WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION
October 20, 2015
By Trevor Findlay, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
In this new report, Trevor Findlay provides the first comprehensive study of the IAEA's handling of states not complying with their non-proliferation obligations. The report finds that none of the cases have followed the non-compliance process outlined in the Agency's Statute and safeguards agreements. Rather, each case has posed unique challenges to the non-proliferation regime. The report concludes that creativity and deft statecraft are key to the handling of complex non-compliance cases.
"Keeping the Bombs in the Basement: U.S. Nonproliferation Policy toward Israel, South Africa, and Pakistan"
Journal Article, International Security, issue 1, volume 40
Many accounts suggest that the United States did little to prevent Israel, Pakistan, and South Africa from developing nuclear weapons. These accounts are flawed, however. The United States did attempt to stop all three countries from acquiring the bomb and, when those efforts failed, to halt additional proliferation measures such as further testing and weaponization.
May 20, 2015
Op-Ed, The Hill
By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
William H. Tobey, Matthew Bunn, and Nickolas Roth oppose proposed legislation that would prohibit funding for fixed radiation detectors to catch nuclear smugglers. They argue for a balanced program to defeat nuclear smuggling that includes strong security, effective law enforcement and intelligence work, and interdiction efforts and border controls backed by both fixed and mobile radiation detectors.
May 15, 2015
Op-Ed, Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog
By Barak Mendelsohn, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 2014–2015
"The Islamic State, on the other hand, reached prominence in the chaotic aftermath of the Arab uprisings and at a time of great U.S. reluctance to intervene in the Middle East. It focused on gaining territory and establishing a caliphate as measures that would further increase its power as it attempts to remake the international system. The Islamic State also promoted a particularly radical ideology, genocidal toward Shiites and other Middle Eastern minorities and ruthless toward Sunnis who refuse to submit to its authority. As a result, not only does it manifest an even more expansive challenge to the international order, it is also better equipped to threaten this order."
May 11, 2015
Op-Ed, European Leadership Network
By Martin B. Malin, Executive Director, Project on Managing the Atom
"One of the dramas playing out this month in New York at the 2015 Review Conference for parties to the Treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) concerns the future of discussions on establishing the weapons of mass destruction free zone in the Middle East..."
April 27, 2015
This report proposes a framework for IAEA verification of steps toward nuclear disarmament, premised on IAEA verification of fissile material, in any form, whether classified or not, submitted by any state possessing nuclear weapons. It identifies technical, legal, and financial solutions to the challenges posed by such verification, and offers a way forward to the implementation of the proposed framework. The tool that Rockwood and Shea offer is ready for any state with nuclear weapons to take up, finish the final details, and implement.
April 26, 2015
The abstracts in this booklet summarise the research presented at an academic symposium convened on the sidelines of the 2015 NPT Review Conference. As we write this, journalists and seasoned experts in the nuclear policy field have been speculating about the particularly difficult challenges facing the Review Conference this year. To address those challenges, we would urge all concerned to consider the ideas and analyses presented at this symposium. Experts would be hard-pressed to find a better collection of fresh ideas and approaches for assessing and strengthening the NPT.
March 23, 2015
By Laura Rockwood, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
In 1996, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the United States and the Russian Federation entered into a cooperative effort – the Trilateral Initiative – aimed at investigating the feasibility and requirements for a verification system under which the IAEA could accept and monitor nuclear warheads or nuclear warhead components pursuant to the NPT Article VI commitments of both States. Although the Initiative ended in 2002, the Model Verification Agreement produced could still serve as the basis for bilateral or multilateral agreements between the IAEA and nuclear-weapon States.
In this paper, Thomas E. Shea and Laura Rockwood examine the potential role for international verification of fissile material in relation to nuclear disarmament, what was accomplished under the Trilateral Initiative and, more importantly, what should be done now to preserve its legacy and take concrete steps towards such verification.
January 21, 2015
Op-Ed, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
By Aaron Arnold, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
"For US regulators, 2014 was a banner year for collecting fines against sanctions violators, according to The Economist. In June, BNP Paribas—France’s largest bank, and one of the largest in the world—agreed to shell out $9 billion to the US Department of Justice for violating sanctions against Cuba, Iran, and Sudan. This past month, US regulators slapped Germany’s Commerzbank—the country’s second-largest bank, with a similar global presence—with a $1 billion fine, after launching an investigation into its dealings with sanctioned countries. The increases in fines have signaled an aggressive, zero-tolerance policy toward violators, as well as a willingness to use the extraterritorial provisions of sanctions, which allow regulators to punish foreign-based banks..."
December 15, 2014
Symposium on the Non-Proliferation Treaty, Nuclear Disarmament, Non-proliferation, and Energy: Fresh Ideas for the Future
The ninth Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) will be held at the UN Headquarters in New York from April 27-May 22, 2015. This is the fourth such conference since the indefinite extension of the NPT in 1995. Participating governments will discuss nuclear disarmament, non-proliferation, and the peaceful use of nuclear energy with a view to arriving at consensus on a number of issues.