5 Items

 The U.N., left, and Iraqi flags sit on the table of the conference hall prior to the talks on details for a return of the U.N weapons inspectors to Iraq at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna, Austria, Monday, Sept. 30, 2002.

AP Photo/Diether Endlicher

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Cheater’s Dilemma: Iraq, Weapons of Mass Destruction, and the Path to War

| Summer 2020

From 1991 to 2003, the Iraqi leadership faced a cheater’s dilemma —specifically, how much it should disclose about its past weapons of mass destruction capabilities and cover-up efforts. An examination of the Iraqi leadership’s handling of this key policy dilemma reveals how pervasive principle-agent problems shaped Iraqi behavior.

Analysis & Opinions

Policy Roundtable 1-3 on the International Atomic Energy Agency Statute at Sixty

| Nov. 19, 2016

Sixty years ago, on 23 October 1956, an international conference at the United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York adopted the Statute of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The document is almost as long as the UN Charter and remains the legal foundation of ‘the Agency,’ as the world nuclear organization is widely called.[1] This H-Diplo/ISSF policy roundtable uses the anniversary as an opportunity to discuss the IAEA’s mandate and role in history and current affairs. Does the IAEA Statute, which was written in a very different context, stand up to scrutiny today? What does the answer suggest about the IAEA and institutions of global nuclear governance more generally? How can the IAEA be strengthened?

Israeli warplanes attack and destroyed Iraq's nuclear reactor outside Baghdad, June 8,1981.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Attacks on Nuclear Infrastructure: Opening Pandora's Box?

| October 2011

"Recent evidence confirms that the Osirak reactor was intended not to produce plutonium for a weapons program, but rather to develop know-how that would be necessary if Iraq acquired an unsafeguarded reactor better suited for large-scale production of plutonium. Israel's attack triggered a far more focused and determined Iraqi effort to acquire nuclear weapons."

Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin gestures as he replies to international condemnation of Israel's air strike against Iraq's nuclear reactor at a news conference in Jerusalem, June 9, 1981.

AP Photo

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Revisiting Osirak: Preventive Attacks and Nuclear Proliferation Risks

| Summer 2011

Israeli’s attack on Iraq’s nearly operational Osirak reactor in 1981 may have caused immediate delays in Iraq’s nuclear capabilities, but ultimately it may have galvanized Iraq into revamping its nuclear program.  Prior to the attack, Iraq’s nuclear program was disorganized and inconsistently supported; it also lacked a steady budget.  Immediately after the attack, Iraq established a covert nuclear program aimed specifically at producing nuclear weapons.  Although preventative attacks can be affective in the short term, it is crucial to consider that such attacks may create a consensus among leaders about the need for nuclear weapons and therefore lead to an intensified nuclear program.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, right, meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, July 27, 2009. Israel disagreed with the U.S. over a potential military strike to thwart Iran's progress toward a possible nuclear weapon.

AP Photo

Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

Can an Attack Deny Iran the Bomb?

| May 11, 2010

"Advocates of the strike option suggest that the delay caused by an attack buys valuable time. This begs the question: time to do what? After an attack, three options remain: more strikes, containment or regime change. In the Iraqi case, between 1991 and 2003 air strikes were largely ineffectual, containment crumbled and regime change proved disastrous. Containment and further strikes are unlikely to dissuade a determined Iranian leadership from acquiring nuclear weapons. Regime change is no longer an option."