On September 9, North Korea tested its fifth nuclear weapon. At ten kilotons, the detonation is considered the largest in its history, though still smaller than the atomic weapons used against Japan during World War II. The full details are not yet available, but one point is clear: The status quo of dealing with the North is simply not working. Read what our experts have to say about the
The United States current nuclear strategy allows for the first-use of nuclear weapons against other nuclear-armed states. White House officials had deliberated for months over declaring a formal “no-first-use” declaration that would bar the first-use of U.S. nuclear weapons under any circumstance. While other countries, such as China and India, have such a policy, the Administration is increasingly likely to reject the change. Check out this New York Times article covering the no-first-use debate.
A new set of 400 nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) to replace the current fleet will likely cost more than previously estimated – by a lot. Recent reports indicate that the Pentagon now expects the program to cost $85 billion, approximately 36 percent more than the U.S. Air Force estimate of $62 billion; and based on standard Pentagon budget cost overruns, the price is likely to increase further. Learn more about the new fleet of ICBMs and
their price tag.
Did the United States allow “secret exemptions” for Iran to skirt its obligations under the Iran Deal? Council Board Member Jim Walsh explains why the claims are dubious – and why confidentiality can be critical for a successful diplomatic accord. See what he had to say.
The United States has signed, but never ratified, the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), an important multilateral accord that bans any global nuclear tests. President Obama, a staunch supporter of the treaty, plans to support a non-binding United Nations Security Council resolution reaffirming the global norm against nuclear testing – an important reaffirmation in the face of yet another North Korean nuclear test.
Unfortunately, 33 Senate hawks are falsely interpreting a non-binding resolution as a circumvention of the Senate’s prerogative to ratify treaties. The group is threatening to cut off all U.S. funding for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization, which helps to support critical infrastructure detecting nuclear explosions around the world – including in North Korea. Learn more about the CTBT and why U.S.funding is critical for the future.
The Council and Center are welcoming three new impressive staff members this week. Hazel Correa, our new Communications Director, joins our team with extensive communications experience in the private sector. Previously,
Hazel worked with Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia, leading internal communications for global business groups. Learn more about Hazel and her background.
We are also excited to introduce our newest policy interns, Katherine
Owens, an undergraduate student at George Washington University, and Harrison Palefsky, an undergraduate student at American University. Click on their names to learn more about their backgrounds and experience.
With every advancement, Pyongyang’s willingness to roll back its program will only decline. As North Korea’s fifth nuclear test and other provocative activities show, time is not on our side. We give our take on the North’s latest test.