Asia & the Pacific

36 Items

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad  during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, October 20, 2015.

Kremlin.ru

Analysis & Opinions - Moscow Times

Russia Must Abandon Assad to Fight Terrorism

| November 13, 2015

"The key to a solution to both — the quagmire that has unfolded in Syria and the threat posed by Islamic terrorism — is to deprive the terrorist groups of their main propaganda tools and to form a new Syrian government that excludes Assad (and his foreign Shiite allies) but includes representatives from all of the non-fundamentalist groups involved in the civil war."

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.

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

The Sanctions Delusion

| Dec. 08, 2014

"The United States is overestimating its leverage with sanctions in negotiating a nuclear agreement with Iran—a gamble bound to fail. A second deadline has slipped without a comprehensive agreement between the P5+1 and Iran, and hawkish rhetoric in the U.S. underscores a growing pessimism for successful negotiations by the next deadline in June 2015. Calls to strengthen sanctions highlight waning Congressional support for the talks, and buttress a narrow and unrealistic narrative that economic deprivation will force concessions. Any new sanctions, especially those proposed under the draconian Nuclear Iran Prevention Act, threaten to derail negotiations while providing cannon fodder for Iran’s hardliners..."

Policy Brief - Stanley Foundation

Strengthening International Cooperation on Nuclear Materials Security

| Nov. 04, 2014

The Stanley Foundation convened a group of experts and policymakers from the United States and abroad to address these issues October 15–17, 2014, at its 55th annual Strategy for Peace Conference. The group discussed overcoming challenges to nuclear security cooperation faced by the United States, Russia, and China, and next steps in ensuring that countries put in place effective and sustainable nuclear security measures with strong security cultures. This policy memo offers highlights of the discussion and recommendations of roundtable participants.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry chats with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia before the two joined with Russian and EU officials for 4-way talks about Ukraine in Geneva, Switzerland, on April 17, 2014.

State Dept. Photo

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Blowback: Why Getting Tough on Russia over Ukraine Might Backfire

| May 16, 2014

"Washington needs to make a decision about its foreign-policy priorities, if tensions in eastern Ukraine are not reduced. Giving the events in Ukraine priority over all other international developments is a hazardous strategy. Negotiations have gotten us nowhere, and way more assertive steps against Russia are not likely to make Putin give in, since he seems to be determined not to lose his influence over eastern Ukraine and eager to demonstrate Russia's power."

US-RF Nuclear Security Cooperation

Arms Control Wonk

Analysis & Opinions

US-RF Nuclear Security Cooperation

| March 28, 2014

"This week’s Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague was understandably overshadowed by the continuing international response to Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea. One aspect of the Ukraine crisis that deserves more attention is how the current standoff will impact the future of nuclear security cooperation between the United States and Russia..."

Analysis & Opinions - Power & Policy Blog

The Fallout from Jang Song-taek's Execution

| December 13, 2013

"With the elimination of Jang and the dismantling of his lucrative patronage system, there will be setbacks in Sino-DPRK commercial interactions that will decrease the generation of funds for the Kim regime. In order to fill these funding gaps, it's now more likely that the Kim regime may try to increase revenues from illicit activities like WMD-related sales."

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

Saving the World at Plutonium Mountain

| August 16, 2013

Last October, at the foot of a rocky hillside near here, at a spot known as Degelen Mountain, several dozen Kazakh, Russian and American nuclear scientists and engineers gathered for a ceremony. The modest ribbon-cutting marked the conclusion of one of the largest and most complex nuclear security operations since the Cold War — to secure plutonium (enough to build a dozen or more nuclear weapons) that Soviet authorities had buried at the testing site years before and forgotten, leaving it vulnerable to terrorists and rogue states. The effort spanned 17 years, cost $150 million and involved a complex mix of intelligence, science, engineering, politics and sleuthing. This op-ed is based on documents and interviews with Kazakh, Russian and U.S. participants, and reveals the scope of the operation for the first time.

Scientists and technicians at the General Satellite Control and Command Center on the outskirts of Pyongyang watch the successful launch of the Unha-3 rocket from the west coast, about 56 km from the Chinese border, Dec. 12, 2012.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

North Korea's Nuclear Weapons: Future Strategy and Doctrine

| May 2013

A nuclear North Korea makes it crucial that all countries in Northeast Asia work hard at maintaining a stable security environment that avoids the dangers of a crisis while encouraging North Korea to adopt a nuclear strategy that retains its "no first use" pledge, a strong command and control system, and a stable nuclear weapons posture. Given its relationship with North Korea, China is best positioned to encourage DPRK leaders in these directions.