NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 11 June, 2001

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"NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 11 June, 2001", NAPSNet Weekly Report, June 11, 2001, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-weekly/napsnet-weekly-flash-update-11-june-2001/

Proliferation


1. Missile Proliferation Report

The current issue of Arms Control Today includes a report detailing the current state of missile proliferation. The report states that only five states besides the de jure nuclear-weapon states possess the capability to indigenously produce ballistic missiles with ranges over 1,000 km. The report states that according to the US CIA, Russia, the PRC and the DPRK are the largest suppliers of ballistic missile-related goods, technology, and expertise. The report includes a table listing the global distribution of missile capabilities.
“Global Missile Proliferation: June 2001”


2. DPRK Missile Moratorium

Selig Harrison of the Century Foundation reported after concluding talks with four senior DPRK officials, including Foreign Minister Paek Nam-sun and General Ri Chan Bok, that the DPRK will not maintain its two-year moratorium on missile tests unless the US signals a willingness to discuss normalizing relations. Harrison also reported that DPRK military officers threatened to resume the DPRK’s nuclear weapons program unless the US accelerates the building of two nuclear reactors as promised under the 1994 Agreed Framework. Harrison quoted Bok as saying, “Right now our government has not decided that we need nuclear weapons, but everybody is thinking in that direction in view of the hostile attitude of the Bush administration.”
“North Korea Said to Warn Of New Missile Tests”

Responding to statements by DPRK officials that the DPRK may not maintain its moratorium on missile testing, US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said, “Failure of North Korea to maintain its moratorium on the launch of long-range missiles would block any potential progress.”
“U.S. Warns Pyongyang on Moratorium”


3. US-DPRK Missile Talks

In a written statement, US President George Bush announced on the eve of a visit here by ROK Foreign Minister Han Seung-soo that the US would resume negotiations with the DPRK regarding its production and exporting of missiles and the deployment of troops along the border. It is this last element, analysts report, that the Bush administration is using to distinguish its policy from that of former President Bill Clinton. Bush said that, following the results of the review of US policy towards the DPRK ordered earlier, he had directed his national security team to “undertake serious discussions with North Korea on a broad agenda” that included “verifiable constraints on North Korea’s missile programs and a ban on its missile exports, and a less threatening conventional military posture.” Bush also said, “Our approach will offer North Korea the opportunity to demonstrate the seriousness of its desire for improved relations. If North Korea responds affirmatively and takes appropriate action, we will expand our efforts to help the North Korean people, ease sanctions, and take other political steps.”
“U.S. Will Restart Wide Negotiations With North Korea”
“Text: Bush Statement on Undertaking Talks With North Korea”
“U.S. Will Resume Talks With N. Korea”

Four months after suspending efforts to negotiate with the DPRK, US President George Bush announced that the review of US policy towards the DPRK had been completed and that he had directed his national security team to hold “serious discussions” with the country’s leadership. Regional powers, including Australia and Japan, called the US move constructive, while the ROK urged the DPRK to approach the talks seriously.
“US-N Korea missile talks welcomed”


Missile Defense


1. US Missile Defense Programs

Major General Larry Arnold, commander of the 1st Air Force division, an Air National Guard unit that protects against threats from aircraft and cruise missiles as part of the U.S.-Canadian North American Aerospace Defense Command, reported that the US Air Force tested cruise missile defense systems under development by the US Army and Marine Corp. Major Steve Boes said that no live ordnance was fired, but radar lock-ons, indicating kills, were obtained on all twelve targets. Arnold said he hopes to have two of the systems, called Joint Based Expedition Command and Control Centers, operating in the United States by 2005. At a cost of about $5 million each, they are designed to protect specific sites or events.
“Air Force Tests Missile Defense”

The Center for Defense Information reports that the 2001 supplemental budget request by the US Department of Defense hiked funding by 65 percent, adding $153 million to previous year’s $234 million allocation, for the Airborne Laser project, a component of a possible future missile defense system.
“Technological Challenges in National Missile Defense”

The Washington Post reports that the US Defense Department has been pressing private contractors for options to speed up deployment of missile defenses in an effort to put into place a rudimentary system before the end of President George Bush’s current term in 2004. A senior defense official said, “It is a simple question: Is something better than nothing? The president and the secretary [of defense] have made it pretty clear they believe that some missile defense in the near term is in fact better than nothing.” Suggestions by the Boeing Co., a major contractor for the system, included the US putting a missile tracking radar on a movable floating platform similar to an oil-drilling rig, placed in international waters and therefore not requiring another country’s permission. The article states that even rudimentary system would signal the administration’s resolve, help fulfill one of Bush’s campaign promises and require fundamentally changing or scrapping the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.
“Missile Defense Speedup Weighed”


2. US Consultations: NATO

US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is attending a NATO meeting and attempting to convince his counterparts in NATO to be more supportive of US missile defense efforts. Rumsfeld said that without a crystal ball it was impossible to say who might threaten NATO in the future. However, he insisted it was easier to say how they might threaten the US and its allies and that it was necessary to prepare to meet these threats before they fully emerge: terrorism, cyber attacks, hi-tech weaponry and long-range cruise and ballistic missiles. Some European allies are concerned that Moscow, which refuses to alter the ABM pact, might scrap nuclear arms control agreements if Washington unilaterally backs out of the treaty in order to develop its system. Many European allies of the US fail to see a real threat and others fear that abandoning the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty between the US and Russia would be detrimental to overall European security.
“Rumsfeld markets missile plan to Nato”
“Rumsfeld Pushes for NATO Support of Missile Defense (Update3)”
“Rumsfeld Promotes Missile Defense”

The Center for Defense Information reports that Turkey will support US missile defense plans as long as they cover the territory of other NATO allies, said a Turkish diplomat.
“Europe’s Role in National Missile Defense”

Christine Kucia reports for BASIC that at a meeting of foreign ministers of NATO in Budapest, they omitted any references to the 1972 ABM Treaty in their final joint statement. This is a change in precedent, such as from the December 2000 meeting, when NATO foreign ministers called for “preserving and strengthening the ABM Treaty as a cornerstone of strategic stability and a basis for further reductions of strategic offensive weapons.” Kucia states that, encouraging to US unilateralism, the foreign ministers gave an endorsement to unilateral nuclear weapons cuts. Kucia argues that there is likely to be further evidence of a split in NATO at the meeting next week in Brussels when NATO nuclear policy and the US missile defense proposal are at the head of issues to discuss.
“ABM Treaty Dropped By NATO”


3. US Consultations: Russia

After discussing it with US Secretary of State Colin Powell last week in Hungary, Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said that Russia was prepared to be constructive in talks on missile defense but was unwilling to compromise on the need to preserve the 1972 ABM Treaty. Ivanov said, “This combination of firmness on the one hand in defending our position and, on the other hand, our readiness to carry on a constructive dialogue is the policy we will continue to follow.” He added, “If we make a mistake in our disarmament policy today then the serious consequences of this will be seen in 10 or 15 years and then it will be very difficult to undo those processes, to try and restore what we might destroy today.”
“Russia Ready to Be Constructive on Missile Defense”

The Center for Defense Information reports that former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said in an op-ed article for the New York Times that the Clinton administration had nearly reached an agreement with Russia on modifying the ABM treaty to allow for the deployment of the US National Missile Defense system.
“Impact of NMD on Russia, Nuclear Security”

After meeting with Canadian Defense Minister Art Eggleton, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said, “If we assume that the ABM Treaty loses force, it’s logical to assume that the subsequent treaties that were based on it will also lose force.”
“Russia Warns U.S. On Missile Pact”


4. Japanese Statements

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi stated that the proposed US missile defense system is worth researching, contradicting negative statements by his Foreign Minister, Makiko Tanaka. Koizumi drew a distinction between researching missile defense, which he said is worthwhile, and development and deployment.
“Japanese Divided on Missile Plan”

Japanese dailies reported that Japanese Foreign Minister Makiko Tanaka told Italian Foreign Minister Lamberto Dini that the US missile defense plans appear to be aimed at China, and said that Japan and Europe should join in opposition to the US proposal. She was quoted as saying that the US “says there’s a missile threat. But is missile defense necessary? Japan and Europe must tell the U.S., don’t do too much.” She denied the reports, which, if true, would represent a significant departure for Japan from its current missile defense policy, which includes cooperation with the US on Theater Missile Defense research. The Mainichi Shimbun said Tanaka had made similar remarks earlier to Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer.
“Japanese Aide Is Said to Question U.S. Missile Plan”
“Tanaka Denies Opposing Missile Plan”


5. Commentary

Wolfgang K. H. Panofsky writes in the current issue of Arms Control Today that there has historically been an evolution in military affairs with offense and defense were alternately dominant and subordinate, though nuclear weapons has changed this by increasing the impact of the offense a million-fold. Panofsky argues that for this reason, ballistic missiles defenses are a different problem depending on whether such missiles carry conventional or nuclear payloads, not including the alternative delivery options available to a potential attacker. Panofsky reviews missile detection and defense options and concludes, “In view of all the basic facts, the financial, political, and strategic costs outweigh the benefits of the limited protection a national missile defense could offer.” Further, he argues, with no system ready for deployment within a couple of presidential terms, the “current debate…is a house of cards built on a nonexistent technical foundation,” that will not immediately threaten other countries, but will force them to begin building up their strategic forces.
“The Continuing Impact of the Nuclear Revolution”


Arms Control


1. US Perspective on ABM Treaty

Spurgeon M. Keeny writes in the current issue of Arms Control Today that US President George Bush will now have a Senate dominated by Democrats who share many of the same concerns about missile defense and abrogation of the 1972 ABM Treaty as Russia, the PRC, and US allies. Keeny argues that Bush can constitutionally withdraw the US from the ABM Treaty on his own, but is less likely to do so without the support of US allies or his own Senate. With this “coup de grace,” as Keeny describes the event, Bush has the opportunity to continue researching missile defense within the ABM Treaty while focusing diplomatic efforts on eliminating the existing and potential threats facing the US through arms control and nonproliferation agreements, rather than focusing merely on defenses against a limited number of them.
“Coup de Grace”

Douglas J. Feith, nominated by President George Bush to be US Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, stated during his Senate confirmation hearing that the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty lapsed when the Soviet Union ceased to exist in 1991. However, he said, “The president… has said that the United States is complying with the terms of the ABM Treaty. I’m happy to support that policy.” Jack Dyer Crouch II, nominated as US Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy and currently a professor at Southwest Missouri State University, said during his confirmation hearing that he believed the Bush administration should at least consider resuming nuclear testing.
“Democrats Grill Defense Nominees on Arms Control”


2. PRC Proposed Space Treaty

PRC Ambassador Hu Xiaodi proposed to the UN Conference on Disarmament that, “All space-based weapons and all weapons attacking outer space targets from the earth are to be prohibited once and for all.” The PRC has long been an opponent of the militarization of space, and is concerned that US missile defense proposals incorporate space-based assets to support the system.
“China Urges Work to Ban Space Arms”


Nonproliferation


1. Uranium Purchase Agreement

Thomas L. Neff writes in the current issue of Arms Control Today that half of all fuel for US nuclear energy reactors, which provide 20% of US electricity, now comes from Russia under a 1993 government-to-government nonproliferation agreement that converts highly enriched uranium (HEU) from Russian nuclear weapons to fuel for nuclear power plants. Neff argues that for this reason, the Highly Enriched Uranium Purchase Agreement, or “HEU deal,” is fundamental to US energy security, as well as to national and international security. The program is run by the privatized U.S. Enrichment Corporation (USEC), which is seeking to gain a monopoly on imported nuclear fuel and renegotiate the terms on which the HEU deal is based to increase its profit margin, and therefore threatens US nonproliferation efforts. Neff argues that other agents of the US government could begin to implement the HEU deal beginning in 2002 or 2003 in order to prevent disruption of the flow of HEU from Russia.
“Decision Time for the HEU Deal: U.S. Security vs. Private Interests”


Security


1. US Nuclear Posture

The Federation of American Scientists, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Union of Concerned Scientists outline their vision of a nuclear posture that will guarantee US national security in a new report. The report argues that the current US force structure and doctrine is obsolete, and that the current greatest nuclear danger is from a Russian accidental missile launch due to fixable problems with Russia’s early warning and command-and-control systems. They argue that while the future threat to the US is from nuclear weapons proliferation, US policy does not include commitments to negotiate nonproliferation and arms reduction agreements, nor does it explain the role of the US arsenal as a deterrent against nuclear launches by countries other than Russia. They propose that the US: promote nonproliferation regardless of whether or not it is achievable; declare that it will only launch in response to a nuclear attack by another country; and unilaterally reduce its nuclear weapons arsenal to 1,000 warheads. Other posture recommendations include replacing pre-set targeting with a delayed but tailored response, retire all tactical nuclear weapons, ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, and recognize that a significantly effective missile defense system would prompt Russia and the PRC to actions that “could result in a net decrease in US security.”
“Toward True Security: A US Nuclear Posture for the Next Decade”
“Scientists Want Nuclear Arsenal Cut”
“Report Warns of Russian Threat and Offers New Nuclear Vision”
“Bush Missile Defense Plan Could Backfire, Group Says”


2. PRC Nuclear Modernization

Li Bin, an Associate Professor at the PRC’s Tsinghua University, writes in an essay published by the Pugwash Conferences that the original purpose behind the PRC’s nuclear development was to counter the possibility of nuclear blackmail preventing it from achieving its policy goals. Li states that the US would likely choose an option besides launching a nuclear strike against the PRC in a crisis if the US believes doing so would precipitate nuclear retaliation and that the retaliation can cause US casualties in the tens of thousands. He argues that the deployment of a NMD system would provide the US public with that illusion that the several PRC ICBMs surviving a US first strike would be intercepted by the NMD system, meaning that the PRC would need to increase the number and effectiveness of its nuclear arsenal in order to preserve its deterrent. PRC Ambassador Sha Zukang said, “China has not and will not participate in an arms race with anybody. But neither will we sit on our hands and allow our legitimate security interests to be compromised by any one.” Li argues that the PRC response be visible to the US, not be overly financially burdensome, should not increase the threat perceptions of the PRC by other countries, should be multi-faceted and seek to develop or cope with advanced technologies. Li also proposes that the PRC could pursue arms control to counter the US proposed missile defense system, though this also has high costs for the PRC.
“The Impact of U.S. NMD on Chinese Nuclear Modernization”

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