arms control

The Doomsday Clock should stay where it is

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists will tomorrow announce whether the danger of a nuclear cataclysm has moved closer since last year. The minute hand of the Bulletin’s Doomsday clock, which has measured since 1947 how close the world stands from catastrophic destruction through its symbolic proximity to midnight, has stood at six minutes to midnight since January 2010.

Iran Update: Number 151

Getting to Zero Update

NATO proceeded quietly with its Strategic Deterrence and Defense Posture Review, while U.S. and Russian disagreements over missile defense continued. The United States was also conducting a review of nuclear targeting. In the United Kingdom, the “successor” to the Vanguard-class submarine that carries Trident missiles officially entered “Initial Gate,” or the initial design phase.

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NATO’s Defense and Deterrence Posture Review: A French Perspective on Nuclear Issues

Paul Zajac reviews the assumptions about the apparent rift between France and Germany over nuclear weapons and NATO, and the extent to which the alliance should play a role in nuclear disarmament. He argues that allies must be careful not to let other initiatives, such as projects on missile defense or aspirations for a world without nuclear weapons, harm alliance unity around nuclear deterrence.

Turkey, NATO & and Nuclear Sharing: Prospects after NATO's Lisbon Summit

Mustafa Kibaroglu presents Turkey's political, military and diplomatic views to the prolonged deployment of U.S. tactical nuclear weapons on their soil. Turkey's policy of non-proliferation contrasts with their hosting - albeit burden sharing - of NATO tactical nuclear weapons. He concludes that Turkey, preferably together with other NATO members, should take the initiative in asking the United States to draw them down and remove them entirely, in the interests of Turkish security and alliance cohesion.

Getting to Zero Update

Russia and the United States have begun the exchange of information on their nuclear arsenals under the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) as they assess next steps on arms control and also try to resolve their differences over missile defense. The Iranian and North Korean nuclear situations showed no signs of resolution, and instead pointed to more difficulties ahead.

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Getting to Zero Update

Russia ratifies New START

The Russian parliament completed on January 26 its process of advice and consent for ratifying the New START nuclear arms treaty, and President Dmitry Medvedev signed the ratification bill on January 28.

Both houses of the Russian parliament were required to approve of the treaty. The Duma (lower house) provided its final approval on January 25, by a vote of 350-96, with one abstention. The 137 members of the Federation Council (upper house) voted unanimously for the treaty a day later.

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