Nuclear Issues

1418 Items

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Journal Article - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The future of US–Russian nuclear deterrence and arms control

| June 19, 2017

During the latter part of the Cold War, many strategists thought of nuclear deterrence and arms control as two of the most essential stabilizing elements of the same strategy in managing an adversarial relationship. The renewed crisis between the West (the United States and NATO member states) and Russia demonstrates how critical these elements are to the strategic nuclear relationship. As a result of recent setbacks between Washington and Moscow in the past few years, arms control has taken a back seat, and the risk of conflict due to miscalculation is the highest it has been since the 1980s.

Los Alamos National Laboratory, National Security Science, July 2015

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Discussion Paper - Managing the Atom Project, Belfer Center

When Did (and Didn’t) States Proliferate?

| June 2017

In this Project on Managing the Atom Discussion Paper, Philipp C. Bleek chronicles nuclear weapons proliferation choices throughout the nuclear age. Since the late 1930s and early 1940s, some thirty-one countries are known to have at least explored the possibility of establishing a nuclear weapons program. Seventeen of those countries launched weapons programs, and ten acquired deliverable nuclear weapons.

Video - Center for Strategic & International Studies

Debate: Modernization of Nuclear Missiles

| May 23, 2017

The Project on Nuclear Issues (PONI) and Ploughshares Fund are pleased to invite you to the second in a debate series on a range of nuclear challenges and policy decisions the Trump administration will face in 2017. The debate series aims to provide a forum for in-depth exploration of arguments on both sides of key nuclear policy issues.  Additional topics and dates will be confirmed soon.

President Moon Jae-in the 19th President of Republic of Korea

Republic of Korea/Flickr

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Will South Korea’s New President Foil Trump’s Attempt to Pressure North Korea?

| May 11, 2017

President Donald Trump has identified North Korea as an urgent threat from whom nobody is safe, but efforts to maximize pressure and convince Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear weapons program have always been a long shot. The only chance of ending North Korea’s nuclear obsession is for the United States, South Korea, Japan, and China to collectively put enough pressure on Pyongyang to convince Kim Jong Un that a deal has to be made. Once North Korea comes to the table, all four states then have to be ready to take yes for an answer, offering a combination of security and economic incentives to make denuclearization a reasonable alternative for North Korea’s leader.

Pixabay

Pixabay

Analysis & Opinions - The Diplomat

Watch Out for the Blowback of Secondary Sanctions on North Korea

| Apr. 28, 2017

While tensions continue to flare along the Korean peninsula, the Trump administration struggles to articulate its strategy to persuade North Korea to halt its nuclear program. In a recent visit to the de-militarized zone, Vice President Pence warned Pyongyang to not test America’s “strength and resolve,” citing recent U.S. military strikes in Syria and Afghanistan as a forewarning. A not-so-veiled threat that the Trump administration considers “all options” to be on the table. What is unknown, however, is whether this increased rhetoric is merely saber-rattling or is the opening salvo for a true shift from Obama’s doctrine of “strategic patience.” That is, continuing to apply political and economic pressure until Pyongyang returns to the negotiating table.

Pyongyang, North Korea, April 15, 2017.

Wong Maye-E/AP

Analysis & Opinions - Defense One

Scuttle the Iran Nuke Deal? That Approach Didn’t Stop North Korea

| Apr. 26, 2017

“The Trump administration is currently conducting across the entire government a review of our Iran policy,” U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced on April 19, adding that “an unchecked Iran has the potential to follow the same path as North Korea and take the world along with it.” Ironically, the Trump administration appears to be following the same path on Iran as George W. Bush did on North Korea. The result could be equally dangerous.

By undermining implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — a viable, verified, and sound agreement that blocks Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons — President Trump risks removing the shackles from Tehran’s nuclear efforts. We’ve been down that road before; instead of preserving and strengthening the Agreed Framework with North Korea, Bush freed Pyongyang to keep working on nuclear weapons that could eventually reach American territory.

Would China Go Nuclear? Assessing the Risk of Chinese Nuclear Escalation in a Conventional War with the United States

AP/Andy Wong

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Would China Go Nuclear? Assessing the Risk of Chinese Nuclear Escalation in a Conventional War with the United States

    Author:
  • Caitlin Talmadge
| Spring 2017

Would China escalate to nuclear use in a conventional war with the United States? If China believed that U.S. conventional attacks on missiles, submarines, air defenses, and command and control systems threatened the survivability of its nuclear forces or that the United States was preparing a counterforce attack, it might engage in limited nuclear escalation to gain military advantage or coerce the United States. The United States will face difficult trade-offs in deciding how best to manage the risk of nuclear escalation.

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Could Playing Chicken With North Korea Pay Off?

| Apr. 24, 2017

North Korea has been the focus of global attention and anxiety over the past few weeks. The country’s nuclear and missile capabilities, and increasingly strong statements from U.S. officials, including President Donald Trump, have raised global concerns about the possibility of open war on the Korea Peninsula. While people are right to be worried, the seeds of a diplomatic solution could be forming — if the Trump administration is thoughtful and disciplined enough to seize the opportunity, and if the White House’s bluster is in fact calculated. Big ifs, to be sure, but the threat of military force may motivate both China and North Korea to consider deals in a way they have not been willing to up until now.