NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 24 April, 2000

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"NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 24 April, 2000", NAPSNet Weekly Report, April 24, 2000, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-weekly/napsnet-weekly-flash-update-24-april-2000/

Nonproliferation and Arms Control


1. NPT Review Conference

The UN has established a website for the 2000 Review Conference of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. The website will be updated with meeting agendas, background documents, press releases, and official statements. The US State Department International Information Program has opened a NPT website providing background information and official documents relating to the ongoing conference and the non-proliferation regime. The British-American Security Information Council (BASIC) has a webpage full of information on the Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference, including the list of speakers, BASIC publications and analyses, previews and analysis from other sources, and official documents and statements. Global Beat has a both the audio file and transcript of a telephone briefing on the conference by Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala, UN Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs.
“Non-Proliferation Conference On-Line”
“US Information Agency Open NPT Website”
“The 2000 NPT Review Conference (RevCon)”
“The 2000 Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference”


2. US Policy toward NPT

US State Department’s spokesman James Rubin dismissed criticism expected to emerge from the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference that the nuclear power’s have done too little to fulfill their nuclear disarmament obligations under the treaty. In her opening address to the conference, US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright likewise dismissed the criticism, saying that the US is committed to “a world free of nuclear weapons” and shares “the frustration many feel about the pace of progress toward a world free of nuclear weapons.” She also rejected the idea that new nuclear powers such as India and Pakistan could join the NPT as new nuclear powers. The Clinton Administration laid out its disarmament record in a brochure prepared for the conference.
“US State Department Briefing (excerpts)”
“State Department Spokesman Rebuffs Expected Critique of Nuclear Disarmament Record”
“US Secretary of State Statement to the Non-Proliferation Conference (text only)”
“US Secretary of State Statement to the Non-Proliferation Conference (html)”
“US Brochure Outlines Disarmament Accomplishments (html)”
“US Brochure Outlines Disarmament Accomplishments (pdf)”


3. Implementation of NPT

The non-nuclear countries said that they intend to push the nuclear powers for an unequivocal commitment to disarmament at the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. Daniel Plesch, Director of BASIC, criticized US President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore for not attending the conference. Lawrence Scheinman argues that while the conference may be contentious, it will be a crucial moment for the treaty. “NPT members will not only have to deliberate on the issues usually covered in this forum, they will also have to examine how two critical decisions made at the 1995 conference-the strengthening of the treaty review process and the issuance of ‘principles and objectives’-have fared in the past five years.”
“Politics and Pragmatism: The Challenges for NPT 2000”
“Non-Nuke States Urge Disarmament”
“President Clinton’s Busy Schedule Neglects Major Arms Control Conference”


4. Nuclear Safeguards

Oliver Meier argues that strengthened nuclear safeguards will enhance the nuclear non-proliferation regime by increasing the mutual confidence of states parties that the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is being fully complied with.
“Fulfilling the NPT: Strengthened Nuclear Safeguards”


5. Russian Ratification of CTBT

The Russian Duma voted 298 to 74 on Friday to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
“Russia Is Putting Pressure on U.S. Over Arms Pacts”
“Russian Duma Adopts Nuclear Test Ban Pact”
“Duma Ratifies Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty”
“Russians OK Nuclear Test Ban Treaty”

Analysts see the recent spate of arms control ratification in Russia as an attempt by Russian President Vladimir Putin to put pressure on the US ahead of the Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference.
“Russia’s goodwill pacts come with a bite”
“Russia Plays Trump Diplomacy Card Ahead Of UN Nuclear Forum”
“Putin’s non-STARTer”

Greenpeace released a statement welcoming the Russian Duma’s ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), and calling on the US, the PRC, India and Pakistan to follow suit by the end of 2000.
“Russia’s Ratification Of Test Ban Turns The Heat On The Us To Do Likewise”


6. CTBT Verification

Trevor Findlay and Oliver Meier write that despite the tardiness of major countries in ratifying the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), implementation of the CTBT’s verification system is making good progress. About 100 monitoring stations are reporting to the Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS), and the International Data Centre (IDC) is reportedly 50 per cent complete.
“Fulfilling the NPT: A Verifiable Test Ban”


7. Ratification of START II

The upper house of the Russian parliament on Wednesday finished ratifying the START II nuclear arms reduction treaty. A group of US senators met with Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov and congratulated Russia on the ratification.
“Russia Upper House OKs START II”
“US Sens. Laud Russia on Arms Treaty”


8. START III Talks

The US State Department said on Thursday that the US and Russia moved closer to agreeing on the basis for START III disarmament talks at recent Geneva meeting. The US said it was looking for a reduction to between 2,000 and 2,500 nuclear warheads, while Russian President Vladimir Putin recently stated that he would like to see a reduction down to 1,500 warheads. Further talks were planned but no dates were set.
“U.S. Details With Russians START III Arms Reductions”
“U.S., Russia End Nuclear Arms Control Talks In Geneva”
“US, Russia End Missile Talks Round”

The Christian Science Monitor said in an editorial that moving forward with the START process will require patient persuasion by the US and a better democracy and economy in Russia.
“The Restarting of START”


9. US Nuclear Arsenal

US government officials and private analysts said that the US Navy is upgrading the 20-year-old submarine-launched W-76 nuclear warhead to enable it to destroy any remaining super-hardened Russian missile silos. More than 2,000 of the warheads will soon be going through the Energy Department’s service-life extension program to be put back in submarines beginning in 2005.
“U.S. Nuclear Stockpile Plans Draw Scrutiny”


10. NATO Nuclear Policy

Over the last several weeks, the Dutch government has provided a number of statements concerning its own and NATO’s nuclear policy, relevant to the discussions at the current nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference. This compilation of Dutch government statements has been prepared based on information provided by Karel Koster with PENN (Project on European Nuclear Non-Proliferation).”
“Chronology of Recent Dutch Nuclear Policy”


11. Nuclear Terrorism

Graham T. Allison and Sam Nunn argue that the Russian Duma’s ratification of the START II nuclear arms treaty presents a major opportunity for “a bold proposal” for a joint Russian-US initiative to prevent terrorist theft of Russian nuclear weapons and weapons-usable nuclear materials. The seizure of nuclear material being smuggled to Pakistan from the former Soviet Union increased US fears that Osama bin Laden is trying to develop an “Islamic bomb.”
“Chance for a Safer World”
“Atomic Haul Raises Fears of bin Laden Terror Bomb”


12. US-Russian Uranium Deal

Vladimir Rybachenkov, security and disarmament department counselor of the Russian Foreign Ministry, noted that Russia’s exports of uranium fuel to the US have provided Russia with US$2 billion. He also denied the “myth” that Russia and the US reached a secret uranium deal.

“Uranium Fuel Exports Fetch Russia 2 Billion Dollars” “‘Secret Uranium Deal'”


Missile Issues


13. US Missile Defense

The Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies reviews the US assessment of the ballistic missile threat which the Clinton administration has said it will use to decide whether to deploy a national missile defense system. The Washington Post notes that missile defense is likely to become an issue in November’s presidential campaign.
“Assessing the Assessment: The 1999 National Intelligence Estimate of the Ballistic Missile Threat”
“An Issue Gains Altitude”
“Heat Is on Anti-Missile Defense”

Spurgeon M. Keeny, Jr. argues in Arms Control Today that the extent and significance of the missile threat to the US has taken on an increasingly central role in the debate over US missile defense. “Consequently, the question arises whether there is really a credible missile threat from North Korea and other ‘rogue’ states that justifies deployment, despite the high technical risk and negative consequences.” US Senator Carl Levin, in the keynote address at the 28th annual luncheon and membership meeting of the Arms Control Association, discussed the strategic ramifications of deploying a national missile defense and examining the possibility that a cooperative arrangement could be reached with Russia that would allow for a limited U.S. national missile defense while reducing the number of deployed strategic weapons below START II levels.
“Telling It Like It Isn’t”
“Toward an Agreement With Russia on Missile Defense”


14. Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty

K. Scott McMahon, at a presentation to Sandia National Laboratory’s Tenth International Arms Control Conference on 16 April 2000, argued that we have to be prepared for the possibility of US withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty. Senior Republican Senators told US President Bill Clinton that they opposed his efforts to renegotiate the ABM Treaty and to build only a limited antimissile defense system.

“The End of the ABM Treaty. Planning for Withdrawal and Threat Reduction”
“G.O.P. Senators Tell Clinton They Oppose Him on ABM Treaty and Defense System”


15. Missile Nonproliferation Regime

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov will present Russia’s strategic initiative on the development of the global control system over the non-proliferation of missiles and missile technologies at the Nuclear Weapons Non-proliferation international conference.
“Russia to Suggest Global Nuclear Control System”


Military


16. Russian Strategic Doctrine

Valery Manilov, the first deputy head of the Russian armed forces general staff, disagreed with criticisms of Russia’s military doctrine by NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe General Wesley Clark. Manilov said that partnership occupies a pivotal place in the new doctrine, and that unlike NATO, Russia does not divide its partners into “first class” and “second class.”
“Russia Military, U.S. General At Odds Over Moscow’s Military Doctrine”


17. US Security Strategy

The US Commission on National Security/21st Century released a report entitled “Seeking a National Strategy: A Concert for Preserving Security and Promoting Freedom,” which lays out a range of US security interests and strategic objectives. One key national security objective outlined in the report is to “help the international community tame the disintegrative forces spawned by an era of change.” This is the second of two reports, with the final report expected in March, 2001.
“Defense Panel Calls for Re-vamp of U.S. Security Strategy”
“Protecting the Failing State (Part I)”


18. NATO Burden Sharing

John C. Hulsman of the Heritage Foundation argues that the disparity in burden sharing between the US and its European allies is undermining the NATO alliance.
“A Grand Bargain With Europe: Preserving NATO For The 21st Century”


19. US Military Installation

The Federation of American Scientists has an IKONOS 1-meter resolution image of Area-51, a secret US military installation.
“Area 51 – Groom Lake, NV”
“Snooping’s Not Just for Spies Any More”


Diplomacy


20. ROK-DPRK Summit

Edward Neilan of the Heritage Foundation argues that, in light of the upcoming ROK-DPRK summit, the US must pursue a policy of “disciplined reciprocity, a quid pro quo engagement that rewards North Korea only when it takes concrete steps to improve relations with the South.”
“With North Korea, Seek Quid Pro Quo Engagement”

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