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"Though we have acheived progress, our work is not over. That is why I support the mission of the Arms Control Association. It is, quite simply, the most effective and important organization working in the field today." 

– Larry Weiler
Former U.S.-Russian arms control negotiator
August 7, 2018
Events

Toward a Successful NPT Review Conference: Briefing with Amb. Burk

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Date: Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Time: 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Location: Carnegie Endowment for Intl. Peace, 1779 Mass. Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.
Keynote: Ambassador Susan F. Burk
Commentators: Deepti Choubey and Daryl G. Kimball


In May 2010, nearly 190 nations will meet in New York to assess the implementation of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and to chart a path forward for progress on its three pillars: nonproliferation, disarmament and peaceful uses of nuclear energy. This Review Conference, held every five years, is critical to ensuring the Treaty survives the onslaught of current challenges and will require leadership from key states, particularly the United States.

The U.S. Special Representative of the President for Nuclear Nonproliferation, Ambassador Susan Burk, will present and discuss American goals. Following her remarks, Carnegie’s Nuclear Policy Program Deputy Director Deepti Choubey will describe what is at stake and Daryl Kimball, Executive Director of the Arms Control Association (ACA), will identify the critical issues and possible solutions for government officials, experts and the media to watch for at the Rev. Con.

Copies of the Arms Control Association's forthcoming report "Major Proposals to Strengthen the NPT: A Resource Guide for the 2010 Review Conference," by Cole Harvey and the ACA Research Staff will be available. Arms Control Today's in-depth interview with Susan Burk and additional analysis and commentary on the 2010 NPT Review Conference is available online from <http://www.armscontrol.org/act/current>

To RSVP for the event, please click here < http://www.carnegieendowment.org/events/?fa=eventDetail&id=2841 >

Keynote Speaker

Ambassador Susan F. Burk
Susan F. Burk is the Special Representative of the President for Nuclear Nonproliferation. She is responsible for working with other States to strengthen the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the international nonproliferation regime. Ambassador Burk plays a lead role in preparing for the NPT Review Conference, and through international diplomacy promoting the United States’ goal of renewing and reinvigorating the NPT and the global regime. Previously, Ms. Burk served as the first Deputy Coordinator for Homeland Security in the State Department’s Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism. Prior to that assignment, Ms. Burk served as Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation where she led the Bureau’s efforts to support the Proliferation Security Initiative, and served as chief U.S. negotiator for the Statement of Interdiction Principles. She joined the Bureau of Nonproliferation in June 2002 as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Nonproliferation Controls. A career civil servant, Ms. Burk joined the Department of State in April 1999 as the Director of the Office of Regional Affairs.

Commentators

Deepti Choubey
Deepti Choubey is the deputy director of the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment. Her research interests include the calculations of non–nuclear-weapon states, U.S. nonproliferation and disarmament policies, and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. She has provided commentary for CNN, MSNBC, National Public Radio, BBC, and CBS Radio, and has written for the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and U.S. News and World Report, among others. Prior to joining the Carnegie Endowment in 2006, Choubey was director of the Peace and Security Initiative (PSI) for the Ploughshares Fund.

Daryl G. Kimball
Daryl Kimball became the Executive Director of the Arms Control Association in September 2001. ACA, formed in 1971, is a leading source of information and analysis for the news media and policy-makers on arms control and non-proliferation matters. Kimball is also the chief editorial advisor and a contributor to ACA's magazine, Arms Control Today, widely considered to be the journal of record in the field.

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Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, March 31 3:00-5:00

Strengthening the NPT: Challenges and Solutions for the 2010 NPT Review Conference

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Remarks of Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director,
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace,
March 31, 2010

Click here to download these remarks in .doc format.

Nearly a year ago, President Barack Obama’s campaign to confront global nuclear weapons threats started with an ambitious agenda. In April in Prague, Obama reiterated the U.S. commitment to “seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons” beginning with renewed U.S. leadership to reduce the role and number of nuclear weapons, permanently outlaw nuclear testing, accelerate U.S. and global efforts to secure vulnerable nuclear materials, and strengthen the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).

The Prague speech marked a significant shift away from the strategy of the previous administration and has created new possibilities for progress at the upcoming NPT Review Conference (RevCon).

Just weeks after Obama’s Prague address and days after the U.S. delegation reiterated that it recognizes the political commitments made at past NPT conferences, States Parties agreed on an agenda for work at the 2010 RevCon.

At the same time, States Parties could not agree on specific recommendations outlining a path forward to address the key items on the NPT agenda. And there is no shortage of recommendations for updating and strengthening the NPT.

The Arms Control Association has just published a detailed resource guide on the “Major Proposals to Strengthen the NPT” by our former Scoville Peace Fellow Cole Harvey with support from our ACA research team.

Our survey of proposals should make it abundantly clear that a vast majority of the 180 plus NPT States Parties actually do agree on a substantial number of practical measures that would strengthen and update the treaty. There are a number of very useful proposals that could provide the basis for agreement, including UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Five-Point Plan and elements from UN Security Council Resolution 1887.

And if certain difficult issues can be handled adroitly, if key states—particularly Iran—are not singled out for criticism by others and do not themselves seek to block consensus, and if the United States and a representative group of states voice support for common objectives, the conference can come together around an “Action Plan to strengthen and reaffirm the NPT.

Ideally, the “Action Plan” would be part of a final conference statement. If that is not possible, the success of the conference and support for the “Action Plan” might be measured and expressed through the Conference President’s summary report.

Major Challenges and Ways Forward for the 2010 RevCon

There are five related sets of issues that the states parties must address properly if there is to be agreement or near-agreement on an Action Plan to strengthen the NPT. Four of these are topics that have been debated in one way or another since the first NPT RevCon; another is relatively new.

1. Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Issues Relating to Withdrawal

One dominant theme at this RevCon will be the danger to the NPT from states that are under investigation for IAEA safeguards violations, are pursuing sensitive nuclear fuel cycle activities, or both.

North Korea’s declared but unrecognized withdrawal from the NPT in 2003 highlights the fact that under the treaty, countries can acquire technologies that bring them to the very brink of nuclear weapons capability without explicitly violating the agreement and can then leave the treaty without automatic penalties.

Iran secretly pursued enrichment capabilities for years. While Iran’s main facility at Natanz and another at Qom are under safeguards and its capabilities are still limited, they are gradually growing. There is also the risk of unsafeguarded enrichment work and suspicion that Iran has engaged in warhead design work.

In response, a variety of proposals have been advanced that would lead to a more definitive and prompt response to cases of noncompliance and withdrawal.

Reaching agreement will be difficult in no small part because Iran will likely block agreement on any proposal, but it is important that in the very least states agree to:

  • Address without delay any notice of withdrawal from the NPT, including the convening of a special session of the states parties to discuss a collective response, and to affirm that a state remains responsible under international law for violations of the NPT committed prior to its withdrawal.

Unlike the U.S. effort at the 2005 NPT RevCon to call out noncompliant states by name, which provoked Iran and complicated efforts to reach agreement. This time around, I hope and expect that the United States and other leading actors will pursue a country-neutral approach. After all, everyone knows which states are the states of concern.

However, action before or during the RevCon by the Security Council to approve tougher, targeted sanctions against Iran could make it even more likely that Iran and some of its allies would block agreement on this issue and possibly others at the RevCon.

2. Peaceful Nuclear Uses and Safeguards

Iran’s uranium enrichment program and consideration by some states to become commercial nuclear fuel suppliers has rekindled a long-running discussion about how the proliferation of sensitive nuclear fuel cycle activities—enrichment and reprocessing—can be avoided while ensuring that states may pursue the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

Several proposals have been advanced that would provide nuclear fuel or a guarantee of nuclear fuel to states that meet basic nonproliferation criteria as an incentive not to pursue their own indigenous enrichment or reprocessing capacity. However, many developing states are concerned that multilateral approaches to the nuclear fuel cycle could limit their future options and generally do not embrace this approach.

There will likely be much discussion but little progress in resolving such differences at this RevCon. At most the States Parties may agree to:

  • Continue to work together on multilateral approaches to the nuclear fuel cycle, including assurances of nuclear fuel supply, to help provide reliable fuel supplies while minimizing the risk of proliferation of sensitive fuel cycle technologies.

To avoid isolation, Iran will also seek to equate its pursuit of sensitive fuel cycle activities in defiance of UN Security Council Resolutions with the so-called “right” under Article IV of the NPT on peaceful use of nuclear energy. It is crucial that states in the nonnuclear weapons majority do not play into Iran’s strategy.

It is incumbent on states in the Nonaligned group and other to support the NPT by urging—in their own national statements—that the Iranian government: fully respond to the IAEA’s outstanding questions about its nuclear activities; to suspend its sensitive fuel cycle activities as a confidence building measure; to agree to IAEA inspections under the terms of the additional protocol; and to engage in diplomacy with the P-5 and other states to reach a prompt resolution to the crisis. Brazil and South Africa can and should play a leadership role in this regard.

Nonaligned states should join other NPT States Parties to:

  • Recognize the right to pursue the peaceful use of nuclear energy in conformity with Articles I and II and the safeguards required under Article III and call upon all states to provide the cooperation and information necessary to verify compliance with safeguards obligations by all

    Iran’s safeguards transgressions and the ongoing investigation of Syrian nuclear activities by the IAEA have highlighted once again the importance of strengthening safeguards. While the vast majority of NPT States Parties have Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements with the IAEA, many have not adopted the Additional Protocol to their safeguards agreements, which would give the IAEA important additional authority to investigate undeclared nuclear activities. While many Western countries support the Additional Protocol as the verification standard, developing states generally oppose making it a legally-binding obligation.

    While this RevCon will not close such divergent views, States Parties can at least agree to make further progress toward universalization of the Additional Protocol. They should:

    • Recognize that a Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement (CSA) accompanied by an Additional Protocol (AP) based on the model additional protocol should be the internationally recognized safeguards standard, and call upon all states that have yet to do so to conclude and bring into force a CSA and an AP no later than 2015 and call on all states to apply this safeguards standard to the supply of nuclear material and equipment.

      3. Nuclear Disarmament

      Until recently, at least, the majority of countries felt that the five original nuclear-weapon states were not moving quickly enough to fulfill their NPT pledge to eliminate nuclear weapons and uphold their NPT-related commitments on the CTBT. The continuing possession of nuclear weapons by these states, reinforced by lackluster progress on disarmament in the last decade, erodes the willingness of certain states in the non-nuclear weapon majority to agree to strengthen the nonproliferation end of the NPT bargain.

      The conclusion of New START after less than a year of negotiations is a significant diplomatic achievement that puts the process of verifiable strategic nuclear reductions back on track. Yet, New START will still leave the United States and Russia with thousands of excess nuclear weapons. Furthermore, while the U.S. and Chinese governments officially support efforts to achieve CTBT ratification and entry into force, frustration that neither have done so nearly fifteen years since the treaty was concluded is understandably high.

      While President Obama has pledged to “reduce the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. national security strategy,” and may soon announce how he intends to do so in the NPR, other nuclear weapon states could certainly do more to reduce the role and number of their nuclear weapons.

      We can expect that a number of states will draw attention to the slow pace of progress on nuclear disarmament, including some, such as Iran, who simply wish to draw attention away from themselves.

      The P-5 certainly have a better story to tell on their implementation of Article VI at this conference than they did five years ago. But there is clearly more to be done to move toward a world without nuclear weapons and the nuclear weapon states can and should jointly outline what they intent to do next.

      The following are some practical proposals for what might be included in the disarmament section of the Action Plan:

      • To boost momentum ahead of the NPT conference, Obama and Medvedev should announce their readiness to resume consultations on the next round of nuclear arms reductions. As Secretary Clinton said during her January 2009 nomination hearing, such talks should be broadened to include the verifiable elimination of all warhead types: deployed and nondeployed, strategic and nonstrategic.
      • Obama and Medvedev should also invite the world’s other recognized nuclear-armed states to engage in a high- level dialogue on how to make their nuclear capabilities more transparent, create greater confidence, and move toward the eventual elimination of all nuclear weapons.
      • All five nuclear weapon states should also reaffirm their so-called unequivocal undertaking to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals. They should also issue “clean” negative nuclear security assurances to States Parties to the NPT in good standing with their treaty and safeguards obligations, and declare their intent to refrain from testing pending the entry into force of the CTBT.

      The five original nuclear weapon states should ideally express these and other commitments in a joint statement before the RevCon.

      There is also an opportunity for States Parties to agree on several other common steps on disarmament in a conference Action Plan:

      • Call upon the nuclear weapon states to take tangible steps to reduce the role and salience of nuclear weapons in their national security strategies;
      • Urge the nuclear weapon states not to increase the size their nuclear arsenals and to undertake concrete  action to verifiably and irreversibly reduce all types of nuclear warheads and delivery vehicles.
      • With respect to substrategic nuclear weapons, states should agree to begin the process of removing such weapons from forward-deployed areas and engage in negotiations leading the elimination of all such weapons. On this issue NATO member states in particular should recognize the fact that such weapons do not serve any meaningful or helpful role for alliance defense or the security of Europe.
      • Call upon all states to refrain from nuclear test explosions for any purpose and to undertake all necessary measures to bring the CTBT into force no later than 2015;
      • Urge all states to halt the production of fissile material for weapons purposes and to place all excess fissile material under international safeguards pending the conclusion of negotiations on a verifiable fissile material production cut off;
      • Urge the nuclear weapon states to transform their negative security assurances into legally-binding form;
      • Call upon all states possessing nuclear weapons to report regularly information relating to their fissile material stockpiles and the number of nuclear weapons and their delivery systems in a format agreed among States Parties to the NPT.

      To be clear, nuclear disarmament is not an end unto itself. These nuclear disarmament steps will not only enhance the prospects of strengthening nonproliferation and compliance measures, but are clearly in the national security interest of nuclear weapon states and their allies.

      4. Nuclear Weapon Free Zones and the Middle East

      Support for and the creation of new zones free of nuclear weapons is a critical part of the NPT bargain. Since 2005, two such zones—covering Africa and Central Asia—have come into force, though not all of the nuclear weapon states have ratified the protocols that outline their obligations under these treaties. This brings the total number of nuclear weapons free zones to six. They cover virtually the entire southern hemisphere.

      However, the lack of progress toward a nuclear weapons free zone in the Middle East is a problem and will be a major issue at this RevCon. As part of the package of proposals leading to the extension of the treaty in 1995, states adopted the so-called Middle East resolution, that requests states in the region to take practical steps toward the establishment of an effectively verifiable WMD-free zone and requests all treaty members to extend their cooperation and exert their utmost efforts to that end.

      Egypt, which has championed the issue at the UN since it joined the NPT, is understandably frustrated and is seeking commitments by NPT States Parties to take tangible steps in this direction. As the current chair of the Nonaligned Movement, it has substantial leverage to press its case. Egypt has put forward a series of working papers on the topic that include specific proposals. Some of these are clearly designed simply to make a point about the one non-NPT state in the region; others are pragmatic and reasonable.

      Visible and early U.S. support for tangible steps toward a Middle East nuclear weapon free zone, such as the naming of a special envoy by the RevCon to convene states to discuss the matter is critical for progress on this matter and for the success of the RevCon.

      As a senior German diplomat writes in an article in the forthcoming issue of Arms Control Today, “Further stalling on the issue will only exacerbate the proliferation risks in the region.”

      5. Engaging in Civil Nuclear Trade with States Outside the NPT

      Since the last RevCon in 2005, the United States, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and others pushed the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers Group to approve an exemption for NPT holdout India from NSG guidelines that require comprehensive international safeguards as a condition of nuclear trade.

      This is fundamentally an affront to the NPT because it extends to a non-NPT state the peaceful nuclear uses benefits that have so far been reserved only for those states that meet their nonproliferation obligations. Among other things, the deal also violates the decision at the 1995 NPT RevCon to make comprehensive safeguards agreements a condition of nuclear supply and undermines efforts to universalize the Additional Protocol. It has led Pakistan to seek similar treatment and prompted Israel to argue for a criteria-based approach to civil nuclear trade with the NSG that include Israel.

      While damage has already been inflicted on the NPT regime, the United States and other key states should make clarifying statements and support language in a potential RevCon resolution that mitigates that damage and guards against further erosion of NPT principles.

      Paragraph 3 of the September 6 NSG statement says the “basis” for the India exemption includes India’s continued adherence to several nonproliferation pledges it made in July 2005 and on September 5, 2008, including continued observance of its voluntary nuclear test moratorium. India rejects any such direct linkage.

      The United States should make clear that any nuclear test explosion would lead to the termination of nuclear trade by the United States with that country. That was the position of Senator Obama and it should be the position of President Obama. As then-Sen. Obama (D-Ill.) said on the floor of the Senate in a colloquy with Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) on November 16, 2006, “[I]n the event of a future nuclear test by the Government of India, nuclear power reactor fuel and equipment sales, and nuclear technology cooperation would terminate.”

      The NPT States Parties should adopt common language that: reaffirms that nuclear testing anywhere is a serious threat to international security and calls on States Parties to suspend nuclear cooperation with any state that conducts a nuclear weapon test explosion for any reason or violates its safeguards agreements.

      Conclusion

      President Barack Obama's Prague Agenda for nuclear weapons threat reduction and elimination has rejuvenated hopes that the conference will come together around a package of proposals to strengthen the treaty.  However, friction over Iran's controversial nuclear activities and a lack of progress toward one NPT-related goal—the pursuit of a Middle East nuclear weapon free zone—threaten to overshadow the broad degree of support for the treaty and measures to update and strengthen it.

      U.S. leadership by example is essential but not sufficient. Updating the successful NPT for its next 40 years requires strong leadership and action by other nuclear-armed states, as well as the nonnuclear weapon state majority.


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      Remarks by ACA Executive Director Daryl G. Kimball at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace on March 31, 2010.

      Event Transcript and Resources: Roundtable Discussion "Towards a Global Arms Trade Treaty (ATT): What role for the United States?"

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      Press Contact: Jeff Abramson Deputy Director, (202) 463-8270 x109.

      (Washington, D.C.): On February 18th, 2010, a roundtable discussion “Towards a Global Arms Trade Treaty (ATT): What Role for the United States?” was held at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, hosted by the Arms Control Association, the Center for International Trade & Security (CITS), Oxfam America, and Project Ploughshares. The Chair of the United Nations ATT Process, Ambassador Roberto Garcia Moritan, spoke at the opening panel, along with Anna MacDonald of Oxfam International and the Control Arms Campaign. A keynote address prepared by Under Secretary of State Ms. Ellen Tauscher’s office was delivered by Ambassador Donald Mahley, the U.S. lead negotiator on the ATT.

      The event built upon a smaller meeting hosted in September 2009 and the momentum created by last fall’s adoption of a new UN resolution with regards to a future treaty. On October 30th, 2009, 153 UN members, including for the first time the United States, cast a historic vote in favor of establishing an Arms Trade Treaty. Negotiations on the terms of the treaty will begin in July of this year and are set to conclude at a UN Conference in 2012.

      A strong and universally adopted ATT would provide an international standard for a regulated trade in conventional arms and could prevent the devastating effects that uncontrolled arms transfers have on civilian populations and regional stability. As the world’s largest conventional arms exporter and the country with the most comprehensive arms transfer controls, an engaged United States could help ensure that the highest possible standards are adopted.

      A briefing paper prepared for the event is attached.

      The State Department also hosts a transcript and video of portions of the meeting.

       


      Event Transcript

       

      ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION –
      TOWARDS A GLOBAL ARMS TRADE TREATY:
      WHAT ROLE FOR THE UNITED STATES?

      WELCOME:

      KEN EPPS,
      SENIOR PROGRAM ASSOCIATE, PROJECT PLOUGHSHARES

      MODERATORS:

      RACHEL STOHL,
      ASSOCIATE FELLOW, CHATHAM HOUSE

      JEFF ABRAMSON,
      DEPUTY DIRECTOR, ARMS CONTROL ASSOCIATION

      SPEAKERS:

      AMBASSADOR ROBERTO GARCÍA MORITÁN,
      THE REPUBLIC OF ARGENTINA

      ANNA MACDONALD,
      CONTROL ARMS CAMPAIGN MANAGER, OXFAM INTERNATIONAL

      DONALD MAHLEY
      Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary, Threat Reduction, Export Control, U.S. State Department

      THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 2010, 9:30 A.M.,
      CARNEGIE ENDOWMENT FOR INTERNATIONAL PEACE, WASHINGTON, D.C.

      Transcript by
      Federal News Service

      Washington, D.C.

       

      KEN EPPS:  Good morning, everyone.  My name is Ken Epps.  I’m senior program associate at Project Ploughshares, which is the ecumenical peace center of the Community Council of Churches and affiliation with the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies at ConradGrebelUniversityCollege, University of Waterloo.

      On behalf of the organizations who have jointly organized this event – and those are the Arms Control Association, the Center for International Trade and Security, Oxfam America and Project Ploughshares – I would like to welcome all participants to this roundtable discussion.

      I am especially pleased to welcome our opening panelists, Ambassador Moritan and Anna MacDonald, who have traveled a considerable distance from Argentina and the United Kingdom, respectively, to be with us here today.

      And of course we are particularly delighted that Ms. Ellen Tauscher, undersecretary for Arms Control and International Security at the State Department, will be providing the keynote address during our working lunch.

      On behalf of my own organization, Project Ploughshares, based in Canada, I would like to thank our Washington partners for the considerable efforts in arranging the many details of today.  And I also wish to acknowledge the financial support for the event from Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada.

      As indicated in the invitation, the purpose of today’s roundtable is to promote discussion on how the U.S. government can best engage with and contribute to the development of a robust international arms trade treaty.  The roundtable is focused on the important role of the U.S. government in the ATT process, but today’s event is also one of many initiatives by civil society organizations around the world to engage a range of stakeholders in the promotion of a legally binding, comprehensive and effective treaty.

      In particular, the civil society-based Arms Trade Treaty Steering Committee, an NGO coalition that includes Project Ploughshares and other NGOs here today, has promoted the idea of an ATT for more than a decade, and we are pleased to be here today.

      Motivated by concern about the egregious impact of irresponsible and illicit arms transfers, the NGO coalition has strived to promote high global standards in a binding international agreement that would require states to effectively control all international transfers of conventional arms in their jurisdiction.

      The quest for an international convention to control the arms trade is not new – it has existed since at least the days of the League of Nations – but renewed momentum emerged during the 1990s, when a group of NGOs, along with Nobel Peace Laureates led by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, first promoted the idea of an international code of conduct for arms transfers.

      By 2000, the Code Working Group of NGOs transformed the international code into the Framework Convention on International Arms Transfers with the assistance of international legal experts.  The framework convention in turn became the basis for proposals for the more popularly named Arms Trade Treaty, and the Code Working Group became the ATT steering committee.

      It was this NGO coalition which, in 2005, published the core global principles for international arms transfers, drawn from relevant, existing international instruments and obligations.  These principles have been promoted widely by civil society advocates of the ATT as a blueprint for draft parameters for an effective treaty.

      In 2002, the coalition also agreed that its three largest multinational members – Amnesty International, Oxfam, and the International Action Network on Small Arms – would take a grassroots and global control arms campaign to promote the ATT.

      Among other initiatives, the campaign launched the Million Faces online petition initiative, which, in less than three years, became the world’s largest photo petition.  More than 1 million people from over 160 countries contributed photos and drawings to the petition, which called for ATT negotiations at the U.N.

      The petition was presented to the U.N. secretary-general in June, 2006.  By December 2006, the U.N. General Assembly had overwhelmingly voted for a U.N. process to consider an international treaty on the global arms trade.

      In these opening remarks, it is not my intention to detail NGO perspectives on ATT content and campaigning to promote the U.N. treaty process.  We will hear from civil society representatives on these issues later today, but I would like to emphasize the importance that NGOs advocating a comprehensive and effective ATT attached to U.S. commitment to the treaty process.

      The NGO coalition welcomed U.S. support for the treaty when it was announced by Secretary of State Clinton in October 2009.  Indeed, it is apparent to all who have followed ATT developments that U.S. participation in treaty negotiations will be central and crucial.  As the largest exporter of conventional weapons, the U.S. brings the weight of trade realities to treaty discussions.

      In her October statement, Secretary Clinton noted the gold standard set by U.S. export controls, and these, along with the commitments it has made with respect to the trade in conventional weapons – and I refer you here to the roundtable briefing paper that Rachel Stohl has produced for us, which details these standards and commitments.  These are all clearly important for the U.S. to bring to the table during treaty negotiations.

      In addition to U.S. influence on other key actors in the arms trade, especially U.N. secretary (sic) council members that have abstained on General Assembly votes on the ATT – that is, in particular, Russia and China – it will be necessary to ensure that treaty negotiations do not generate (sic) into the lowest common denominator process.

      In the end, the effectiveness of a negotiated ATT will rest on the willingness of support of states to ensure the highest possible treaty standards.  As NGOs, we look to the U.S. to join and indeed lead in these efforts.

      I’d like to conclude now with some housekeeping notes.  Perhaps most important, the washrooms are directly out this door at the end of the hallway.  Secondly, I would like to remind people that while the morning panel is in open session and the luncheon working session is open, the proceedings from lunch – or from after lunch will be held according to the Chatham House Rule.  That is, none of the comments of presenters or participants are for attribution.

      And, finally, there is a request that all participants, if possible, complete the evaluation form that you will find in your packets on colored paper.  It should only take a minute or two to fill out and you can leave it on the table or hand it to one of the organizers on your way out.  And we thank you for that.

      So again and finally, welcome to all roundtable participants.  The organizers of today’s event look forward to open and fruitful discussions which we hope will contribute another step towards a strong and robust arms trade treaty.  I now give the floor to Rachel Stohl, who will chair the opening session.

      RACHEL STOHL:  Thank you, Ken, and good morning to everyone.  I’m delighted to see that we have such a packed house this morning and look forward to enhancing the dialogue on this issue with all of you.

      It’s my pleasure to chair this first panel, which will hopefully set the stage internationally for what’s happening within ATT so that as we move throughout the morning, and hear from Undersecretary Tauscher about what the U.S. government is doing, and then this afternoon hear from various U.S. stakeholders that we have a context in which to put that in, because we like to think that, you know, what happens in Washington, you know, goes out to the rest of the world, but there’s a lot going on outside that we need to also take into consideration here.

      So our speakers this morning are Ambassador Roberto Garcia Moritan from Argentina and Anna MacDonald from the Control Arms Campaign and Oxfam International.  For those that haven’t had the opportunity to meet these individuals, Ambassador Moritan has been a career diplomat since 1971.  He was permanent representative to the Conference of Disarmament from 1989 to 1994 and undersecretary for Latin American affairs from ’94 to ’98.

      He also served as his country’s permanent representative to the United Nations from 1999 to 2002 and was the undersecretary for foreign affairs from 2003 to 2005 and vice minister and secretary of state for foreign affairs from 2005 to 2008.  So he has a long and distinguished diplomatic career.

      In addition to serving as the president of the Conference on Disarmament in 1993 and the most recent session in 2009, he has chaired both the U.N. Group of Governmental Experts and the Open-Ended Working Group on the Arms Trade Treaty and will be serving as the chair for the upcoming U.N. process.  So we’re delighted to have him share his experience and thoughts on the way forward.

      Anna MacDonald from Oxfam International has worked for Oxfam since 1995 in a variety of international programs and advocacy positions.  She has worked on arms control issues for Oxfam since 2002, playing a key role in the launch in the development of the Control Arms Campaign, which she’ll tell us about in her remarks.

      So first I would like to open to Ambassador Moritan.  And what we’ll do is hear from both our speakers and then open it for discussion and questions, because I think that’s going to be the most – these are round tables, and so this will be the most fruitful way to have our discussion.  Thank you.

      AMBASSADOR ROBERTO GARCIA MORITAN:  Thank you, Rachel, for your kind words.  As Rachel said, I’m going to make first some general comments on the complexities of today’s world, which is good in a certain way because it assures diplomats that we will not run out of work.

      This century’s threat to peace and security are at least, in many ways, more complex than those the world has seen in the past, and they come from a variety of sources, mainly from weapons that can kill on a mass scale, but also from global terrorism, drug trafficking, organized crime.

      In this new global environment, peacekeeping, peacemaking, peace-building requires new multilateral efforts.  In a way, we have to start being a little bit more imaginative to deal with the new threats to international security.

      While most conflict takes place primarily within countries, non-state threats and actors have also become key topics in contemporary security.  Also, the statistics show that many more people are killed in ethnic conflicts or as a consequence of the proliferation of conventional weapons than international war.

      So one of the great tragedies of our time is the uncontrolled spread of weapons, often from illegal markets and even sometimes in violation of U.N. embargoes.  The global arms trade provides weapons for the legitimate national self-defense of states for peacekeeping and law enforcement, in accordance with international law and in particular with Article 51 of the U.N. Charter.  But it also provides arms to governments with track records of use of weapons inappropriately and sometimes unlawfully against civilians in violation of human rights and international and military law.

      So without adequate controls, weapons and the munitions that begin in the legal arms trade can too easily pass into the hands of armed groups and those involved in organized crime.  More than 2,000 people per day die as a consequence of violence and conventional weapons.  The cost of armed violence in Africa – only to give an example – is around 19 billion U.S. dollars.  These weapons fuel conflict, violate human rights, break down societies and prevent people climbing out of poverty.

      The regulation of conventional arms transfers is crucial to grip a global problem that is spiraling out of control.  I feel there is an imperative need to reduce the human costs of arms proliferation and prevent unscrupulous weapons suppliers and ensure that all exporters are working to the same standards.

      One crucial step is to try to negotiate an arms treaty.  Such a treaty should not hinder responsible trade but it will prevent defense exporters from undermining international security and prosperity.  The main objective is to create a comprehensive, legally binding international mechanism for ensuring a more responsible trade in conventional arms.  The primary responsibility for controlling the flows of arms rests with the states, whether they are manufacturers or not, that export, re-export, transit or import arms.

      The current situation, as I see it, is full of gaps and loopholes and inconsistencies.  Some countries have national controls with different standards, in many cases barely enforced.  A large number do not have controls or those criteria are too weak.  Some regional and multilateral arms control regimes lack some strong provisions for implementation.

      Controlling international arms transfers is in the fundamental interest of all states, and especially given the nature and structure of international arms trade today.  During the Cold War, only the U.S. and the USSR were nationally self-sufficient in arms production.  Today more countries have autonomous arms industry.  The arms market is not just larger but more globalized, and this means that arms are being produced in many countries.

      Although it’s true that 80 percent of the market is controlled by a fewer number of states, the numbers of countries producing weapons nowadays is more than a hundred, especially ammunition and small weapons.

      So the question is not only the weapons which are being produced and transferred legally, but those also that goes into the legal market.  It’s not enough to know that certain countries have responsible controls for the flows of their exports; we need to have a global system with equal standards that all countries could follow to assure a responsible trade in conventional weapons.

      It is with this vision in mind that the co-authors started this process several years ago.  From the first U.N. resolution, the co-authors knew that they had enough votes for the commencement of those negotiations.  But, nevertheless, they thought it was necessary to engage in a wider process to make all U.N. members understand the purposes and objectives of the initiative.  Universal participation is very important to have an instrument effective for the purposes that we are pursuing, so we started to follow a step-by-step process.

      The first one was to ask the secretary-general views of the state members of the U.N., and certainly the response allowed us to think on the need of such a treaty.

      The second step took place when the secretary-general of the U.N. called for a U.N. group of experts.  The group of experts was organized in a liberated manner, and there were representations from countries that produced weapons from different regions of the world, but also with a political ecunemiun (ph) where you had eclectic and enthusiastic of the initiative.

      The group of experts went into looking in material, the essential elements towards a treaty on arms trade, and came out with a conclusion that further work was necessary and was needed for larger participation of U.N. members.

      So the third phases started in 2008 when the secretary-general called for an Open-Ended Working Group, which was a subsidiary organ of the U.N. General Assembly.  It was a deliberative process which was thought initially to work during two years.

      The work we did in 2009 and the exchange of views between member states, it was clear that the deliberative process was able to complete its task in 2009.  The exchange of views was large.  Countries from all regions participated actively and we were able to analyze the feasibility of the treaty, scope, parameters and some other questions related to an arms trade treaty.

      Out of talks and deliberation, it was clear that an exchange of views was extensive, transparent and clear enough, and I guess that was the reason why the General Assembly – last U.N. General Assembly decided to take a new step, which was to call for a conference in 2012 and the establishment of a preparatory committee to start the work for that conference.

      When you look at the U.N. resolution, you can see a negotiated mandate for the PrepCom.  So the PrepCom will have, beginning July 2010, the responsibility to start negotiating the elements of a treaty.  When we talk about the elements of the treaty, we have, at the end of the day, the treaty itself.  So the purpose and the responsibility of the PrepCom will be to start working on that process between 2010 and 2012.

      The first meeting will take place in July this year in New York, and we have a two-week session, which is not going to be extremely large, for the kind of responsibilities we have before us.  And we will have completed the work during 2011 because, actually, the PrepCom meeting in 2012 will have to deal mainly with procedural aspects.  So by 2011 it will be useful to try to see if we can complete the work of the PrepCom according to the General Assembly resolution and present a text to the conference by 2012.

      So the work which has been done is an interesting one from a diplomatic point of view because it was not an initiative that was thrown to countries from one day to another, but one that was presented with intention of a better understanding of the objectives that we were pursuing.

      As I said before, we have from the commencement the necessary votes to start those negotiations but we chose a step-by-step process because we thought that in security issues we have to work and we have to exchange views in a quite deep manner to be sure that all countries are able to understand the purposes.  And, at the same time, it’s extremely important to learn the concerns of those which are eclectics with the initiative to try to solve and to try to see ways and means on how to consider those concerns.

      We are exactly in that process.  We are trying now, after the open-ended work, to continue consultations towards the work of the PrepCom in the months of July.  And, since then, the process of negotiations starts as a new game, and I hope very much that by the end of 2011 we will be able to have a draft with substantive elements that the PrepCom could present to the conference in 2012.

      I think, Rachel, maybe it would be more interesting for the participants to ask questions than to listen.

      MS. STOHL:  Okay, thank you.

      AMB. MORITAN:  Thank you.

      ANNA MACDONALD:  Okay, thanks very much.  I would just like to extend my thanks to the organizers of this event.  As has been said, I’m speaking from Oxfam International and on behalf of the Control Arms International Campaign, and I’ve been asked to give the International Campaign perspective on the Arms Trade Treaty and a bit of a history of the campaign and process so far, and perhaps most of all to underline why the world really needs this treaty and why we need it so urgently.

      Arms fuel conflict, poverty and human rights abuses around the world on a daily basis.  It’s not only the 2,000 people that die everyday as a result of armed violence, but also the many thousands more who suffer torture, rape, oppression and are forced to flee their homes.

      In the period since the U.N. started discussing an ATT in 2006, we estimate that more than 2.1 million people have died as a result of armed violence.  And the U.N. estimates that during the 1990s, conventional weapons were used to kill over 5 million people and force 50 million more to flee their homes.

      This is a photo that I took in a refugee camp in Eastern Congo some months back where upon asking the women in the camp what was the biggest problem that they faced, they responded not with demands for water or shelter or food, but simply to state that the biggest problem was the men with guns.

      The uncontrolled trade in arms and the uncontrolled flood of weapons into some of the world’s worst conflict zones fuels poverty and exacerbates situations for people who are already living a marginalized or difficult existence.

      For Oxfam, the reason that we’ve been involved in arms control issues for some more than a decade now is quite simple:  Every day, around the world, our staff and partners in the hundred countries in which we work bear witness to the problems and devastation caused by an arms trade that is out of control.  As a speaker at our global Arms Trade Treaty conference last week in Vienna commented, “The profit of the arms trade is measured in dollars but the cost is counted in lives.”

      We’re clear in the campaign that there is legitimate role for arms and the arms trade.  When used in line with international law, arms clearly have a legitimate use, and certainly we support states’ rights to self-defense as enshrined in the U.N. Charter.  But these rights also come with responsibilities.  Almost all states have responsibilities under international humanitarian law and international human rights law, and what’s important in the perspective and context of our global Arms Trade Treaty is that these responsibilities are also applied to arms transfer controls.

      At the moment, the lack of any effective global regulation means that what we have, at best, is a system of patchwork controls where different countries have different levels of export control agreements.  Some regions have regional transfer agreements in place, but there is no single global, coordinated system, which leads to a situation where, in the words of a monarch (sic) commander in Congo, “Peacekeepers are left feeling like they’re mopping the floor with the taps turned on.”  No sooner are they dealing with the problem of one arms catchment that’s coming through, but then another load of arms and ammunition is arriving.

      It’s a situation that we think an arms trade treaty can go some way to address, a legally binding treaty that would create the level playing field that Ambassador Moritan has already described, and based around core principles, around international law, which we will be going into in more detail after the lunch session, we believe could go a long way to bring the arms trade under control and to prevent this situation spiraling out of control.

      And it’s an initiative which, as we’ve already heard, is gaining – rapidly gaining momentum and is now soon to become a reality in the relatively short period between now and 2012 when the negotiation conference will take place.  I’ll just touch briefly on one example of what we’re talking about when we describe the need to stop irresponsible arms transfers.

      Most of you will be familiar and will remember the ship that sailed from China to – or attempted to sail from China to Zimbabwe in 2008, and only in fact due to the actions of the church movement and civil society, the ship came to the attention of the world’s media as it was prevented from docking first in Durban in South Africa and subsequently in a number of other ports around Southern Africa, as various moves were meant to prevent its intended cargo of ammunition, arms and mortar bombs from reaching Zimbabwe at that time in a height of political tension and where there was clearly a high risk that the weapons and ammunition would be used to commit human rights abuses.

      So just briefly to touch on the history of the international campaign and where we’ve come to since the launch in 2003, when the campaign began back in October 2003, there were three countries which publicly supported the call for an arms trade treaty:  Mali, Costa Rica and Cambodia.  Ken has described some of the longer background history before that, how the idea developed from discussions amongst Nobel laureates and developed from that into ideas around an international code of conduct and ultimately an arms-trade treaty.

      From launching an international campaign with an aim to try to raise the profile of the need for arms control around the world and to increase political pressure for countries to support the idea of an arms trade treaty, we gradually saw more and more countries coming out and declaring their support for international arms control.

      As Ken has described, various campaigning devices such as Million Faces petition, a photo petition which was active in more than 120 countries around the world, helped bring the need for an arms trade treaty and the need for arms control to popular attention.

      This slide is from a presentation back in 2006 when we were mapping the countries that supported an arms trade treaty, and we’d reached the figure of around 43 countries who publicly declared their support.

      In the summer of 2006, our symbolic millionth face, Julius Arile, an armed violence survivor from Kenya, presented the petition to then-Secretary Gen. Kofi Annan, calling for states within the U.N. to begin work on an arms trade treaty.  The campaign continued to grow and to increase support as region after region, more and more countries openly declared their support for greater international arms control.

      And then, as Ambassador Moritan has already described, a group of governments came together – seven core governments came together and drafted a resolution introducing the Arms Trade Treaty to the U.N. and mandating the U.N. to begin discussions on an arms trade treaty.

      That was overwhelmingly passed through the U.N. with 153 governments voting in favor to begin work on the ATT.  And, as we’ve heard, that led on to a secretary-general’s consultation to all states on what the feasibility, scope and parameters of an ATT could be.  Is it actually possible, and if so, what should be in it?

      In parallel with that, the International Civil Society Campaign ran a People’s consultation in more than 50 countries around the world, and we believe that that public consultation which involved all sectors of society went some way to encourage countries in that very high level of response that we saw.

      The group of governmental experts, which then met in 2008, we feel was significant in that it agreed, and while it was a small group of countries and perhaps disproportionately made up of those countries that still had reservations or concerns around an ATT, significantly agreed that work should continue, which led to, in the end of 2008, a further resolution being tabled and then overwhelmingly passed, mandating the setting up of an Open-Ended Working Group.

      And this is what we’ve seen happen over the last year during 2009.  The Open-Ended Working Group has met twice, and from our perspective, perhaps significantly, the debate has moved from a discussion of if there should be an arms trade treaty to when there should be an arms trade treaty, and therefore what should be in it?  We feel this is significant in terms of both the political dynamic and the depth of discussions that have been going on amongst states.

      And so that leads us to where we are now, which is the resolution that was passed – introduced in October last year and then mandated by the General Assembly in December, which essentially moves the Arms Trade Treaty into a negotiation phase that Ambassador Moritan has described – again, 150 votes in favor, and of course the biggest political shift, which we very much welcome and look forward to now further discussions in this event and beyond, is the move of the U.S. administration from a previous no vote to now yes.

      So that’s the sort of part in history from the campaign perspective.  We believe that both the actions of the campaign and the discussions amongst states have demonstrated both a need for a treaty and a desire to see one negotiated as swiftly as possible.

      Certainly we believe it needs to be a robust treaty if it’s going to really save lives and livelihoods, and we very much look forward to continuing those discussions with you today as we move forward with this process.  Thanks.

      MS. STOHL:  Thank you both, Ambassador and Anna, for, I think, some great remarks to frame the debate, the process and the discussions as we move forward, and I think since this is a roundtable, although there’s a lot of faces that I can’t quite see all the way in the back too, I think it would be helpful to have a discussion and to talk about some of the issues that were raised.

      And, given – I think it will be logistically difficult to pass a mike.  If you do have a question, just raise your hand, and if you could introduce yourself and speak very loudly so that we can hear you up here.  And if you have someone that you would like to address your particular question to – oh, you do have the mike?

      MR.     :  (Off mike.)

      MS. STOHL:  Okay.  If you have a question – we have two mikes, okay.  Sorry; missed the back mike.  I couldn’t figure out how Jeff was going to get all the way to the back, but since we have two mikes, if you raise your hand, either in the back or in the front, the mike will come to you.  And, again, please introduce yourself and ask your question.  Over here?

      Q:  Hi, is it on?

      MS. STOHL:  Can you stand, just because it’s hard to see you?

      Q:  I’m Julia Fromholz with Human Rights First.  Anna, you mentioned at the very end the U.S. switch in 2009.  I wanted to know from either of you, what effect does the U.S. insistence on consensus have?  What do you expect it to have?  And what, in this case, does consensus really mean?

      AMB. MORITAN:  I really don’t know if the U.S. insisted on consensus or not, but the fact is that the General Assembly Resolution took a decision on the matter.  And in a certain way it’s logical to work under consensus.

      When you deal with international security issues, our questions are very sensitive toward nations.  Sometimes it’s very difficult to understand what security means for a country or what does threat mean for a certain country.  Sometimes it’s not so much for diplomats to make that analysis as for psychoanalysts to look on the reasons why a country feels a threat or insecure.

      So when you deal with security issues, there’s a special nature of problems, and the case of weapons is the best example.  Why does a country need weapons for their self-defense?  Well, the answer – only that country can give the answer.

      So when you deal with those kind of sensitive issues, it is clear that negotiations have to go undertake a very deep, serious process of consultations, understanding of the issues involved, and in that process, consensus becomes an important question because universality should be the aim of instruments of this sort.  It would serve no purpose if we have a treaty of like-minded states only.  We could have the treaty tomorrow if that is the kind of treaty we want.

      What we would like to have is not only like-minded but also eclectic countries on board.  Everybody has to feel comfortable with the process of those negotiations.  And for them to feel comfortable in those negotiations, it is essential to have certain rules of the game.  And the rule of the game is that you will not cheat by putting into a vote certain questions that could be sensitive for them.

      So the question of consensus is normal to any process of serious negotiations, which its aim is for universal participation.  We will see at the end of the process what the U.N. will do once the treaty is completed, or if it lacks of some elements to have a robust instrument as we all would like to have.

      But from my point of view, which, being the chairman, I’m the one having more difficulties with a consensus vote – (laughter) – because I will have to try to arrive to a consensus.  I think it’s not much of a problem because the responsibility will be to try to see how we can find ways and means to accommodate the concerns and at the same time have a robust instrument.

      We have done it in the past.  We have done it – I had a chance of working into that.  It was the Chemical Weapons Convention.  We were able, with the rule of consensus, to have an excellent instrument on chemical weapons.  We were able, though consensus also, to negotiate – although we were unable to adopt it in the CD, but we were able to negotiate a good nuclear test ban treaty in the CD.

      So consensus is not a difficulty.  Sometimes it’s an advantage for delegations to participate more comfortable in those negotiations.  So from that perspective, I don’t think it should be a matter that should worry anyone.  It’s part of the game.  Thank you.

      MS. STOHL:  I think Anna might have a different take.

      MS. MACDONALD:  Sure.  (Laughter.)  I think – I mean, what we would see as crucial is that through this process we’re achieving the highest possible standards for international arms control, not the lowest possible common denominator, which is the risk.

      And in that balance between striving for a treaty that the biggest number of states are able to be a part of so it has the widest possible impact and having the toughest possible standards.  Then certainly we want to see that a treaty has very strong criteria in it, that it is very comprehensive in its scope, covering all conventional weapons with criteria around human rights, international humanitarian law and sustainable development at its heart.

      The risk that we would see with a weak treaty is that it could legitimize the situation that we currently have, and we don’t think actually that any of the states that have supported the move for an arms trade treaty want to see that.  What we’re trying to do here, we think collectively, is change the situation that we currently have.  We’re trying to stop irresponsible arms transfers.  We’re trying to stop the flood of weapons into the world’s worst conflict zones.  We’re not simply putting a stamp on what we already have.

      I think that what we’ve seen so far with the level of state support, with the content of what states have submitted in their submissions to the U.N. and in the discussions that have taken place so far, is a very strong, overwhelming majority that want to see robust controls in place.

      And what’s essential in this next period of two years leading up to that final conference is that the will of that overwhelming majority is not blocked by the actions of a minority, and I think that’s very much, from civil society’s perspective, what we’re looking to all states that have supported this process to be ensuring that what they are doing in the preparatory meetings is ensuring that that will of the majority does indeed go through and that we see the highest possible standards achieved by the end.

      MS. STOHL:  There’s a question in the back.

      Q:  My name is Jacques Bahati.  I work with Africa Faith and Justice Network.  I think the core of my question is, is there any work going on as far as other issues related to the reason why weapons are sold and let loose?

      I’ve seen that for those nations who produce these weapons, there is economic benefit to it.  Are they willing to put those economic benefits on the side for the sake of peace and prosperity for other countries?

      Also, I wonder if the United Nations is relevant to really address this issue, whereas these powerful countries are the ones sitting and making these decisions.  Will they be really able to enforce the rules when they are the ones benefiting from the trade?  Thank you.

      MS. MACDONALD:  Go ahead, please.

      AMB. MORITAN:  Yes.  My impression is that a treaty like the one we will start negotiating in July serves all countries; serves those countries that produce weapons in a large scale, serves countries that produce weapons in a small scale, and serves the purpose of the countries which do not produce.

      I think it’s in the interest of everyone, but from the point of view of those larger exporters of – which is a handful of – a few countries that have around 80 percent of the market, to have a responsible criteria and standards will not hinder their capacity to export.

      This treaty will not prohibit the export of weapons.  This treaty will not try to avoid any one buying weapons if they think it’s necessary for their self-defense, law enforcement and their participation in peace operations of the U.N.

      What we are trying to do is have common international standards for all countries to assess when they take a decision on the export.  And what do they have to assess?  They have to assess if those weapons are going to be used on extreme cases in an irresponsible manner.

      What are those extreme cases?  Violation of human rights.  Should a country sell certain weapons to a nation that violates, systematically, human rights?  Well, the country who sells the weapons should know that those weapons will kill people, so they should evaluate, before doing that, if it is recommendable to do that or not.  In a genocide situation, should weapons be sold?  In a conflict between states which humanitarian law is not observed, should weapons be sold?

      So the questions we are dealing with are extreme cases of irresponsibility and try to have common international standards to prevent that irresponsibility.  I doubt very much that by adopting measures in that sense, that will hinder the additional capacity and the way of making money in this industry.  On the contrary.  I feel that an instrument of this nature will give a new guarantee to those industrial manufacturers that they’re doing the adequate thing.

      So the question here is the decision to whom to sell in certain circumstances.  This is why the treaty will try to concentrate on those standards so that everybody around the world have the same standards when it comes to evaluate those exports.

      MS. STOHL:  I don’t want to put any government officials on the spot, but we have several different governments represented here, both major exporters and perhaps secondary-tier exporters.  So I don’t know if any government official wanted to answer that question with a kind of national perspective.  If not, that’s okay; just wanted to – there are a lot of people in the room that may not know who’s here, so if there are any additional comments on that – otherwise we’ll take another question.

      Q:  Thank you.  I’m Norma Rein with the Boeing Company and I have a question about the scope of the treaty.  Through the work done so far, have any preliminary recommendations or decisions been made with respect to what items would fall under the purview of the treaty, or is the focus just small arms?  Would you be so kind to explain a little bit on that?  Thanks.

      AMB. MORITAN:  Thank you very much.  As you all know, the process we’ve been in until now has been one of governmental experts and an open-ended discussion in the U.N. General Assembly.  Out of those two specific processes came a variety of views with respect to the scope.

      It is my understanding that there is a common minimum acceptance that this scope should include what we usually say is seven-plus-one, which are the weapons which are included in the seven categories of the U.N. Register on Conventional Weapons (sic), plus small and light weapons.

      Out of these deliberative discussions, many countries would like to see some other things included in the scope – munitions, as has been said, components, new and used technologies – and the list is wide.  We will have to start exchanging ourselves into discussions and negotiation with respect to scope beginning July.  But, as I said to you, it is my understanding that at least the seven-plus-one category is going to be basis upon we will have to build and to see how far, according to delegations, we could go to agree in a scope that will include all the elements that will be in accordance with the purposes we’re pursuing.

      MS. MACDONALD:  Yeah, just to add from the NGO perspective, in fact, inside the silver packs that were given out at the beginning you’ll see our position papers on scope and parameters.  We, put simply, believe that all conventional weapons should be covered by the scope of type of weapon.  We think this should also include ammunition.  It should also include components, and it should also include those weapons – those components and parts that have capacity for dual use.

      In terms of the scope of type of transfer, we similarly believe that all types of transfer should be covered by an arms trade treaty – i.e. exports, imports, sale, transfer, gift, loan, et cetera.  But you’ll see those are detailed a little more substantially in the papers.

      MS. STOHL:  Jeff, can you get to Susan over here?  Go to the back.  Do you see Susan over here?

      Q:  I think I can just – it’s a simple question.

      MR.     :  It’s too late – too late.  (Laughter.)

      Q:  Could you say just a few words –

      MS. STOHL:  Say who you are.

      Q:  I’m Susan Waltz, University of Michigan.  Could you say just a few words about where things stand with the separate-but-related efforts to negotiate an instrument on marking and tracing and brokering, just how that fits in the whole scheme now?

      AMB. MORITAN:  Well, this is a different question from the one we’re dealing – so, actually, in the context demanded, we have – the responsibility of the PrepCom is going to be limited to negotiate the elements of a treaty itself.

      Now, of course we will have to deal with the question of verification.  We haven’t entered into details of verification and moratorium during the group of governmental experts.  There were generic presentations on the question.  Also, on the open-ended working groups, only a few delegations make reference to the matter.

      So the question you mentioned could be one that delegations could raise when it comes to the question of verification moratorium on some or some other kind of publications of the treaty.  But we will have to see, so it’s a little bit difficult for me in advance to make any comment on the question but it’s clear that in some aspects there is certain relation between the two aspects.

      MS. STOHL:  I think we have three hands.  We have one in the back, we have Roy here, and then we have Steve.  And so, just looking at the time, in case the undersecretary shows up earlier, perhaps we can take all three of those questions and then answer them.

      Q:  Thanks.  Erik Wasson, Inside U.S. Trade – a question mainly for the ambassador.  What proposals are on the table that would possibly result in changes to U.S. export controls, and could you possibly describe how the ATT could differ from the Wassenaar regime, for example?  Thanks.

      (Cross talk.)

      AMB. MORITAN:  Oh, I’m sorry.

      MS. STOHL:  That was a media one, so do you want to do – okay, take off – and then if someone could bring Steve Goose – if you could raise your hand.

      Q:  Hi, I’m Roy Isbister from Saferworld, and I’ve got more a comment than a question.  It’s on the scope issue and the use of the language of seven-plus-one.  And in the – my kind of take on the Open-Ended Working Group was there were a lot of people using the language of seven-plus-one and meaning that in a very comprehensive sense.

      But if you examine what seven-plus-one actually means in detail, it’s a lot more limiting than people often think.  So for example, one of the categories is aircraft but it is only attack aircraft, and I think a lot of people, when they were talking about seven-plus-one, they were talking about military aircraft in general.

      So I think it’s just one of the issues when looking at scope.  There is a danger in using this kind of shorthand and so, obviously, as the discussion goes forward, these kind of details will get teased out.  But I just think we need to be very careful of what we understand with some of the shorthand that is being used.  Thanks.

      MS. STOHL:  Steve?

      Q:  Steve Goose with Human Rights Watch – sort of one big question for both the ambassador and Anna, and then a couple of nuts and bolts if you can.

      On the big one, what do you anticipate at this point are going to be the most contentious and difficult issues to deal with?  You undoubtedly already have a good idea of what that’s going to be, and if you would share that with us.

      And the nuts and bolts, it strikes me that for something that was launched in 2006, there has been very little formal work on this the past three years.  How much time is going to be devoted to it in the coming years?  What’s the schedule look like?  How many PrepComs, how long, how much time devoted for the negotiations themselves, and when do you personally hope to be able to produce the first draft text?  Are you going to use a rolling text with brackets?  (Laughter.)

      MS. MACDONALD:  Why don’t you go first?

      AMB. MORITAN:  With respect to the first question, I wouldn’t know how to answer your question, really, but I do realize that the U.S. has a very responsible legislation on the question and, as I understand, a very strict and robust legislation on the matter.

      It is my personal impression that a treaty most probably is going to be in the same direction of the U.S. national position on many questions that the treaty will cover but it will be up to the U.S. to know if that would require some internal change in legislation.

      But the U.S. certainly is a responsible country in the way it applies its legislation when it comes to export of weapons and how to follow the life of those weapons after they’d been exported the first time.  So according to my lack of experience, I don’t think it should impose a big difficultly of legislation inside of the U.S.

      The Wassenaar arrangement, as you know, is a very important grouping of countries from different regions, which have the same objective of working hard on certain specific purposes when the group was created, but it is limited in its participation, and although it has countries from different regions, that limitation is one that makes desirable to have a wider negotiation in the U.N.

      If all U.N. members were a member of the Wassenaar agreement, that maybe would have been different and sometimes simpler to deal with the issues we have before it, but that’s not the case so we have to deal with reality.

      So the Wassenaar group is a very important one.  We continue working.  The objectives are maybe larger than the ones we’re pursuing in ATT.  The ATT is focusing on a specific question of conventional weapons.  The Wassenaar list has an important list of conventional weapons, which are covered in the Wassenaar arrangement.  I mentioned the Wassenaar countries will ask that those views will be taken into account and then certainly you enter negotiations and we will see how to deal with those questions.

      Now, the question of, what are the sensitive and difficult issues; I think all of them are.  (Laughter.)  The first day we met in the open-ended consultation, people thought we will never – we’re going to start the meeting because procedural issues were going to block the whole exercise.

      How do you say “miracle?”

      MS. STOHL:  Miracle.

      AMB. MORITAN:  A miracle was produced and the particular questions were solved.

      In diplomatic negotiations, things are never easy, and that’s good because this is what our governments pay us for, to work and not only to be in cocktails and receptions.  And certainly the issues we have before us are going to be of an enormous complexity.  Each one of the 192 countries have different views, and when it comes to look at each one of the issues, even small ones, we can see are going to be complex ones.

      One that shouldn’t be a matter of worry to anyone, according to my views at least, which will be human rights.  Human rights is so obvious that it should be a criteria.  It should be so obvious that everybody should be protecting human rights worldwide.  It’s not for some other countries.  So when you look at which one of the details and elements will have to start working, things are going to be complicated, and we do not have much time.

      To answer your question, actually we have two substantive meetings in 2010, which are going to be together in two weeks, one following the other ones, and two weeks in 2011.  Somebody said to me I had 120 hours to complete negotiations if you pull everything together.

      Of course it’s going to be a difficult task, but at the same time it’s good that we have limited time before us because I will exercise and I will put the effort of everybody to work with a certain timeframe to arrive to consensus.

      I’m conscious that we will be able to have a substantive draft instrument by 2012, and I hope it will not have brackets, as you say, only very few – or asterisks.  (Laughter.)  But even if we have brackets and asterisks, it’s not bad.  It’s part of a negotiation process to have brackets.  And, actually, as I imagine, that the first text that will be seen is going to have brackets because we will have to try to see and try to include all points of view and then start looking how to accommodate those points of view.

      So I’m not really afraid of brackets.  I was born with brackets, I think.  (Laughter.)  But it’s going to be an interesting exercise, one we will start in July.  And I said to you, if it’s true that I have only 120 hours, well, you can imagine we had a put a lot of enthusiasm and energy to complete our work, but I think we can do it.

      MS. MACDONALD:  Yes, I think we would certainly – from the NGO side I had concerns around the shortness of time, looking at comparable treaty processes in both disarmament and other fora and the number of weeks that are available.  Four weeks of preparatory meetings then followed by a final month seems to us to be pretty tight, which obviously puts the onus on the states, as the ambassador says, to make sure that they’re moving swiftly, but perhaps, all the same, points to the need for certain types of substantial intercessional work and the use of other foreign opportunity for states to be discussing and progressing these issues.

      We hoped that there would be the development of texts and substantive content in intercessional periods if states are serious about wanting to see the development of a robust instrument, because certainly, from what we’ve seen in discussions thus far, yes, it is possible for any issue to become contentious and thus take up quite a lot of time.

      So I think for all of those states that are very keen on having consensus as a process mechanism, it’s also their responsibility to ensure that that doesn’t become a block and that the striving to get agreement is just that and not a stumbling over every issue.

      For us I think we can, yes, certainly foresee some of the issues that are going to be potentially difficult, and Roy has already touched around the definitions on scope and the preciseness of that and what we actually do mean to be covered by that is perhaps the first one to clarify, although, again, if you actually delve into what most exporting states currently cover within the scope of their own export control agreements, it shouldn’t be contentious because actually the majority of exporting states have quite a wide scope.

      Similarly, with human rights and – (unintelligible) – yes, states have wide existing obligations underneath those international laws already, so the existence of those within the treaty should not be contentious.  But for us it’s absolutely crucial how they’re applied, and references to obligations are different to clear obligating criteria, and that will be something that obviously we’ll be looking at very closely and keen to be working with all supporter states on those issues to make sure that it really is robust criteria that has developed.

      MS. STOHL:  I think we’ll take one more question.  Bridget?

      Q:  Thanks.  Bridget Moix with the Friends Committee on National Legislation.  Just to pick up on one other complicated question, Anna, you mentioned wanting sustainable development to be at the heart of a treaty, and I know there is a lot more attention to looking at the links between armed violence and development, arms accumulation and development.  The criteria here lists wanting to limit arms that would seriously impair poverty reduction or socioeconomic development.  How do you see that ideally being incorporated into a treaty, you know, by criteria or measurements?

      MS. MACDONALD:  Thanks.  When we’ve been exploring this issue – and, in fact, over the last year we’ve been engaged on a project with both importing and exporting states to examine the issue of sustainable development.  We’re very clear from Oxfam and other development agencies’ perspective that there shouldn’t be a rich-countries criteria.  It’s not about country X is considered to be too poor or not to purchase weapons; it’s about the appropriateness of a transfer and how that may or may not undermine other poverty reduction targets that that state might have, and should essentially be about a dialogue between the importing and exporting state.

      We’ve also been doing work to break down sustainable development into more tangible component parts, so, for example, looking at the issue of corruption and looking at issues of transparency and accountability, which is you can break down those then into criteria that exports control we’d essentially be looking at.  I’m looking at in a similar way that you might be looking for patterns or likelihood of risk of misuse of weapons.  You’d be looking at sustained patterns around corruption, for example, as one of the risk factors to be assessing when looking at particular exports.

      So we’ve been, as I say, doing quite a number of roundtables and discussions with states on this issue, and it seems to us quite clearly that there are ways in which we can break this down into very practical criteria.  There’s a lot of support amongst African states, for example, around seeing sustainable development as being a very key part of the treaty, and indeed one of their reasons for supporting it.  So it’s something we’ll be progressing during this next period.

      MS. STOHL:  Well, I want to thank our panelists and the audience as well.  I got a note that the undersecretary is running a few minutes behind, and so since it’s perhaps difficult for people to get up and use the restroom, given the close quarters, I think we might take the advantage of having the few extra minutes if people want to use the restroom or to get a cup of coffee in advance of her presentation, and she should be arriving in the next five minutes.  So please make it a brief pause so that we can start back on time.  Thank you again to our panelists.  (Applause.)

      (Break.)

      JEFF ABRAMSON:  Good morning.  My name is Jeff Abramson.  I’m deputy director of the Arms Control Association.  Thank you all for being here.  Let me, before I get to my very quick introduction, give you a status of what is happening right now.  Undersecretary Tauscher regrets that she cannot make it today to the meeting, which I am at.  She’s very apologetic and has offered to do this again sometime, so we’re going to take her up on that.

      But Ambassador Don Mahley has agreed to read her prepared remarks.  Afterwards, he’s willing to take questions, but unfortunately for the media here, those will have to be off the record, and he will be a little bit more clear on that as well.

      So we do have remarks.  I’ll be introducing him in just a second.  We are trying to print it out – (laughter) – so that he can give the speech.  I will be back momentarily.

      (Break.)

      MR. ABRAMSON:  So thank you all once again for being here.  I’m delighted now to turn our focus – turn our focus to emerging U.S. policy on this.  The issues we’re confronting, as you know, including the lack of transparency and weapons flows, potential fueling of destabilizing arms races and arms accumulations, and the dreadful humanitarian consequences of unregulated trafficking in conventional weapons are not new, and the need to arrive at more effective solutions are no less urgent.

      I’ll point out a little bit from our archive.  A few months ago I stumbled across the June 1991 special edition of Arms Control Today, which focused on reigning in the arms trade.  And one of the articles called for gaining control, building a comprehensive arms restraint system.  And this was in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War.  That was a window where we thought there was opportunity.  Nearly two decades have passed and today we have a new policy window, in part made possible by this administration’s decision last year to get engaged in the arms trade treaty process.

      The organizations, as you’ve heard, who have sponsored this gathering, are committed to working with this administration and others in this room to create what, in Secretary of State Clinton’s words is, quote, “a strong and robust treaty that contains the highest possible legally binding standards for the international transfer of conventional weapons,” unquote.

      We’re delighted that Don Mahley, the ambassador who has been working on this issue for a number of years, is willing to step in and deliver the speech on this issue.  And we are encouraged that the United States, as the world’s largest arms supplier, is prepared to be part of the solution to this tough challenge, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts about where the U.S. is on arms trade treaty concepts and how you think those in this audience could engage in this process.

      Ambassador Mahley, thank you again, and the podium is yours.

      DONALD MAHLEY:  Thank you, and we’ll start out by – again, I’ll offer my apologies.  I realized that you expected to see the undersecretary, who is much younger and more dynamic than I am up here, but unfortunately the United States government, being engaged in multiple things at the same time – and for those of you who may think differently, we can indeed walk and chew gum at the same time, and this case she’s doing exactly that in another context and unfortunately can’t be here.

      MR.     :  (Off mike.)

      MR. MAHLEY:  The microphone is on?

      MR.     :  Yes, it is.

      MR. MAHLEY:  Yeah.  And so, again, I will apologize for her absence.  She did want to be here and she sends her own apologies.

      Also, as I give you these comments, I am literally going to be reading the text that Undersecretary Tauscher was going to be delivering, so in this sense there may be a couple of things that don’t sound exactly right, but just assume, again, that you have the undersecretary here and this is only a bad mask that she’s wearing for Halloween – (laughter) – that you’re seeing behind the platform.

      And then when we finish that, I will certainly be prepared to take questions and answers, but that will be me taking questions and answers and so therefore those will be off the record at that point and I want to make sure that everybody understands that before we get down to get started on that.

      Okay, what Undersecretary Tauscher meant to say was:

      Jeff, thanks very much for your introduction.  (Laughter.)  I also want to thank everyone here for your energy, your commitment to these issues and your patriotism.  It’s nice to see such friendly faces.  Now, I look out there and I’m not sure that they’re as friendly as she might have imagined they would be, but that’s okay.  (Laughter.)  That’s not in her comments.

      You all are what I consider my base.  Let me start by thanking the sponsors of this meeting, the Center for International Trade and Security, Oxfam America, the Arms Control Association and Project Ploughshares.

      As everyone here knows, President Obama has set forth a bold arms control and nonproliferation agenda, and for good reason, and because so many of us have made such an effort to speak out about the Prague agenda, it has garnered a lot of support, a lot of attention, and a lot of media coverage.

      I know that conventional arms have gotten much less attention, even though they kill more people every year than nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.  I am here to make sure that everyone knows the United States is strongly committed to addressing the problems posed by the irresponsible transfers of conventional weapons.

      So last October, Secretary Clinton said that the United States, quote, “is committed to actively pursuing a strong and robust treaty that contains the highest possible legally-binding standards for the international transfer of conventional weapons.”

      We will work between now and the U.N. Conference in 2012 to negotiate a legally binding Arms Trade Treaty, and we’ll need your help in achieving it.  We have made that a fundamental policy commitment.  So let me explain what it means in practical terms and let me explain why we're doing this now.

      Like a lot of ideas, an arms trade treaty has been in the works for a long time.  The U.N. Register of Conventional Arms opened the door to global discussions of a range of conventional weapons.  These discussions have broadened so that we now have an A to Z list of meetings and forums on how to limit or eliminate small arms, anti-personnel landmines and other indiscriminate weapons.

      But conventional arms transfers are a much wider question than just small arms or voluntary registration of some information about transfers.  We need a treaty that looks at regulating all conventional weapons, from small arms and light weapons to aircraft carriers.

      Unlike chemical or biological weapons, an arms trade treaty cannot be a ban on conventional weapons.  When conducted responsibly, arms transfers are a legitimate commercial enterprise that supports global stability.

      The international arms trade provides nations with material necessary to fulfill the most basic functions of a government:  protecting its citizens and enforcing its national sovereignty.  What we are after is a means to have all nations do what the United States already does:  examine each conventional weapons transfer before it is authorized to be certain that it will enhance and not undermine security and stability.

      We all know that there is a dark side to arms transfers that can have devastating consequences for people and regions.  Irresponsible transfers can support terrorists, enable genocide and create, sustain and compound proliferation nightmares.

      The Arms Trade Treaty discussions have gained momentum by a shared recognition by all of the disruptive and oppressive impact of illicit or ill-advised arms transfers by a number of countries and organizations.  What we need, therefore, is to explore a legally binding measure to better control transfers across international borders.

      For the Arms Trade Treaty to be effective at thwarting irresponsible transfers, it must ensure that members effectively implement national laws that criminalize such transfers and allow for the monitoring of commerce.  Without this, it won't necessarily deter or stop terrorism, or any of the other things that we are concerned about.

      So-called “legally binding instruments” are absolutely meaningless, for example, to terrorists.  They are criminals who don’t and won’t abide by any reasonable agreements.  That means that the only way to effectively control or inhibit their activity is indirectly.

      All states must recognize the obligation to enact and enforce laws within their territory that criminalize, isolate and punish those terrorist groups operating within their territory or profiting from transactions that originate in or transit through their territory.  And, if the state claiming sovereign jurisdiction does not have the capability for such enforcement, then the international community must make available the resources to create such capability, both in the short and long run.

      This means that any international instrument hoping to make real impact on so-called “illicit” arms transfers must focus on requiring each party to put in place those necessary means to eliminate such rogue non-state actors, both from within their territory and on the receiving end of their international commerce.

      It means that weak states, where terrorists operate with relative freedom, must adapt to the very real and difficult requirements any effective instrument will lay out for them.  They must take all necessary steps to become an effective, law-abiding state.

      At the same time, conventional arms transfers are a crucial national security concern for the United States.  Our government has always supported effective action to control and ensure responsibility in the international transfer of arms.  That’s because we believe that stable societies and secure environments are the very best places for the growth of freedom and prosperity.

      So we are a leading advocate of ensuring that arms transfers are done only for legitimate purposes.  We carefully consider them before they are approved.  I should know since I sign off on them, and I put in place safeguards designed to ensure, for example, that small arms are used in the manner for which the transfer was intended.

      The United States has one of the most comprehensive sets of requirements in the world that must be satisfied before a U.S. manufacturer is authorized to transfer arms internationally.  Every month, literally thousands of applications for export of weapons are reviewed in detail by our government.

      We have a strong and robust regulatory body.  The transfer of arms are approved only when there is realistic and reasonable evidence the intended recipient has shown that they have a legitimate need and sufficient safeguards, and those safeguards are there to preclude either deliberate or unintended re-transfers or unapproved end uses.

      We also consider the effect of the transfer on regional stability.  This process requires enormous effort, it is expensive, and it results in denying exports in questionable circumstances.  Although this can work to the commercial disadvantage of U.S. firms, it is a price we have to pay to try to stem the flow of conventional arms to terrorist groups, to rogue states and to others who would undermine the rule of law.

      It is also why the United States believes that it is the responsibility of the entire international community to settle for no less than the highest possible standards in international agreements and in reporting activities.  We believe that robust and vigorous regulation and enforcement would make it much more difficult for terrorist groups or rogue nations to destabilize regions or support terrorist activity.

      This is why, after careful consideration, the Obama administration has decided to actively support international efforts to achieve an effective global framework and to set high the bar that everyone must meet.  The United States will seek a result that establishes high standards of expected conduct in international activity and in national enforcement.

      The Arms Trade Treaty negotiations will likely be long and difficult.  Some participants will be tempted to take the easy road, seeking the lowest common denominator just to get a quick agreement from those states who would like to continue to support, directly or indirectly, terrorists, pirates and genocidal warlords for a quick profit or short-term advantage.

      Let me be clear:  We will not rush to judgment by approving a weak or loophole-laden agreement.  The United States is not interested in a vague or weak outcome just to feel good.  That would not do anything to address the real issues in arms transfers.

      The United States believes an arms trade treaty is sufficiently important to national security and to international stability that the deliberations needed to produce consensus decisions in order to command the widest possible participation.  A document that failed to gain support from important international players capable of acting outside their reach will undercut the objectives and purposes and would be worse than having no document at all.

      Therefore, we firmly believe that consensus is needed to ensure the high standards necessary for an effective arms trade treaty.  It is not, nor should others hope it to be, an excuse for avoiding hard choices or real, deliberative controls.  There will no doubt be serious, lengthy negotiations over most of the elements of any outcome.

      In fact, it has been our experience, sometimes painful, over the course of four decades of such negotiations that there is an inevitable rush by many participants in those negotiations to seek simplified or shallow provisions because they sound good and they’re easily agreed to.

      The United States considers the subject of conventional arms transfers, with their pervasiveness, dual-use capabilities and potential harm, too important to national security to be treated with less than the level of detail and engagement they deserve.  This will not make the negotiations easier, but it will give them the greatest chance of being meaningful and of commanding both the attention and participation by those states necessary to their eventual success.

      I know that some will argue that a consensus agreement will make it tough to get real progress.  Let me say two things:

      First, some states could attempt to derail negotiations to seek an individual concession.  Our goal is to make such behavior transparent to bring public and diplomatic pressure onto the offending party.  It’s sort of like earmarking for Congress; it’s better to know what’s being done in the light of day rather than being slipped into a 1,000-page bill in the dark of night.

      And there are, as you know, a handful of states who make up the backbone of the worldwide arms trade.  Excluding them or not getting a universal agreement would make any agreement less than useless.  In political terms, this requires a big-tent policy even if bringing some into the tent is time consuming and painful.  But it is the only way to address this issue and bring about an enduring and meaningful agreement that enhances our national security and also enhances international stability.

      The treaty is worth doing because it can have, unlike many things we do, a more immediate impact.  Lessening the arms trade can lead to less killing and less maiming, but the reality is that it is a very big challenge and we’re going to need your help to build the political support necessary to get this one done.

      Thank you very much.  And, as I said, I’m prepared to answer questions.  They will have to be off the record at this point, however.  Thank you.  (Applause.)

       

       

       

      ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION –

      TOWARDS A GLOBAL ARMS TRADE TREATY:

      WHAT ROLE FOR THE UNITED STATES?

      WELCOME:

      KEN EPPS,

      SENIOR PROGRAM ASSOCIATE, PROJECT PLOUGHSHARES

      MODERATORS:

      RACHEL STOHL,

      ASSOCIATE FELLOW, CHATHAM HOUSE

      JEFF ABRAMSON,

      DEPUTY DIRECTOR, ARMS CONTROL ASSOCIATION

      SPEAKERS:

      AMBASSADOR ROBERTO GARCÍA MORITÁN,

      THE REPUBLIC OF ARGENTINA

      ANNA MACDONALD,

      CONTROL ARMS CAMPAIGN MANAGER, OXFAM AMERICA

      DONALD MAHLEY

      Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary, Threat Reduction, Export Control, U.S. state department

      THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 2010

      9:30 A.M.

      CARNEGIE ENDOWMENT FOR INTERNATIONAL PEACE, WASHINGTON, D.C.

      Transcript by

      Federal News Service

      Washington, D.C.

      KEN EPPS: Good morning, everyone. My name is Ken Epps. I’m senior program associate at Project Ploughshares, which is the ecumenical peace center of the Community Council of Churches and affiliation with the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies at ConradGrebelUniversityCollege, University of Waterloo.

      On behalf of the organizations who have jointly organized this event – and those are the Arms Control Association, the Center for International Trade and Security, Oxfam America and Project Ploughshares – I would like to welcome all participants to this roundtable discussion.

      I am especially pleased to welcome our opening panelists, Ambassador Moritan and Anna MacDonald, who have traveled a considerable distance from Argentina and the United Kingdom, respectively, to be with us here today.

      And of course we are particularly delighted that Ms. Ellen Tauscher, undersecretary for Arms Control and International Security at the State Department, will be providing the keynote address during our working lunch.

      On behalf of my own organization, Project Ploughshares, based in Canada, I would like to thank our Washington partners for the considerable efforts in arranging the many details of today. And I also wish to acknowledge the financial support for the event from Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada.

      As indicated in the invitation, the purpose of today’s roundtable is to promote discussion on how the U.S. government can best engage with and contribute to the development of a robust international arms trade treaty. The roundtable is focused on the important role of the U.S. government in the ATT process, but today’s event is also one of many initiatives by civil society organizations around the world to engage a range of stakeholders in the promotion of a legally binding, comprehensive and effective treaty.

      In particular, the civil society-based Arms Trade Treaty Steering Committee, an NGO coalition that includes Project Ploughshares and other NGOs here today, has promoted the idea of an ATT for more than a decade, and we are pleased to be here today.

      Motivated by concern about the egregious impact of irresponsible and illicit arms transfers, the NGO coalition has strived to promote high global standards in a binding international agreement that would require states to effectively control all international transfers of conventional arms in their jurisdiction.

      The quest for an international convention to control the arms trade is not new – it has existed since at least the days of the League of Nations – but renewed momentum emerged during the 1990s, when a group of NGOs, along with Nobel Peace Laureates led by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, first promoted the idea of an international code of conduct for arms transfers.

      By 2000, the Code Working Group of NGOs transformed the international code into the Framework Convention on International Arms Transfers with the assistance of international legal experts. The framework convention in turn became the basis for proposals for the more popularly named Arms Trade Treaty, and the Code Working Group became the ATT steering committee.

      It was this NGO coalition which, in 2005, published the core global principles for international arms transfers, drawn from relevant, existing international instruments and obligations. These principles have been promoted widely by civil society advocates of the ATT as a blueprint for draft parameters for an effective treaty.

      In 2002, the coalition also agreed that its three largest multinational members – Amnesty International, Oxfam, and the International Action Network on Small Arms – would take a grassroots and global control arms campaign to promote the ATT.

      Among other initiatives, the campaign launched the Million Faces online petition initiative, which, in less than three years, became the world’s largest photo petition. More than 1 million people from over 160 countries contributed photos and drawings to the petition, which called for ATT negotiations at the U.N.

      The petition was presented to the U.N. secretary-general in June, 2006. By December 2006, the U.N. General Assembly had overwhelmingly voted for a U.N. process to consider an international treaty on the global arms trade.

      In these opening remarks, it is not my intention to detail NGO perspectives on ATT content and campaigning to promote the U.N. treaty process. We will hear from civil society representatives on these issues later today, but I would like to emphasize the importance that NGOs advocating a comprehensive and effective ATT attached to U.S. commitment to the treaty process.

      The NGO coalition welcomed U.S. support for the treaty when it was announced by Secretary of State Clinton in October 2009. Indeed, it is apparent to all who have followed ATT developments that U.S. participation in treaty negotiations will be central and crucial. As the largest exporter of conventional weapons, the U.S. brings the weight of trade realities to treaty discussions.

      In her October statement, Secretary Clinton noted the gold standard set by U.S. export controls, and these, along with the commitments it has made with respect to the trade in conventional weapons – and I refer you here to the roundtable briefing paper that Rachel Stohl has produced for us, which details these standards and commitments. These are all clearly important for the U.S. to bring to the table during treaty negotiations.

      In addition to U.S. influence on other key actors in the arms trade, especially U.N. secretary (sic) council members that have abstained on General Assembly votes on the ATT – that is, in particular, Russia and China – it will be necessary to ensure that treaty negotiations do not generate (sic) into the lowest common denominator process.

      In the end, the effectiveness of a negotiated ATT will rest on the willingness of support of states to ensure the highest possible treaty standards. As NGOs, we look to the U.S. to join and indeed lead in these efforts.

      I’d like to conclude now with some housekeeping notes. Perhaps most important, the washrooms are directly out this door at the end of the hallway. Secondly, I would like to remind people that while the morning panel is in open session and the luncheon working session is open, the proceedings from lunch – or from after lunch will be held according to the Chatham House Rule. That is, none of the comments of presenters or participants are for attribution.

      And, finally, there is a request that all participants, if possible, complete the evaluation form that you will find in your packets on colored paper. It should only take a minute or two to fill out and you can leave it on the table or hand it to one of the organizers on your way out. And we thank you for that.

      So again and finally, welcome to all roundtable participants. The organizers of today’s event look forward to open and fruitful discussions which we hope will contribute another step towards a strong and robust arms trade treaty. I now give the floor to Rachel Stohl, who will chair the opening session.

      RACHEL STOHL: Thank you, Ken, and good morning to everyone. I’m delighted to see that we have such a packed house this morning and look forward to enhancing the dialogue on this issue with all of you.

      It’s my pleasure to chair this first panel, which will hopefully set the stage internationally for what’s happening within ATT so that as we move throughout the morning, and hear from Undersecretary Tauscher about what the U.S. government is doing, and then this afternoon hear from various U.S. stakeholders that we have a context in which to put that in, because we like to think that, you know, what happens in Washington, you know, goes out to the rest of the world, but there’s a lot going on outside that we need to also take into consideration here.

      So our speakers this morning are Ambassador Roberto Garcia Moritan from Argentina and Anna MacDonald from the Control Arms Campaign and Oxfam International. For those that haven’t had the opportunity to meet these individuals, Ambassador Moritan has been a career diplomat since 1971. He was permanent representative to the Conference of Disarmament from 1989 to 1994 and undersecretary for Latin American affairs from ’94 to ’98.

      He also served as his country’s permanent representative to the United Nations from 1999 to 2002 and was the undersecretary for foreign affairs from 2003 to 2005 and vice minister and secretary of state for foreign affairs from 2005 to 2008. So he has a long and distinguished diplomatic career.

      In addition to serving as the president of the Conference on Disarmament in 1993 and the most recent session in 2009, he has chaired both the U.N. Group of Governmental Experts and the Open-Ended Working Group on the Arms Trade Treaty and will be serving as the chair for the upcoming U.N. process. So we’re delighted to have him share his experience and thoughts on the way forward.

      Anna MacDonald from Oxfam International has worked for Oxfam since 1995 in a variety of international programs and advocacy positions. She has worked on arms control issues for Oxfam since 2002, playing a key role in the launch in the development of the Control Arms Campaign, which she’ll tell us about in her remarks.

      So first I would like to open to Ambassador Moritan. And what we’ll do is hear from both our speakers and then open it for discussion and questions, because I think that’s going to be the most – these are round tables, and so this will be the most fruitful way to have our discussion. Thank you.

      AMBASSADOR ROBERTO GARCIA MORITAN: Thank you, Rachel, for your kind words. As Rachel said, I’m going to make first some general comments on the complexities of today’s world, which is good in a certain way because it assures diplomats that we will not run out of work.

      This century’s threat to peace and security are at least, in many ways, more complex than those the world has seen in the past, and they come from a variety of sources, mainly from weapons that can kill on a mass scale, but also from global terrorism, drug trafficking, organized crime.

      In this new global environment, peacekeeping, peacemaking, peace-building requires new multilateral efforts. In a way, we have to start being a little bit more imaginative to deal with the new threats to international security.

      While most conflict takes place primarily within countries, non-state threats and actors have also become key topics in contemporary security. Also, the statistics show that many more people are killed in ethnic conflicts or as a consequence of the proliferation of conventional weapons than international war.

      So one of the great tragedies of our time is the uncontrolled spread of weapons, often from illegal markets and even sometimes in violation of U.N. embargoes. The global arms trade provides weapons for the legitimate national self-defense of states for peacekeeping and law enforcement, in accordance with international law and in particular with Article 51 of the U.N. Charter. But it also provides arms to governments with track records of use of weapons inappropriately and sometimes unlawfully against civilians in violation of human rights and international and military law.

      So without adequate controls, weapons and the munitions that begin in the legal arms trade can too easily pass into the hands of armed groups and those involved in organized crime. More than 2,000 people per day die as a consequence of violence and conventional weapons. The cost of armed violence in Africa – only to give an example – is around 19 billion U.S. dollars. These weapons fuel conflict, violate human rights, break down societies and prevent people climbing out of poverty.

      The regulation of conventional arms transfers is crucial to grip a global problem that is spiraling out of control. I feel there is an imperative need to reduce the human costs of arms proliferation and prevent unscrupulous weapons suppliers and ensure that all exporters are working to the same standards.

      One crucial step is to try to negotiate an arms treaty. Such a treaty should not hinder responsible trade but it will prevent defense exporters from undermining international security and prosperity. The main objective is to create a comprehensive, legally binding international mechanism for ensuring a more responsible trade in conventional arms. The primary responsibility for controlling the flows of arms rests with the states, whether they are manufacturers or not, that export, re-export, transit or import arms.

      The current situation, as I see it, is full of gaps and loopholes and inconsistencies. Some countries have national controls with different standards, in many cases barely enforced. A large number do not have controls or those criteria are too weak. Some regional and multilateral arms control regimes lack some strong provisions for implementation.

      Controlling international arms transfers is in the fundamental interest of all states, and especially given the nature and structure of international arms trade today. During the Cold War, only the U.S. and the USSR were nationally self-sufficient in arms production. Today more countries have autonomous arms industry. The arms market is not just larger but more globalized, and this means that arms are being produced in many countries.

      Although it’s true that 80 percent of the market is controlled by a fewer number of states, the numbers of countries producing weapons nowadays is more than a hundred, especially ammunition and small weapons.

      So the question is not only the weapons which are being produced and transferred legally, but those also that goes into the legal market. It’s not enough to know that certain countries have responsible controls for the flows of their exports; we need to have a global system with equal standards that all countries could follow to assure a responsible trade in conventional weapons.

      It is with this vision in mind that the co-authors started this process several years ago. From the first U.N. resolution, the co-authors knew that they had enough votes for the commencement of those negotiations. But, nevertheless, they thought it was necessary to engage in a wider process to make all U.N. members understand the purposes and objectives of the initiative. Universal participation is very important to have an instrument effective for the purposes that we are pursuing, so we started to follow a step-by-step process.

      The first one was to ask the secretary-general views of the state members of the U.N., and certainly the response allowed us to think on the need of such a treaty.

      The second step took place when the secretary-general of the U.N. called for a U.N. group of experts. The group of experts was organized in a liberated manner, and there were representations from countries that produced weapons from different regions of the world, but also with a political ecunemiun (ph) where you had eclectic and enthusiastic of the initiative.

      The group of experts went into looking in material, the essential elements towards a treaty on arms trade, and came out with a conclusion that further work was necessary and was needed for larger participation of U.N. members.

      So the third phases started in 2008 when the secretary-general called for an Open-Ended Working Group, which was a subsidiary organ of the U.N. General Assembly. It was a deliberative process which was thought initially to work during two years.

      The work we did in 2009 and the exchange of views between member states, it was clear that the deliberative process was able to complete its task in 2009. The exchange of views was large. Countries from all regions participated actively and we were able to analyze the feasibility of the treaty, scope, parameters and some other questions related to an arms trade treaty.

      Out of talks and deliberation, it was clear that an exchange of views was extensive, transparent and clear enough, and I guess that was the reason why the General Assembly – last U.N. General Assembly decided to take a new step, which was to call for a conference in 2012 and the establishment of a preparatory committee to start the work for that conference.

      When you look at the U.N. resolution, you can see a negotiated mandate for the PrepCom. So the PrepCom will have, beginning July 2010, the responsibility to start negotiating the elements of a treaty. When we talk about the elements of the treaty, we have, at the end of the day, the treaty itself. So the purpose and the responsibility of the PrepCom will be to start working on that process between 2010 and 2012.

      The first meeting will take place in July this year in New York, and we have a two-week session, which is not going to be extremely large, for the kind of responsibilities we have before us. And we will have completed the work during 2011 because, actually, the PrepCom meeting in 2012 will have to deal mainly with procedural aspects. So by 2011 it will be useful to try to see if we can complete the work of the PrepCom according to the General Assembly resolution and present a text to the conference by 2012.

      So the work which has been done is an interesting one from a diplomatic point of view because it was not an initiative that was thrown to countries from one day to another, but one that was presented with intention of a better understanding of the objectives that we were pursuing.

      As I said before, we have from the commencement the necessary votes to start those negotiations but we chose a step-by-step process because we thought that in security issues we have to work and we have to exchange views in a quite deep manner to be sure that all countries are able to understand the purposes. And, at the same time, it’s extremely important to learn the concerns of those which are eclectics with the initiative to try to solve and to try to see ways and means on how to consider those concerns.

      We are exactly in that process. We are trying now, after the open-ended work, to continue consultations towards the work of the PrepCom in the months of July. And, since then, the process of negotiations starts as a new game, and I hope very much that by the end of 2011 we will be able to have a draft with substantive elements that the PrepCom could present to the conference in 2012.

      I think, Rachel, maybe it would be more interesting for the participants to ask questions than to listen.

      MS. STOHL: Okay, thank you.

      AMB. MORITAN: Thank you.

      ANNA MACDONALD: Okay, thanks very much. I would just like to extend my thanks to the organizers of this event. As has been said, I’m speaking from Oxfam International and on behalf of the Control Arms International Campaign, and I’ve been asked to give the International Campaign perspective on the Arms Trade Treaty and a bit of a history of the campaign and process so far, and perhaps most of all to underline why the world really needs this treaty and why we need it so urgently.

      Arms fuel conflict, poverty and human rights abuses around the world on a daily basis. It’s not only the 2,000 people that die everyday as a result of armed violence, but also the many thousands more who suffer torture, rape, oppression and are forced to flee their homes.

      In the period since the U.N. started discussing an ATT in 2006, we estimate that more than 2.1 million people have died as a result of armed violence. And the U.N. estimates that during the 1990s, conventional weapons were used to kill over 5 million people and force 50 million more to flee their homes.

      This is a photo that I took in a refugee camp in Eastern Congo some months back where upon asking the women in the camp what was the biggest problem that they faced, they responded not with demands for water or shelter or food, but simply to state that the biggest problem was the men with guns.

      The uncontrolled trade in arms and the uncontrolled flood of weapons into some of the world’s worst conflict zones fuels poverty and exacerbates situations for people who are already living a marginalized or difficult existence.

      For Oxfam, the reason that we’ve been involved in arms control issues for some more than a decade now is quite simple: Every day, around the world, our staff and partners in the hundred countries in which we work bear witness to the problems and devastation caused by an arms trade that is out of control. As a speaker at our global Arms Trade Treaty conference last week in Vienna commented, “The profit of the arms trade is measured in dollars but the cost is counted in lives.”

      We’re clear in the campaign that there is legitimate role for arms and the arms trade. When used in line with international law, arms clearly have a legitimate use, and certainly we support states’ rights to self-defense as enshrined in the U.N. Charter. But these rights also come with responsibilities. Almost all states have responsibilities under international humanitarian law and international human rights law, and what’s important in the perspective and context of our global Arms Trade Treaty is that these responsibilities are also applied to arms transfer controls.

      At the moment, the lack of any effective global regulation means that what we have, at best, is a system of patchwork controls where different countries have different levels of export control agreements. Some regions have regional transfer agreements in place, but there is no single global, coordinated system, which leads to a situation where, in the words of a monarch (sic) commander in Congo, “Peacekeepers are left feeling like they’re mopping the floor with the taps turned on.” No sooner are they dealing with the problem of one arms catchment that’s coming through, but then another load of arms and ammunition is arriving.

      It’s a situation that we think an arms trade treaty can go some way to address, a legally binding treaty that would create the level playing field that Ambassador Moritan has already described, and based around core principles, around international law, which we will be going into in more detail after the lunch session, we believe could go a long way to bring the arms trade under control and to prevent this situation spiraling out of control.

      And it’s an initiative which, as we’ve already heard, is gaining – rapidly gaining momentum and is now soon to become a reality in the relatively short period between now and 2012 when the negotiation conference will take place. I’ll just touch briefly on one example of what we’re talking about when we describe the need to stop irresponsible arms transfers.

      Most of you will be familiar and will remember the ship that sailed from China to – or attempted to sail from China to Zimbabwe in 2008, and only in fact due to the actions of the church movement and civil society, the ship came to the attention of the world’s media as it was prevented from docking first in Durban in South Africa and subsequently in a number of other ports around Southern Africa, as various moves were meant to prevent its intended cargo of ammunition, arms and mortar bombs from reaching Zimbabwe at that time in a height of political tension and where there was clearly a high risk that the weapons and ammunition would be used to commit human rights abuses.

      So just briefly to touch on the history of the international campaign and where we’ve come to since the launch in 2003, when the campaign began back in October 2003, there were three countries which publicly supported the call for an arms trade treaty: Mali, Costa Rica and Cambodia. Ken has described some of the longer background history before that, how the idea developed from discussions amongst Nobel laureates and developed from that into ideas around an international code of conduct and ultimately an arms-trade treaty.

      From launching an international campaign with an aim to try to raise the profile of the need for arms control around the world and to increase political pressure for countries to support the idea of an arms trade treaty, we gradually saw more and more countries coming out and declaring their support for international arms control.

      As Ken has described, various campaigning devices such as Million Faces petition, a photo petition which was active in more than 120 countries around the world, helped bring the need for an arms trade treaty and the need for arms control to popular attention.

      This slide is from a presentation back in 2006 when we were mapping the countries that supported an arms trade treaty, and we’d reached the figure of around 43 countries who publicly declared their support.

      In the summer of 2006, our symbolic millionth face, Julius Arile, an armed violence survivor from Kenya, presented the petition to then-Secretary Gen. Kofi Annan, calling for states within the U.N. to begin work on an arms trade treaty. The campaign continued to grow and to increase support as region after region, more and more countries openly declared their support for greater international arms control.

      And then, as Ambassador Moritan has already described, a group of governments came together – seven core governments came together and drafted a resolution introducing the Arms Trade Treaty to the U.N. and mandating the U.N. to begin discussions on an arms trade treaty.

      That was overwhelmingly passed through the U.N. with 153 governments voting in favor to begin work on the ATT. And, as we’ve heard, that led on to a secretary-general’s consultation to all states on what the feasibility, scope and parameters of an ATT could be. Is it actually possible, and if so, what should be in it?

      In parallel with that, the International Civil Society Campaign ran a People’s consultation in more than 50 countries around the world, and we believe that that public consultation which involved all sectors of society went some way to encourage countries in that very high level of response that we saw.

      The group of governmental experts, which then met in 2008, we feel was significant in that it agreed, and while it was a small group of countries and perhaps disproportionately made up of those countries that still had reservations or concerns around an ATT, significantly agreed that work should continue, which led to, in the end of 2008, a further resolution being tabled and then overwhelmingly passed, mandating the setting up of an Open-Ended Working Group.

      And this is what we’ve seen happen over the last year during 2009. The Open-Ended Working Group has met twice, and from our perspective, perhaps significantly, the debate has moved from a discussion of if there should be an arms trade treaty to when there should be an arms trade treaty, and therefore what should be in it? We feel this is significant in terms of both the political dynamic and the depth of discussions that have been going on amongst states.

      And so that leads us to where we are now, which is the resolution that was passed – introduced in October last year and then mandated by the General Assembly in December, which essentially moves the Arms Trade Treaty into a negotiation phase that Ambassador Moritan has described – again, 150 votes in favor, and of course the biggest political shift, which we very much welcome and look forward to now further discussions in this event and beyond, is the move of the U.S. administration from a previous no vote to now yes.

      So that’s the sort of part in history from the campaign perspective. We believe that both the actions of the campaign and the discussions amongst states have demonstrated both a need for a treaty and a desire to see one negotiated as swiftly as possible.

      Certainly we believe it needs to be a robust treaty if it’s going to really save lives and livelihoods, and we very much look forward to continuing those discussions with you today as we move forward with this process. Thanks.

      MS. STOHL: Thank you both, Ambassador and Anna, for, I think, some great remarks to frame the debate, the process and the discussions as we move forward, and I think since this is a roundtable, although there’s a lot of faces that I can’t quite see all the way in the back too, I think it would be helpful to have a discussion and to talk about some of the issues that were raised.

      And, given – I think it will be logistically difficult to pass a mike. If you do have a question, just raise your hand, and if you could introduce yourself and speak very loudly so that we can hear you up here. And if you have someone that you would like to address your particular question to – oh, you do have the mike?

      MR. : (Off mike.)

      MS. STOHL: Okay. If you have a question – we have two mikes, okay. Sorry; missed the back mike. I couldn’t figure out how Jeff was going to get all the way to the back, but since we have two mikes, if you raise your hand, either in the back or in the front, the mike will come to you. And, again, please introduce yourself and ask your question. Over here?

      Q: Hi, is it on?

      MS. STOHL: Can you stand, just because it’s hard to see you?

      Q: I’m Julia Fromholz with Human Rights First. Anna, you mentioned at the very end the U.S. switch in 2009. I wanted to know from either of you, what effect does the U.S. insistence on consensus have? What do you expect it to have? And what, in this case, does consensus really mean?

      AMB. MORITAN: I really don’t know if the U.S. insisted on consensus or not, but the fact is that the General Assembly Resolution took a decision on the matter. And in a certain way it’s logical to work under consensus.

      When you deal with international security issues, our questions are very sensitive toward nations. Sometimes it’s very difficult to understand what security means for a country or what does threat mean for a certain country. Sometimes it’s not so much for diplomats to make that analysis as for psychoanalysts to look on the reasons why a country feels a threat or insecure.

      So when you deal with security issues, there’s a special nature of problems, and the case of weapons is the best example. Why does a country need weapons for their self-defense? Well, the answer – only that country can give the answer.

      So when you deal with those kind of sensitive issues, it is clear that negotiations have to go undertake a very deep, serious process of consultations, understanding of the issues involved, and in that process, consensus becomes an important question because universality should be the aim of instruments of this sort. It would serve no purpose if we have a treaty of like-minded states only. We could have the treaty tomorrow if that is the kind of treaty we want.

      What we would like to have is not only like-minded but also eclectic countries on board. Everybody has to feel comfortable with the process of those negotiations. And for them to feel comfortable in those negotiations, it is essential to have certain rules of the game. And the rule of the game is that you will not cheat by putting into a vote certain questions that could be sensitive for them.

      So the question of consensus is normal to any process of serious negotiations, which its aim is for universal participation. We will see at the end of the process what the U.N. will do once the treaty is completed, or if it lacks of some elements to have a robust instrument as we all would like to have.

      But from my point of view, which, being the chairman, I’m the one having more difficulties with a consensus vote – (laughter) – because I will have to try to arrive to a consensus. I think it’s not much of a problem because the responsibility will be to try to see how we can find ways and means to accommodate the concerns and at the same time have a robust instrument.

      We have done it in the past. We have done it – I had a chance of working into that. It was the Chemical Weapons Convention. We were able, with the rule of consensus, to have an excellent instrument on chemical weapons. We were able, though consensus also, to negotiate – although we were unable to adopt it in the CD, but we were able to negotiate a good nuclear test ban treaty in the CD.

      So consensus is not a difficulty. Sometimes it’s an advantage for delegations to participate more comfortable in those negotiations. So from that perspective, I don’t think it should be a matter that should worry anyone. It’s part of the game. Thank you.

      MS. STOHL: I think Anna might have a different take.

      MS. MACDONALD: Sure. (Laughter.) I think – I mean, what we would see as crucial is that through this process we’re achieving the highest possible standards for international arms control, not the lowest possible common denominator, which is the risk.

      And in that balance between striving for a treaty that the biggest number of states are able to be a part of so it has the widest possible impact and having the toughest possible standards. Then certainly we want to see that a treaty has very strong criteria in it, that it is very comprehensive in its scope, covering all conventional weapons with criteria around human rights, international humanitarian law and sustainable development at its heart.

      The risk that we would see with a weak treaty is that it could legitimize the situation that we currently have, and we don’t think actually that any of the states that have supported the move for an arms trade treaty want to see that. What we’re trying to do here, we think collectively, is change the situation that we currently have. We’re trying to stop irresponsible arms transfers. We’re trying to stop the flood of weapons into the world’s worst conflict zones. We’re not simply putting a stamp on what we already have.

      I think that what we’ve seen so far with the level of state support, with the content of what states have submitted in their submissions to the U.N. and in the discussions that have taken place so far, is a very strong, overwhelming majority that want to see robust controls in place.

      And what’s essential in this next period of two years leading up to that final conference is that the will of that overwhelming majority is not blocked by the actions of a minority, and I think that’s very much, from civil society’s perspective, what we’re looking to all states that have supported this process to be ensuring that what they are doing in the preparatory meetings is ensuring that that will of the majority does indeed go through and that we see the highest possible standards achieved by the end.

      MS. STOHL: There’s a question in the back.

      Q: My name is Jacques Bahati. I work with Africa Faith and Justice Network. I think the core of my question is, is there any work going on as far as other issues related to the reason why weapons are sold and let loose?

      I’ve seen that for those nations who produce these weapons, there is economic benefit to it. Are they willing to put those economic benefits on the side for the sake of peace and prosperity for other countries?

      Also, I wonder if the United Nations is relevant to really address this issue, whereas these powerful countries are the ones sitting and making these decisions. Will they be really able to enforce the rules when they are the ones benefiting from the trade? Thank you.

      MS. MACDONALD: Go ahead, please.

      AMB. MORITAN: Yes. My impression is that a treaty like the one we will start negotiating in July serves all countries; serves those countries that produce weapons in a large scale, serves countries that produce weapons in a small scale, and serves the purpose of the countries which do not produce.

      I think it’s in the interest of everyone, but from the point of view of those larger exporters of – which is a handful of – a few countries that have around 80 percent of the market, to have a responsible criteria and standards will not hinder their capacity to export.

      This treaty will not prohibit the export of weapons. This treaty will not try to avoid any one buying weapons if they think it’s necessary for their self-defense, law enforcement and their participation in peace operations of the U.N.

      What we are trying to do is have common international standards for all countries to assess when they take a decision on the export. And what do they have to assess? They have to assess if those weapons are going to be used on extreme cases in an irresponsible manner.

      What are those extreme cases? Violation of human rights. Should a country sell certain weapons to a nation that violates, systematically, human rights? Well, the country who sells the weapons should know that those weapons will kill people, so they should evaluate, before doing that, if it is recommendable to do that or not. In a genocide situation, should weapons be sold? In a conflict between states which humanitarian law is not observed, should weapons be sold?

      So the questions we are dealing with are extreme cases of irresponsibility and try to have common international standards to prevent that irresponsibility. I doubt very much that by adopting measures in that sense, that will hinder the additional capacity and the way of making money in this industry. On the contrary. I feel that an instrument of this nature will give a new guarantee to those industrial manufacturers that they’re doing the adequate thing.

      So the question here is the decision to whom to sell in certain circumstances. This is why the treaty will try to concentrate on those standards so that everybody around the world have the same standards when it comes to evaluate those exports.

      MS. STOHL: I don’t want to put any government officials on the spot, but we have several different governments represented here, both major exporters and perhaps secondary-tier exporters. So I don’t know if any government official wanted to answer that question with a kind of national perspective. If not, that’s okay; just wanted to – there are a lot of people in the room that may not know who’s here, so if there are any additional comments on that – otherwise we’ll take another question.

      Q: Thank you. I’m Norma Rein with the Boeing Company and I have a question about the scope of the treaty. Through the work done so far, have any preliminary recommendations or decisions been made with respect to what items would fall under the purview of the treaty, or is the focus just small arms? Would you be so kind to explain a little bit on that? Thanks.

      AMB. MORITAN: Thank you very much. As you all know, the process we’ve been in until now has been one of governmental experts and an open-ended discussion in the U.N. General Assembly. Out of those two specific processes came a variety of views with respect to the scope.

      It is my understanding that there is a common minimum acceptance that this scope should include what we usually say is seven-plus-one, which are the weapons which are included in the seven categories of the U.N. Register on Conventional Weapons (sic), plus small and light weapons.

      Out of these deliberative discussions, many countries would like to see some other things included in the scope – munitions, as has been said, components, new and used technologies – and the list is wide. We will have to start exchanging ourselves into discussions and negotiation with respect to scope beginning July. But, as I said to you, it is my understanding that at least the seven-plus-one category is going to be basis upon we will have to build and to see how far, according to delegations, we could go to agree in a scope that will include all the elements that will be in accordance with the purposes we’re pursuing.

      MS. MACDONALD: Yeah, just to add from the NGO perspective, in fact, inside the silver packs that were given out at the beginning you’ll see our position papers on scope and parameters. We, put simply, believe that all conventional weapons should be covered by the scope of type of weapon. We think this should also include ammunition. It should also include components, and it should also include those weapons – those components and parts that have capacity for dual use.

      In terms of the scope of type of transfer, we similarly believe that all types of transfer should be covered by an arms trade treaty – i.e. exports, imports, sale, transfer, gift, loan, et cetera. But you’ll see those are detailed a little more substantially in the papers.

      MS. STOHL: Jeff, can you get to Susan over here? Go to the back. Do you see Susan over here?

      Q: I think I can just – it’s a simple question.

      MR. : It’s too late – too late. (Laughter.)

      Q: Could you say just a few words –

      MS. STOHL: Say who you are.

      Q: I’m Susan Waltz, University of Michigan. Could you say just a few words about where things stand with the separate-but-related efforts to negotiate an instrument on marking and tracing and brokering, just how that fits in the whole scheme now?

      AMB. MORITAN: Well, this is a different question from the one we’re dealing – so, actually, in the context demanded, we have – the responsibility of the PrepCom is going to be limited to negotiate the elements of a treaty itself.

      Now, of course we will have to deal with the question of verification. We haven’t entered into details of verification and moratorium during the group of governmental experts. There were generic presentations on the question. Also, on the open-ended working groups, only a few delegations make reference to the matter.

      So the question you mentioned could be one that delegations could raise when it comes to the question of verification moratorium on some or some other kind of publications of the treaty. But we will have to see, so it’s a little bit difficult for me in advance to make any comment on the question but it’s clear that in some aspects there is certain relation between the two aspects.

      MS. STOHL: I think we have three hands. We have one in the back, we have Roy here, and then we have Steve. And so, just looking at the time, in case the undersecretary shows up earlier, perhaps we can take all three of those questions and then answer them.

      Q: Thanks. Erik Wasson, Inside U.S. Trade – a question mainly for the ambassador. What proposals are on the table that would possibly result in changes to U.S. export controls, and could you possibly describe how the ATT could differ from the Wassenaar regime, for example? Thanks.

      (Cross talk.)

      AMB. MORITAN: Oh, I’m sorry.

      MS. STOHL: That was a media one, so do you want to do – okay, take off – and then if someone could bring Steve Goose – if you could raise your hand.

      Q: Hi, I’m Roy Isbister from Saferworld, and I’ve got more a comment than a question. It’s on the scope issue and the use of the language of seven-plus-one. And in the – my kind of take on the Open-Ended Working Group was there were a lot of people using the language of seven-plus-one and meaning that in a very comprehensive sense.

      But if you examine what seven-plus-one actually means in detail, it’s a lot more limiting than people often think. So for example, one of the categories is aircraft but it is only attack aircraft, and I think a lot of people, when they were talking about seven-plus-one, they were talking about military aircraft in general.

      So I think it’s just one of the issues when looking at scope. There is a danger in using this kind of shorthand and so, obviously, as the discussion goes forward, these kind of details will get teased out. But I just think we need to be very careful of what we understand with some of the shorthand that is being used. Thanks.

      MS. STOHL: Steve?

      Q: Steve Goose with Human Rights Watch – sort of one big question for both the ambassador and Anna, and then a couple of nuts and bolts if you can.

      On the big one, what do you anticipate at this point are going to be the most contentious and difficult issues to deal with? You undoubtedly already have a good idea of what that’s going to be, and if you would share that with us.

      And the nuts and bolts, it strikes me that for something that was launched in 2006, there has been very little formal work on this the past three years. How much time is going to be devoted to it in the coming years? What’s the schedule look like? How many PrepComs, how long, how much time devoted for the negotiations themselves, and when do you personally hope to be able to produce the first draft text? Are you going to use a rolling text with brackets? (Laughter.)

      MS. MACDONALD: Why don’t you go first?

      AMB. MORITAN: With respect to the first question, I wouldn’t know how to answer your question, really, but I do realize that the U.S. has a very responsible legislation on the question and, as I understand, a very strict and robust legislation on the matter.

      It is my personal impression that a treaty most probably is going to be in the same direction of the U.S. national position on many questions that the treaty will cover but it will be up to the U.S. to know if that would require some internal change in legislation.

      But the U.S. certainly is a responsible country in the way it applies its legislation when it comes to export of weapons and how to follow the life of those weapons after they’d been exported the first time. So according to my lack of experience, I don’t think it should impose a big difficultly of legislation inside of the U.S.

      The Wassenaar arrangement, as you know, is a very important grouping of countries from different regions, which have the same objective of working hard on certain specific purposes when the group was created, but it is limited in its participation, and although it has countries from different regions, that limitation is one that makes desirable to have a wider negotiation in the U.N.

      If all U.N. members were a member of the Wassenaar agreement, that maybe would have been different and sometimes simpler to deal with the issues we have before it, but that’s not the case so we have to deal with reality.

      So the Wassenaar group is a very important one. We continue working. The objectives are maybe larger than the ones we’re pursuing in ATT. The ATT is focusing on a specific question of conventional weapons. The Wassenaar list has an important list of conventional weapons, which are covered in the Wassenaar arrangement. I mentioned the Wassenaar countries will ask that those views will be taken into account and then certainly you enter negotiations and we will see how to deal with those questions.

      Now, the question of, what are the sensitive and difficult issues; I think all of them are. (Laughter.) The first day we met in the open-ended consultation, people thought we will never – we’re going to start the meeting because procedural issues were going to block the whole exercise.

      How do you say “miracle?”

      MS. STOHL: Miracle.

      AMB. MORITAN: A miracle was produced and the particular questions were solved.

      In diplomatic negotiations, things are never easy, and that’s good because this is what our governments pay us for, to work and not only to be in cocktails and receptions. And certainly the issues we have before us are going to be of an enormous complexity. Each one of the 192 countries have different views, and when it comes to look at each one of the issues, even small ones, we can see are going to be complex ones.

      One that shouldn’t be a matter of worry to anyone, according to my views at least, which will be human rights. Human rights is so obvious that it should be a criteria. It should be so obvious that everybody should be protecting human rights worldwide. It’s not for some other countries. So when you look at which one of the details and elements will have to start working, things are going to be complicated, and we do not have much time.

      To answer your question, actually we have two substantive meetings in 2010, which are going to be together in two weeks, one following the other ones, and two weeks in 2011. Somebody said to me I had 120 hours to complete negotiations if you pull everything together.

      Of course it’s going to be a difficult task, but at the same time it’s good that we have limited time before us because I will exercise and I will put the effort of everybody to work with a certain timeframe to arrive to consensus.

      I’m conscious that we will be able to have a substantive draft instrument by 2012, and I hope it will not have brackets, as you say, only very few – or asterisks. (Laughter.) But even if we have brackets and asterisks, it’s not bad. It’s part of a negotiation process to have brackets. And, actually, as I imagine, that the first text that will be seen is going to have brackets because we will have to try to see and try to include all points of view and then start looking how to accommodate those points of view.

      So I’m not really afraid of brackets. I was born with brackets, I think. (Laughter.) But it’s going to be an interesting exercise, one we will start in July. And I said to you, if it’s true that I have only 120 hours, well, you can imagine we had a put a lot of enthusiasm and energy to complete our work, but I think we can do it.

      MS. MACDONALD: Yes, I think we would certainly – from the NGO side I had concerns around the shortness of time, looking at comparable treaty processes in both disarmament and other fora and the number of weeks that are available. Four weeks of preparatory meetings then followed by a final month seems to us to be pretty tight, which obviously puts the onus on the states, as the ambassador says, to make sure that they’re moving swiftly, but perhaps, all the same, points to the need for certain types of substantial intercessional work and the use of other foreign opportunity for states to be discussing and progressing these issues.

      We hoped that there would be the development of texts and substantive content in intercessional periods if states are serious about wanting to see the development of a robust instrument, because certainly, from what we’ve seen in discussions thus far, yes, it is possible for any issue to become contentious and thus take up quite a lot of time.

      So I think for all of those states that are very keen on having consensus as a process mechanism, it’s also their responsibility to ensure that that doesn’t become a block and that the striving to get agreement is just that and not a stumbling over every issue.

      For us I think we can, yes, certainly foresee some of the issues that are going to be potentially difficult, and Roy has already touched around the definitions on scope and the preciseness of that and what we actually do mean to be covered by that is perhaps the first one to clarify, although, again, if you actually delve into what most exporting states currently cover within the scope of their own export control agreements, it shouldn’t be contentious because actually the majority of exporting states have quite a wide scope.

      Similarly, with human rights and – (unintelligible) – yes, states have wide existing obligations underneath those international laws already, so the existence of those within the treaty should not be contentious. But for us it’s absolutely crucial how they’re applied, and references to obligations are different to clear obligating criteria, and that will be something that obviously we’ll be looking at very closely and keen to be working with all supporter states on those issues to make sure that it really is robust criteria that has developed.

      MS. STOHL: I think we’ll take one more question. Bridget?

      Q: Thanks. Bridget Moix with the Friends Committee on National Legislation. Just to pick up on one other complicated question, Anna, you mentioned wanting sustainable development to be at the heart of a treaty, and I know there is a lot more attention to looking at the links between armed violence and development, arms accumulation and development. The criteria here lists wanting to limit arms that would seriously impair poverty reduction or socioeconomic development. How do you see that ideally being incorporated into a treaty, you know, by criteria or measurements?

      MS. MACDONALD: Thanks. When we’ve been exploring this issue – and, in fact, over the last year we’ve been engaged on a project with both importing and exporting states to examine the issue of sustainable development. We’re very clear from Oxfam and other development agencies’ perspective that there shouldn’t be a rich-countries criteria. It’s not about country X is considered to be too poor or not to purchase weapons; it’s about the appropriateness of a transfer and how that may or may not undermine other poverty reduction targets that that state might have, and should essentially be about a dialogue between the importing and exporting state.

      We’ve also been doing work to break down sustainable development into more tangible component parts, so, for example, looking at the issue of corruption and looking at issues of transparency and accountability, which is you can break down those then into criteria that exports control we’d essentially be looking at. I’m looking at in a similar way that you might be looking for patterns or likelihood of risk of misuse of weapons. You’d be looking at sustained patterns around corruption, for example, as one of the risk factors to be assessing when looking at particular exports.

      So we’ve been, as I say, doing quite a number of roundtables and discussions with states on this issue, and it seems to us quite clearly that there are ways in which we can break this down into very practical criteria. There’s a lot of support amongst African states, for example, around seeing sustainable development as being a very key part of the treaty, and indeed one of their reasons for supporting it. So it’s something we’ll be progressing during this next period.

      MS. STOHL: Well, I want to thank our panelists and the audience as well. I got a note that the undersecretary is running a few minutes behind, and so since it’s perhaps difficult for people to get up and use the restroom, given the close quarters, I think we might take the advantage of having the few extra minutes if people want to use the restroom or to get a cup of coffee in advance of her presentation, and she should be arriving in the next five minutes. So please make it a brief pause so that we can start back on time. Thank you again to our panelists. (Applause.)

      (Break.)

      JEFF ABRAMSON: Good morning. My name is Jeff Abramson. I’m deputy director of the Arms Control Association. Thank you all for being here. Let me, before I get to my very quick introduction, give you a status of what is happening right now. Undersecretary Tauscher regrets that she cannot make it today to the meeting, which I am at. She’s very apologetic and has offered to do this again sometime, so we’re going to take her up on that.

      But Ambassador Don Mahley has agreed to read her prepared remarks. Afterwards, he’s willing to take questions, but unfortunately for the media here, those will have to be off the record, and he will be a little bit more clear on that as well.

      So we do have remarks. I’ll be introducing him in just a second. We are trying to print it out – (laughter) – so that he can give the speech. I will be back momentarily.

      (Break.)

      MR. ABRAMSON: So thank you all once again for being here. I’m delighted now to turn our focus – turn our focus to emerging U.S. policy on this. The issues we’re confronting, as you know, including the lack of transparency and weapons flows, potential fueling of destabilizing arms races and arms accumulations, and the dreadful humanitarian consequences of unregulated trafficking in conventional weapons are not new, and the need to arrive at more effective solutions are no less urgent.

      I’ll point out a little bit from our archive. A few months ago I stumbled across the June 1991 special edition of Arms Control Today, which focused on reigning in the arms trade. And one of the articles called for gaining control, building a comprehensive arms restraint system. And this was in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War. That was a window where we thought there was opportunity. Nearly two decades have passed and today we have a new policy window, in part made possible by this administration’s decision last year to get engaged in the arms trade treaty process.

      The organizations, as you’ve heard, who have sponsored this gathering, are committed to working with this administration and others in this room to create what, in Secretary of State Clinton’s words is, quote, “a strong and robust treaty that contains the highest possible legally binding standards for the international transfer of conventional weapons,” unquote.

      We’re delighted that Don Mahley, the ambassador who has been working on this issue for a number of years, is willing to step in and deliver the speech on this issue. And we are encouraged that the United States, as the world’s largest arms supplier, is prepared to be part of the solution to this tough challenge, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts about where the U.S. is on arms trade treaty concepts and how you think those in this audience could engage in this process.

      Ambassador Mahley, thank you again, and the podium is yours.

      DONALD MAHLEY: Thank you, and we’ll start out by – again, I’ll offer my apologies. I realized that you expected to see the undersecretary, who is much younger and more dynamic than I am up here, but unfortunately the United States government, being engaged in multiple things at the same time – and for those of you who may think differently, we can indeed walk and chew gum at the same time, and this case she’s doing exactly that in another context and unfortunately can’t be here.

      MR. : (Off mike.)

      MR. MAHLEY: The microphone is on?

      MR. : Yes, it is.

      MR. MAHLEY: Yeah. And so, again, I will apologize for her absence. She did want to be here and she sends her own apologies.

      Also, as I give you these comments, I am literally going to be reading the text that Undersecretary Tauscher was going to be delivering, so in this sense there may be a couple of things that don’t sound exactly right, but just assume, again, that you have the undersecretary here and this is only a bad mask that she’s wearing for Halloween – (laughter) – that you’re seeing behind the platform.

      And then when we finish that, I will certainly be prepared to take questions and answers, but that will be me taking questions and answers and so therefore those will be off the record at that point and I want to make sure that everybody understands that before we get down to get started on that.

      Okay, what Undersecretary Tauscher meant to say was.

      Jeff, thanks very much for your introduction. (Laughter.) I also want to thank everyone here for your energy, your commitment to these issues and your patriotism. It’s nice to see such friendly faces. Now, I look out there and I’m not sure that they’re as friendly as she might have imagined they would be, but that’s okay. (Laughter.) That’s not in her comments.

      You all are what I consider my base. Let me start by thanking the sponsors of this meeting, the Center for International Trade and Security, Oxfam America, the Arms Control Association and Project Ploughshares.

      As everyone here knows, President Obama has set forth a bold arms control and nonproliferation agenda, and for good reason, and because so many of us have made such an effort to speak out about the Prague agenda, it has garnered a lot of support, a lot of attention, and a lot of media coverage.

      I know that conventional arms have gotten much less attention, even though they kill more people every year than nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. I am here to make sure that everyone knows the United States is strongly committed to addressing the problems posed by the irresponsible transfers of conventional weapons.

      So last October, Secretary Clinton said that the United States, quote, “is committed to actively pursuing a strong and robust treaty that contains the highest possible legally-binding standards for the international transfer of conventional weapons.”

      We will work between now and the U.N. Conference in 2012 to negotiate a legally binding Arms Trade Treaty, and we’ll need your help in achieving it. We have made that a fundamental policy commitment. So let me explain what it means in practical terms and let me explain why we're doing this now.

      Like a lot of ideas, an arms trade treaty has been in the works for a long time. The U.N. Register of Conventional Arms opened the door to global discussions of a range of conventional weapons. These discussions have broadened so that we now have an A to Z list of meetings and forums on how to limit or eliminate small arms, anti-personnel landmines and other indiscriminate weapons.

      But conventional arms transfers are a much wider question than just small arms or voluntary registration of some information about transfers. We need a treaty that looks at regulating all conventional weapons, from small arms and light weapons to aircraft carriers.

      Unlike chemical or biological weapons, an arms trade treaty cannot be a ban on conventional weapons. When conducted responsibly, arms transfers are a legitimate commercial enterprise that supports global stability.

      The international arms trade provides nations with material necessary to fulfill the most basic functions of a government: protecting its citizens and enforcing its national sovereignty. What we are after is a means to have all nations do what the United States already does: examine each conventional weapons transfer before it is authorized to be certain that it will enhance and not undermine security and stability.

      We all know that there is a dark side to arms transfers that can have devastating consequences for people and regions. Irresponsible transfers can support terrorists, enable genocide and create, sustain and compound proliferation nightmares.

      The Arms Trade Treaty discussions have gained momentum by a shared recognition by all of the disruptive and oppressive impact of illicit or ill-advised arms transfers by a number of countries and organizations. What we need, therefore, is to explore a legally binding measure to better control transfers across international borders.

      For the Arms Trade Treaty to be effective at thwarting irresponsible transfers, it must ensure that members effectively implement national laws that criminalize such transfers and allow for the monitoring of commerce. Without this, it won't necessarily deter or stop terrorism, or any of the other things that we are concerned about.

      So-called “legally binding instruments” are absolutely meaningless, for example, to terrorists. They are criminals who don’t and won’t abide by any reasonable agreements. That means that the only way to effectively control or inhibit their activity is indirectly.

      All states must recognize the obligation to enact and enforce laws within their territory that criminalize, isolate and punish those terrorist groups operating within their territory or profiting from transactions that originate in or transit through their territory. And, if the state claiming sovereign jurisdiction does not have the capability for such enforcement, then the international community must make available the resources to create such capability, both in the short and long run.

      This means that any international instrument hoping to make real impact on so-called “illicit” arms transfers must focus on requiring each party to put in place those necessary means to eliminate such rogue non-state actors, both from within their territory and on the receiving end of their international commerce.

      It means that weak states, where terrorists operate with relative freedom, must adapt to the very real and difficult requirements any effective instrument will lay out for them. They must take all necessary steps to become an effective, law-abiding state.

      At the same time, conventional arms transfers are a crucial national security concern for the United States. Our government has always supported effective action to control and ensure responsibility in the international transfer of arms. That’s because we believe that stable societies and secure environments are the very best places for the growth of freedom and prosperity.

      So we are a leading advocate of ensuring that arms transfers are done only for legitimate purposes. We carefully consider them before they are approved. I should know since I sign off on them, and I put in place safeguards designed to ensure, for example, that small arms are used in the manner for which the transfer was intended.

      The United States has one of the most comprehensive sets of requirements in the world that must be satisfied before a U.S. manufacturer is authorized to transfer arms internationally. Every month, literally thousands of applications for export of weapons are reviewed in detail by our government.

      We have a strong and robust regulatory body. The transfer of arms are approved only when there is realistic and reasonable evidence the intended recipient has shown that they have a legitimate need and sufficient safeguards, and those safeguards are there to preclude either deliberate or unintended re-transfers or unapproved end uses.

      We also consider the effect of the transfer on regional stability. This process requires enormous effort, it is expensive, and it results in denying exports in questionable circumstances. Although this can work to the commercial disadvantage of U.S. firms, it is a price we have to pay to try to stem the flow of conventional arms to terrorist groups, to rogue states and to others who would undermine the rule of law.

      It is also why the United States believes that it is the responsibility of the entire international community to settle for no less than the highest possible standards in international agreements and in reporting activities. We believe that robust and vigorous regulation and enforcement would make it much more difficult for terrorist groups or rogue nations to destabilize regions or support terrorist activity.

      This is why, after careful consideration, the Obama administration has decided to actively support international efforts to achieve an effective global framework and to set high the bar that everyone must meet. The United States will seek a result that establishes high standards of expected conduct in international activity and in national enforcement.

      The Arms Trade Treaty negotiations will likely be long and difficult. Some participants will be tempted to take the easy road, seeking the lowest common denominator just to get a quick agreement from those states who would like to continue to support, directly or indirectly, terrorists, pirates and genocidal warlords for a quick profit or short-term advantage.

      Let me be clear: We will not rush to judgment by approving a weak or loophole-laden agreement. The United States is not interested in a vague or weak outcome just to feel good. That would not do anything to address the real issues in arms transfers.

      The United States believes an arms trade treaty is sufficiently important to national security and to international stability that the deliberations needed to produce consensus decisions in order to command the widest possible participation. A document that failed to gain support from important international players capable of acting outside their reach will undercut the objectives and purposes and would be worse than having no document at all.

      Therefore, we firmly believe that consensus is needed to ensure the high standards necessary for an effective arms trade treaty. It is not, nor should others hope it to be, an excuse for avoiding hard choices or real, deliberative controls. There will no doubt be serious, lengthy negotiations over most of the elements of any outcome.

      In fact, it has been our experience, sometimes painful, over the course of four decades of such negotiations that there is an inevitable rush by many participants in those negotiations to seek simplified or shallow provisions because they sound good and they’re easily agreed to.

      The United States considers the subject of conventional arms transfers, with their pervasiveness, dual-use capabilities and potential harm, too important to national security to be treated with less than the level of detail and engagement they deserve. This will not make the negotiations easier, but it will give them the greatest chance of being meaningful and of commanding both the attention and participation by those states necessary to their eventual success.

      I know that some will argue that a consensus agreement will make it tough to get real progress. Let me say two things:

      First, some states could attempt to derail negotiations to seek an individual concession. Our goal is to make such behavior transparent to bring public and diplomatic pressure onto the offending party. It’s sort of like earmarking for Congress; it’s better to know what’s being done in the light of day rather than being slipped into a 1,000-page bill in the dark of night.

      And there are, as you know, a handful of states who make up the backbone of the worldwide arms trade. Excluding them or not getting a universal agreement would make any agreement less than useless. In political terms, this requires a big-tent policy even if bringing some into the tent is time consuming and painful. But it is the only way to address this issue and bring about an enduring and meaningful agreement that enhances our national security and also enhances international stability.

      The treaty is worth doing because it can have, unlike many things we do, a more immediate impact. Lessening the arms trade can lead to less killing and less maiming, but the reality is that it is a very big challenge and we’re going to need your help to build the political support necessary to get this one done.

      Thank you very much. And, as I said, I’m prepared to answer questions. They will have to be off the record at this point, however. Thank you. (Applause.)

      Description: 

      Remarks by Amb. Roberto Garcia Moritan, Anna MacDonald, and Amb. Don Mahley (on behalf of Under Secretary of State Ellen Tauscher)

      Country Resources:

      Next Steps Toward a World Free of Nuclear Weapons: the View from Washington

      Sections:

      Body: 

      Remarks of Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director,
      For the Conference on Practical Steps Toward Zero Nuclear Weapons
      Ottawa, Canada
      January 26, 2010


      Nearly a year ago, President Barack Obama’s campaign to confront global nuclear weapons threats started with a bang. In April in Prague, Obama reiterated the U.S. commitment to “seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons” beginning with renewed U.S. leadership to reduce the role and number of nuclear weapons, permanently outlaw nuclear testing, strengthen the NPT, and accelerate U.S. and global efforts to secure vulnerable nuclear materials.

      Since then, Obama has achieved important progress and shifted the terms of debate. Just weeks after Obama’s Prague address and days after the U.S. delegation reiterated that it recognizes commitments made at past nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conferences, States Parties agreed on an agenda for reviewing the treaty later this year.

      In April, Obama and President Dmitry Medvedev met to “reset” of their strategic relationship and called on their negotiators begin work on a new, verifiable Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, which U.S. and Russian negotiators have nearly finalized. The Obama administration’s decision to shelve the controversial George W. Bush plan to deploy 10 unproven ground-based strategic missile interceptors in Poland in favor of a more flexible and less provocative missile defense architecture has helped facilitate progress.

      The administration also took steps to renew the diplomatic dialogue with Iran and North Korea to find ways to deal with the risks posed by their nuclear activities and safeguards violations.

      The administration set into motion technical studies to explain the case for U.S. approval of the CTBT, and in September Secretary of State Hillary Clinton addressed the Article XIV Conference on Facilitating CTBT Entry Into Force and called on others who have not done so to ratify.

      Also, in September, Obama won UN Security Council support for Resolution 1887, which outlines a comprehensive plan to advance nuclear nonproliferation, disarmament, and security objectives.

      Now, the hard part begins. Within the next few months, the administration must finish and win Senate approval of the new START, secure international support for measures to strengthen the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty at the May review conference, and begin to persuade undecided Senate Republicans that the time has finally come to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

      To succeed, the president and his cabinet must devote far more energy to these goals and ensure that his administration’s top-to-bottom Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), due by March 1, fully supports his Prague agenda.

      In the next few minutes I’m going to review the situation on the major disarmament-related priorities in Washington, highlight some of the obstacles in the way of progress, and offer a few thoughts about what needs to be done to advance progress, including some suggestions about how U.S. allies can be part of the solution.

      New START

      Let’s start with START. This week U.S. and Russian negotiators are entering their ninth round of talks on a new strategic nuclear arms reduction deal that would build upon and update the highly successful 1991 START, which expired Dec. 5.

      Lower, verifiable limits on still-bloated U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals are long overdue. Today, the United States and Russia each deploy more than 2,000 strategic warheads, most of which exist only to deter a massive nuclear attack by the other.

      As President Barack Obama, Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), and many prominent national security leaders have argued, deeper U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear reductions are possible and prudent.

      Unfortunately, the Bush administration did not seek to extend START or replace it with a new treaty before leaving office. To their credit, Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev have decided to pursue a new pact that will reduce deployed strategic warheads to somewhere between 1,500 and 1,675 each (about a 30 percent cut from current levels).

      The United States currently deploys approximately 2,100 strategic deployed warheads, while Russia is estimated to deployed approximately 2,500. New START would therefore cut deployed strategic stockpiles by about a 30 percent.

      The two sides also agreed reduce strategic delivery vehicles to a level between 500 and 1,100. Washington currently possesses approximately 900 strategic nuclear delivery vehicles, while Moscow deploys an estimated 600-800, so the new ceiling will likely be around or perhaps even below 700, which would constitute about a 25 to 30 percent reduction.

      The new agreement will carry forward the most essential of START’s verification and monitoring provisions, which are still needed for predictability and to provide each side with high confidence that the other is complying with the terms of the treaty. It will also put in place new and innovative verification systems to monitor the new deployed strategic warhead ceilings.

      The New START will also open the way for more comprehensive U.S.-Russian arms reduction talks that may begin later this year, which the Obama administration says should address all types of nuclear warheads: deployed and nondeployed; strategic and nonstrategic.

      There is widespread support for the New START deal in the Senate and I expect that eventually the Senate will approve it by well more than a two-thirds margin.

      However, there are some who oppose Obama’s broader nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament strategy who are already trying to undermine, delay, and/or condition the Senate’s approval of the treaty before it arrives.

      Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and a few other Republicans have suggested that the Obama administration should have extended START rather than “rush” toward a new treaty that reduces strategic stockpiles further. That approach of course is now out of the question and was not realistic to begin with. At this point, Moscow will not agree to an extension, and without the lower limits on deployed warheads under a new START deal, Russia could and would likely maintain a deployed strategic arsenal in excess of 2,000 warheads indefinitely.

      Kyl and many of his fellow Republicans are also arguing that deeper strategic nuclear reductions are unwise without a significant new investment in the U.S. nuclear delivery systems and the weapons complex, including expanded plutonium pit production capacity and a new “modern” warhead. Part of his aim may be to undermine support for the CTBT later on down the line.

      The Obama administration will and should argue that such a condition is unnecessary given that the Obama administration already supports targeted investments in key stockpile maintenance work and facilities that advance the work of the existing warhead Life Extension Programs, and given that from a technical perspective, new design replacement warheads are unnecessary and are counterproductive to nonproliferation goals. As Bill Perry, George Shultz, Henry Kissinger, and Sam Nunn pointed out in their January 20 oped in The Wall Street Journal, a new independent report from the JASON scientific advisory group found that, “[L]ifetimes of today’s nuclear warheads could be extended for decades, with no anticipated loss in confidence.”

      New START critics have also complained that it will not provide an adequate verification system to ensure compliance. To the contrary, without the New START deal, there will be no verification at all. With START there will be an ongoing verification and monitoring system that more than adequately ensures compliance with its limitations, which will be different than the original START.

      These and other issues will be debated soon. If the treaty can be finalized within the next month, we can expect that the Senate will begin its consideration of the New START deal by April or May and hold a vote before July 1. Ratifying treaties is never easy, but if the Obama administration devotes high-level effort to this common sense next step, it will be approved this year.

      “Immediate and Aggressive” Action on the CTBT

      After the New START agreement, the Obama administration wants the Senate to take on the CTBT. While U.S. is approval of the CTBT is overdue, there is more work to get the job done.

      The Obama administration’s CTBT effort started off with well with the President pledging “immediate and aggressive” action to win Senate support for the treaty. In May, Vice-president Biden was tapped to play a lead role in the effort.

      The case for U.S. approval of the CTBT is stronger than ever. Since the CTBT was briefly considered by the U.S. Senate in 1999, there have been technical advances in the U.S. stockpile stewardship program and verification and monitoring capabilities that should address earlier concerns that led many Senators to vote “no.”

      For example, contrary to claims that “concerns about aging and reliability [of the U.S. arsenal] have only grown,” confidence in the ability to maintain U.S. warheads is increasing. Through the Stockpile Stewardship Program, which includes nuclear weapons surveillance and maintenance, non-nuclear and subcritical nuclear experiments, and increasingly sophisticated supercomputer modeling, each warhead type in the U.S. nuclear arsenal has been determined to be safe and reliable through a rigorous certification process each year since 1994.

      The 2002 National Academy of Sciences panel, which included three former nuclear weapons lab directors, found that the current Stockpile Stewardship Program provides the technical capabilities that are necessary to maintain confidence in the safety and reliability of the existing seven types of nuclear warheads in the active stockpile, "provided that adequate resources are made available...and are properly focused on this task."

      As a result, with or without the CTBT, it is highly unlikely that the United States will ever conduct another nuclear explosive test. There is neither the scientific need nor political will to do so. A growing list of bipartisan leaders agree that by ratifying the CTBT, the U.S. stands to gain an important constraint on the ability of other states to build new and more deadly nuclear weapons that could pose a threat to American security.

      As Sigfried Hecker, former director of Los Alamos National Laboratory, recently put it: “the single most important reason to ratify the CTBT is to stop other countries from improving their arsenals.”

      For example, a new round of nuclear weapon test explosions would allow China to perfect smaller warhead designs and allow it to put multiple warheads on its relatively small arsenal of strategic ballistic missiles—a move that could allow it to increase its nuclear strike capability. Without nuclear weapon test explosions, potential nuclear-armed states like Iran would not be able to proof test the more advanced, smaller nuclear warhead designs that are needed in order to deliver such weapons using ballistic missiles.

      National and international capabilities to detect and deter possible clandestine nuclear testing by other states will be significantly greater with the CTBT in force, but U.S. ratification is essential to spur action by the eight other states whose ratification is required for entry into force. And of course, U.S. ratification of the CTBT will help build support for measures needed to strengthen the NPT.

      Through the course of 2009, we saw a number of prominent national security experts express their support for Senate approval of the CTBT, including former George H. W. Bush National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft and former NNSA administrator Linton Brooks. It is a good list but it needs to grow longer.

      As of today there are at least 60 likely CTBT supporters in the Senate, putting the Obama administration within striking distance of a 2/3 majority.

      However, over the course of the past several months, the administration has focused on putting into motion technical studies by the National Academies of Science and the Intelligence Community that will help build the case for the treaty and it has delayed effort to launch a systematic and high-level effort to win the support of key Senators.

      As a result, the CTBT effort has fallen off pace and is now in jeopardy because of the slow pace of the New START negotiations and the crowded Congressional calendar. The White House nevertheless has an opportunity to increase it political engagement with the Senate on the CTBT.

      With a robust and well-funded nuclear weapons stockpile management plan and new technical reports that make it clear that the treaty can be verified with high confidence and the U.S. stockpile can be maintained effectively without the renewal of nuclear testing, the administration will have the tools it needs to make the case, but it needs to make the case and at a high-level.

      Even if the CTBT is not formally voted on this year, it is essential that the Obama administration secure the public support of a few additional Senators for the CTBT.

      U.S. allies, including Canada, also need to do their part by publicly expressing their strong desire for positive action toward ratification by Washington and other CTBT hold-out governments. This can have a powerful effect on both the White House and key Senators. In addition, it is important that Canada and other friends of the CTBT actively engage hold-out governments, including and most particularly China and India, to ratify the CTBT.

      The Nuclear Posture Review

      Even before START and the CTBT are before the Senate, President Obama will have a chance to advance the nuclear disarmament effort with his Nuclear Posture Review, which is now scheduled to be completed March 1.
      In our view the, NPR can and must effect transformational rather than incremental changes in U.S. nuclear weapons policy in at least four key areas.

      First, the NPR should recognize that maintaining a large nuclear arsenal dedicated to performing a wide range of missions is unnecessary and contrary to U.S. security interests. Incredibly, even after two post-Cold War NPRs, the United States retains thousands of nuclear warheads to deter a Russian nuclear attack, defend U.S. forces or allies against conventional attack, and counter chemical and biological threats.

      Given the U.S. conventional military edge and the catastrophic effects of nuclear weapons, no plausible circumstance requires or could justify the use of nuclear weapons to deal with a non-nuclear threat, and they are useless in deterring or responding to nuclear terrorism.

      Accordingly, the new NPR should narrow the role of nuclear weapons to a core deterrence mission: maintaining a sufficient, survivable nuclear force for the sole purpose of deterring the use of nuclear weapons by another country against the United States or its allies. This would reinforce existing U.S. negative security assurances and significantly reduce the salience of nuclear weapons.

      Second, a core nuclear deterrence posture would allow the United States to reduce its nuclear inventory drastically, to no more than a few hundred deployed strategic warheads on a smaller triad of delivery systems within the next few years. To help engage Russia in talks to reduce its arsenal of tactical nuclear warheads, the NPR will open the way to a joint U.S.-NATO decision to withdraw the militarily obsolete stockpile of an estimated 200 U.S. tactical bombs from Europe.

      Some suggest that deep U.S. nuclear weapons reductions would lead certain U.S. allies, namely Japan and Turkey, to consider building their own nuclear arsenals. Such assertions exaggerate the role of “extended nuclear deterrence,” underestimate the role of U.S. conventional forces, and ignore the risks and costs of going nuclear.

      It is important for nations like Canada to counteract these myths and to make it clear that a reduction in the role and number of U.S. nuclear weapons would reinforce existing U.S. negative security assurances vis-à-vis non-nuclear-weapon states and support our positive security assurances to allies in the event of nuclear attack on them, which would further strengthen support for the NPT.

      Third, the NPR should eliminate the requirement and plans for rapid launch in response to a nuclear attack. As Obama noted during the campaign, “[K]eeping nuclear weapons ready to launch on a moment’s notice is a dangerous relic of the Cold War. Such policies increase the risk of catastrophic accidents or miscalculation.” As president, he now has a chance to order changes to operational procedures that give the commander-in-chief far more time to consider his response to a nuclear attack or provocation and work with Russia to adopt a similar posture.

      Finally, Obama’s NPR should clarify his January 2009 pledge “not to authorize new nuclear weapons,” by stating that it is U.S. policy not to develop new-design warheads or modify existing warheads to create new military capabilities.

      Progress in each of these areas will be difficult but each is vital to reducing nuclear weapons dangers. If the United States, its allies, and its friends fail to significantly reduce the role and number of nuclear weapons and permanently ban nuclear testing, the global effort to stem the proliferation of nuclear weapons and prevent their use will falter.

      Description: 

      Remarks of Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director, for the “Practical Steps to Zero Nuclear Weapons,”
      Ottawa, Canada

      Subject Resources:

      Event Transcript: START Follow-On Treaty: Assessing Progress on Nuclear Risk Reduction

      Sections:

      Body: 

       

      December 9, 2009 from 9:30-11:00 am


      Press Contacts: Tom Z. Collina, Research Director (202) 463-8270 x104; Travis Sharp, (202) 543-4100 x2105

      (Washington, D.C.): U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev are expected to sign a major nuclear arms control agreement this month.   The two nations have been negotiating since April on a new treaty to replace the highly-successful 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), which expired Dec. 5.

      On Dec. 4 Presidents Medvedev and Obama issued a "bridging" statement, which says in part: "Recognizing our mutual determination to support strategic stability between the United States of America and the Russian Federation, we express our commitment, as a matter of principle, to continue to work together in the spirit of the START Treaty following its expiration, as well as our firm intention to ensure that a new treaty on strategic arms enter into force at the earliest possible date."

      On Dec. 9, three leading U.S. experts on nuclear weapons policy and arms control will review the legacy of START, analyze the importance of a new follow-on agreement, review the key issues of contention, and describe the likely outcomes.


      Event Transcript

      ARMS CONTROL ASSOCIATION
      START FOLLOW-ON TREATY:
      ASSESSING PROGRESS ON NUCLEAR RISK REDUCTION

      WELCOME AND MODERATOR:
      LEONOR TOMERO,
      DIRECTOR, NUCLEAR NON-PROLIFERATION,
      CENTER FOR ARMS CONTROL AND NON-PROLIFERATION

      SPEAKERS:
      STEVEN PIFER,
      SENIOR FOREIGN POLICY FELLOW,
      BROOKINGS INSTITUTION

      LINTON BROOKS,
      FORMER CHIEF U.S. NEGOTIATOR,
      STRATEGIC ARMS REDUCTION TREATY

      DARYL G. KIMBALL,
      EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,
      ARMS CONTROL ASSOCIATION

      WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2009

      Transcript by
      Federal News Service
      Washington, D.C.

      LEONOR TOMERO:  Welcome everybody and good morning.  My name is Leonor Tomero.  I’m the director of nuclear nonproliferation at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation.  We’re a private, nonpartisan membership organization that supports prudent measures toward the elimination of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.

      I’m very happy to be here this morning, co-hosting this event on the new START agreement with the Arms Control Association.  President Obama, on April 5, 2009, in Prague stated, “Today, the Cold War has disappeared but thousands of those weapons have not.  In a strange turn of history, the threat of global nuclear war has gone down, but the risk of a nuclear attack has gone up.”

      Today, the president is receiving his Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo.  So where are we headed in terms of the U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals, which account for about 20,000 nuclear weapons, which is about 95 percent of the total nuclear weapons in the world?  

      The 1991 START agreement, which mandated significant reductions from Cold War-era levels and mandated legally binding verification measures, expired on Saturday as negotiations for a new agreement between the United States and Russia, which began in April, go into the final stretch.  With only a few but difficult issues of contention remaining between the two sides, we are hopeful that a new agreement will be finalized and submitted to the Senate in the next few weeks.

      This new agreement for reductions in nuclear weapons, promised by President Obama as a first and necessary step and supported by the Congressional Commission on Strategic Posture of the United States, remains extremely important for the United States and international security.

      It is especially important in the context of U.S.-Russian relations, the current U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.  Much is at stake.  We have with us today three of the foremost leading experts on nuclear weapons and arms control to provide context, explain what we can expect from this new agreement, examine what’s at issue and what differences remain, and how the two sides may come together in a final agreement, and finally, why this agreement matters.

      It’s my great pleasure to introduce Ambassador Steven Pifer, sitting in the middle.  He is currently a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in their Center for the United States and Europe.  His expertise in nuclear arms control and U.S. relations with Russia and states of the former Soviet Union stems from his service over two decades as a Foreign Service Officer in capitals including Moscow, London, Warsaw and Kiev, and on the U.S. delegation to the negotiations on intermediate-range nuclear forces in Europe.  

      He served as U.S. ambassador to Ukraine as well as deputy assistant secretary of state and also special assistant to the President and senior director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia on the National Security Council.  

      We will then have the pleasure of hearing from Ambassador Linton Brooks.  Ambassador Brooks is a former Navy officer and has decades of experience on nuclear arms control, and served as the chief negotiator on the Strategic Arms Reduction, START, agreement.  Most recently, he served as under secretary of energy for nuclear security and administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration in the last administration.  

      Prior to joining NNSA, he was vice president and assistant to the president for policy analysis at the Center for Naval Analyses.  His decades of leadership in government include posts relevant to nuclear policy, military strategy, technology, submarine programs and arms control.  He is currently senior advisor in the project on nuclear issues at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

      And third, we will hear from Daryl Kimball.  He is the executive director of the Arms Control Association, which is a private, nonprofit membership organization dedicated to public education and support of effective arms control measures pertaining to nuclear, chemical, biological and conventional weapons and it also publishes Arms Control Today. 

      Mr. Kimball has been a leading advocate on reducing the danger posed by nuclear weapons, having served at various nonprofit organizations and having headed several influential coalitions and campaigns, including for the testing moratorium in 1992, and the Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty.  

      We will hear from the three speakers and have them make their presentations and then once they have concluded their presentations, we will open it up for questions-and-answer session.  So without further ado, let me turn it over to Ambassador Pifer.

      STEVEN PIFER:  Well, thank you very much.  It’s a pleasure for me to be here today and what I’m going to talk about are the prior agreements that governed U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear forces and give you a bit of a sense for the size of those forces and also some of the issues that I think are key to the negotiations, and then set up my colleagues’ comments on options for resolving those problems.

      And I’ll begin by talking a little bit about the 1991 Strategic Arms Reductions Treaty, or START.  The START agreement had limits on both launchers, heavy bombers, intercontinental ballistic missile launchers and submarine-launched ballistic missile launchers and warheads.

      And I use the term “launcher” for ICBMs and SLBMs because the START treaty didn’t actually count missiles; it counted launchers.  So for an ICBM, it would count the silos that sit out in South Dakota and Wyoming and Montana.  And for a submarine-launched ballistic missile, it wouldn’t count the missile itself; it would count the tube on the submarine.  That was for ease-of-verification purposes but when you saw a silo or a tube on a submarine, you assumed a missile was in there.  And the main limitation here was that neither side could deploy more than 1600 strategic nuclear delivery vehicles, ICBMs, SLBMs and heavy bombers.

      The other set of limits applied to the number of warheads and they said that there could be no more than 6,000 warheads on those 1600 systems.  And within that 6,000, there were a set of various sublimitations.  But it’s important to note that here, the warheads were not counted directly, the START treaty used what was called an attribution rule.  

      So for example, the Russian SS-18 missile was counted as carrying 10 warheads.  When you saw a silo that was designed for an SS-18, under the START rules, you’d assume there was an SS-18 and that then counted as 10 warheads.  So the 308 SS-18s that the Soviet Union had back in 1990 were attributed as carrying 3,080 warheads.  And that’s how you got the count towards the 6,000 warhead level.

      The treaty was enforced from December 5 of 1994 until last Saturday.  It was a 15-year treaty.  The treaty also had very extensive verification measures.  First of all, there was a provision that prohibited interfering with national technical means, NTM, for verification.  And that’s a euphemism for things like surveillance satellites.  

      You couldn’t interfere with the other guy’s ability to watch your implementation of the treaty.  It had a data exchange.  It prohibited encrypting telemetry.  This is the information that a missile broadcasts back to a ground station during a test shot.  And basically, it required you to share that information.  So the United States had a good understanding about Russian missile tests and the Russians had a good understanding about American tests.  

      The agreement required lots of notifications.  You had to notify before you eliminated a system.  And it had 12 types of inspections, including a permanent inspection presence at Votkinsk, which is where Russia built the mobile ICBMs.

      This here is actually the START treaty and it’s a book.  The treaty itself is only about 25 pages but most of this is the verification protocols, the notification requirements and the inspection requirements.  

      Okay.  This is the 2002 Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty, large-type version.  It has a single limitation.  It requires no more than – the sides can deploy no more than 1700 to 2200 warheads on their strategic systems.  But it has no limits on strategic nuclear delivery vehicles.  It has no counting rules.  It has no verification provisions.  It’s enforced until December 31 of 2012.  But on its own, it really can’t be verified, and I’ll get into some of the complications that poses in just a moment.  

      This chart here shows how START-accountable strategic nuclear delivery vehicles were reduced over the last 20 years.  And there really are three data points here.  The red line there is the Soviet Union and then Russia.  The green line is the United States.

      The first point is September of 1990, which is when the United States and the then-Soviet Union made their first data exchange.  The second data point is January of 2002.  That’s 7 years after the treaty entered into force and that’s a key point because the START treaty required that all of the reductions be implemented within 7 years of entry into force.

      And then the last data point on the right is July of 2009.  That was the last data exchange that the United States and Russia conducted under the terms of the START treaty.  And what you see here is basically that already by 1997, 1998, the United States and Russia have reduced to below the level of nuclear delivery vehicles, ICBMs, SLBMs and heavy bombers required in the treaty – that 1600 limit.

      This gives the same information for START-accountable warheads.  And again, using those attribution rules, how many warheads do you attribute to those – intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles and bombers.  And again the three data points, September 1990, January of 2002 and July of 2009.

      And what you see is both the United States and Russia, as required by January of 2002, had reduced to below 6,000 warheads.  The Russians continued downward and today, they deploy about – or they had 4,000 accountable warheads under the treaty, whereas the United States stayed fairly close to the 6,000 number – although that’s an overstatement which I’ll explain right now.

      Based on the data exchange that the United States gave to the Russians in July of this year and under that data exchange, the United States declared that it had 1,188 strategic nuclear delivery vehicles and that they were capable of carrying 5,916 warheads.  

      And this just gives you the breakdown by ICBMs, SLBMs and bombers.  The numbers on the left are the numbers of launchers, and the numbers here are the numbers of warheads attributed to those systems.  This right column here adds up to 5,916.  

      Now, earlier this year, the Pentagon let it be known that, in fact, the U.S. strategic nuclear force had reduced to the level required by the strategic offensive reduction treaty.  It was less than 2200 warheads.

      So how do we reconcile these two numbers?  Twenty-two hundred and 5,916.  And there are really three ways to do it.  First of all, most, if not all, American intercontinental ballistic missiles and submarine-launched ballistic missiles had been down-loaded, in that warheads have been removed.

      So for example, the Minuteman-III ICBM was designed to carry three warheads.  Many, if not most of them, have been down-loaded so they carry only a single warhead.  Likewise, a lot of American Trident D5 missiles, which can carry up to eight warheads, some of them may be carrying only one and two warheads.  So they’re carrying well below their maximum capacity.

      A second difference is that a number of systems that were defined as strategic nuclear delivery vehicles by the START treaty have over the past 15 years been converted to conventional roles.  

      So for example, the B-1 bomber force here on the top, that’s been removed from the nuclear force.  It now is converted to convention-only missions.  And four of the 18 Trident missile submarines have been converted such that they pull the Trident missiles out, and into the tube they’ve inserted a canister that carries seven conventional cruise missiles.  

      So those systems still count under the START counting rules that were in existence until last Saturday because they had not been eliminated according to the very precise rules of START, even though they no longer had a part in the U.S. strategic nuclear plan.

      And finally, there’s the issue of phantom systems, systems that have no military utility but still count under the agreement.  And I’ll show you a picture of B-52s, both phantom and eliminated.  These B-52s on the right, the ones that have had the fuselage cut into two places and then they’ve had their wings cut off, are eliminated.  These two B-52s on the left, even though they’re not flyable – they have no engines, they have no landing gear, they’re actually sitting on hard stands – are still counted under START as a strategic offensive nuclear delivery vehicle because they had not been chopped according to the very rigorous requirements of START.  

      This is an MX silo out in Wyoming.  There were 50 of these.  The MX missiles were all pulled out in 2002 and 2003, and I’m told the only thing in there now is ground water that’s been seeping in over the last five or 6 years.  But because the silo – and remember, the silo was the unit of account under the START treaty – the silo has not been destroyed, it’s still considered to have the MX missile inside with the MX missiles’ 10 warheads.  There are 50 of these and that expands the U.S. count under START.  

      This is a picture of what a destroyed or eliminated silo looks like.  There’s a very precise requirement in START to destroy the top 6-to-8 meters of the headwork, and it’s usually done explosively.  But until “these” silos look like “this,” they still count it into the START rules.

      Russian START-accountable forces in July of 2009 came out to 809 strategic nuclear delivery vehicles capable of carrying just under 3900 warheads.  And while the Russians have not said where they are with regards to the SORT limit of 2200, I suspect that this number of warheads is probably an overestimate; that the Russian number is somewhat less than 3,000.  

      And that’s in part because a large number of the submarine-launched ballistic missiles are on submarines that the Russians appear to have decommissioned.  They probably removed the missiles and the submarines are slated for dismantlement, but again, until those submarines have actually been physically dismantled or the missile tubes have been removed, they were still counting under the START books and therefore still had to be in this data exchange.  So we don’t know exactly what the Russian number is, but 3897 is probably significantly overstated.  

      So just to sum up the START treaty which ended on Saturday – sort of what I would regard as three of its major contributions:  First of all, it was the first treaty to reduce strategic arms.  

      The SALT agreements, the Strategic Arms Limitation signed back in the 1970s put a cap on launchers.  But because it didn’t limit warheads – in fact, the United States and the Soviet Union then piled lots of warheads on those launchers so you had a dramatic increase.  

      In fact, under START, you’ve had a dramatic reduction in forces where both the United States and Russia had over 10,000 deployed warheads in 1989 and 1990, and that’s come down now to well below 6,000 – more, I think, in the range of 2200 to 3,000.

      A second:  The START treaty had very significant verification and transparency measures.  As a result of this treaty, we knew and understood Russian strategic forces much better and that they had much more insight into our forces.  And this included intrusive measures including on-site inspection.

      And finally, and sort of the most, I think, important result, was it provided for a very stable U.S.-Russian nuclear relationship over the last 15 years.  

      Finally, just to set up the next talk, looking at what are probably the key issues that they’re grappling with now in Geneva in the context of the follow-on treaty, and these were the issues, as I understood to be at the beginning of the current round which began in November.

      First of all, there was a difference between the sides on missile defense.  And that question was if you took the July joint understanding between Presidents Obama and Medvedev, how would you actually encapsulate their agreement that there would be some language on the interrelationship between strategic offense and strategic defense?

      Second, while the agreement in July, there was a fairly narrow difference between 1500 and 1675 with regards to the number of permitted strategic warheads, there was a large difference with regards to the number of launchers.  The Russians proposed 500; the United States proposed 1100.

      And I think if we can work out issues like those conventional systems that I mentioned – the B-1s and those four submarines – and treatment of the phantom systems, that probably reduces the U.S. requirement significantly below 1100 – maybe towards around 800, which might put us in range of the compromise.

      Finally, the question, what about putting conventional warheads on ICBMs and SLBMs; there’s an American interest in this.  

      And then, as I think always happens with arms control treaties at the end, verification questions – defining a regime that allows you, on the one hand, to understand what the other side is doing in terms of compliance with the treaty, but also in a way that doesn’t provide usually expensive requirements that require adjusting operational practices and such.

      So with that background, I’ll turn it over to Ambassador Brooks to talk about where we think the current talks may be going.

      LINTON BROOKS:  All right.  Let me outline for you where I think we will probably end up, and first let me make an important point.  The fact that the treaty wasn’t done on the 5th of December is a fact, but it’s not a problem.  They started in April; that’s eight months ago.  My treaty started 9 years before I watched it being signed.  

      So while this is a less – I hope – complicated treaty, it is certainly not surprising that they haven’t finished things.  And you can see in the nature of the statement the two governments issued about continuity until it’s finished that this is going to be a fairly short period.  I don’t know what a fairly short period means – weeks, not months, not years.  

      Now, what are the, sort of, plausible solutions for the problems that Steve has suggested?  Let’s take missile defense first because it’s the easiest.  

      It is certainly not going to be a treaty which somehow falls back in significant limits on ballistic missile defense.  What the president said was that the treaty would acknowledge that there’s a relationship between defense and offense.  The easiest way to do that is in the preamble, as a fairly traditional arms control way.  You know, in the very beginning of the treaty – the part nobody ever reads – it goes through a litany of why we’re doing these things and recalls our obligations under the nonproliferation treaty.  And that’s the place where you might see it.  

      You might see something in general provisions and, finally, you might just see something that’s in some kind of side statement.  I think it is very unlikely that this treaty will constrain in any way ballistic missile defenses, first because I think that would complicate ratification enormously in this country, but secondly, because I don’t think the Russians are interested in doing that at this stage.

      The number of launchers – the SNDV limit that Steve mentioned.  My guess is that what we will have is we will have two limits in the treaty.  We will have a limit that will cover things that actually have the ability to be used for strategic forces.  And then we’ll have an additional limit for all these other things that will have relatively little operational meaning, but it will allow the Russians to say that they captured all of those systems and that the United States couldn’t go build a bunch more empty silos and somehow get a breakout capability.

      The exact number in the middle will be somewhere between 700 and 800, and where it’ll be in there depends a little bit on what options the United States needs to preserve for force structure.  Nuclear posture review is not out yet; nuclear posture review could go in several directions.  If you keep all 450 of the current ICBM force, that puts you in one bunch.  If you reduce that, then you reduce total number of launchers, you keep all the submarines and simply remove warheads from missiles.  That puts you in one situation.  So more than 700, less than 800 and probably not a hard problem.  

      My guess is that the conventional warheads issue is a strange issue because it has the Russians concerned about something we haven’t actually decided to do yet, which is to have a significant program that is called prompt global strike, the ability to deliver, within an hour, a conventional strike anywhere in the world.  It’s a very narrow but potentially very useful capability.  The last administration sought to embed that capability on ballistic missile submarines.  Congress was unimpressed.  There is now talk about embedding it in a newly designed missile.  

      My guess is that the easiest way to handle this is to simply say that such missiles count against the launcher limit because it’d be pretty hard to sort out which ones do and don’t have conventional warheads.  

      And then they’ll do something for the warhead limit.  It’s a relatively easy problem to solve because even if you are a strong supporter of the U.S. deploying such a system, the numbers will be very small.  

      That leaves verification and I share Steve’s view that most of the time that my colleagues and friends in Geneva are spending, they’re spending on verification details.  To give you an example, the summit in 1987 agreed between President Reagan and General Secretary Gorbachev on essentially all the numbers you saw in Steve’s first slide.  We signed the treaty 4 years later and essentially all of that time was verification.  Now, more complicated treaty, greater suspicion, scenarios we don’t worry about anymore – nonetheless, it suggests that what stretches this out is verification.

      So what are the verification issues that are probably going to be difficult and how will they come out?  I would suggest to you that there are probably three that they’re working on.  One is telemetry.  An important way that we know about developments in Russian strategic ballistic missiles is that any missile test you take telemetry and you send it down.  It measures the pressure in the firing chamber.  It measures all the various signals to the control services.  And START requires that that be uninterrupted and that there be an exchange of information on how to interpret.  The Russians have argued that we’re not developing any new missiles so this is unfair because only they are developing new ballistic missiles.  It’s an interesting argument but it’s the argument they make.

      My guess is that what we will do is continue the telemetry but probably simplify the exchange of interpretive data.  First of all, we’re less likely to need it because we’ve been interpreting this stuff for 15 years.  And secondly, START was written to be very precise, which means that it enshrines old technology and old ways of interpreting data.  My guess is that the Russians know this is important to the United States; it will be one of the last things agreed on, but it will be agreed with telemetry.  

      Second issue, I don’t quite understand why people think it’s an issue.  Steve mentioned that one of the many types of inspections was the ability to monitor missiles – count missiles, essentially – as they came out of a production facility at a place called Votkinsk.  And there’s been some handwringing in various comments recently that that will probably not be preserved.  

      And I agree that will not be preserved.  The Bush administration had decided it didn’t want to preserve it; it doesn’t serve any useful purpose.  I mean, the right way to do verification is figure out what the limits are and then see what you need to verify them.

      The continuous monitoring at Votkinsk was done at a time when we were worried about large numbers of spare launchers and large numbers of spare missiles that could be brought together, and that has proven not to be a genuine worry.  The Russians have not done anything like the number of spares they were allowed under START-I.  Further, the whole philosophy under that was for enduring or continuing a protracted nuclear war, which to the best of my knowledge, nobody in the world believes in anymore.  So I don’t think that continuous monitoring will be in the final treaty and I don’t think that’s a very big deal.

      Finally, one of the things that they are working on in verification, which is simple in principle, but probably complicated because it doesn’t draw directly on existing language, is numbers of warheads.  Steve told you that the way the START treaty works is you see a missile and you just assume how many warheads are on there because the START treaty was designed to limit the maximum capability of strategic forces.

      This treaty, like the treaty of Moscow – the SORT treaty – is designed to measure what the actual forces are.  And as Steve told you, those can be quite different.  So either you have to have all new attribution rules or you have to say no, well, what we’re going to count is real, no-joke warheads, and then you have to have a way to verify that.

      My guess is we’re going to count warheads and my guess is that the procedures for verifying that – it’s not that there’s any blinding new breakthrough that’s necessary – but drafting the procedures to verify not the maximum number, but the actual number will be time consuming.  

      For security reasons, for example, we put a big shroud with a bunch of bumps in it so you can count how many warheads could be on that missile, but you don’t know how many really are.  Well, that won’t work if you’re actually interested in what’s really there.  So that is what I think.

      Now, this is not a deal-breaker; this is not something, frankly, that will find its way into any story on START, but this is why it didn’t get finished by the 5th of December because working out these procedures, I think you can expect – Steve held up two treaties.  Look for this one to be somewhere between the two in size – I don’t know, 50, 60 pages – I made that up, but that’s a reasonable number.  

      So that’s where I think we’re likely to come out.  None of the things that I have talked about strike me as particularly hard or particularly deal-breakers.  I share my colleague’s view that we’re within a couple of weeks from actually being able to read this thing.

      MS. TOMERO:  Thank you.  So we’ll hear next from Daryl Kimball.

      DARYL KIMBALL:  Thank you, Leonor, and thank you to Linton and Steve for being here and sharing their insights.  We really do have the two top people here on this subject.  And I just want to come back to something that Leonor said at the top.  

      As we look at this new treaty, we have to keep in mind that we’re two decades beyond the fall of the Berlin Wall, and still, the United States and Russia deploy more than 2,000 strategic nuclear warheads, many of which are on a high-alert status.  And most of these weapons, the vast majority, exist simply to deter their use by the other country.

      To their credit, Presidents Obama and Medvedev have recognized that the nuclear status quo is neither desirable nor is it sustainable, and they directed their negotiators to get to work, beginning last April, to try to conclude a new START deal by the end of the year.  

      And as Linton just said, the deal is obviously not done.  I would agree that we are within days, if not a couple a weeks, of a conclusion.  It’s important for both sides to drive hard to reach the finish line before the U.S. and the Russian winter holidays set in.  And obviously, the deal should be done well, but it needs to be done.  This is a long overdue step, especially because START – the 1991 START treaty – expired and the verification provisions are technically no longer with us.  

      Now, once this treaty is completed and delivered, there is going to be debate in the United States Senate.  It is going to consider whether to provide advice and consent for ratification.  And that debate needs to be thorough.  There’ll be a lot of good, legitimate questions, and there’ll be some others that are not so serious.  

      And the debate has really already begun.  And so what I’m going to do for the next few minutes is to briefly review and respond to some of the most common criticisms and concerns that have come up.  Linton has indirectly addressed some of these that are coming up.  I’m not going to cover the same ground but focus on some others.  And I’d note that many of these are based on misinformation or a misperception about what this treaty is, and these are criticisms about what this treaty is not going to be.

      So one of the criticisms that we’ve heard for some months now – and this was most recently expressed in a September 30 Senate Republican Policy Committee paper – is the idea that it is imprudent to agree to lower levels of strategic nuclear warheads unless Russia’s relatively larger stockpile of nonstrategic warheads is also reduced.  

      Indeed, Russia is believed to have a larger and sizeable tactical warhead force, perhaps as many as 3,000 bombs; nobody knows exactly how many.  And it should be verifiably reduced – mainly to decrease the risk of terrorist acquisition in the future.  

      But we also have to keep in mind as we look at Russia’s tactical force that, just like their strategic force, not all of these are deployed, not all of these are in top operational condition and independent experts believe that maybe only a few hundred are in any condition that could be utilized in a real-world military situation.  And even at lower strategic force levels – well below what the two countries are contemplating for this agreement – those tactical warheads do not give Russia any meaningful military advantage and should not be allowed to impede the modest but very important reductions in strategic arsenals under a new START treaty.  

      Another thing to consider is that there has never been a U.S.-Russian treaty that addresses tactical warheads.  And given the short timetable the negotiators have had to deal with this new START agreement, taking on the challenge of tactical warheads in this round of talks, I think, was simply impractical.  And the best way to address this problem is to finish this agreement and to begin the next round of more comprehensive U.S.-Russian talks and to do, as the Obama administration has suggested – Hillary Clinton said this in her confirmation hearing testimony back in January – the next round of U.S.-Russian talks could and should address not just strategic but nonstrategic tactical warheads and not just deployed, but nondeployed warheads.  There’s something in that negotiation for both the United States and Russia.  And that is the best way to go forward to deal with tactical warheads.

      Another frequently enunciated criticism is that lower U.S. strategic nuclear deployments will undermine U.S. deterrence capabilities and invite peer competition.  We saw this argument coming out of a resolution put forward by the ranking Republican on the House Foreign Relations Committee just this week.  

      In my view, these kinds of claims are counterfactual and they just don’t make sense.  I mean, first of all, U.S. security commitments to our NATO and Asian allies do not depend on maintaining more than 2,000 strategic nuclear warheads on more than 800 strategic nuclear delivery vehicles.  Our allies support deeper, verifiable U.S.-Russian strategic reductions as a contribution to disarmament and strengthening the global nuclear risk reduction and nonproliferation effort.

      And third, there is no other country aside from the United States and Russia that is believed to possess more than 300 nuclear warheads.  And that next country is France.  China, often cited as a potential peer competitor has, perhaps, up to 300 warheads.  But they only have 30 to 40, perhaps, deployed on long-range ballistic missiles.  So China has never sought to nor is it likely to even begin thinking about increasing its stockpile in the coming years if the United States and Russia make further verifiable, modest reductions in their still extremely large strategic arsenals.

      And finally, as I said before, because the U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals are still sized to deter one another, if the United States and Russia work in parallel to reduce their stockpiles together, it does not affect strategic stability, our alliance commitments and it is a net contribution to the global nonproliferation effort.  

      Now, another argument that has come up is that given the short timetable for these talks, it would be imprudent to rush into a new agreement, and that in the haste to reach a new deal by the December 5 deadline, the Obama administration might make concessions to Russia that negatively affect U.S. security.  And those people who’ve argued that, including Sen. Jon Kyl on the Senate Republican Policy Committee, have argued that a simple extension of the 1991 START treaty would be in order.

      The problem with that argument is that a simple extension of START is a non-starter.  That is not going to happen.  START formally expired on December 5.  Russia is not and has not been interested in a simple extension of START, in part because that would prohibit their ability to replace their older ICBM systems with newer systems and make it impossible for them to maintain a strategic force that is roughly equivalent in numbers to the United States, nor would the United States necessarily want to have all of the various limits and sublimits that START imposes continue for another 5 years.

      And what’s more, if we simply extended START, the effect would be that Russia could and probably would try to maintain a larger, deployed strategic nuclear warhead force – above 2,000 warheads – on their 500, 600 strategic delivery vehicles, than they would under this new START treaty, which aims to bring down those deployed warhead numbers to 1500 to 1675.  

      So finally, one of the arguments that has been brought up is that it would be imprudent for the United States to further reduce its strategic arsenal without a condition in the resolution or ratification to modernize U.S. strategic nuclear forces and warheads.

      Now, we have to keep a couple of things in mind.  The United States’ strategic nuclear delivery force is modern, it is reliable and there are ongoing programs to maintain the Minuteman-III force as well as the D5 submarine-launched ballistic missile force.  And there are plans in the works to replace the submarines that carry those submarine-launched ballistic missiles.  

      Finally, there have been a lot of debates about whether the United States needs to quote, unquote, “modernize” its nuclear warheads.  There is a bevy of scientific analysis – independent scientific analysis – about the success of the current program to life-extend existing nuclear warhead types.  

      There is a recent report by the independent JASON Group that found that the lifetimes of today’s nuclear warheads could be extended for decades with no anticipated loss in confidence.  And that doesn’t mean that there don’t have to be targeted, focused investments in the right areas to maintain that capability, but the fact is that there is no modernization gap.  There is nothing that Russia is doing with its stockpile that necessitates a wholly different approach on the part of the United States to maintain existing missile, bomber and warheads.

      So bottom line, from my perspective and I think from all of us here, is that the new START treaty, as we’re calling it – there still is no official name that I’m aware of, right?  We might have a contest later this week to figure out what the new name should be.  But the new START treaty is essential to maintaining U.S. and Russian strategic stability, to maintaining the essential verification provisions that Linton and his colleagues first worked out in the 1991 START Treaty, it is important for establishing new, lower limits on U.S. and Russian stockpiles which are still way out-of-line with current-day realities.  

      And progress on the part of the United States and Russia on verifiable nuclear disarmament is going to help them win broader international support in the coming weeks and months, and especially at the May 2010 NPT Review Conference, for tougher measures to strengthen the beleaguered nonproliferation system with respect to safeguards and compliance and enforcement.  

      So we look forward to your questions.  I think Leonor will be fielding your questions and telling us who might answer them.

      MS. TOMERO:  Well, thank you so much.  I think we’ve heard what the major issues are going to be in this new agreement, and how these differences might be resolved.  And I think we’ve gotten a good overview of what the political pitfalls might be as the Senate takes up consideration for ratification of this agreement.  

      Why don’t we jump right into questions and answers and – I see one right here – and also, before you ask your question if you could please identify yourself?  Thank you.

      Q:  My name is John Barry from Newsweek.  Could I ask the two ambassadors what do they foresee as being the force modernization programs – I’m thinking in terms of delivery vehicles, bombers, submarines, missiles – that either side is likely to or wants to put in hand?

      MR. BROOKS:  The treaty is going to be explicitly based on the July joint summit statement between the two presidents that each side will be free to shape its own forces.  Now, that sounds trivial but in fact for much of the Cold War, our goal in arms control was to nudge the Soviets away from land-based missiles with multiple warheads and toward what we perceived of as more stabilizing.  As Daryl says, Cold War’s been over for a long time and so those concessions are less important, and they never were attainable even in the Cold War.  So we will each decide for ourselves.  

      I think it’s very clear in the United States that this treaty will allow us to preserve the so-called triad – there will be ICBMs, there will be submarine-launched ballistic missiles, there will be bombers.  Some of the reductions in this treaty will be taken by further lowering the number of warheads on submarines.  What we don’t know – and it won’t be the treaty that will tell us; it will be the nuclear posture review – we don’t know whether there will be reductions in numbers of launchers.  

      There’s a lively debate, unrelated to the START treaty, about whether it would be prudent to reduce the number of ICBM launchers.  There will probably, driven by the START treaty, be a look at whether you should reduce by one or even two of the submarines.  So I think those are decisions we would make anyway.  The START treaty will legitimize, enforce, the total numbers but will not, I think, drive us in a force structure.  

      With regard to the Russian Federation, they have set their modernization goals in progress but they are proceeding relatively slowly.  And it appears that their vision of their future forces, first, is a new submarine called the Borey class – of which the first is in the water – carrying a new missile which they have had a fair amount of trouble with the development.  

      I assume that that’s a speed bump.  I mean, the one thing the Soviet Union certainly could do was make ballistic missiles that flew.  So I assume that they will work out these changes.  That they speak of sometimes six, sometimes eight of the Borey class, and only got two under construction – so this is a very long – I mean submarine construction, the one that’s getting ready to deploy the yuri – yuri drulagu—the one that’s getting ready to deploy – (laughter) – has been under construction since the early ’90s.  So I think it’s going to be a slow process.  So that’s one strand.

      One strand is the deployment of a missile that we call the SS-27 but is more commonly referred as the Topol-M.  It’s a missile that comes in both a silo-based variant and a mobile variant.  They’ve been producing these at a rate of about – of single digits per year.  Not exactly sure whether that’s financial – there doesn’t seem to be any problem with the missiles – so they’re shifting to that missile.  

      A variant of it which they have said they will produce will carry multiple warheads.  The numbers are not clear.  Some Russian press has suggested six, although the missile is the lineal descendent of some missiles that, historically, were designed to carry three warheads.  And one of the reasons that the Russian Federation would not have agreed to an extension of START is that they want to go ahead and produce this, and for complex rules that made sense at the time that don’t make sense now, that would have posed problems under START.  

      So I think what we’re going to see is they’ll preserve a number of their existing systems as long as they can but that won’t be a lot longer because their missiles are old.  This family of missiles, the Topol-M, when in both a mobile and fixed variant will be much of what they will shift their ICBM force to, their submarine force will shift to the new Borey class and all of this will happen quite slowly based on what we see so far, although obviously, the Russian Federation, at one point, had a budget surplus that was greater than their defense budget.  So if they chose, in the absence of, oh, say, an arms control agreement, to sprint and make this happen faster, they could.

      MS. TOMERO:  Mr. Pifer?

      MR. PIFER:  I just had one observation which is I think there is – and it’s important to bear in mind – there’s a different design philosophy on the part of the United States and Russia.  The Russians tend to build a missile for 15, 20 years, the service life expires, and they replace it with a new missile.  

      So on that chart of Russian SNDVs, the SS-18s and the SS-19s will go away as the new SS-27, the Topol-Ms, come online.  I think the U.S. philosophy is more – you build a basic missile frame and then you actually modernize it.  So the Minuteman-III, which was introduced into the force in the early 1970s, is scheduled to still be in the force in 2030.  And I think the Trident D5 which came on-line, I think, in the late 1970s, early 1980s, also to 2030.  

      So we take a missile frame and we modernize it, and we refurbish it, whereas the Russian practice is to take a missile, they use it for 15 years and then they replace it completely.  So you’ll see new numbers coming up on the Russian side and you may think that, gosh, the Americans are still deploying these 1970s missiles.  I suspect when they retire the last Minuteman III in 2030, it may have three of the original bolts on it from 1970 but it’s going to be a very different missile.

      MS. TOMERO:  A question here?

      Q:  Barry Schweid of AP.  This may sound like a curious question but you’re an experienced negotiator and I’m asking particularly about current negotiations.  It is no longer one-on-one Cold War, East against West – no question who the perceived enemy was on both sides.  Do they ever in the course of these negotiations get into or dwell on what possible countries, what targets they need these missiles for?  Or is this sort of mechanical work?  It’s like redoing a kitchen; you assume it’s for food, for eating.  Do they ever get into the realistic world of – why do you need these missiles or these weapons?  Does a country have to defend itself, find itself pressed to explain why it needs multiple warhead missiles?

      MR. BROOKS:  In my experience, both when I was negotiating and in some of the discussions with the Russians since, they tend not to get into the areas you’re thinking of.  Now, first of all, these are bilateral negotiations and there tends to be a mindset to look at the bilateral balance.  So the Russians will explain, for example, why they worry that a conventional strategic ballistic missile could somehow threaten them and the Americans will explain why it’s being designed for another purpose.  Same thing will be true for defenses.  So that at that level, there will be discussions.  

      When I was doing it, there were some discussions early on about British and French systems.  I don’t think those have occurred, except perhaps in a little rhetoric since that’s really a settled issue that we negotiate our forces versus their forces and the British and French are independent.  

      But in terms of what one might call the real nuclear issues of the day – what one does about Iran, what one does if there is a destabilization in Pakistan, what one does about nuclear terrorism – there are lots of discussions between the United States and the Russian Federation about those.  But both sides have an incentive to keep those out of the negotiations.  

      One of my colleagues once said, think of negotiations like a giant contract law case.  It’s not your job to think about what kind of world I might have where I don’t need this massive contract; it’s your job to get the massive contract done in a way that protects your interests while still reaching agreement.  So I don’t think that you have very many of those.  

      Now, my successor – this is Secretary Gottemoeller – has a long history of knowing many Russians well.  And I don’t rule out the possibility that at the end of sessions when you’re sort of decompressing and having a cup of coffee there are chats like that.  But they don’t play any significant role in the negotiations in my experience.

      MS. TOMERO:  Yeah, Mr. Pifer.

      MR. PIFER:  I’d just add two points.  I mean, certainly in the negotiations on intermediate-range nuclear force in the 1980s, originally the Russians pushed very hard – or the Soviets pushed very hard – to try to bring in British and French systems.  But after the walkout, and when the negotiations resumed again in 1985 and there was a more realistic approach, it was limited to U.S. and Soviet systems.  

      I think, though, it probably – and I don’t think Linton would disagree with me on this – if, in fact, this process of reducing U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear forces continues, at some point – and I can’t tell you whether it’s a U.S.-Russian deployment of a 1,000 warheads or 700 or what – at some point, I think, they will have to get into this discussion of third-country forces because there’ll just be some point where Washington and Moscow are not prepared to reduce further unless you begin to bring in the nuclear forces of other countries in some way.

      MR. BROOKS:  I agree with that, and those are important decisions.  They aren’t likely to play much of a role in the discussions in Geneva because they’re not where the decisions will be made about things like that.

      MR. KIMBALL:  Let me just quickly, I mean, just add – your question varies about, kind of, the broader question of why do we have these weapons and why do we have the kind of force we have?  

      Q:  (Inaudible, off mike.)  Oh, sure.  It sort of would have helped – if you can take anybody’s (word in this world ?) – to lay out what it is you’re trying to do, and why?  Who is your target?  Who is your concern?

      MR. KIMBALL:  Right.  Well, I think as my two friends here just said, I mean, that’s not typically what is being discussed in the negotiations.  But it is the issue that probably is – and if not, it has to be – part of the nuclear posture review discussions that are going on inside this administration right now.  

      And I just wanted to use this as a jumping-off point to say that it is critical for the president to think about these questions:  Why do we have a force of this size given the threats that we perceive today, and is that force structure – those numbers – appropriate for today’s realities?  

      And so what I think we have to look forward to is the Obama administration’s assessment of some of those issues and that may change the calculus, to some extent, between the U.S. and Russia in the next round of talks because this negotiation is based on current nuclear force requirements that were set years ago.  

      And so that’s why I think some of the adjustments in the actual force levels are going to be relatively modest.  There will not be a steep drop in the United States’ strategic nuclear delivery force.  It’s not going to go much below 800 in my estimation.  Even though the number of strategic deployed warheads may be 30-percent lower, we’re still going to have most of those strategic delivery systems.  

      So the fundamental questions need to be and should be addressed in this nuclear posture Review which is kind of the second chapter in the Obama administration’s agenda on nuclear weapons.

      MR. BROOKS:  But it’s important to recognize that at least in principle, there will always be something that the United States wants to do – for reasons unrelated to Russia – that could conceptually be seen by the Russians – who do have a kind of a worst-case analytic methodology.  

      And so how can arms control help in that?  Well, two administrations ago, the United States and Russian Federation agreed on something called the Joint Data Exchange Center.  The last administration tried to bring that into force but it ran into some stupid problems.  And this would be sharing early warning.  

      If, in fact, there’s going to be any ballistic missile defense, it would be helpful if the Russians and the United States had a common understanding of where ballistic missiles might come from, and would avoid misinterpretation.  And so Daryl’s organization has chided us in the last administration, with some justification, for not getting that done.  And now he can chide the current administration.

      It has not received the urgency it should because – I don’t care what the nuclear posture review says – just in principle, there’s always going to be something that a worst-case planner will say, oh, this is aimed at us.  And even if it’s not, you need mechanisms to help reinsure it.  So that’s where arms control would say, but we already got that agreement; that’s a question of actually getting it implemented.  

      MS. TOMERO:  And I think also, I think the president has made clear that this is just a first step.  And, as the speakers mentioned, a nuclear posture review, I think, will provide more answers, and that will hopefully be able to look to further reductions – or at least the initiation of negotiations on further reductions, hopefully, soon after this new agreement is ratified.  Yeah, we had a question here in front.

      Q:  Thanks.  My name is Andre Sitav Angustas (ph), the Russian News Agency.  Actually, to follow up on what Barry was asking and what you were discussing right now, I think the Russians have been saying this for years now, that we first need to discuss the nature of the threats.  We need to agree on the nature of the threats, especially on the missile defense issues.  And then, proceeding from there, we need to see what we can do separately or together.  But that’s an aside.

      My question is about verification.  I don’t know anything about the subject, so it’s a layman’s question, obviously.  I just proceed from the layman’s logic that the Russians are in a weaker position at this point, and they should be more interested in stricter verification than the Americans; that they should be arguing for the right to come here and inspect everything you do.  

      And yet, it seems like they are complaining that the Americans have this old thinking, as they say, and they want to retain the strict verification procedures of the treaty that expired on December 5th.  With all the intrusive measures and all of that with your Votkinsk, and they are not happy about that.  They say, let’s do something simple.  Why?  Well, why do you think the Russians want to simplify the procedures?

      MR. BROOKS:  My experience in several arms control negotiations has been that detailed, verification ideas more often come from the U.S. side.  In the Cold War, that was because of suspicion.  I think now it’s just because of habit.  

      My experience has been that the Russian security services are much more worried about American inspectors than the American security services are worried about Russian inspectors.  I don’t mean to say that both sides pay attention to meeting their obligations while not giving away secrets but if you look, for example, at the experience with the cooperative threat reduction program and the number of actually quite good projects that are in both sides’ interest that prove difficult to bring to fruition because of Russian unwillingness to have Americans in certain locations, I think it is simply a different security philosophy.

      Finally, my experience with the Russians is that among the things they want to be equal is an equality of burden.  If they have to do something that is cumbersome, they want to see the United States have to do the same thing.  

      An example from the START treaty that may or may not be carried forward in the new START:  there were a number of notifications that we asked for and received with regard to mobile ICBMs.  Because the United States didn’t have any mobile ICBMs, but because we moved bombers around much more than the Russians did, there are a parallel set of notifications about bomber movements.

      If you sit down and say, what strategic purpose do those notifications serve, they don’t really serve much of a strategic purpose but they serve the broader purpose of the Russians being able to say to themselves, yes, some of this is a burden on us but it’s also a burden on America and that’s fair because it’s in the overall interest.  

      So I can’t give you a better answer than that.  I think Americans wonder about that.  But it is certainly my experience that the Russians see the burdens of having foreigners in closed locations much more clearly than they see the benefits of being able to go to locations.

      Now, Americans like to say that’s because we’re so open and they don’t need to go there, but in fact, most of the things you’re finding out in verification are not things you’d find out without going.  Otherwise, you wouldn’t have made the provision.

      MR. KIMBALL:  Yes, very quickly, I mean, I think some of what Linton is describing with respect to Russia, my perception is that it’s also based on a sense of vulnerability to Western military capabilities.  And so a country that feels more vulnerable is often less interested in revealing its vulnerabilities.  

      Second, I think we also have to remember that – and I say this with no disrespect to Linton, in particular – but with some criticism about the last administration, there was not an ongoing discussion between the United States and Russia about how to enhance and advance verification and monitoring over the past several years.  

      The last administration correctly noted that some of these verification provisions were no longer necessary because we no longer fear an out-of-the-blue nuclear attack from Moscow.  But at the same time, they have provided predictability and transparency and confidence about future intentions.  

      And many in the Russian military, in particular, I think, have gotten used to this American storyline that these verification-monitoring provisions are out-of-date, they’re a vestige of an earlier area and now there is, I think, a major – there has been a significant shift in the American position, but I think the Russian position, as a whole, has not adjusted quite as quickly over the last 12 months.

      MS. TOMERO:  We have a couple of questions, so maybe we can get back to you after we’ve taken a few of the questions.  Elaine?

      Q:  Hi, thanks.  Elaine Grossman from the National Journal Group.  I actually want to ask a question about verification, also.  I’m wondering what the panelists might imagine could be verification provisions that might be carried out to verify deployed warheads, and how they might address the security concerns on both sides about seeing the warhead loading and seeing the warheads themselves.

      MR. BROOKS:  I think they’ll be drawn as closely as possible from START.  The issues will be numbers of inspections and what kind of – three issues:  How much detail do we exchange about loadings of individual missiles?  The United States wants to be able to preserve flexibility on the number of warheads it carries on missile, and it certainly does.  Then you’ll have to – if you go to an actual deployed standard, you’ll have to provide more detail than we have provided before.  And exactly how that works without getting you into things that would cause security concerns will be hard.

      Secondly, you’ll do the same spot check we did, except you’ll probably have to do a different approach to shrouding because you’ll be demonstrating the actual number of warheads rather than that it’s no more than a certain number.  That’s fairly straightforward, I think.  

      And more than that, I don’t know the problem will be made easier depending on the degree to which the sides choose to have a common loading on all missiles.  My guess is, for example, that the Minuteman-III will be an all single-warhead force by the time this treaty is implemented.  And so then that’ll be easier because you can sort of look at any of them.

      MR. PIFER:  I’d just add a couple points on – under the START treaty, each side was allowed to do each year 10 warhead inspections where you could go to a submarine base and say, that submarine there, open up missile 2 number 17 and show me that there are no more than eight warheads on that submarine.  And you could also do it at ICBM bases.  I mean, that wasn’t enough to tell you the total number, but it was enough to create a significant risk that if you gambled and tried to put more warheads on there than you’d declared, you might get caught.  

      Now, the American side, I think because it wants to put different numbers of warheads on the Trident missiles, wants to move from that attribution rule towards an actual count rule.  I’ve also heard from a number of people throughout the U.S. government that they understand that this may be more difficult to monitor and verify than using the attribute rule, and that they have said that they are prepared to accept more intrusive verification measures.  

      So one back-of-the-envelope idea I came up with – they probably have other smarter people who have smarter ideas – but if a Russian inspection team, say, went to Kings Bay, Georgia, and you had a provision where they could choose a submarine, and if we were prepared to be more open, we could tell the Russians, for those 20 missile tubes, here are the number of warheads on each missile.  And then they could choose, you know, some number – three – maybe to inspect and confirm that.

      Again, that creates a significant risk of being caught if you cheat.  You don’t have to show them what’s on every missile.  But it’s a mechanism, I think, that would allow you to have a workable monitoring regime.  It would be a bit more intrusive and it would be a bit more difficult than the attribution rule, but this is a soluble problem.  

      And I think these are the sorts of things that they’re probably working on now, where it’s not so much an issue of principle; it’s just sort of getting that right balance between showing enough that allows you to monitor and verify the treaty while also not making it impossibly difficult for the submarine operators who have other things to do.

      MS. TOMERO:  We have time for one more question.  

      Q:  My name is – (inaudible) – and I am a correspondent from Japan’s newspaper, Mainichi Shimbun.  And I have also a verification question to Mr. Pifer.  And you pointed out five main factors of the START treaty, and what will be changed or what will not be changed in that new treaty, and what will be the merit or – (inaudible) – for the United States?

      MS. TOMERO:  So a question for Professor Pifer.  I saw actually two other questions in the back, so let’s take those two, and get Professor Pifer to answer this first question and then maybe have each of the speakers answer the last question.

      Q:  Hi, Matt Knight (sp) from the British Embassy.  Just in warhead verification, counting numbers, are decoys in or out?

      MS. TOMERO:  And then you right here.

      Q:  Jim Manion from Agence France Press.  Could you talk a little bit about potential obstacles to ratification of the treaty?  I know that you mentioned missile defense, but are there others?  

      MR. PIFER:  Let me take the first – of the five sets of provisions I had there, I would guess – I would suspect that there will be some provision that says you can’t interfere with the other side’s national technical means.  That’s been fairly standard in arms controls treaties now, so that the other side is allowed to use its surveillance satellites in other ways for purposes of monitoring the treaty.  

      With regards to the other provisions, I think it remains to be seen.  There was an agreement in principle by the sides that they would proceed – they would start with the basis of the START verification regime, but where possible, both sides wanted to simplify it and make it easier to implement.  

      And I suspect that over having now worked under this regime for 15 years, I think the United States has conducted, like, 600 inspections under it; the Russians have conducted over 400.  So there’s a lot of experience.  And I think one thing that the sides have been able to probably do is go and say, maybe these measures, we don’t really need.  

      As Linton said, I think the Votkinsk provision – to have a permanent presence at Votkinsk – perhaps at this point, we no longer need that.  And so the verification provisions really need to be driven by the actual limitations that you agree to, and to the extent that you have different limitations than were in the START treaty, and I think in some ways this new agreement is going to be simpler than the START treaty.  That may impose, in some ways, less demanding verification requirements.  And that gives the side the opportunity, then, to eliminate the inspections if they make no contribution to the overall understanding of the other side’s compliance with the treaty.

      MR. BROOKS:  With regard to ratification, I assume that defenses will be dealt with as I suggested earlier, which is in language that does not impose any restrictions.  Therefore, I think that defenses, which is one of the big deals for people who are worried about the treaty, will not be a bar to ratification.  

      I think that there will be some rhetoric about nonstrategic, but since it’s been clear since the April statement that the treaty wasn’t about nonstrategic, since there’s a possibility for perfect negotiations to deal with that, since the treaty it’s replacing didn’t deal with it, it’s hard for me to see that that will be a significant bar to ratification.

      If you look at the resolution that was introduced, it has some curious features.  It says that the intelligence community estimates that in 15 years, China could have 100 warheads capable of reaching the United States, and then, somehow seems to say that a treaty that has us with 1500 warheads now, that there’s an imbalance there.  I don’t understand that.  I think it’ll be a debate point because there’s a school of thought that is really worried about China, but there’s not a lot of data about a significant Chinese buildup.  

      Daryl commented on the ratification issue about maintaining a nuclear enterprise.  In pure logic, that has nothing to do with this treaty.  I mean, whatever we ought to do to maintain the nuclear enterprise, we ought to do whether we have this treaty or no treaty or an extension of START.  I think that it is very clear that there’ll be an attempt to use START ratification to solidify some things, and exactly how that works, I don’t think it endangers ratification.  

      I think there will be a fair amount of negotiation both within the Senate and between the Senate and the administration.  To some extent, you’ll have to see what’s in the nuclear posture review.  The nuclear posture review is perceived by skeptics as calling for significant intent to maintain a capable nuclear weapons enterprise, whatever you think that means, then I think it doesn’t become a ratification debate.

      I frankly think that this treaty is so clearly in our overall interest that there’ll be a lot of rhetoric, but I’d be extremely surprised if this is not ratified with the kind of majorities that we’ve seen in the past.  

      There are a couple of things we don’t know.  We don’t know how it’s going to handle conventional.  There are a handful of people for whom this conventional strike is very important, and they will be looking at that.  But if you look at the arguments that have been made so far, there are mostly cautions not to do things that I don’t think the administration has any intention of doing.  And so, I mean, if we banned ballistic missile defenses, that would hurt ratification, but since the administration has no intention of doing that, that’s not a terribly interesting worry.

      MR. KIMBALL:  Well, I would agree with Linton’s overall assessment of the obstacles or the chances for the Senate providing advice and consent.  I mean, I would just add a couple additional things.  

      As everyone can see, the Congress has a very full agenda and the administration has a very full agenda.  I mean, one of the key issues regarding when this treaty is going to be evaluated and approved is, okay, when is the Senate Foreign Relations Committee going to hold hearings; when is Harry Reid going to provide floor time?  It may not happen as fast as some of us think it ought to, but I think it will.

      The administration, I would add, needs to put together a much more substantial, high-level effort to reach out to the Senate to talk about these issues because I think as you all recognize there hasn’t been much discussion about these nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons policy issues in many, many years.  And there is a steep learning curve in Congress on these issues.

      And so I think many in the Senate may be susceptible to some of these arguments that Steve and Linton and I are casually dismissing here, but might gain some traction in the Senate.  So the administration is going to need to be very well-prepared in reaching out to the Senate.

      And on one of those issues, I don’t think the key issue in this treaty ratification discussion is going to be about verification because there will be the superficial perception that this new START treaty is not like the last START treaty.  It doesn’t have as robust a verification system, and that must be bad, right?  

      Well, as we’ve described, it is going to be a different verification system because this is a different time, there are going to be a more streamlined set of limits and requirements for each side and, ironically, some of those who right now are arguing and complaining about the loss of certain verification tools like Votkinsk – and this is Sen. Kyl – were the very ones who, in 2003, were criticizing START for being a 700-page behemoth that was out-of-step with current realities and they praised SORT for its brevity and its being streamlined.  Now, we’ve come full-circle here.  

      I think we’ll see in the end that this is a treaty that – and the Senate will recognize – is a treaty that makes a lot of sense, it’s very modest in what it is actually reducing, it will provide continuity with the U.S.-Russian relationship, but it will also at the same time help move us towards much more rational limits on the two countries’ nuclear weapons arsenals.  And so I would agree that it’s going to, in the end, be approved but it might be a longer and slower slog than many of us would like.

      MR. BROOKS:  Two other points –

      MS. TOMERO:  (Inaudible, off mike) – and Ambassador Brooks to provide some closing comments in maybe 90 seconds so that we don’t run out of time.

      MR. BROOKS:  Okay, and I’m going to use the first 30 of them for these two points.  There’s one other issue that people have raised, which is the Russians need this treaty and we don’t.  The basis for that argument is saying, look, the Russian forces are going to go down lower than their current level no matter what happens – probably true – and therefore, it’s not in our interest to have a treaty.  

      But in fact, as Daryl has pointed out, the only reason we set the levels we have now were to assure our allies, and we assure our allies by a second to none standard.  So there’s no particular reason not to go forward with a treaty and it’s kind of facile to get into discussions about who needs it most in a technical sense.  Remember my previous comment about who has the budget surpluses and who doesn’t – so whether you want to encourage an arms race right now is interesting.

      Finally, I would point out – and we should have pointed out earlier – Daryl’s right – when will the Foreign Relations Committee take up the treaty?  But don’t look for that to happen immediately because after the treaty is signed, there is a detailed article-by-article analysis that’s mechanical but burdensome because it becomes part of the shared understanding between the Senate and the administration.  And this is a long treaty, and it’s been a while since we’ve done an article-by-article analysis of a long treaty.  So if this treaty gets signed in the next two weeks, it still won’t get to the Hill until sometime in late February.  

      And I guess in closing, when we have the treaty, you’ll be able to look at it.  I think that a lot of the reasons we did START-I don’t apply anymore.  But predictability, transparency and something that regulates the overall political relationship, those are important, and those alone are enough to justify ratifying the treaty.  

      And then you add the questions about reclaiming our legitimate role as the leader in international nonproliferation, and so I think that – I am hopeful that this will be looked at thoroughly by the Senate because it ought to be looked at thoroughly by the Senate.  But I think it will be ratified.

      MR. PIFER:  I would just second that comment.  I think based on what we understand the treaty, how it’s shaping up – and obviously we do have to look at the actual text when it comes out – but based on what we’ve heard, it’s going to be manifestly in America’s national interest to go ahead and ratify this treaty.  It will be good for having a stable nuclear relationship between the United States and Russia.  

      But it’s also going to be important, as Linton just mentioned, that the United States and Russia, which between them control 95 percent of the nuclear weapons in the world, are acting to fulfill their requirements under the nonproliferation treaty to move towards lower levels of weapons.  That will be important when you have Washington trying to work next May at the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference to try to tighten up the NPT regime.

      Second point I would make is that I do think one of the reasons why the treaty will happen – I think it’s probably a matter of days or weeks – is that the Russians do want the treaty, in part because their forces are being reduced.  But I think as Linton just said, we shouldn’t just assume that the Russians are going at any case.  

      If you look at Russia today, it is very important, I think, to the Kremlin – and I use this, now, of the Kremlin to include the White House, which is where Prime Minister Putin now works – it’s important to Russia to have some vestige of great power status.  Strategic nuclear parity with the United States is really their major claim to being a superpower on par with the United States.  And so I think we should not doubt that if the Russians believe they have to invest more to maintain nuclear parity with us, they will.  And that will not be to the U.S. advantage.

      The last observation I would make is to look at the Senate ratification debate, and I would recall that the Strategic Offensive Reduction Treaty signed in 2002 was ratified in the Senate by – I think it was a 95-to-0 vote.  

      I think when you look at the limitations in the new treaty, they will be an improvement on the SORT treaty, but the reductions will be relatively modest – maybe a warhead limit of around 1600 in the new treaty as opposed to between 1700 to 2200 in the SORT treaty.  

      But what you will have in this new treaty, though, are an array of verification measures, array of transparency measures, so you’re going to have SORT with a slight reduction, but the verification, which SORT did not have.  And I think it would be very hard for serious people who voted to ratify the SORT treaty in 2003 now to come around and say that this new treaty was somehow detrimental to American national security.

      MS. TOMERO:  Any other last words?  I’d like to thank you for a very helpful and engaging discussion.  I think we’ve been able to benefit from several decades of unique experience on these issues, including at the highest levels of government, to deal with these issues before us as we expect a new treaty in the next few weeks, and consideration by the Senate in the next few months.  

      I trust you grabbed a copy of the START briefing book.  It’s also available on the front page of the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation at our START center.  The Web site is www.armscontrolcenter.org.  

      I’d like to thank you very much for your questions and your interest, and I’d also particularly like to express my appreciation to the Arms Control Association, to Daryl and particularly also to Tom Collina.  And please join me in thanking our speakers.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)  


      For further information, see:

      Description: 

      Panelists: Linton Brooks, Steven Pifer, and Daryl Kimball

      Country Resources:

      On Eve of International Mine Ban Treaty Summit, Arms Control and Humanitarian Experts Urge U.S. to Join Treaty - Transcript Available

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      WHAT: Telephone Press Briefing
      WHEN: Monday, Nov. 23, 2009, 10:00 - 11:00 A.M.

      Click here for transcript of this event. Announcement of the event is immediately below.

      (Washington, D.C., Nov. 17) - From Nov. 30 to Dec. 4, representatives of the 156 states party to the Mine Ban Treaty will meet in Cartagena, Colombia, to review 10 years of progress under the accord. In a telephone press briefing Monday, Nov. 23, arms and humanitarian experts will provide perspectives and information on the Treaty, the upcoming review conference, and explain the case for a U.S. decision to join the treaty.

      Despite being the world's largest donor to mine clearance and victim assistance, and complying with key provisions of the Mine Ban Treaty, the United States has not joined the treaty. The Clinton administration set the United States on a path to join the Mine Ban Treaty in 2006, but the Bush administration rejected that plan in 2004. In February of this year, 67 national organizations called on President Obama to review U.S. landmine and cluster munitions policy as a step toward joining the Mine Ban Treaty and the Convention on Cluster Munitions. The United States will be represented at the Cartagena Summit, marking the first official U.S. participation at a formal Mine Ban Treaty states-parties meeting.

      "U.S. participation in the Cartagena review conference is a positive step, but it is unclear whether it signals a shift in the Obama administration's approach to the Mine Ban Treaty," said Jeff Abramson, deputy director of the Arms Control Association.

      "A commitment to join the Mine Ban Treaty would bring the United States in line with its key NATO allies and demonstrate again President Obama's dedication to multilateral diplomacy and international institutions which the Nobel Committee cited in selecting him for this year's Peace Prize," Abramson added.

      "In the decade since the Mine Ban Treaty took effect, antipersonnel mines have been thoroughly stigmatized and relegated to the dustbin of history," said Steve Goose, arms division director at Human Rights Watch.

      "The United States has much to gain and nothing to lose by joining the treaty," Goose argued. He will attend the Cartagena Summit as Head of Delegation for the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997.

      Even though the United States is a global leader in providing victim assistance funding, the most recent Landmine Monitor report found that "victim assistance has made the least progress of all the major sectors of mine action, with funding and action falling far short of what was needed."

      "A U.S. decision to join the Mine Ban Treaty would signal that significant work still needs to be done to aid those impacted by landmines and other war debris in the sector of victim assistance," noted Wendy Batson, executive director of Handicap International-U.S..

      More than 1,000 people are expected to attend the Cartagena Summit, and dozens of countries will be represented by their heads of state, or foreign or defense ministers.

      Panelists:

      Wendy Batson, Executive Director, Handicap International-U.S.

      Steve Goose, Director, Arms Division, Human Rights Watch

      Jeff Abramson (moderator), Deputy Director, Arms Control Association.


      Additional resources:

      Cartagena Summit on a Mine-Free World - http://www.cartagenasummit.gov.co/

      Landmine Monitor Report 2009: Toward a Mine-Free World - http://lm.icbl.org/index.php/publications/display?url=lm/2009/

      Human Rights Watch Landmine Resource Page - http://www.hrw.org/en/category/topic/arms/landmines

      Letter to Obama Administration from 67 national organizations requesting a review of U.S. policy on landmines and cluster bombs - http://www.armscontrol.org/system/files/Obama_sign-on_letter_FINAL.pdf

      For more information on landmines and the Mine Ban Treaty, contact Jeff Abramson at [email protected] or (202) 463-8270 x 109.

      Description: 

      Panelists: Wendy Batson, Steve Goose, Jeff Abramson

      Country Resources:

      ACA Event - Iran's Nuclear Challenge: Where to Go From Here? Full transcript now available

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      Arms Control Association Press Briefing
      Thursday, October 22, 2009
      9:30 - 11:00 A.M.

      Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Choate Room
      1779 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC

      For the first time in several years, serious multilateral discussions with Iran over its nuclear program were held on October 1. The outcome of that meeting was an agreement, "in principle" that Iran would send about 80 percent of its stockpile of low-enriched uranium to Russia for further enrichment, and then to France to fashion it into fuel for a safeguarded Iranian reactor. Another meeting is scheduled on October 19 to finalize the details of this arrangement. This tentative progress occurs in the context of revelations regarding a secret Iranian enrichment facility, which the International Atomic Energy Agency will visit for the first time on October 25. At this important juncture, ACA will host a panel of experts on Iran and its nuclear program to explain these developments, what they mean for efforts to address the Iranian nuclear challenge, and how to make progress moving forward.

      Paul Pillar, Director of Graduate Studies, Center for Peace and Security Studies, Georgetown University. Pillar served for three decades as an analyst in the U.S. intelligence community, including most recently as the national intelligence officer for the Near East and South Asia from 2000-2005. He will discuss how current developments affect the U.S. intelligence community's assessments on Iran and the likely consequences of a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities.

      Greg Thielmann, Senior Fellow, the Arms Control Association. Thielmann was most recently a senior professional staffer of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and previously a U.S. Foreign Service Officer for 25 years, last serving as Director of the Strategic, Proliferation and Military Affairs Office in the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research. He will address how recent events may impact the timeframe in which Iran could develop a nuclear weapon and the time available for a diplomatic strategy to make progress.

      James Dobbins, Director, RAND International Security and Defense Policy Center. In addition to serving in several senior diplomatic posts in the White House and State Department, Dobbins was the U.S. representative to the Bonn Conference on Afghanistan in 2001, which involved negotiating with Iranian officials on establishing the new Afghan government. Bringing his experience in negotiating with Iran, he will weigh in on what the initial talks have accomplished, what to expect from the Iranian negotiators, and where the U.S. diplomatic approach should go from here.

      Peter Crail, Nonproliferation Analyst, Arms Control Association, Moderator

      Description: 

      Panelists: Paul Pillar, Greg Thielmann, and James Dobbins

      Country Resources:

      Subject Resources:

      ATT Roundtable Discussion - September 30, 2009

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      On September 30, 2009, representatives from U.S. and foreign defense industries, the U.S. government, Congressional offices, and non-governmental organizations and think tanks were invited to discuss a potential Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The roundtable was organized by the Arms Control Association, the Center for Industry and Security (CITS) at the University of Georgia, Oxfam America, and Saferworld.

      See attached document for meeting report.

      Description: 

      On September 30, 2009, representatives from U.S. and foreign defense industries, the U.S. government, Congressional offices, and non-governmental organizations and think tanks were invited to discuss a potential Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).

      The New Nuclear Agenda: The Obama Administration and Arms Control

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      Remarks of Tom Z. Collina, Research Director
      Confronting Global WMD Threats Conference sponsored by US Air Force, USAF Counterproliferation Center, Defense Threat Reduction Agency
      Colonial Williamsburg
      August 13-14, 2009


      As the world's two leading nuclear powers, the United States and Russia must lead by example.
      --President Barack Obama, Moscow, July 6, 2009


      On behalf of the nonpartisan, independent Arms Control Association, I would like to commend the US Air Force, USAF Counterproliferation Center and Defense Threat Reduction Agency for hosting this important event and for inviting me to speak. It is an honor and privilege to be here.

      I have no doubt that our next speaker Assistant Secretary of State Rose Gottemoeller will do an excellent job describing the administration’s current positions on arms control. So as not to steal her thunder, I will try to give a different perspective and look further into the future as to where administration policy should go, and why.

      But first, the present. On April 5 in Prague, President Obama delivered an electrifying speech on the future of nuclear weapons. In it, the president committed the United States to a bold new path on nuclear weapons and global security, including his now-famous pledge to “seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.” President Obama made clear that he is seeking a nuclear-weapons free world not as an end in itself, but as a key part of a broader strategy to reduce the risk of nuclear war, contain the proliferation of nuclear weapons and prevent nuclear terrorism:

      Today, the Cold War has disappeared but thousands of those weapons have not. In a strange turn of history, the threat of global nuclear war has gone down, but the risk of a nuclear attack has gone up. More nations have acquired these weapons. Testing has continued. Black market trade in nuclear secrets and nuclear materials abound. The technology to build a bomb has spread. Terrorists are determined to buy, build or steal one. Our efforts to contain these dangers are centered on a global non-proliferation regime, but as more people and nations break the rules, we could reach the point where the center cannot hold.

      The president’s concern, widely shared by others, about a “nuclear tipping point” is fueled by recent events. North Korea withdrew from the NPT in 2003 (the first state ever to do so), conducted nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009, and continues to produce nuclear materials and test its missiles. Iran is also testing missiles, developing a nuclear power program and is enriching uranium, which could potentially be used in nuclear weapons. At a time of justified concern about climate change, the spread of nuclear power to additional nations, including states in the Middle East, is a key proliferation concern. North Korea in particular seems intent on sharing its nuclear-knowhow, with frightening implications for proliferation and terrorism. Militant groups have reportedly attempted attacks on nuclear sites in Pakistan.

      Meanwhile, the United States and Russia continue to deploy thousands of nuclear weapons on active alert, far in excess of any justifiable mission other than keeping rough parity with the other. This overblown posture perpetuates the myth that such large arsenals are necessary to ensure US and Russian security, when in fact the opposite is true. Both countries are vulnerable to the accidental or unauthorized launch of nuclear weapons, to the loss of control of these weapons (as illustrated by the 2007 incident in which the Air Force mistakenly loaded nuclear weapons onto B52 bombers) and to nuclear materials falling into terrorists’ hands. Large nuclear arsenals are the root cause of these threats, not solutions to them.

      The challenge now for the Obama administration is to strike a new balance between the often-competing priorities of deterrence and nonproliferation, such that the US nuclear force can be maintained at lower levels while at the same time fostering the international cooperation we need to meet today’s proliferation challenges. The need for a new approach is urgent, as nuclear dangers have been increasing just as US leadership was receding.

      President Obama is now providing the new leadership we need. With his Prague speech, the July Moscow Summit, the G8 meeting in Italy and other efforts, the president has swiftly begun to reinvent US nuclear policy to address the threats we face today, and will likely face tomorrow. He has begun in earnest to refocusUS efforts on reducing Cold War arsenals and countering nuclear proliferation and terrorism by undertakingan integrated strategy:

      1. Reestablishing US leadership on arms control. The Obama administration recognizes that proliferation is a global challenge that cannot be solved without US leadership and international support. The administration is seeking to earn that support by resuming talks with Russia on a binding, verifiable arms reduction agreement to replace START by the end of 2009. The President has also called for senate ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and for a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT) to ban the production of fissile materials for weapons. The president also declared, significantly, an ultimate goal of the elimination of nuclear weapons. These important steps open the door for the US to resume its historic role as an effective leader on global efforts to stop the bomb’s spread.

      2. Redefining the purpose of nuclear weapons. The administration’s arms control agenda must be supported by realistic missions for a reduced nuclear arsenal. If the United States were to adopt a policy that focuses the mission of nuclear weapons to preventing their use by others, then it could drastically reduce the nuclear inventory to a total of no more than 1,000 weapons of all types— strategic, tactical, deployed, and reserves. The ongoing Nuclear Posture Review must address this challenge and support the president’s goals.

      3. Reinvesting in the Nonproliferation Treaty system. By making good on past arms control commitments and by working to improve the international inspections system, President Obama hopes to ensure a successful NPT review conference in 2010 and a stronger treaty thereafter. The president also plans to reenergize diplomatic efforts to restrain North Korea and Iran’s nuclear programs. The administration plans to work for stronger measures to address noncompliance and withdrawals from the treaty and to prevent civil power programs from being used as fronts for weapons activities, such as by placing greater restrictions on the transfer of enrichment and reprocessing technologies. Significantly, the president will chair a special meeting of the U.N. Security Council in September on nuclear non- proliferation and disarmament.

      4. Strengthening programs to thwart nuclear terrorism. In addition to the NPT and the nuclear inspection system, there is a growing web of multilateral agreements to thwart terrorist acquisition of nuclear weapons and material, such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, the Proliferation Security Initiative, UN Security Council Resolution 1540, and others. President Obama announced in Prague a new international effort to secure vulnerable nuclear materials within four years, break up black markets, intercept materials in transit, and use financial tool to disrupt illicit trade. To better coordinate and promote these efforts, the president also announced plans to host a Global Nuclear Security Summit in March 2010 in Washington, DC.

      The Obama administration’s integrated strategy on nuclear security can be best understood as a target with concentric circles. The bull’s eye is securing nuclear materials and weapons that may be vulnerable to terrorists. The next circle out is the NPT regime, preventing the spread of nuclear weapons to additional states. The outer circle is the US-Russian arms reduction process, which is essential to reducing and securing nuclear arsenals in their own right and to creating international support for the NPT regime and other efforts.

      New START and Beyond

      The first step in the Obama administration’s nuclear agenda is to rebuild the US-Russian arms control process. This July in Moscow Presidents Obama and Medvedev made history by “resetting” US-Russian relations after years of decline. In particular, the two presidents agreed to replace the START treaty to reduce their nuclear arsenals.

      The START follow-on agreement, or “New START,” is by necessity a limited effort as it must be concluded by the time START expires on December 5. Modest as it may be, New START is an essential down-payment toward further verifiable reductions in each side’s bloated nuclear arsenals. As the two presidents outlined, the new agreement will create 25% lower limits on strategic delivery systems (from START limits of 1,600 to 1,100) and on the number of warheads that may be deployed on those systems (from SORT limits of 2,200 to 1,675).

      Given the December deadline, this new treaty will not be able to deal with some of the most important and difficult issues, such as deeper strategic reductions, tactical weapons, missile defense, and verified dismantlement of retired warheads. Yet these issues must be tackled if President Obama hopes to make progress toward his goal of a nuclear-free world. The heavy lifting is still to come.

      Therefore, U.S. and Russian leaders should not stop with New START, but should expeditiously begin to outline the next agreement—I’ll call it “New START II.” Even as they work to wrap up the current round of negotiations, the two sides should prepare the way for a new round of talks on deeper reductions in 2010.

      In this next phase, the two sides should aim to:

      1. Reduce their respective arsenals to 1,000 total warheads or fewer, with verified dismantlement of retired warheads and disposal of fissile materials, and

      2. Agree on limitations to strategic missile defenses that will give the United States the option of deploying a system to counter missile threats from Iran or North Korea, but that would not undermine Russia's confidence in its nuclear deterrent.

      Arsenal Reductions: As part of the ongoing Nuclear Posture Review, the United States should focus the mission of nuclear weapons to deterring their use by others. If it does, then it could drastically reduce its nuclear inventory to a total of no more than 1,000 weapons of all types—strategic, tactical, deployed, and reserves (compared to over 5,000 such weapons today).

      Such a reduced force and revised targeting strategy would be more than enough to leave no doubt that the United States retains the ability to retaliate against any nuclear-armed state in the event they would initiate a nuclear attack against the United States or its allies.

      As for tactical weapons, some Russian military planners believe they are needed as an insurance policy against U.S. and NATO conventional forces, but the military value of these weapons is questionable. Not only is the chance of a direct conventional conflict between Russia and NATO remote, but the huge potential damage from tactical weapons makes their use inappropriate as a response to conventional attack. Hanging on to these weapons also perpetuates the risk that they may fall into the hands of terrorists.

      It would be far better to retire these unnecessary weapons and have their dismantlement verified and their nuclear materials rendered unusable for military purposes. Verifiable dismantlement of all retired warheads and disposition of fissile materials would further reduce both sides’ capabilities to reconstitute a larger arsenal. U.S. leaders may be more likely to agree to verifiable dismantlement if Russia agrees to begin dismantling its outdated tactical arsenal.

      To nudge Russia in this direction, NATO should be willing to consider giving up its tactical weapons as well. Bob Einhorn, State Department special advisor on nonproliferation and arms control, said in July that the need to reduce Russian tactical weapons "poses a question of whether the U.S., as an inducement to Russia to limit or consolidate its tactical weapons, should be prepared to reduce or eliminate the relatively small number of U.S. nuclear weapons that remain in Europe."

      Missile Defense: Neither the US nor Russia should allow the missile defense issue to impede progress toward deeper nuclear reductions. The Obama administration has reasonably delayed work on a third missile interceptor site in Europe, but it is unlikely to rule out additional interceptors until it completes its ongoing review of U.S. missile defense policy. Suggestions that the administration has “traded” European missile defense for Russian agreement to New START are mistaken.

      The reality is that there is nothing to trade. The U.S. interceptors for Europe have not been tested and are years away from possible deployment. There is time for Moscow and Washington to explore and develop truly cooperative approaches to counter Iran’s potential long-range missile threat and agree to limits on strategic missile defenses. If the US and Russia can work together to contain Iran’s nuclear and missile programs, then there would less need for a European deployment.

      Beyond New START, it is unlikely that Russia will agree to significantly lower levels of nuclear arms in the face of the possibility of unlimited US missile defense deployments. The time has come to set priorities, and the Obama administration should prioritize arsenal reductions. The security value of arms control is proven; strategic missile defense is not.

      Ending Nuclear Testing, Fissile Material Production

      In addition to New START, an important part of the administration’s nonproliferation agenda is ratification of CTBT and negotiation of a FMCT. Significant progress on these agreements will greatly aid efforts to strengthen the NPT at the May 2010 review conference and will enhance global nonproliferation efforts in general. In the words of Ellen Tauscher, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security:

      We are not so naïve as to believe that problem states will end their proliferation programs if the United States and Russia reduce our nuclear arsenals. But we are confident that progress in this area will reinforce the central role of the NPT and help us build support to sanction or engage states on favorable terms to us. Our collective ability to bring the weight of international pressure against proliferators would be undermined by a lack of effort towards disarmament.

      US Senate ratification of CTBT is more important than ever, given the need to reestablish US leadership on arms control, strengthen the NPT, and constrain the development of advanced nuclear weapons by other states. Meanwhile, the treaty is effectively verifiable and will not undermine the US deterrent force; the United States can maintain a reliable arsenal under a CTBT. According to the bipartisan 2009 Council of Foreign Relations Report on U.S. Nuclear Weapons Policy co-chaired by Bill Perry and Brent Scowcroft:

      While a state could develop a first-generation Hiroshima-type nuclear bomb without nuclear testing, the CTBT would prevent a state from gaining guaranteed technical assurance through nuclear testing that advanced nuclear weapons would work reliably. The political benefit of the CTBT is that it has been strongly linked to the vitality of the nonproliferation regime. The Task Force believes that the benefits outweigh the costs and that the CTBT is in U.S. national security interests.

      As important as it is, the CTBT ratification effort is in danger of getting lost in the noise. The administration is understandably focusing first on New START, given that START will expire in four months. Ratification of New START is not expected until next spring, hopefully before the May NPT conference. It may not be possible to mount a successful CTBT ratification effort before the NPT meeting, although the administration should still seek to do so. At a minimum CTBT ratification should be well underway with the prospect for a vote in summer 2010, and by no means should this vote be delayed until the fall. To achieve this goal the Obama administration needs to launch a high profile campaign for CTBT ratification soon.

      FMCT is essential to capping global stockpiles of weapons-usable fissile materials, and thus is an important part of a broader effort to reduce those stockpiles and prevent their transfer to other states or terrorist groups. But it will take time to negotiate this treaty at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva. In the meantime, the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, and France should announce moratoria on the production of fissile materials for weapons and seek agreement from China, India, Pakistan, and Israel to do the same.

      By the May NPT meeting, the US and Russia should make every effort to ratify New START and announce plans to quickly move on to talks on New START II. By then, a high prolife CTBT ratification campaign should be well underway in Washington and the nuclear weapon states could announce joint plans to deposit their instruments of ratification and seek entry-into-force of the treaty. It would also be useful for the nuclear weapons states to declare joint moratoria on fissile material production for weapons, call for a global halt, and announce a timeframe for completing FMCT negotiations at the CD.

      The Road to Zero

      The Obama administration’s nuclear agenda is ambitious. Achieving it will take time and will make the world safer in the near-term, and help us toward the long-term vision of a nuclear weapons-free world. Once we complete this first phase, the world will be in a better position to determine the next steps. The United States and Russia, for example, will at some point need to bring China, the United Kingdom and France into talks. We will need to talk with India, Pakistan and Israel. Many tough questions remain. The map we have to a nuclear weapons free world--incomplete as it may be--is good enough to start the journey.

      Thank you.

      Description: 

      Remarks of Tom Z. Collina, Research Director. Confronting Global WMD Threats Conference sponsored by US Air Force, USAF Counterproliferation Center, Defense Threat Reduction Agency

      ACA Director Addresses STRATCOM Deterrence Symposium

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      What Are Nuclear Weapons For?
      Reassessing and Reducing the Role of Nuclear Weapons in 21st Century U.S. Security Policy

      Remarks of Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director
      for the First Annual Strategic Deterrence Symposium
      U.S. Strategic Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska
      July 29, 2009


      On behalf of the nonpartisan, independent Arms Control Association, I want to commend U.S. Strategic Command and General Chilton in particular for creating this forum for discussion and for inviting nongovernmental experts to participate.

      It is important because a reexamination and adjustment of the role of nuclear weapons in United States national security strategy is long overdue.

      Although the U.S.-Soviet superpower competition that gave rise to the development, testing, and deployment of tens of thousands of nuclear weapons and thousands of strategic and tactical nuclear delivery systems ended nearly twenty years ago, many of the weapons and the policies developed to justify their possession and potential use persist.

      U.S. nuclear weapons policy must be reoriented in order to help support and advance the comprehensive nuclear risk reduction agenda that has been outlined by President Barack Obama, which is urgently needed to address a wide range of proliferation challenges that are pushing the world close to a “nuclear tipping point.”

      Current Roles and Missions are Anachronistic and Obsolete
      Since the early 1960s, the primary military mission for U.S. nuclear weapons has been counterforce, that is, the attack of military, mostly nuclear, targets and the enemy’s leadership. The requirements for the counterforce mission perpetuate the most dangerous characteristics of nuclear forces, with weapons kept at high levels of alert, ready to launch upon warning of an enemy attack, and able to preemptively attack enemy forces.

      U.S. nuclear weapons and the threat they might be used not only served to deter the Soviet Union and other Cold War adversaries from embarking on a course of action considered hostile or contrary to U.S. security interests, but they were also used to try to coerce Cold War era adversaries into taking more compliant diplomatic positions. In other words, U.S. policymakers viewed nuclear weapons as not only essential to a nuclear deterrence strategy but also a "compellence" strategy designed to coerce, or intimidate. Because policymakers and military planners considered the credibility and superiority of U.S. nuclear forces to be essential to these objectives, U.S. governments built up U.S. nuclear arsenals and delivery capabilities.

      Unfortunately, even after two post-Cold War Nuclear Posture Reviews, the United States still has a nuclear force posture that calls for fewer operationally deployed strategic nuclear weapons but still essentially retains the same basic roles and retains all of the essential characteristics it had during the Cold War. Current doctrine calls for:

      • a nuclear arsenal and readiness posture capable of delivering a devastating counterforce attack against Russia, China, and other potential regional nuclear-armed foes.
      • the possible use of nuclear weapons to defend U.S. forces and allies against massive conventional military attacks; and
      • the possible use of nuclear weapons to counter suspected chemical or biological weapons threats.

      As a result the United States and Russia currently deploy more than 2,200 strategic warheads each on hundreds of strategic delivery systems. Many more strategic warheads are retained in reserve as a hedge against unspecified future security threats and the highly unlikely possibility of a catastrophic failure of one or more of the United States existing warhead types.

      With the end of the Cold War and the development of new conventional technologies, the traditional purposes for U.S. nuclear weapons have become increasingly less relevant. It is also increasingly clear that yesterday's doctrines and the nuclear forces that derive from them make it more difficult to convince other states that nuclear weapons are a weapon of last resort that are not needed for their security.

      However, justified U.S. fears of a bolt-from-the-blue Soviet nuclear attack once were, they no longer apply to our current world. Russia is seeking lower, verifiable ceilings on both deployed warheads and strategic delivery systems. Current and future U.S. conventional military power is more than sufficient to defeat any other conventional military aggressor.

      Nor is there any conceivable circumstance that requires or could justify the use of U.S. nuclear weapons to deal with an unconventional chemical or biological weapons threat. As former Secretary of Defense William Perry said in April 1996 in reference to the suspected Libyan chemical weapons facility at Tarhunah, "[if] some nation were to attack the United States with chemical weapons … we could make a devastating response without the use of nuclear weapons.” Perry noted, "in every situation that I have seen so far, nuclear weapons would not be required for response."

      U.S. nuclear doctrine should not treat nuclear weapons as a mere extension of the most powerful conventional forces. In the real world they are and must be treated separately. No U.S. President has seen fit to use nuclear weapons even in the midst of two protracted wars—Korea and Vietnam.

      As General Colin Powell said in his 1995 autobiography: “No matter how small these nuclear payloads were, we would be crossing a threshold. Using nukes at this point would mark one of the most significant political decisions since Hiroshima.”

      The Adverse Effects of Current U.S. Nuclear Force Posture
      So long as the United States hangs on to these obsolete Cold War nuclear missions and counterforce strategy and implies the potential use of nuclear weapons in response to conventional, chemical, and biological threats, U.S. nuclear weapons will be more of a liability than an asset in addressing today’s highest national security priority: which is preventing the use of nuclear weapons and their proliferation to terrorists and additional states. Why is this the case?

      A nuclear U.S. nuclear arsenal of many thousands of weapons does nothing to deter terrorists from using a nuclear bomb should they acquire one. Even with advances in nuclear forensics, attribution challenges make the threat of use of nuclear weapons against states that might in some way assist or facilitate nuclear terrorism impractical and imprudent.

      In fact, the more nuclear weapons there are in the world, the more difficult it is to maintain adequate nuclear weapons security standards. Over time there is low-probability, but high-consequence risk that terrorists will get their hands on one.

      Without significant reductions in the role and number of U.S. (and Russian) nuclear weapons, and without U.S. ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, our ability to harness the international support necessary to prevent nuclear terrorism and prevent new nuclear weapon states will be greatly diminished.

      Without these reductions and the test ban, many non-nuclear-weapon states will become less willing to agree to more effective IAEA safeguards, tighter constraints on the spread of sensitive nuclear fuel cycle technologies, tougher sanctions against violators, and improved interdiction efforts, among other steps.

      There is another important reason for the United States to reduce its reliance and emphasis on nuclear weapons: so long as we do, other states with nuclear weapons—friends and foes alike— will or will be tempted to emphasize nuclear weapons into their own plans, policies, and practices, and seek to improve the capabilities and size of their nuclear forces and delivery systems. We should support measures, such as the CTBT, and pursue initiatives that would help prevent qualitative improvements in any nuclear arsenal—others or our own.

      Quite simply, maintaining a large nuclear arsenal dedicated to perform a wide range of missions is unnecessary and contrary to the United States security interest. The number and role of U.S. nuclear weapons should be strictly limited to what is essential and unique.

      Transforming U.S. Nuclear Policy: Moving to a "Core Nuclear Deterrence" Posture
      In recent years, a growing number of national security experts and leaders, including President Barack Obama, have come to recognize the importance of dramatically changing the roles and missions of U.S. nuclear weapons in ways that:

      • minimize the salience and number of nuclear weapons;
      • advance concrete nuclear risk reduction steps consistent with the United States nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) disarmament obligations; and
      • reinforce our commitment to eventually achieve a world without of nuclear weapons.

      We can and should limit the role of our nuclear weapons to a core deterrence mission: maintaining a sufficient, survivable nuclear force for the sole purpose of deterring the use of nuclear weapons by another country against the United States or its allies. With secure forces, deterring a nuclear strike requires far fewer nuclear warheads and delivery systems than the current counterforce-oriented nuclear arsenal.

      Thus, if the United States were to adopt a policy that explicitly limits the purpose of nuclear weapons to preventing their use by others, then it could drastically reduce its nuclear inventory to a total of no more than 1,000 weapons of all types—strategic, non-strategic, deployed, and nondeployed—within the next few years. As outlined in a 2005 Arms Control Association report by Dr. Sidney Drell and Ambassador James Goodby, the United States could quickly downshift to a strategic triad of:

      • some 288 warheads on a fleet of three or more Trident submarines on patrol,
      • 100 warheads on 100 land-based Minuteman missiles, and
      • about two dozen nuclear-capable strategic bombers.

      Comparable numbers of nondeployed warheads and delivery systems could serve as a "responsive" force.

      Such a force and revised targeting strategy would be more than enough to leave no one in doubt that the United States retains the ability of devastating retaliation against any nuclear-armed state in the event they would initiate a nuclear attack against the United States or its allies.

      If the United States were to adopt a core deterrence strategy, it could and should eliminate the requirement and plans for rapid launch in response to a nuclear attack. Instead, the United States should adopt a posture that is geared to giving the commander-in-chief far more time to consider his response to a nuclear attack or provocation. We should notify Russia of this policy and urge it to make similar changes in its policy and practices. This would significantly reduce the risk of accidental or unauthorized launch. It is reckless that we remain dependent on the effectiveness of Russian command and control systems 24/7, 365 days a year.

      With a core deterrence posture, U.S. policymakers would no longer make ambiguous statements regarding the possible use of nuclear weapons except in the event of the use of nuclear weapons by others. In other words, the U.S. officials should end the practice of stating that “all options are on the table” in response to lesser threats.

      A core deterrence strategy would not require new types of nuclear warheads. To reinforce the United States commitment to reducing the role and missions of U.S. nuclear weapons, the United States should also declare that it will not develop or produce new design warheads or modified warheads for the purpose of creating new military capabilities.

      Adoption of a core nuclear deterrence policy and deeper, verifiable U.S. and Russian nuclear force reductions would also open the way for President Obama to fulfill his goal of initiating "a high-level dialogue among all the declared nuclear-weapon states on how to...move toward meaningful reductions and the eventual elimination of all nuclear weapons."

      A core deterrence approach would also reinforce existing U.S. negative security assurances vis-à-vis nonnuclear weapon states and support our positive security assurances to allies in the event of nuclear attack upon them.

      Those who suggest that deep U.S. nuclear weapons reductions would lead certain U.S. allies to consider building their own nuclear arsenals exaggerate the role of “extended nuclear deterrence” today and ignore the risks and costs of going nuclear. Many factors beyond sheer numbers of nuclear weapons mitigate against a decision by a U.S. ally to go nuclear, not the least of which is the diplomatic and conventional military support the United States can and would provide.

      Implications for Maintaining a Smaller Nuclear Stockpile
      So long as nuclear weapons exist, the United States will and can maintain its arsenal in a safe, secure, and reliable fashion. Contrary to the suggestions of some, the United States is NOT on the brink of losing the capability to maintain its nuclear weapons and political support for core stockpile stewardship activities is strong. In fact, the United States’ current capability to maintain its existing stockpile warheads is more than adequate and does not depend on a program of nuclear test explosions.

      With sufficient multiyear funding the existing U.S. nuclear arsenal has been—and can continue to be—maintained and modernized through non-nuclear tests and evaluations, and as necessary, the replacement or remanufacture of key components to previous design specifications.

      Since 1994, a rigorous certification process has determined each warhead type in the U.S. nuclear weapons arsenal to be safe and reliable. Life Extension Programs have successfully modernized major warhead types in the arsenal and stretched out their effective service life for decades to come.

      Future year budget requests should focus the resources of the nuclear weapons laboratories and the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) on core tasks, and the weapons labs must avoid unnecessary alterations to existing weapons through warhead life extension refurbishment. New evidence on the longevity of weapons plutonium has removed any urgency to engineer and manufacture new design replacement warheads.

      A clear “no new nuclear weapons” policy, as outlined above, would help counter possible perceptions that an augmented stockpile stewardship program will lead to qualitative improvements in the military capabilities that could undermine a principle benefit of the CTBT to disarmament and the NPT, which is preventing the development of new and more deadly nuclear weapons.

      Bottom Line
      Yesterday’s nuclear doctrines and arsenals do not fit today’s realities. All of us here have a responsibility and duty help implement the steps necessary to dramatically reduce the number and salience of nuclear weapons by shifting to a "core nuclear deterrence" posture," restore U.S. credibility on disarmament, maintain our enduring nuclear stockpile in the absence of nuclear test explosions, and open a conversation with the world's other nuclear-armed states on joint measures to reduce and eventually eliminate global stockpiles.

      As President Obama said in a speech on Monday July 27, “… together, we must strengthen the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty by renewing its basic bargain: countries with nuclear weapons will move towards disarmament; countries without nuclear weapons will not acquire them; and all countries can access peaceful nuclear energy. A balance of terror cannot hold. In the 21st century, a strong and global regime is the only basis for security from the world's deadliest weapons.”

      Finally, as I advocate for a shrinking of our nuclear arsenal and the role of nuclear weapons in our military strategy, I want to express my respect and appreciation for those who serve the Strategic Forces Command. STRATCOM serves with dedication and distinction in carrying out the policy directions of civilian authority. If we are to succeed in moving to a safer world, your continuing high quality service will be critical.

      Description: 

      Remarks by ACA Executive Director Daryl G. Kimball at the First Annual Strategic Deterrence Symposium on July 29, 2009.

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