Council Front and Center: March 16, 2019


The Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation is the Council’s affiliated 501(C)(3) research organization.What happened at the second North Korea summit, and what happens next?
Competing narratives have emerged following the abrupt end to the second summit between President Trump and Kim Jong-un, write Executive Director John Tierney and Policy Analyst James McKeon. This underscores the complexity of nuclear negotiations. Negotiators must now look forward, not backward. Both sides have strong incentives to return to the diplomatic table and attempt to find a path forward. It is long past time to empower the strong cadre of American technical and diplomatic experts to take the lead on transforming reduced tensions into verifiable agreements. 

Many of our experts were asked to weigh in on where the relationship between the United States and North Korea goes from here. Senior Policy Director Alexandra Bell writes about how to get diplomacy back on track. Program Assistant Erin Connolly writes about how this affects younger generations. New Program Coordinator Abigail Stowe-Thurston writes about the need for diplomacy, no matter how messy, to avoid military action. And the Center’s Scoville Fellow, Rachel Emond, writes about how few women were involved in the talks.

Arms Control With Russia Is On Life Support
Between the Trump Administration’s decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and its seeming apathy toward extending the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) beyond its expiration in February 2021, it is looking increasingly likely that the United States and Russia could enter into a new strategic arms race. In a televised debate and newspaper article, Policy Analyst McKeon refutes the position that the INF Treaty should be abandoned, noting that without it, we risk “a rehashing of the worst moments of the Cold War.” Intern Deverrick Holmes writes that he hopes his generation will learn to prioritize arms control; and InternTaylor Felt writes that we have a clear choice: extend New START or risk starting a new strategic arms race.

Top 5 Must-Reads
1) North Korea threatens to suspend denuclearization talks with the United States
2) India-Pakistan crisis may be easing, but nuclear threat still hangs over the region
3) Armed Services Chair plots move to ‘kill’ Trump’s plan for a low-yield nuke 
4) Russia Follows U.S. Out of Landmark Nuclear Weapons Treaty
5) US plans tests this year of long-banned types of missiles


What else?
Program Assistant Connolly writes that Hollywood’s fascination with artificial intelligence has undermined the Department of Defense’s ability to work with the private sector on emerging technology. 
How did our interns get interested in nuclear policy? For Taylor Felt, a class on WMDs fit her schedule and she quickly realized she wanted to spend more than three hours a week on the subject. For Deverrick Holmes, one Twitter exchange caused him to leave his job at a financial firm to pursue a career trying to rid the world of nuclear weapons.


Eleven Bills We Support
Since January, 11 bills and resolutions have been introduced that we are proud to throw our full support behind. We’ll be updating you via email and social media as action is taken on these bills. For now, you can learn more on our website.