President Obama has once again pushed nuclear weapons, and his vision for a world free of nuclear weapons, to the center of the world’s stage with his speech yesterday before the United Nations’ General Assembly and his chairing of the United Nations’ Security Council meeting this morning. He reiterated his goal of ratifying the Comprehensive [...]
by Ivanka Barzashka and Ivan Oelrich A much anticipated IAEA report on Iran’s nuclear activities was leaked today. The report indicates that, among other things, Iran has conceded to additional safeguard at Natanz. This is a welcome development but occurring amidst a contested Iranian election, European threats of increased sanctions, continuing oblique hints of Israeli [...]
The post Increased Safeguards at Natanz: What Does It All Mean? appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.
by Ivan Oelrich Today is the sixty-fourth anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, which was one of those rare events that divides human history into a before and an after. That day was the beginning of the nuclear age. There is nothing special about sixty-four, not like a fiftieth or a centenary. But, years [...]
The post Hiroshima: Making the Sixty-fourth Anniversary Special appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.
A recently released report, U.S. Nuclear Deterrence in the 21st Century: Getting It Right, by the ad hoc New Deterrent Working Group with a forward by James Woolsey, is an interesting document. I believe this report is significant because it might typify the arguments that will be used against arms control treaties in the upcoming [...]
The post Not Getting It Right: More Bad Reasons to Have Nuclear Weapons appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.
The Congressional Commission on the strategic posture report released yesterday is what the Air Force calls a “target rich environment.” There is a lot to shoot at. This essay follows up on the post that Hans Kristensen and I published yesterday. I want to continue the theme I discussed yesterday that the recommendations of the [...]
The post Congressional Commission and Nuclear “Requirements” appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.
Last Wednesday, 8 April, the Federation of American Scientists and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) jointly released FAS Occasional Paper Number 7, From Counterforce to Minimal Deterrence — A New Nuclear Policy on the Path Toward Eliminating Nuclear Weapons. As part of the release, my coauthors, Stan Norris of NRDC and Hans Kristensen of [...]
By Ivanka Barzashka and Ivan Oelrich Yesterday, on Iran’s national Nuclear Technology Day, President Ahmadinejad announced the country’s latest nuclear advances, which seem to have become an important source of national pride and international rancor. April 9 marks the day when Iran claimed to have enriched its first batch of uranium in 2006. Yesterday, Ahmadinejad [...]
The post Iran’s Fuel Fabrication: Step closer to energy independence or a bomb? appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.
Yes, today, 9 April, is the official Iranian holiday to celebrate all the progress that the Iranians have made toward nuclear self-sufficiency. The Iranian nuclear program is getting lots of news, especially their effort to enrich uranium using centrifuges and today’s inauguration of their new fuel fabrication facility. The fundamental problem with centrifuges is that [...]
Despite a world of advice to the contrary, the North Koreans launched their Taepodong-2 or Unha rocket yesterday morning. Recent reports are that the first two stages operated correctly but the third stage failed. Reading between the lines a bit, it might have failed to ignite rather than exploding. This seems to be a replay [...]
Indications are that North Korea is moving ahead with its planned launch of a missile with the intent of placing a satellite into orbit. The North Koreans are portraying the launch in purely innocuous, civilian terms even naming the rocket “Unha,” which means “Milky Way” in Korean, to emphasize its space-oriented function. In the West, [...]
The post North Korea’s Teapodong-2 Unha Missile Launch: What might we learn? appears on the FAS Strategic Security Blog.