NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 14 May, 2001

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"NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 14 May, 2001", NAPSNet Weekly Report, May 14, 2001, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-weekly/napsnet-weekly-flash-update-14-may-2001/

Missile Defense


1. US Missile Defense Program

The Acronym Institute released a document with the full text of US President Bush’s speech outlining US intentions on missile defense and arms control. Accompanying are relevant excerpts of statements by officials in the Bush administration, US Congressmen, and heads of foreign governments and international institutions. The statements reflect the absence of a consensus within the US and internationally on missile defense.
“President Bush Speech on Missile Defence, May 1, 2001”


2. US Consultations in Asia

Protesters against the US missile defense proposal met US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage when he traveled to the ROK to consult with officials there. The leader of one group, Mun Jeong-hyun said, “We’re not happy with his coming to Korea. He’s trying to force (South) Korea to accept the missile defense.” After meeting with ROK President Kim Dae-jung, Armitage said, “At the moment, we are not talking with North Korea on anything, but I suspect that we will in the near future.”
“Protest greets U.S. missile talks”

The Asahi Shimbun reported that, in talks with US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, Japanese officials were more positive about working with the US on Theater Missile Defense (TMD) than with National Missile Defense (NMD). Missile defense is an important defense policy issue for Japan, because of the threat of ballistic missiles from the DPRK. The Asahi Shimbun states that Japanese officials have tried to keep NMD and TMD separate to avoid diplomatic problems with neighboring countries by arguing that they involve two different kinds of technology, but the Bush administration’s plan to combine the two would make it difficult for Japan to do so.
“Japan weighs response to U.S. missile strategy”

The Center for Defense Information released an update of their report on Asian views of the US missile defense program. CDI states that according to a report in the South China Morning Post, a survey of 31 Asian defense experts in South, Southeast and East Asia found overwhelming displeasure with US missile defense programs. Two-thirds of respondents said that missile defense systems deployment in Asia will destabilize Asia and start a new arms race.
“U.S. National Missile Defense: Views from Asia”


3. US Consultations in Europe

NATO Secretary General George Robertson met with senior US officials on May 8 and discussed US plans for missile defenses. He said the meetings were constructive. He also said that he welcomed US proposals for the future of NATO, as “All of NATO’s nations have an opportunity to shape the Alliance’s approach.”
“Full Text: Statement by NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson on Bush speech”

US Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz will meet with senior officials in France, Germany, Poland, and Russia as part of President George W. Bush’s commitment to consult closely with other nations concerning missile defense.
“Wolfowitz to Travel to Europe”

US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz held talks with officials of the French Foreign Ministry on May 8 to explain the plan for missile defenses on the second day of his European tour, and was heading to Germany and Poland then to Moscow on Friday. A separate delegation visited the Netherlands on Wednesday as part of the consultations. Danish Foreign Minister Mogens Lykketoft reiterated Denmark’s position that “a missile defense must not start a new arms race.”
“US Briefs Europeans on Defense Plan”


4. US Consultations with Russia

US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice explained in media interviews the US intention to consult with Russia on the US missile defense program.
“Rumsfeld, Rice Say U.S. Will Cooperate with Others on Missile Defense”
“Missiles, Missteps Take Spin”

Chief Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Yakovenko said that, when US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz arrives in Russia to consult with Russia on US plans to deploy missile defenses, the Russian side “will set out to the American representatives our concrete approaches, and the direction in which strategic stability can be strengthened.” Wolfowitz and US Deputy National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley will meet with Yuri Kapralov, a senior Russian Foreign Ministry arms control official, and First Deputy Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Trubnikov.
“Skeptical Russia to Listen on U.S. Missile Shield”
“Wolfowitz to Travel to Europe”

Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Yakovenko reported that Russia has formed a special panel to formulate Russia’s response to US plans for a limited missile defense system, headed by Yuri Kapralov, director of the Foreign Ministry’s department of security affairs and disarmament. Yakovenko said, “The missile defense problem is extremely complicated and it demands detailed discussion.” Yakovenko made these remarks as the US delegation led by US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz was to arrive in Russia for talks on the subject.
“Moscow Sets Up Missile Panel”


5. Missile Defense Commentary

The Council for a Livable World said in a statement that President Bush’s speech on missile defense on May 1 only vaguely discussed the threats with which missile defense is to cope. Importantly, said the statement, while missile defense is supposed to be evaluated on the basis of the criteria of cost, technological readiness, effect on arms control, and the presence of a threat, Bush made no mention of the other first three criteria. The statement deconstructs Bush’s speech, responding to specific statements with counter-arguments.
“‘Fuzzy’ Logic on Missile Defense”

James Lindsay and Michael O’Hanlon, Senior Fellows at the Brookings Institution, criticized Bush’s speech in an editorial in the Los Angeles Times. They stated that Bush did not elucidate on the proposed US missile defense program, a program that they argue will divert resources from other defense needs and would increase the nuclear and missile threats facing the US. While acknowledging that some aspects of the 1972 ABM Treaty may be outdated, they also said Bush has not justified why it is in US interests to leave Russia and the US unconstrained by the core principles of the treaty.
“Ambiguity Swaddles Bush’s Missile Plan”

Gail Collins, in an editorial in the New York Times, argues that missile defense spending will be approved by the US Congress “because nobody ever lost an election by voting for defense appropriations.” She contrasts this to the problem of domestic terrorism, which she argues faces bureaucratic infighting, even with the dozen Senate committees and subcommittees attempting to sort through the 46 federal agencies responsible for coping with the threat of domestic terrorism. Collins states that experts would prefer to task Vice President Richard Cheney with the responsibility of coordinating the US response to this threat, “since ‘terrorist attack’ fits under Dick Cheney’s current portfolio of Everything Except Education.”
“Beam Me Up, Rummy”


6. Commentary on European Consultations

Andrew J. Pierre writes in the current edition of Arms Control Today that according to the Bush administration, US allies in Europe have been persuaded by the administration’s firm language of the inevitability of missile defense deployment and have focused upon the benefits of missile defense, dropping most of their objections. Pierre argues European leaders have tactically chosen to avoid a fight with the US over missile defense and wait to see a detailed plan before committing themselves, but generally remain unconvinced. Missile defense, in the opinion of French strategist Francois Heisbourg, is seen as a disproportionate response to a “famine-ridden Asian backwater with a yearly GDP representing one month’s worth of WalMart sales.” Pierre states that domestic political currents point to the absence of a consensus for some time for many European countries, especially as Europeans view the dominance of offensive weapons and the resulting deterrence that has kept the peace as a valuable effect of the ABM Treaty and therefore do not wish to see it abrogated.
“Europe and Missile Defense: Tactical Considerations, Fundamental Concerns”


7. Issues in AsiaThe Asahi Shimbun reports that if the US missile-defense system is projected globally and TMD deployment becomes subsumed within the US global defense strategy, TMD deployment by Japan would create diplomatic problems and raise the issue of Japan’s right to exercise collective self-defense. Asahi argues that although nuclear arms reductions by the US would be welcome, Japan should not accept the US new missile-defense program in exchange. Japan has been involved in joint research with the United States since 1998 on the TMD plan for high-altitude surveillance above the oceans.
“The best response to the U.S. on missile defense is a flat `no'”

An Issue Brief produced by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace states that US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage will likely find an audience receptive to US missile defense and arms reduction plans when he visits India. Following US President George Bush’s speech outlining US plans for missile defense, the Indian Ministry of External Affairs released a statement which said, “India believes there is a strategic and technological inevitability in stepping away from a world that is held hostage by the doctrine of MAD to a cooperative, defensive transition that is underpinned by further cuts and a de-alert of nuclear forces.” With the successful visits by US current and former officials to India, and by Indian officials to the US, US-Indian ties are buoyed by the expectation that sanctions will be removed, the prospect of emerging as a preferred ally in the US effort to “balance” China in the region, and the opportunity to isolate Pakistan have all contributed to the current government’s shift in strategy and the “irrational exuberance,” argues some in the media, for the US missile defense proposal.
“New Delhi: Searching for an _______”

Patrick E. Tyler writes in the New York Times that during negotiations in 1969 over what became the 1972 ABM Treaty, both Russia and the US were convinced that the best defense against global nuclear war was mutual exposure to each other’s offense, but they agreed that each side could deploy a single antimissile site to eliminate the threat posed by a rising PRC. Tyler states that current negotiations reflect the return of this triangular diplomacy, as Russia and the PRC first stood together against the US proposed missile defense and now Russia has shifted to cooperation with the US on the issue, leaving the PRC isolated.
“Behind the Shield, a 3-Sided Rivalry”


Nuclear Weapons


1. Algerian Nuclear Program

David Albright and Corey Hinderstein of the Institute for Science and International Security write in the current issue of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists that Algeria’s nuclear program appears too extensive for civilian needs, and, “originally conceived with a clear military purpose, continues to equip itself with the installations necessary to carry out all the activities linked to the complete cycle for obtaining military grade plutonium, a key element in a nuclear arms program.” The essay examines the possible nuclear proliferation threat posed by Algeria and concludes, “It is difficult to determine whether Algeria had a nuclear weapons program in the 1980s, or whether it continues to develop the capability to produce and separate plutonium today.”
“Algeria: BIG DEAL IN THE DESERT?”


Arms Control


1. US Arms Control Policy

The US Senate confirmed John R. Bolton as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, the chief US arms-control official. Bolton held two assistant attorney general positions in the Reagan administration and was assistant secretary of state for international organizations in the first Bush administration. As a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, he criticized the UN and the Clinton administration’s DPRK policy and advocated diplomatic recognition of Taiwan. “John Bolton is precisely the kind of citizen whom the United States desperately needs at this difficult time to have an important role in the protection of the American people from the threat of missile attack,” said US Senator Jesse Helms, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman. Senator Byron Dorgan said, “The world is going to see…Mr. Bolton’s appointment as another sign of the president’s hard line on positions and a unilateralist policy: Abandon ABM, let’s get rid of the ABM treaty or ignore it, build a destabilizing national missile defense system, abandon the Kyoto treaty, suspend missile talks with North Korea, oppose the international criminal court and the international land mine convention.”
“Senate Confirms Bolton as Top Arms Control Official”


2. Commentary on Arms Control

Michael R. Gordon writes in the New York Times that with the cold war at an end, there is no need to begin yet another drawn-out arms control negotiation with a Russia that is no longer an enemy in order to cut nuclear arms or deploy missile defenses. Analysts, he states, worry that the Bush administration’s approach to arms control will weaken the international arms control regime and ultimately make US relations with other countries, especially Russia, less predictable. Gordon states that the Bush administration is clearly not of the same opinion on arms control agreements, with Secretary of State Colin Powell recognizing the value US allies put on formal agreements, while Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld argues that the US shouldn’t sign the CTBT because the it needs to design new nuclear weapons. The result is, a senior Defense Department official said, “We are probably not going to be hampered by arms control agreements.” An administration official, however, said that in the end, the US policy will incorporate a mixture of unilateral cuts, formal limits on weapons and streamlined verification. Leon S. Fuerth, a professor at George Washington University and national security adviser to former Vice President Al Gore, said, “I don’t think that this or future administrations will sleep that well not knowing the whereabouts or status of hundreds or thousands of Russian strategic nuclear weapons, especially without any legal rights to demand accurate information.”
“Military Analysis: U.S. Weighing Future of Arms Pacts”


Nonproliferation


1. US-DPRK Missile Talks

US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher urged the DPRK to continue its moratorium on missile tests and said, “We will conduct our review in a thorough manner and we’ll anticipate completing it in a timely fashion.” He added, “The nature of the regime, the conventional forces, the missile exports, the missile developments, all these events in North Korea have been of serious concern to the United States and remain of serious concern.”
“Bush to N. Korea: No Missile Tests”

Before a meeting with ROK Unification Minister Lim Dong-won, US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage stated that it is the DPRK’s financial problems that are driving it to sell missiles and missile technology. He said that the US would begin talks again with the DPRK soon, in what article author Christopher Torchia describes as an attempt by the US to restimulate ROK-DPRK talks. After discussing US missile defense issues in the ROK, Armitage is expected to fly to India.
“N. Korea Said Desperate for Money”


2. Russian Nonproliferation Programs

Analysts, including James Clay Moltz, a director of the Monterey Institute’s Center for Nonproliferation Studies, argue that it would be a much better bargain for US security if the US diverted a small percentage of the funding for missile defense towards controlling Russia’s “loose nukes.” Moltz said, “We’re seeing the [US] defense budget increasing for new weapons, but decreasing for the kind of cooperative security approaches that really will reduce the long-term threat.” Vyacheslav Nikonov, head of the independent Politika Foundation think tank in Moscow, said, “There is not enough money for anything in Russia, even for nuclear arsenals, which deserve much more attention.” He adds, “The idea of punishing Russia by not cutting its nuclear arsenal is a strange idea, with a strange logic. If you spent half of that sum [proposed for the US missile defense shield] on Russian disarmament, you probably wouldn’t even need the shield.”
“Loose nukes” get shortchanged?”


Security


1. Russian Early-Warning System

Geoffrey Forden, a senior research fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, writes that of the four known recent, false alerts for nuclear war, all four show the importance of both the US and Russia having reliable space-based early-warning systems. Forden argues that, as Russia no longer has the working fleet of early-warning satellites to reassure its leaders that it is not under attack during a false alert, its continuing economic difficulties threaten itself, the world at large, and the US in particular with the mistaken launch of nuclear missiles. Forden also argues that while joint monitoring centers may not work between the US and Russia, because one side may disbelieve the other’s data, they would be effective in cooperation with other nuclear states to verify data independently.
“Reducing a Common Danger: Improving Russia’s Early-Warning System”


2. NATO Nuclear Policy

BASIC issued an article, from the Centre for European Security and Disarmament (CESD) in Brussels, exploring the relationship between the likely 2002 NATO enlargement and the resulting increase in importance of the ‘nuclear umbrella’ for continued security in Europe. The article argues that since any inclusion of non-nuclear weapon states into a military alliance that relies on nuclear weapons constitutes a breach of their NPT commitment to take steps toward nuclear disarmament, NATO is out-of-step with the current international arms control regime. The article states that NATO has not ruled out stationing of nuclear weapons in new member countries.
“NATO Enlargement: Embedding Nuclear Reliance”


3. US Space Policy

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on May 8 outlined, in the report of the Commission to Assess U.S. National Security Space Management and Organization, a comprehensive transformation of defense structure and processes dealing with US national security operations in space. Proposed changes include giving the Air Force lead responsibility for prompt and sustained offensive and defensive space operations and extending eligibility for command positions in Space Command to those without flight ratings. The report also proposes research and demonstration of innovative space technologies and systems.
“Text: Rumsfeld on U.S. National Security Space Management”


4. UK Nuclear Submarines

Janes Defense Weekly reports that the UK Royal Navy nuclear-powered attack submarine HMS Tireless, brought into port in Gibraltar last year after a fault developed in its nuclear reactor, has returned to sea.
“Tireless returns to sea”

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