Nuclear Issues

11 Items

Blogtrepreneur/Flickr

Blogtrepreneur/Flickr

Journal Article - Nonproliferation Review

Solving the Jurisdictional Conundrum: How U.S. Enforcement Agencies Target Overseas Illicit Procurement Networks Using Civil Courts

| September 2018

Over the past two decades, the United States has increasingly turned to targeted sanctions and export restrictions, such as those imposed against Iran and North Korea, in order to curb the spread of weapons of mass destruction. One vexing problem, however, is how to contend with jurisdictional hurdles when the violations occur overseas, in countries that are unable or unwilling to assist US enforcement efforts. To solve this problem, US prosecutors are turning to strategies with significant extraterritorial implications—that is, exercising legal authority beyond national borders. One such tool is to use civil legal procedures to seize assets linked to sanctions or export-control violations in jurisdictions that lack cooperative arrangements with US enforcement agencies. While this may be an attractive strategy to bolster enforcement efforts against overseas illicit procurement, using such tools is not without consequence. This article explores the political, legal, and technical implications of enforcing extraterritorial controls against overseas non-state actors by exploring the recent uses of civil-asset forfeiture against Iranian and North Korean procurement networks.

Journal Article - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

New Ways to Detect Nuclear Misbehavior

| Jan. 08, 2018

If we had the technology to detect nuclear materials remotely it could help deter smuggling and make it easier to monitor international nuclear agreements. Several recent breakthroughs, if followed up with continued research and funding, could deliver on this promise. They include technological advances in x-ray and neutron radiography; a method that measures how plasma breaks down when exposed to a radioactive source; and developments in antineutrino detection. While all require more development and testing, they are important steps as the global need for ways to detect nuclear materials grows.

A U.S. Navy Grumman F-14A-90-GR Tomcat.

U.S. Navy

Journal Article - Strategic Trade Review

Tomcat and Mouse: Iranian Illicit Procurement of U.S. Legacy Military Technologies, 1979–2016

| Autumn 2017

Since the 1979 revolution, Iran has sought to illicitly procure parts for the U.S. origin fighter aircraft sold to the country under the rule of the Shah. The U.S. has taken steps to quash this trade—these efforts have constituted a relatively large proportion of U.S. export control enforcement over the past near-to-four decades. 

A transporter erector launcher (TEL), carrying four Babur cruise missiles, on display at the IDEAS 2008 defence exhibition, Karachi, Pakistan.

Skybolt101 Photo CC

Journal Article - Conflict, Security & Development

Do Nuclear Weapons Affect the Guns-butter Trade-off? Evidence on Nuclear Substitution from Pakistan and Beyond

| 2015

Scholars have argued that acquiring nuclear weapons should allow states the luxury of exiting conventional arms races. In turn, a decreased budgetary focus on conventional arms should make possible greater spending on social welfare. The author contests this logic of nuclear substitution by examining its most likely exponent, Pakistan. As a poor, underdeveloped state, a nuclear Pakistan should have welcomed the opportunity to cease its arms race with India, and spend greater sums on its population's welfare. Instead, the article shows that Pakistan has doubled down on its pre-nuclear conventional posture, mainly because of its revisionism over Kashmir.

Kargil War Memorial by the Indian Army at Drass, India, 26 June 2013. The Kargil War was an armed conflict between India and Pakistan that occurred May–July 1999 in the Kargil district of Kashmir and elsewhere along the Line of Control.

Mail2arunjith Photo CC

Journal Article - Journal of Conflict Resolution

Questioning the Effect of Nuclear Weapons on Conflict

| February, 2015

The authors examine the effect of nuclear weapons on interstate conflict. Using more appropriate methodologies than have previously been used, they find that dyads in which both states possess nuclear weapons are not significantly less likely to fight wars, nor are they significantly more or less belligerent at low levels of conflict.

Journal Article - Geopolitics, History, and International Relations

Iran and Weapons of Mass Destruction: The Military Dynamics of Non-Proliferation

| 2014

Weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) are not suitable for the Iranian Army, given its non-mechanized nature; its defensive military posture; its current status as a non-nuclear weapon state; and its sufficient conventional preparation to meet its protective security interests. This paper proposes three interlinked policy approaches to resolve the current impasse.

Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi, right sitting, and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, left sitting, sign a nuclear cooperation agreement at a ceremony in Rome's Villa Madama residence, Feb. 24, 2009.

AP Photo

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Spreading Temptation: Proliferation and Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation Agreements

| Summer 2009

Matthew Fuhrmann's article "Spreading Temptation: Proliferation and Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation Agreements," was published by in the Summer 2009 issue of International Security. In his article, Dr. Fuhrmann argues "Peaceful nuclear cooperation—the transfer of nuclear technology, materials, or know-how from one state to another for peaceful purposes—leads to the spread of nuclear weapons. With a renaissance in nuclear power on the horizon, major suppliers, including the United States, should reconsider their willingness to assist other countries in developing peaceful nuclear programs."

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, center, watches flight training as he inspects the Korean People's Army Air Force Unit 814 at an unknown location in North Korea.

AP Photo

Magazine Article - Foreign Policy

Don't Play Nuclear Chicken with a Desperate Pariah

| June 19, 2009

"This game of escalation will go on and on until North Korea gets what it desires most from Washington: a reliable security assurance. Of course, no one likes to yield to dictators. But ultimately, playing chicken with a desperate and nuclear-armed North Korea is too risky to endeavor. The more isolated the North Koreans become, the more likely they will be to use the nuclear card in threatening two hostages: South Korea and Japan. Everyone loses that game"

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Journal Article - The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs

Pakistan Through the Lens of the 'Triple A' Theory

| Winter 2006

"How has a state whose founding fathers were secular people who believed in rule of law and democracy drifted toward religious extremism and authoritarianism? Three primary factors—variations on the Triple A theory of influence (Allah, the Army, and America)—have led Pakistan down this path: a powerful independent military, the mushrooming of religious militant groups, and the hydra-headed monster that is the intelligence services."