B-2 to carry new nuclear missile, report on aftermath of Fukushima and much more.
From the Blogs
Groups Urge White House to Take Lead in Reducing Secrecy: FAS has joined 29 public interest organizations in urging President Obama to reduce national security secrecy. In a letter to the White House, the group calls upon President Obama to adopt a recommendation of the Public Interest Declassification Board to set up a White House-led Security Classification Reform Steering Committee.
B-2 Stealth Bomber to Carry New Nuclear Cruise Missile: Hans Kristensen writes that the U.S. Air Force plans to arm the B-2A stealth bomber with a new nuclear cruise missile that is in the early stages of development, according to Air Force officials and budget documents. The B-2A bomber, which is designed to slip through air defenses undetected, does not currently have a capability to deliver nuclear cruise missiles, a role reserved exclusively for B-52H bombers.
Survey of Federal Whistleblower Laws and More from CRS: Secrecy News has obtained recently released CRS reports on topics such as laws against federal whistleblowers, drought in the U.S., the armed conflict in Syria and internet governance.
Intelligence Satellite Imagery Declassified for Release: Steven Aftergood writes that a large volume of photographic imagery from the KH-9 HEXAGON intelligence satellites was quietly declassified in January and will be transferred to the National Archives later this year for subsequent public release. The KH-9 satellites operated between 1971 and 1984 and were used to generate images of Cold War intelligence targets.
Confronting Emerging Security Challenges- A Call for Ontological Coherence: What is an emerging security challenge? International security has come to be defined as much by non-military, non-state actor security threats as the “traditional” ones that dominated the Cold War. Eddie Walsh examines the emerging technologies and challenges behind closed doors including: genetic tracking, biosphere modification, 3-D weapons printing and designer pathogens.
Military Photographers Ready to Deploy Around the Globe: U.S. armed forces are increasingly looking to the collection of still and motion imagery to support military operations. According to an updated military doctrine, combat camera (COMCAM) capabilities support “operational planning, public affairs, information operations, mission assessment, forensic, legal, intelligence and other requirements during crises, contingencies, and exercises around the globe.”
New Report on Aftermath of Fukushima Nuclear Accident
The U.S.-Japan Nuclear Working Group, co-chaired by FAS President Dr. Charles Ferguson, has released a report recommending priorities for the Japanese government following the March 11, 2011 nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plan. The U.S.-Japan Nuclear Working Group is composed of bi-national experts who have come together to examine the broader strategic implications of the Fukushima accident.
The report discusses specific issues that must be addressed regardless of Japan’s energy policy decisions, including: strategy for reducing Japan’s plutonium stockpile, new standards for radiation safety and environmental cleanup and treatment of spent nuclear fuel.
The report also examines broader concerns to Japan’s energy policy including: climate change concerns, emerging nuclear safety regulations and global nuclear nonproliferation leadership (as Japan is a non-nuclear weapons state with advanced nuclear energy capabilities). The group offers strategic recommendations for Japanese and U.S. industries and governments regarding the direction of Japan’s energy policy, and how both countries can work together for joint energy security.
Read the report here (PDF).
PREPCOM Nuclear Weapons De-Alerting Briefing
Mr. Hans Kristensen, Director of the Nuclear Information Project, participated in the second Preparatory Committee (PREPCOM) meeting for the 2015 Review Conference of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in Geneva, Switzerland. Kristensen spoke on a panel with FAS board member Dr. Richard Garwin and Professor Gareth Evans on reducing alert rates of nuclear weapons.
Kristensen’s presentation slides are available here.
FAS in the News
- Apr 26: BBC World News America, “Chemical Weapons In Syria”
- Apr 26: Reuters, “Factbox: What Is The Chemical Weapon Sarin?”
- Apr 26: New Scientist, “Threatwatch: Did Syria Use Chemical Weapons Or Not?”
- Apr 26: NPR, “U.S. Wants More Proof Syria Has Used Chemical Weapons”
- Apr 25: Voice of America, “Experts Assess Syria’s Chemical Weapons Capabilities”
- Apr 25: Christian Science Monitor, “Chorus Grows Against Obama Administration’s Sanctions-Heavy Iran Policy”
- Apr 24: Washington Examiner, “Once The Anti-Bush, Obama Increasingly Mirrors His Predecessor”
- Apr 24: NPR, “U.S. Hesitant To Act On Claims Of Chemical Weapons In Syria”
- Apr 23: Foreign Policy, “What Does Assad’s WMD Arsenal Look Like?”
- Apr 23: Foreign Policy, “When Does A Chemical Weapon Used As A Weapon Become A ‘Chemical Weapon’?
- Apr 23: Christian Science Monitor, “Israel Charges Syria With Lethal Chemical Weapons Use”
- Apr 21: The Guardian, “Obama Accused Of Nuclear U-Turn As Guided Weapons Plan Emerges”
- Apr 20: Al Jazeera, “Keeping Secrets, Telling Lies”