Middle East & North Africa

73 Items

A U.S. Trident II missile launches (Wikimedia Commons).

Wikimedia Commons

Analysis & Opinions - War on the Rocks

Can This New Approach to Nuclear Disarmament Work?

| Jan. 23, 2019

An estimated 14,485 nuclear weapons exist on earth today — most are far more powerful than those that twisted railway ties, leveled buildings, and crushed, poisoned, and burned human beings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The majority of these weapons belong to the United States and Russia. For some in the U.S. government, including Chris Ford, assistant secretary at the State Department’s Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation, this number represents significant disarmament progress since Cold War highs of over 70,000 nuclear weapons. They argue the current security environment means that further reductions are not possible at this time. In contrast, for many disarmament advocates and officials from non-nuclear weapons states, this number is still far too high. They are now clamoring to ban all nuclear weapons. Because of this divide, according to Ford, we currently face a “disarmament crisis.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual news conference in Moscow

AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko

Journal Article - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

How the Next Nuclear Arms Race Will Be Different from the Last One

| 2019

All the world's nuclear-armed states (except for North Korea) have begun modernizing and upgrading their arsenals, leading many observers to predict that the world is entering a new nuclear arms race. While that outcome is not yet inevitable, it is likely, and if it happens, the new nuclear arms race will be different and more dangerous than the one we remember. More nuclear-armed countries in total, and three competing great powers rather than two, will make the competition more complex. Meanwhile, new non-nuclear weapon technologies — such as ballistic missile defense, anti-satellite weapons, and precision-strike missile technology — will make nuclear deterrence relationships that were once somewhat stable less so.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani attend a joint news conference

AP

Analysis & Opinions - Atlantic Council

US Pressure is Pushing Iran Closer to Russia and China

| Mar. 22, 2018

"...Iran's turn toward China and Russia leave the United States with less leverage for future negotiations on any issue, making it less and less likely for Iran to agree to cooperate with the United States or its allies. Thus, it is crucial to rethink these policies and come up with a more feasible plan."

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.

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

5 Burning Nuclear Problems on Trump’s Desk

| Jan. 25, 2017

Nuclear weapons remain the most powerful weapons on the planet and how President Donald Trump’s team manages nuclear issues is critical to our security. These are hard challenges; none were perfectly addressed under President Obama’s leadership. But we made them a priority from day one. Whether or not the new team puts them at the top of the to-do list, here are five issues that will demand their attention before too long.

Announcement - Managing the Atom Project, Belfer Center

2016-2017 Harvard Nuclear Policy Fellowships

| December 15, 2015

The Project on Managing the Atom offers fellowships for pre-doctoral, post-doctoral, and mid-career researchers for one year, with a possibility for renewal, in the stimulating environment of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School. The online application for 2016-2017 fellowships opened December 15, 2015, and the application deadline is January 15, 2016. Recommendation letters are due by February 1, 2016.

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."

Construction site of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in Tamil Nadu, India, 14 April 2009. Atomstroyexport, Rosatom's overseas project manager, is a partner in the construction.

Petr Pavlicek/IAEA

Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

The Russian Nuclear Energy Proposal: An Offer You Can't Refuse

| June 5, 2015

"Russia has developed a proposal that seems to offer a solution to these problems. Under the acronym BOO (Build, Own, Operate), Russia's state-owned Rosatom offers to finance, build and operate new nuclear reactors for the aspiring nuclear energy countries....Rosatom's proposal only contributes to a quicker global dispersal of nuclear energy, while the existing nuclear safety governance regime is not ready yet to ensure the safety of a global expansion."

Analysis & Opinions - The Hill

Don't Weaken Our Defenses Against Nuclear Smuggling

| May 20, 2015

William H. TobeyMatthew Bunn, and Nickolas Roth oppose proposed legislation that would prohibit funding for fixed radiation detectors to catch nuclear smugglers. They argue for a balanced program to defeat nuclear smuggling that includes strong security, effective law enforcement and intelligence work, and interdiction efforts and border controls backed by both fixed and mobile radiation detectors.

Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

Is Cybersecurity Like Arms Control?

| May 18, 2015

"In little more than a generation, the Internet has become the substrate of the global economy and governance worldwide. Several billion more human users will be added in the next decade, as will tens of billions of devices, ranging from thermostats to industrial control systems (the 'Internet of Things'). All of this burgeoning interdependence implies vulnerabilities that governments and non-governmental actors can exploit. At the same time, we are only beginning to come to terms with the national-security implications of this. Strategic studies of the cyber domain resemble nuclear strategy in the 1950s: analysts are still not clear about the meaning of offense, defense, deterrence, escalation, norms, and arms control."