NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 9 October, 2000

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"NAPSNET Weekly FLASH Update 9 October, 2000", NAPSNet Weekly Report, October 09, 2000,

Nuclear Forces

1. US Nuclear Program

The Department of Energy’s inspector general reported that deferred maintenance at US weapons plants have delayed reliability tests, repairs of major nuclear weapons, and set back the schedule for disassembling some older warheads. The inspector general estimates the agency will need an additional $5 to $8 billion over 10 years to cope with the backlogs in its “Stockpile Stewardship” program.
“Energy Department Report Details Weapons Problems”

2. Russian Nuclear Program

A study by the Russian Center for Policy Studies (PIR) examines the post-Cold War importance of nuclear parity. They argue that it is no longer necessary for Russia to maintain parity with the United States and that Russian security can be provided with fewer means.
“Center for Arms Control, Energy and Environmental Studies at MIPT: Nuclear Parity and National Security In New Conditions”


1. WMD & Nuclear Proliferation

In a statement to the US Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, Deputy Director of the Department of Central Intelligence’s Nonproliferation Center A Norman Schindler said that no matter who is in power in Iran, it will continue to develop and expand its WMD and ballistic missile programs as long as it perceives threats from US military forces in the Gulf, a nuclear-armed Israel, and Iraq. He also argued that prestige may also be a factor.
“Iran’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Programs”

The International Atomic Energy Agency reiterated its “concern” over the DPRK’s nuclear program, saying that the IAEA cannot conclude whether the DPRK is diverting nuclear materials. An IAEA resolution passed September 22 urged the DPRK to come into full compliance with its safeguards agreement.
“IAEA Concerned Over NK Nuke Program”

Jacques EC Hymans from Harvard University argues that although 40 states could have developed nuclear weapons, fewer than ten did so. He found that the states that did acquire nuclear weapons were in much more parlous security environments than many of those that abstained. The decision to “go nuclear” appears to be more driven by a combination of the emotions of fear and national pride.
“Taking the plunge: emotion and identity in the decision to acquire nuclear weapons”

2. Russian Nuclear Materials Disposition

During his address to the recent UN Millennium summit, Russian President Vladimir Putin appealed for international financial support to convert its nuclear weapons sites and dispose of excessive weapons-usable plutonium. He warned that Russia would be unable to implement its disarmament and nonproliferation commitments if it does not receive assistance.
“What’s Behind Putin’s Nuclear Initiative?”

During the annual meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, Russian Atomic Energy Minister Yevgeny Adamov said that the high cost of converting Russian nuclear power plants to burn reactor fuel mixed with excess military plutonium could prevent Russia from honoring a deal with the US to destroy 34 tons of weapons-grade plutonium. He said Russia was considering avoiding the high cost by selling the fuel to other states licensed to use the fuel.
“Russia Says Costs Could Slow Plutonium Destruction”

Atomic Energy Minister Yevgeny Adamov said that a Russian-American contract on highly- and low-enriched uranium has made it possible for the Russian nuclear sector to invest almost a billion rubles in the decommissioning of nuclear submarines this year, ten times more than up to 1997. “There is no other program with the US that operates more effectively,” he said. “Russia has managed to sell its fuel for even more than on the market,” he added predicting that the contract will be “unconditionally extended.”
“Russia Claims 10% Of World Atomic Waste Recycling Market – Adamov”

3. Securing Russian Military Materiel

Russian law enforcement officials reportedly have found 240 missile warheads in a private company’s scrap metal storage area in Russia’s Pacific port of Khabarovsk. Searches in the company’s other scrap metal storage units turned up four missile warhead parts, complete with antennae and wings, and an additional 126 warheads.
“Hundreds of Missile Warheads Found in Scrap Metal in Russian Far East”

The foreign policy advisor to Democratic Presidential Candidate Al Gore, Graham T. Allison, who directs the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, wrote in the Los Angels Times that the risk of “loose nukes” is the only reason Russia remains important to the United States. Rather than focusing on Russia’s operational nuclear weapons, the next US president should give highest priority to securing Russian nuclear weapons, weapons-usable nuclear material, and other weapons of mass destruction.
“A Partisan Panel Scatters Poppycock”

4. Missile Proliferation

The London Sunday Telegraph reported that Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi has taken delivery of North Korean No-Dong surface-to-surface ballistic missiles and launchers. The missiles have a range of up to 800 miles and are capable of hitting targets in Israel and NATO states in southern Europe. North Korea reportedly has agreed to supply Libya with 50 ballistic missile systems and seven launchers, construct in Libya the infrastructure necessary for maintaining and storing the missiles, and train the Libyans in all aspects of missile technology over a period of five years.
“Missiles Deal Puts Israel In Gaddafi Sights”

Arms Control

1. NPT Review Conference

The foreign ministers of New Agenda Coalition countries issued a statement in which they expressed concern about the continuing challenges to the non-proliferation regime. They urged that action program adopted at the last NPT Review Conference be fully implemented. They also urged early commencement of negotiations on nuclear arms reductions between the United States and the Russian Federation and for the parties to the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty to preserve its integrity and validity.
“UN First Committee: New Agenda Coalition Communiqué, September 13, 2000”

In a paper presented at the September 2000 meeting of the American Political Science Association, Michael Tkacik from Stephen F. Austin State University in Texas examined the relationship between nonproliferation and general arms control proposals. He argues that unilateral arms control has created incentives to proliferate and that bilateral arms control agreements have had little impact on nonproliferation efforts. Tkacik further states that multilateral arms control may strengthen the nonproliferation regime, but that retaining the option to respond with nuclear weapons to biological weapons does not hinder nonproliferation efforts. Finally, he argues that a unilateral and absolute “no first use” commitment by the US would actually encourage the proliferation of nuclear weapons.

An editorial in the Indian daily The Telegraph concluded that the visit by India’s Prime Minister to Washington had demonstrated that the U.S.-Indian relationship had moved beyond many of the obstacles that prevented the “natural alliance” between the two nations. The editorial said, “It helps that after the Cold War both countries have shed many prejudices against each other. India has ended its economic isolationism. The US no longer treats India as a Soviet cat’s paw.”
“Indian Editorial: US Understands India’s Security Concerns”

Announcement: The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace announced that the 2001 Carnegie International Non-Proliferation Conference is to be held June 18-19, 2001. See web site for information
“2001 Non-Proliferation Conference Information”

2. Conference on Disarmament

The Federation of American Scientists reported that disagreements over nuclear disarmament and the prevention of an arms race in outer space blocked the Conference on Disarmament from adopting a work program during its 2000 session. This was the second year in a row that the Conference has not achieved progress on any of the items on its agenda.
“Deadlocked, Conference on Disarmament ends 2000 session with no work plan”

3. Nuclear Policy in NATO

Karel Koster from PENN writes in Disarmament Diplomacy that despite the commitments made by all the NATO states at the NPT Review Conference, it is developments in US and Russian nuclear policy that will determine the future of NATO nuclear policy. Absent a strong public pressure to force a review of the policy, Koster writes, NATO states such Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Norway, which have shown themselves prepared to move faster in other contexts, should follow the example of Canada’s increasingly vocal and forthright stance in favor of nuclear reform.
“An Uneasy Alliance: NATO Nuclear Doctrine & The NPT”
“Text-only version”

4. Indian Testing Moratorium

Indian Prime Minister AB Vajpayee stated, “subject to its supreme national interests,” India “will continue its voluntary moratorium until the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) comes into effect.” Vajpayee’s statements were evidence that the Indian government is distancing itself from last year’s hawkish Draft Nuclear Doctrine. Tension remains in India between the Indian government’s eagerness to assuage US non-proliferation concerns and India’s domestic political imperatives.
“Vajpayee’s Nuclear Diplomacy”


1. Russia Military Reform

Russian President Vladimir Putin delayed plans to cut the armed forces by a third, saying that “there will be no wholesale, massive reductions of the Russian armed forces.” The remarks, which were given at a meeting of his National Security Council with top military commanders present, seemed to undercut recent statements by Defense Minister Igor D. Sergeyev that Russian military personnel would be cut from 1.2 million to 850,000 men between 2001 and 2003. Sergei Ivanov, the secretary to the security council, said Putin’s decision was intended to give the military six more weeks to “calculate once again all the economic parameters of the reforms that will be carried out pretty soon.”
“Under Pressure, Putin Postpones Military Cuts”

2. Revolution in Military Affairs

As a result of their experience during operations over Kosovo last year, the US armed forces and several European countries plan to acquire additional precision-guided bombs. Most efforts focus on weapons that incorporate a guidance package combining a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver with an inertial navigation system (INS), which can be delivered in weather conditions that prevent the use of laser-guided bombs (LGBs). These weapons assist in minimizing collateral damage and can be delivered with greater safety margins for the planes that carry them.
“Kosovo spurs precision bomb programs”

3. UK Submarine Accident

The Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Pique said during a television interview that the Spanish Government insisted that the British Government provide it with the necessary information on the repair of the nuclear submarine HMS Tireless in Gibraltar and that this “exceptional” case would not become a precedent on “the Rock.” The submarine has been docked at Gibraltar since May, when it suffered a reactor accident while operating off Sicily.
The article “Spain Calls British Statements on UK Nuclear Sub Repair Situation ‘Unacceptable'” is available from World News Connection

Missile Defense

1. Commentary on US NMD/TMD

The Council for a Livable World Education Fund released a report that shows 58% of the public supported the US President Bill Clinton’s decision to not deploy National Missile Defense (37% strongly support), while only 30% opposed it (20% strongly opposed). The report argued that there is no evidence that missile defense will play any significant role in the election.

During the final session of the main United Nations arms control forum, Russian ambassador Vasily Sidorov and China’s envoy Hu Xiaodi denounced the proposed US missile shield system. The Russian delegate hinted that the START III arms control treaty could not go ahead unless NMD it was dropped and said that US fears of attack by a rogue state with ballistic missiles were exaggerated.
“Russia, China Again Denounce US Missile Shield Plan”

2. TMD Deployment Issues

TY Wang from Illinois State University discusses US military planning in Northeast Asia and its implications for the China-Taiwan situation. The paper concludes that the Clinton administration’s ambiguous policy represents an unbalanced approach to cross-Strait relations and could inadvertently precipitate a dangerous crisis in the Taiwan Strait.
“TMD: Taiwan Missile Defense System.”

3. TMD/NMD System Tests

The Jerusalem Post reported that the radar from the Arrow 2 anti-ballistic missile system succeeded in detecting Syria’s launch of a longer-range Scud D. The Scud D was picked up by the Green Pine radar system, rushed into deployment during the last Scud crisis with Iraq in late 1998. Although Syria’s existing Scud missiles can reach most of Israel, the increased range of the new Scud D gives Syria the option of deploying the missiles deeper inside Syria to better protect them.
“Arrow Radar Detects Syrian Scud D Test”


1. India-Pakistan

In a paper presented at the 2000 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Sarah J. Diel-Hunt examined the utility of confidence- and security-building measures (CSBMs) between India and Pakistan. She finds that CSBMs, which are based on a strategy of reassurance, are incongruent with the security strategy of deterrence currently employed in India and Pakistan. She argues that policymakers should focus on identifying the conditions that will enable a shift away from deterrence in order to determine the preconditions for CSBM adoption and implementation.
“The Utility of Confidence- and Security-Building Measures: The Case of India and Pakistan “

2. India-China

Two Indian warships visited Shanghai in only the third Indian visit to China ever. Another visit took place in 1995 and the first all the way back in 1958. A joint communications exercise was scheduled with Chinese Eastern Fleet warships during departure. Chinese warships are expected make reciprocal port calls in India in February 2001 for the international fleet review, the first-ever meeting in India of eastern and western navies.
The article “Indian Warships Visiting China to Expand Naval Diplomacy” is available from World News Connection

3. Cold War Lessons

In a paper presented at the 2000 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Dalia Dassa Kaye describes how lessons of US-Soviet military contacts during the Cold War now enable security elites in the Middle East, Asia, and Africa to meet to discuss threat perceptions and common security concerns. Kaye plans to use the material in a larger study about security dialogues on regional arms control in the Middle East.
“Security Dialogues Among Adversaries: Track Two Diplomacy and IR Theory.”

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