Council: Front and Center – July 25

An update on arms control, national security, and politics from Council for a Livable World and the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation. 
What’s News:
We Have a Deal—and It’s a Very Good One
On July 14th, after nearly two years of negotiations, the U.S. and its negotiating partners reached a final agreement to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. All without a single bomb dropped, diplomacy prevailed in producing a solid agreement that blocks all of Iran’s pathways to the bomb. Read the full statement released by the Council and Center.
This agreement is, however, not yet a done deal. The challenge remains to defend this agreement against a GOP-led Congress—which now has until mid-September to review it—and a force of opposition mobilized by big-money backers.
Arms control and national security experts on the board and staff of the Council and Center have been on Capitol Hill testifying before Congress and briefing members of Congress and their staff on the merits of the deal. Dr. Jim Walsh (our international security expert from MIT), Ret. Col. Dick Klass, Ed Levine (longtime Senate Staffer), Angela Canterbury (executive director), John Isaacs (senior fellow), and Greg Terryn (Research and Policy Associate) have been trekking up and down Capitol Hill to inform Members of Congress about the benefits of the deal and the dangers of its rejection. See our latest factsheets for information on this deal.
Take Action Now and Help Prevent War
The good news: the opposition may have money, but we have people! For the next two months, we will rely on people like you to create a groundswell of support for this deal in Congress. 
Here are two ways you can join the movement and help right now:
  • Sign this pro-deal petition we’ve joined with like-minded partners at We will be delivering hundreds of thousands of these petitions next week at a press conference on Capitol Hill featuring pro-diplomacy members of Congress. Help us get to half-a-million signatures!
  • Send an email to your representative and senator right now and help us flood their inboxes in support of this deal.
Mobilizing the Netroots
Last weekend, Council for a Livable World attended the Netroots Nation conference for the first time, where thousands of progressive activists, bloggers, candidates, and members of Congress gathered. In partnership with, we hosted an event that drew a huge crowd of foreign policy progressives and featured Reps. Keith Ellison and Hank Johnson. Executive Director Angela Canterbury also spoke at the conference’s only foreign policy panel: A Progressive Foreign Policy Begins in Iran, where she explained the critical importance of mobilizing progressives behind this watershed deal, and this opportunity to prevent war. You can watch the entire panel on our website here.
Council board member Dr. Jim Walsh, an international security expert at MIT, has been a go-to expert on the Iran deal over the past few weeks.
The Navy Should Seek Quality, Not Quantity
Governor John Kasich of Ohio, who just added his name to the GOP presidential hat, has his eye on a major expansion of U.S. Naval ships. In an article for, Council board member Daniel Wirls critiqued the Governor’s pledge, arguing that it’s the quality of ships that’s important here, and not quantity. Read the full article here. 
Political Tip Sheet
Don’t miss this update on the most recent news in the 2016 elections from Senior Fellow John Isaacs.
The F-35: When ‘Too Big To Fail’ Fails
The F-35 is a $1.5 trillion plane that is fraught with flaws and is bankrupting America. Sarah Tully offers 10 Things America Could Buy Instead of the F-35—including cancer treatment and buying school lunches for children below the poverty line.Check it out on BuzzFeed!
NDAA Remains in Limbo
The congressional conference on the Fiscal Year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act has been officially postponed until September. Before Congress leaves for their Summer recess, Council for a Livable World sent this letter to the conferees with our positions on critical provisions, including the F-35, nuclear weapons dismantlement funding, and missile defense. 
The Bomb Turns 70
In 1945 the world’s first nuclear bomb was detonated in New Mexico, forever altering the course of history. Read from our Summer Intern Matt Price on the Nukes of Hazard Blog who recounts just how far we’ve come since this fateful day, and the challenges that lie ahead.
Sen. Murphy on “Boots on the Ground”
The U.S. has been bombing the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria for nearly a year. In a recent debate at the Brookings Institute, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) argues that the U.S. response to this terror group must not include the commitment of American troops on the ground. Read a full account of the debate from Matt Price.
America’s Next Great Expense
A recent study on the cost-effectiveness of nuclear weapons has us asking: at the cost of $1 trillion, are nuclear weapons the best bang for our taxpayer buck? Read more about this study from Matt Price on the Nukes of Hazard blog.
A New Cold War Can be Prevented
Despite what the hawks say, the U.S. and Russia are not headed for a Cold War redo. Matt Price writes on the Nukes of Hazard blog how, through careful diplomacy, icy relations between the world’s two biggest nuclear powers can in fact be warmed.
Be Social:
The Iran deal debate isn’t just taking place in the halls of Congress; it’s filling up the feeds of social media. We must use new media to elevate our champions, and to inform and educate the public on this good deal. Check out our most recent infographics in support of the agreement and click on the graphic to share.
Dick Durbin Iran Deal
GOP Iran Deal Resolution
Iran Deal poll graphic
Joint Chiefs Iran