U.S. NUCLEAR ISSUES
October 7, 2015
By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
"One category of nuclear material that has not yet been adequately addressed throughout recent Nuclear Security Summits is military stockpiles.2 Instead, the Summit process has focused primarily on reducing the risk of civilian nuclear material theft..."
"'Wean Them Away from French Tutelage': Franco-Indian Nuclear Relations and Anglo-American Anxieties During the Early Cold War, 1948–1952"
Journal Article, Cold War History, Nuclear History and the Cold War Special Issue, issue 3, volume 15
By Jayita Sarkar, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
Based on multi-archival research, this article explores the significance of Franco-Indian nuclear relations against the backdrop of Anglo-American endeavours to censor information related to atomic energy and to secure control of strategic minerals during the early Cold War.
September 24, 2015
Magazine or Newspaper Article, The Atlantic
By Graham Allison, Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School
The defining question about global order for this generation is whether China and the United States can escape Thucydides’s Trap. The Greek historian’s metaphor reminds us of the attendant dangers when a rising power rivals a ruling power—as Athens challenged Sparta in ancient Greece, or as Germany did Britain a century ago. Most such contests have ended badly, often for both nations, a team of mine at the Harvard Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs has concluded after analyzing the historical record. In 12 of 16 cases over the past 500 years, the result was war. When the parties avoided war, it required huge, painful adjustments in attitudes and actions on the part not just of the challenger but also the challenged.
September 4, 2015
Op-Ed, USA Today
By Ashton B. Carter, Former Co-Director, Preventive Defense Project, Harvard & Stanford Universities
Nineteen years ago, I was in Ukraine when the last nuclear warheads, orphaned during the Soviet Union’s breakup, rolled out of the country. As an assistant secretary of Defense at the time, I had worked with Washington colleagues and foreign counterparts to eliminate those nuclear weapons and thus one danger at the dawn of the post-Cold War world. Together — with bipartisan support in Congress led by Sens. Sam Nunn, a Democrat, and Richard Lugar, a Republican — we succeeded.
Today, the Iran deal provides the opportunity to address an even greater nuclear threat. Congress should support it because, once implemented, the deal will remove a critical source of risk and uncertainty in a vitally important but tumultuous region.
September 6, 2015
By Nawaf Obaid, Visiting Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
In his first visit to the United States since assuming the throne, Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud met with US President Barack Obama to discuss various regional issues, foremost among them Iran’s destabilizing regional activities and the aftermath of the recent nuclear deal. The Saudi monarch was assured that the agreement prevents Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon through a robust inspections regime, and that there is a provision for a snapback of sanctions should the agreement be violated. But more broadly, the outcome of the meeting highlights and emphasizes Saudi Arabia’s continued efforts to counter and negate Iran’s influence in certain Arab countries.
September 2, 2015
Op-Ed, The Hill
By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom
Intelligent men and women of good will are lining up on both sides of the fateful choice Congress faces in September: whether to approve or reject the nuclear deal with Iran. Part of what’s going on is an unfortunate mixing together of two quite different questions, one looking backward and one looking forward. First, should the Obama administration and other major powers have gotten a better deal? Second, given the deal the negotiators did produce, whatever its warts, is it better for U.S. and world security to accept it or reject it and try to force Iran to agree to a better one?
August 20, 2015
Op-Ed, The Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog
By Mark Bell, Research Fellow, International Security Program/Project on Managing the Atom
"Each nuclear state has behaved somewhat differently with nuclear weapons. However, history suggests that if Iran were to acquire nuclear weapons, it would be less universally emboldened than the pessimists fear, but nor would it find nuclear weapons to be useless."
August 20, 2015
Op-Ed, The National Interest
By Shai Feldman, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Ariel Levite, Visiting Scholar, Project on Managing the Atom
The other night we had a dream. We dreamed that the negotiations with Iran had produced a comprehensive agreement that not only credibly contained the country’s pursuit of nuclear weapons forever but also effectively checked its regional ambitions.
August 5, 2015
Op-Ed, The National Interest
By Albert Carnesale, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Opponents of the Iran nuclear deal are understandably frustrated. While they urge the U.S. Congress to reject the agreement negotiated by the United States, UK, France, Russia, China, Germany and Iran, and endorsed unanimously by the UN Security Council, they have been unable to identify a plausible alternative that would better serve the national security interests of the United States and our allies and friends. What alternatives, whether feasible or not, have been offered, and how do they compare to endorsing the pact that is currently being considered by Congress?
August 3, 2015
Op-Ed, Washington Examiner
By Olli Heinonen, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Two flashes, one in Hiroshima and the other in Nagasaki, extinguished the lives of 200,000 people, made equally large by the amount of suffering resulting from the consequences that the blast and radiation generated. This was also the start of the nuclear armament race, first between the United States and the then-Soviet Union, soon followed by the United Kingdom, France and China.
The two Cold War adversaries and environment the Cold War generated held the nuclear aspirations of the allies at bay. The warning by President Kennedy of a nightmare scenario of several dozen states gaining nuclear weapons in the coming age unless steps were taken did not materialize. Security guarantees by the U.S. and Soviet Union to their allies, access to peaceful nuclear technology and the conclusion of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty in 1968 were medicines to curb nuclear proliferation.