September 8, 2016
"Lessons learned from dismantlement of South Africa's biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons programs"
Journal Article, Nonproliferation Review
By Olli Heinonen, Senior Associate, Managing the Atom Project
South Africa had active nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons programs during the 1970s and 1980s. South Africa dismantled its nuclear weapon program prior to its 1991 accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Similarly, it terminated its chemical weapons program prior to its 1995 ratification of the Chemical Weapons Convention. Only the dismantlement of Pretoria's nuclear weapons program was subjected to international verification—albeit ex post facto—following a 1993 decision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference to verify the correctness and completeness of South Africa's declarations under its NPT safeguards agreement. During the 1980s, South Africa also developed and purportedly used biological weapons, violating its obligations under the 1972 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction, which it had ratified in 1975. This article draws lessons from the verification of the dismantlement of these programs and makes recommendations for future verification work to confirm the elimination of weapons of mass destruction capabilities.
September 2, 2016
Russia in Review: a digest of useful news from U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism for August 26-September 2, 2016
Magazine or Newspaper Article, The Atlantic
We urge the next president to establish a White House Council of Historical Advisers. Historians made similar recommendations to Presidents Carter and Reagan during their administrations, but nothing ever came of these proposals. Operationally, the Council of Historical Advisers would mirror the Council of Economic Advisers, established after World War II. A chair and two additional members would be appointed by the president to full-time positions, and respond to assignments from him or her. They would be supported by a small professional staff and would be part of the Executive Office of the President.
August 31, 2016
Magazine or Newspaper Article, TIME / time.com
By Kevin Rudd, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
The UN is still important, but it needs to be reformed for a new age.
By Calestous Juma, Professor of the Practice of International Development; Director, Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; Principal Investigator, Agricultural Innovation in Africa and Ismail Serageldin
As the African Union develops its long-term agenda 2063 for the continent, science, technology and innovation will play a bigger part in development goal setting, especially in the context of social and economic growth.
August 31, 2016
The Summer 2016 issue of the Middle East Initiative Mosaic newsletter features highlights of MEI programs and activities over the 2015-2016 academic year. This year's issue features highlights from the diverse and exciting work of students, fellows, faculty, and staff on public policy issues in the Middle East over the past year, including a focus on the MEI community's response to Syria and in-depth stories on our research fellowship program, alumni connections, students' experiences from Cambridge to the Middle East, and much more!
By William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
William H. Tobey reviews the motivations, strengths, and weaknesses of the nuclear security summits and provides recommendations for how governments can maintain momentum and awareness now that the summit process is over. He concludes that some of the innovations from the process will continue to be useful tools.
August 31, 2016
Op-Ed, Agence Global
By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative
"The unprecedented combination of political chaos, cross-cutting military confrontations, and strategic contradictions in northern Syria reached a record-setting point two days ago. That was when Brett McGurk, the U.S. special envoy to the coalition fighting the Islamic State, and the Department of Defense (DoD) said, 'we call on all armed actors to stand down and take appropriate measures to deconflict and open channels of communication.'"
August 30, 2016
Op-Ed, The National Interest
By Simon Saradzhyan, Director, Russia Matters Project; Assistant Director, U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
The latest series of military exercises in Russia have unnerved its Western neighbors, who are concerned that Russia may be preparing for a military campaign. The Russian military is indeed preparing for war, but that does not mean the Kremlin actually plans to initiate one anytime soon.
August 29, 2016
Op-Ed, Financial Adviser
By Jeffrey Frankel, James W. Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth
This year’s presidential election campaign in the United States is certainly unique. Donald Trump has shaken up the way a campaign is run, how a nominee communicates with voters, and the Republican Party’s platform, with many of his positions deviating from GOP tradition. But, on tax policy, Trump has toed the party line – and that’s not a good thing.