1235 Items

Analysis & Opinions - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Has South Korea Renounced "Nuclear Hedging"?

| June 27, 2017

"While it remains to be seen how the Moon administration's nuclear energy and security policies will materialize, it is too early to conclude that Seoul is renouncing the option of nuclear hedging. Uncertainty over the US commitment to security alliances under President Trump, combined with the election of a South Korean president who is promoting more independent national security, makes it unlikely that South Korea is abandoning the hedging option altogether."

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

Sen. Sam Nunn: 'We Have a Choice Between Cooperation or Catastrophe'

| June 20, 2017

As a U.S. senator, Sam Nunn played a key role in conceiving the legislation—and then securing Congressional and government support—to fund the dismantling and safeguarding of nuclear weapons and materials in the possession of a disintegrating Soviet Union. This effort came to be known as the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction program, and June 17 marked 25 years since the signing of the first general framework agreement for CTR-funded projects by presidents George H.W. Bush and Boris Yeltsin. To learn more about this painstaking process, see our timeline of nuclear-security cooperation among the U.S., Russia and the other Newly Independent States.

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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.

Anti-THAAD protest

AP

Analysis & Opinions - The Diplomat

THAAD Illuminates Problems in South Korea's Civil-Military Relations

| June 16, 2017

"Civil-military relations, which refer to the relationship between the civilian political leadership and the military, have been widely studied due to the latent danger of a state's military usurping control from civilian authorities. As Socrates once said, soldiers protect the state from external threats, but they themselves are also potential threats to society. For this reason, limits must be placed on the military's role within a society, and civilian control of the military has been accepted as a norm within democratic regimes — political leaders set policy (ends), while the military use their military expertise to devise strategies (means) to implement that policy. This is essential for the democratic system, where civilian political leaders exercise the authority delegated to them by the people to rule. Thus, unelected soldiers must obey decisions made by political leaders. To this end, in most democracies civilians hold top national security posts."

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

25 Years of Nuclear Security Cooperation by the US, Russia and Other Newly Independent States: A Timeline

The timeline below was compiled by Simon Saradzhyan and Mariana Budjeryn and the foreword was written by William Tobey (author bios below). As an accompaniment, Ms. Budjeryn has also interviewed Sam Nunn, the former senator whose efforts were key to securing U.S. funding to help a disintegrating Soviet Union dismantle and safeguard its nuclear weapons. The timeline authors would like to thank former RM student associate Andre Gellerman for his research support and Susan Koch for her insightful comments. This is an evolving draft, produced in cooperation with the U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism at Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and with support from the center's Managing the Atom Project. A bibliography can be found at the bottom of the page.

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Analysis & Opinions - Foundation for Defense of Democracies

Drawing a “Broader Conclusion” on Iran’s Nuclear Program

| June 2017

Under the terms of the nuclear deal with Iran, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), key restrictions would expire if  the IAEA formally reaches a “broader conclusion” that Tehran’s nuclear program is entirely peaceful. Such a conclusion would result in the lifting of the UN’s remaining non-nuclear sanctions, including the ban on ballistic missile testing and the conventional arms embargo.  Furthermore, the U.S. and EU would delist additional entities from their sanctions lists.  Notably, the EU would delist all entities affiliated with Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the organization responsible for both terrorist activities abroad as well as key aspects of the nuclear program.

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.

Iran Talks

Iran Talks

Report - Institute for Science and International Security

Is Iran Mass Producing Advanced Gas Centrifuge Components?

| May 30, 2017

The head of Iran’s nuclear program says Iran has the capability to initiate mass production of advanced centrifuges on short notice. The mass production of these centrifuges (or their components) would greatly expand Iran’s ability to sneak-out or breakout to nuclear weapons capability or surge the size of its centrifuge program if the deal fails or after key nuclear limitations end. If Salehi’s statement is true, Iran could have already stockpiled many advanced centrifuge components, associated raw materials, and the equipment necessary to operate a large number of advanced centrifuges. The United States and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) need to determine the status of Iran’s centrifuge manufacturing capabilities, including the number of key centrifuge parts Iran has made and the amount of centrifuge equipment it has procured. They need to ensure that Iran’s centrifuge manufacturing is consistent with the intent of the nuclear deal as well as the deal’s specific limitations on advanced centrifuges. Moreover, the Iranian statement illuminates significant weaknesses in the Iran deal that need to be fixed.