defense Council and holds the Wade Green Chair for Nuclear Policy. Matthew McKinzie is the nuclear program's senior scientist.


ENDNOTES

1. Thomas B. Cochran and Matthew G. McKinzie, "Detecting Nuclear Smuggling," Scientific American, March 24, 2008. Additional information can be found at www.nrdc.org/media/2008/080325.asp.

2. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has produced letters, reports, and testimony critical of the Department of Homeland Security's program to test and develop the second generation of radiation portal monitors. See GAO, "Combating Nuclear Smuggling: Additional Actions Needed to Ensure Adequate Testing of Next Generation Radiation Detection Equipment," GAO-07-1247T, September 18, 2007; GAO, "Combating Nuclear Smuggling: DNDO Has Not Yet Collected Most of the National Laboratories' Test Results on Radiation Portal Monitors in Support of DNDO's Testing and Development Program," GAO-07-347R, March 9, 2007; GAO, "Combating Nuclear Smuggling: DHS's Cost-Benefit Analysis to Support the Purchase of New Radiation Detection Portal Monitors Was Not Based on Available Performance Data and Did Not Fully Evaluate All the Monitors' Costs and Benefits," GAO-07-133R, October 17, 2006; GAO, "Combating Nuclear Terrorism: Federal Efforts to Respond to Nuclear and Radiological Threats and to Protect Emergency Response Capabilities Could Be Strengthened," GAO-06-1015, September 21, 2006; GAO, "Combating Nuclear Smuggling: DHS Has Made Progress Deploying Radiation Detection Equipment at U.S. Ports-of-Entry, but Concerns Remain," GAO-06-389, March 22, 2006; GAO, "Combating Nuclear Smuggling: Corruption, Maintenance, and Coordination Problems Challenge U.S. Efforts to Provide Radiation Detection Equipment to Other Countries," GAO-06-311, March 14, 2006.


Arms Control Today welcomes letters from our readers. Letters should be under 600 words and should include the writer's full name, address and daytime phone number. Please put "LETTER TO THE EDITOR" in the subject line of the E-mail. Letters may be edited for space. E-mail to the Editor.

 

Editor's Note

Miles A. Pomper

It may seem strange to argue that the 1968 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) has been a success at a time when North Korea has opted out of the treaty, Iran has skirted its requirements, and the nuclear-weapon states are still far from meeting the treaty's ultimate goal of nuclear disarmament. Yet, especially given the technological changes and increasing globalization of the last four decades, things surely could have been much worse.

Exactly what has prevented more countries from developing nuclear weapons is open to discussion. International alliances, domestic politics, and the strong-arm tactics of the nuclear superpowers have certainly played a part. But it is also certain that the NPT has played an essential role.

As four influential leaders make clear in this month's issue, if the treaty is going to continue to play its essential role in the preservation of peace and stability in the coming decades, it will have to be adapted and strengthened. In particular, all four write that the nuclear-weapon states have to demonstrate more clearly their commitment to nuclear disarmament.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre acknowledges that states will need to resolve some of the most difficult dilemmas surrounding deterrence and verification. Former UN Undersecretary-General Jayantha Dhanapala argues that such efforts are essential if non-nuclear-weapon states are to be held to their own NPT commitments. Ambassador Thomas R. Pickering, formerly the top U.S. career diplomat, writes that the permanent members of the UN Security Council, particularly the United States and Russia, can and should do more to reduce nuclear dangers. Pointing to the example of the Chemical Weapons Convention, K. Subrahmanyam, a leading Indian nuclear strategist, argues that nuclear-weapon states should take steps, such as banning the first use of nuclear arms, that could eventually lead to the elimination of the weapons altogether.

In addition to looking forward to the future of the NPT, this issue includes a pictorial history of the treaty and related developments in the nuclear nonproliferation regime, created by Assistant Editor Brian Creamer and staff analysts.

Our news section includes Oliver Meier's reporting on a preparatory meeting for the NPT's 2010 review conference. Other news articles cover differences over a proposed follow-on to the 1991 U.S.-Russia START agreement, President George W. Bush's decision to send a nuclear cooperation agreement with Russia to Congress, and the latest wrinkles in the efforts to curb the North Korean and Iranian nuclear programs.

In our book review this month, Paul Boyer discusses J. Peter Scoblic's U.S. vs Them, which examines the role that conservative ideology has played in U.S. political battles over arms control during the last half-century. One of the battles he touches on is the conservatives' fight against the consistent application of the NPT. This is a fight one hopes they lose.

Cluster Munitions Treaty Announced

Miles A. Pomper

More than 100 countries agreed May 30 on a draft treaty to outlaw nearly all cluster munitions, after two weeks of final negotiations in Dublin, Ireland and more than a year of intensive discussions. Those endorsing the treaty included several close U.S. allies, most notably the United Kingdom. The United States and several other countries with the largest stockpiles of such weapons did not endorse the treaty.

Cluster munitions are bombs, rockets, and artillery shells that disperse smaller submunitions over broad areas. Sometimes those submunitions initially fail to explode, posing potentially lethal risks to anyone that might later disturb them. (See ACT, January/February 2008.)

In November 2006, Norway announced that it would lead an effort to limit cluster munitions after the United States, Russia, and some other countries party to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) refused at that time to initiate negotiations on those weapons. The CCW subsequently initiated cluster munitions talks but with a narrower scope than those led by Norway.

The draft treaty requires the destruction of all forbidden cluster munitions within eight years and the clearance of all areas afflicted with unexploded cluster submunition remnants within 10 years. Extensions may be requested if these deadlines cannot be met. Future states-parties may only retain for combat cluster munitions that have five characteristics, such as self-destruct mechanisms, that diminish risks to noncombatants. The accord also includes measures for international assistance to victims of cluster munitions. Countries will be able to officially sign the treaty this December and then it will enter into force six months after 30 governments sign and ratify it.

 

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Unexploded Weapons Clearance Plan Progresses

Jeff Abramson

The Department of State opened a bidding process April 29 to solicit plans for a new quick-reaction force that would be able to handle threats to civilians from unexploded cluster bombs and other explosive remnants of war (ERW). U.S. officials hope that the privately run force could begin operating later this year with the capability to deploy anywhere in the world within 48 hours.

The rationale for the force is wrapped up in the ongoing debate about addressing the effects of cluster munitions, which are bombs, rockets, and artillery shells that disperse smaller submunitions over broad areas and sometime fail to explode and later maim or kill civilians if disturbed. (See ACT, March 2008.) On May 21, Stephen Mull, acting assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs, reiterated the administration's position that a narrow focus on such munitions is ill advised. Instead, he said, "the humanitarian issues brought on by cluster munitions are really a small part of a much larger problem that we think the whole world needs to work on together." Toward that end, the quick-reaction force is tasked with responding to humanitarian and destruction needs associated with a wide range of so-called remnants of war.

Katherine Baker, a U.S. delegation member to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), first discussed the force at a CCW meeting on Jan. 16, saying it would "deal holistically with explosive remnants of war, small arms and light weapons, cluster munitions, landmines, man-portable air defense systems, and other types of conventional weapons found in countries suffering from the legacy of war." Washington prefers to address cluster munitions and other ERW within the CCW process. The United States has abstained from participating in a separate international effort known as the Oslo process, which May 30 in Dublin concluded treaty text limiting cluster munitions.

On April 29, the State Department's Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement released a solicitation asking for private companies to bid on the quick-reaction force. Force requirements include the ability to have an advance reconnaissance team on-site anywhere in the world within 48 hours and an operational force in place within 14 days.

The size and cost of the force is not specified in the solicitation. In some ways, it may be an evolution of a quick-reaction demining program that ended last year. That force, operated by private contractor RONCO Consulting Corporation, consisted of approximately 40 demining personnel and support infrastructure. Between 2001 and 2007, it deployed to Iraq, Mozambique, Sri Lanka, and Sudan, but dealt most specifically with mines, rather than the broader range of conventional weapons and unexploded ordnance envisioned for the new force.

The solicitation closes June 13. As of May 27, more than a dozen companies had added their names to an interested vendor list, suggesting that they may submit proposals to operate the force.

On May 21, Richard Kidd, director of the weapons removal and abatement office, told Arms Control Today that he is hopeful this asset could be operational as early as this fall. He also indicated that he has already been in conversation with UN officials about how to make it available to global efforts. The goal, he said, is to be able to "respond to any conventional weapons emergency" anywhere in the world. He added that "most of the weapons out there are not U.S. origin, not U.S. deployed, and not U.S. made."

 

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Panel Formed on WMD, Terrorism

Brittany Griffith

Congressional leaders recently announced the formation of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism, appointing nine commissioners on May 16.

The commission is the result of legislation Congress passed last year to fully implement the recommendations of the independent commission that investigated the September 11 terrorist attacks. (See ACT, March 2007.) The commission will be responsible for assessing programs intended to secure all nuclear weapons-usable material, evaluating the roles and structure of relevant government departments and other actors, promoting coordination between the United States and international regimes, and analyzing the threat posed by black market networks and the effectiveness of the U.S. response.

Former Sens. Bob Graham (D-Fla.) and Jim Talent (R-Mo.) will serve as chairman and vice chairman of the committee. The other appointees are former Rep. Timothy Roemer (D-Ind.), who served on the original September 11 commission; Ambassador Wendy Sherman; Harvard expert Graham Allison; Richard Verma, a partner at the law firm Steptoe & Johnson; Henry Sokolski, executive director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center; former Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control Stephen Rademaker; and Robin Cleveland, a former congressional, White House, and World Bank aide.

The commission's formation comes as Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) and Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) announced they were forming and would co-chair a Nuclear Security Caucus on Capitol Hill. Fortenberry said the caucus was needed because "[i]t is becoming easier to access the technical information and materials necessary to do devastating harm. It is my hope that this new working group will add momentum to nuclear threat reduction."

Similar to the nine-member commission, the caucus seeks to engage bipartisan interest in identifying vulnerabilities in nuclear policy and taking immediate action to improve safeguards and secure fissile material to prevent its misuse. The new caucus is one of a number of working groups of lawmakers intended to curb the proliferation of nuclear weapons-related technology.

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Congressional leaders recently announced the formation of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism, appointing nine commissioners on May 16.

The commission is the result of legislation Congress passed last year to fully implement the recommendations of the independent commission that investigated the September 11 terrorist attacks. (See ACT, March 2007.) The commission will be responsible for assessing programs intended to secure all nuclear weapons-usable material, evaluating the roles and structure of relevant government departments and other actors, promoting coordination between the United States and international regimes, and analyzing the threat posed by black market networks and the effectiveness of the U.S. response. (Continue)

Anti-Missile Test Shelved By Technical Glitch

Wade Boese

A technical glitch led the Pentagon to scrub its most recently planned test of a long-range ballistic missile interceptor system. The mid-May cancellation came on the heels of a sharp round of congressional debate on the system's capability and the release of a governmental watchdog report that found the system remains unproven and needs more rigorous testing.

Rick Lehner, a spokesperson for the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency (MDA), told Arms Control Today May 15 that the agency canceled the experiment of the ground-based midcourse defense (GMD) due to a faulty telemetry unit on the test interceptor's exoatmospheric kill vehicle. Lehner said the unit plays no role in helping the kill vehicle locate and collide with a target in space but relays data back to testers so they can later evaluate the kill vehicle's performance.

The intercept test would have been the first for the system since destroying a mock warhead last September. (See ACT, November 2007 .) Including that success, the system has compiled a record of seven intercepts in a dozen attempts.

Just four of those tests have occurred after December 2002 when President George W. Bush ordered the system's deployment. The MDA has fielded roughly two dozen GMD interceptors in Alaska and California to counter what the administration claims are growing missile threats from Iran and North Korea. The most advanced missiles successfully flight-tested by either country are medium-range missiles.

Lehner said the next system intercept test will take place later this fall as previously scheduled, but before that, the MDA plans to conduct a target flight test to vet some of the system's radars. Lehner noted that the target would be accompanied by decoys, a practice that the MDA suspended at the end of 2002 as it transitioned to an upgraded interceptor and kill vehicle.

An adversary might employ decoys to trick a missile defense into engaging them while letting a warhead escape unscathed. System critics, such as Philip Coyle, a former director of the Pentagon's independent weapons-testing office, claim that the previous decoys used by the MDA were easily distinguishable from the real target, offered no real discrimination challenge to the GMD system, and did not realistically reflect what a foe could employ.

In recent congressional testimony, Lieutenant General Henry Obering, the director of the MDA, defended his agency's past use of decoys and the GMD's ability to deal with decoys and other countermeasures. Appearing April 1 before a subcommittee panel of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Obering stated the current GMD system has "the ability to deal with simple countermeasures, and we've flown against those in our flight-test program." He also said at an April 30 hearing of a subcommittee of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform that the system is not yet able to deal with "complex countermeasures" but that it could overcome countermeasures that he anticipated Iran and North Korea might employ.

The April 30 hearing was that subcommittee's third missile defense-related hearing convened this year by Rep. John Tierney (D-Mass.), the panel's chairman. Tierney said he was leading an "extensive and sustained" look at missile defense because of its high costs (the most recent annual budget request for the MDA totaled $9.3 billion), previous failed attempts to develop working anti-missile systems, and concerns about the current system's effectiveness and value.

In his remarks, Tierney cited a March report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), which conducts studies for lawmakers. That report found the MDA had "enhanced the capability of some assets" and conducted experiments that "provide some assurance" that the overarching Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS), of which the GMD system is the long-range centerpiece, will work as designed. But the investigative agency also concluded that "performance of the fielded system is as yet not verifiable because too few tests have been conducted to validate the models and simulations that predict BMDS performance." The GAO also stated that "the tests done to date have been developmental in nature, and do not provide sufficient realism for [the Pentagon's] test and evaluation director to fully determine whether the BMDS is suitable and effective for battle."

Obering conceded that the agency had not done enough flight and intercept testing to validate the models and simulations on which it relies to predict the system's performance, but he also contended that past test results have not invalidated those models or simulations either. "We have not seen any showstoppers," Obering declared.

The sharp questioning of Obering during the hearing by Tierney and other Democrats upset the panel's ranking Republican, Rep. Christopher Shays (Conn.). Decrying the hearing as a "fraud" and "an absolute joke," Shays said that committee members only wanted to "score points" rather than "know how this system works."

Some Democrats contend, however, that the MDA is devoting too much attention to less mature systems at the expense of those that have shown promise. In particular, they have urged the MDA to shift greater spending to the Aegis ship-based system and the mobile land-based Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD). Both systems have recent successful testing records and are designed to intercept short- to intermediate-range ballistic missiles that Democrats say present a more immediate threat to U.S. troops and allies than the danger posed by long-range missiles to the U.S. homeland. In making their case, the lawmakers have pointed to a 2007 classified Pentagon report that called for nearly doubling the number of Aegis and THAAD system interceptors (133 and 96, respectively) that the MDA planned to procure.

The legislative protests appear to have had some effect. The MDA budget released earlier this year had postponed the acquisition of two THAAD fire units by at least a year (see ACT, March 2008 ), but Obering testified in the recent hearings that the MDA had revised its plans to avoid the delay. Obering and other administration officials also said they intend to alter their long-term plans to acquire additional Aegis and THAAD system interceptors.

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A technical glitch led the Pentagon to scrub its most recently planned test of a long-range ballistic missile interceptor system. The mid-May cancellation came on the heels of a sharp round of congressional debate on the system's capability and the release of a governmental watchdog report that found the system remains unproven and needs more rigorous testing. (Continue)

Russia Wants Limits on Prompt Global Strike

Wade Boese

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.

Current U.S. efforts to develop long-range conventional-strike weapons grew out of calls for such a capability in the Pentagon's 2001 Quadrennial Defense Review and the Bush administration's Nuclear Posture Review the same year. (See ACT, January/February 2002 .) Administration officials contend that those weapons, now generally referred to as "prompt global strike" and intended to strike targets in less than an hour, would provide a military option when the United States might otherwise face the choice of using nuclear weapons or not acting against a potential danger. Officials acknowledge those moments might be rare, but they include scenarios such as terrorists meeting briefly in remote locations or foes preparing a missile launch threatening U.S. troops, allies, or satellites.

Russia objects, saying such weapons would be destabilizing because their use could be misconstrued as a nuclear attack against it, leading Russia to potentially launch nuclear weapons at the United States. U.S. officials maintain there are measures, such as pre-launch notifications or basing non-nuclear missiles separately from nuclear missiles, to minimize possible misperceptions. (See ACT, May 2006 .)

Still, Russian officials note that non-nuclear systems could be used to attack their country. In addition, a Russian government source May 15 indicated to Arms Control Today that another concern is that the United States could amass more potential long-range nuclear delivery vehicles than Russia by deploying unregulated non-nuclear delivery systems that could be modified quickly or secretly to carry nuclear warheads, undermining long-standing efforts to maintain U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear parity.

U.S. and Russian officials since March 2007 have been engaged in irregular and so far unproductive talks on a possible agreement to succeed the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) , which is scheduled to expire Dec. 5, 2009. (See ACT, May 2007. ) START imposes ceilings on U.S. and Russian deployments of nuclear warheads and strategic delivery vehicles: land-based ICBMs, submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs), and heavy bombers. At the Bush administration's insistence, the May 2002 Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT) , which expires at the end of 2012, limits only warheads.

In the ongoing talks, Moscow is pressing for an agreement that sets limits on both warheads and strategic delivery vehicles, unlike SORT, and counts all such vehicles against the ceiling whether they carry nuclear or conventional payloads. A second Russian government source May 14 told Arms Control Today that his government's "firm position" is that "all strategic weapons, no difference [between] nuclear or conventional loads, must be under strict mutual treaty control." He contended that the "prompt global strike effort is extremely dangerous [because] you can never tell what the load [is] when a strategic missile is launched."

The first Russian government source, however, noted that the United States "is reluctant to speak about ceilings on carriers." Although publicly stating for the first time that the Bush administration is open to new warhead limits, John Rood, acting undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, acknowledged May 21 before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that Russia wants "a treaty with a broader scope, something which would also cover...conventional delivery systems." He said the administration opposes that position. In all likelihood, the question of whether to negotiate treaty limits on prompt global strike systems will pass to the next U.S. administration.

That administration also will face decisions on developing or deploying prompt global strike weapons. Congress rejected the Bush administration's initial two-year plan unveiled in 2006 to start substituting conventional payloads for nuclear warheads on two SLBMs on each of the 12 deployed U.S. ballistic missile submarines. Fearing that specific approach carried too much risk of Russian misinterpretation of launches, Congress called for further study of the general concept and more research into alternatives. (See ACT, January/February 2008 .)

In its February budget request for fiscal year 2009 starting Oct. 1, the Bush administration asked Congress for $117.6 million to fund a Prompt Global Strike program under the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology, and logistics. The request includes funds to research a long-range, land-based Conventional Strike Missile and technologies for a submarine-launched system, as well as some funds for the Falcon project of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Those funds are in addition to a separate $25 million request by DARPA to pursue the Falcon program, which involves research on a hypersonic technology vehicle that, unlike a ballistic missile, would travel at a flatter trajectory, spend more time flying inside the atmosphere, and be able to maneuver toward a target. The Army has done research into a similar hypersonic glide vehicle that some lawmakers are pushing to make part of the broader Prompt Global Strike program.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO), which conducts studies for lawmakers, released an April report charging that current prompt global strike efforts lack coordination. Observing that it had identified 135 projects and programs that could have applications for prompt global strike, the GAO contended that the Pentagon "has not yet established a prioritized investment strategy that integrates its efforts to assess global strike options and makes choices among alternatives." It further noted that key military stakeholders have different views about the global strike concept and how such future weapons might be used.

The GAO also indicated that too much attention is being paid to the potential weapons and not "critical enabling capabilities." For instance, the report pointed out that officials with the Pentagon's Strategic Command, which is tasked with promoting and facilitating prompt global strike, say "current intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance and command and control capabilities generally do not provide the persistent coverage, processing and sharing of information, and rapid planning required for compressed global strike time frames."

A panel of the National Academy of Sciences' National Research Council also referred in a report last year to "supporting enablers." The panel, which endorsed the general concept of prompt global strike (see ACT, June 2007 ), said it would provide a full analysis of those enablers in a final report on prompt global strike due this year to Congress. Although the panel estimated that report would be completed "by early 2008," a panel spokesperson April 28 e-mailed Arms Control Today that the report would not be out until "the later half of this year."

Corrected online September 3, 2008. See explanation.

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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)

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