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Nuclear News - 06/14/00
 RANSAC Nuclear News, 14 June 2000


A. Expanded Threat Reduction Initiative (ETRI)

    1. U.S.-Russian Non-Proliferation Efforts, John Holum, USIA(6/9/00)
B. Deep Cuts – De-Alerting
    1. Trapped in the Nuclear Math, Bruce G. Blair, New YorkTimes (6/12/00)
C.  START
    1. Ivanov Says Start-3 Agreement Possible This Year, RFE/RL(06/12/00)
D. Russian Nuclear Forces
    1. Russia Publishes Nuclear Arms Book, Bill Gertz, WashingtonTimes (6/12/00)
E. Department of Energy (DOE)
    1. Russian Nuclear Secrets Missing From Los Alamos, RFE/RL(6/13/00)
F. Arms Control - General
    1. Interview:  Grey Describes “Real Progress” in Arms Control,USIA (6/9/00)
G. ABM, Missile Defense
    1. Group Urges President To Bar Missile Defense, WashingtonPost (6/13/00)
 

A. Expanded Threat Reduction Initiative (ETRI)

1.
U.S.-Russian Non-Proliferation Efforts
        John Holum
        USIA
        June 9, 2000
        (for personal use only)

I've just returned from the Moscow summit and I can assure you, thetiming for this open forum is most appropriate. We were heavily engagedin addressing just the issues we're discussing today.

At the summit, and indeed in the numerous arms control engagements we'veheld over the past few years with our Russian counterparts, I'm struckby the nature of the discussions. Certainly we have differences. But theideological tone of the Cold War is long over -- it's now more a meetingof partners, seeking to reconcile differing perspectives and to proceedwith the business of arms control and non-proliferation.

I mention this, because it confirms that the gravest security risk wefaced during the Cold War -- the prospect of a massive nuclear exchange-- is not the greatest security risk we face today. Many weapons remain,but they are coming down -- fast -- and a conflict that could inspire theiruse is less and less imaginable.

Today's main security risk from the former Soviet Union has a differentface. It arises from what may be called the "residue" of the Cold War -the possibility that nuclear technology, materials, and expertise may fallinto the wrong hands.

Think about it. You're Iran, or Iraq, or a terrorist group, and youwant a nuclear weapon. If you had access, you might be tempted to stealone. But it would be hard to conceal and transport, dangerous to handle,and protected by codes so you probably couldn't make it work anyway. Oryou could make your own weapon, drawing on widely available technical information.The hardest part would be to get the special nuclear material, but thena small quantity -- the volume of a soda can of plutonium, or a footballsized piece of highly-enriched uranium (HEU) -- could be enough. Indeed,if you did attain a weapon, you'd probably take it apart, to "mine" itfor the HEU or Plutonium and forget about figuring out how to operate theweapon itself.

In the wake of the Cold War, the former Soviet Union and other New IndependentStates represent potential opportunities for terrorists or rogue nationsto acquire nuclear materials and expertise on the cheap. Deterioratingeconomies and a shrinking weapons establishment have created hardshipsfor weapons scientists. Temptations for illicit trafficking in these materialsare growing. And the good news of weapons dismantlement is accompaniedby the bad news of more and potentially more accessible weapons grade material.

So as we address an arms control problem by reducing strategic weaponsthrough START, we're also confronting a mounting challenge to our non-proliferationefforts.

We're working closely with Russia to address these challenges. We'reremoving excess material from weapons programs; and we're trying to makesure that such material is never again used, by anyone, for military purposes.And we're helping to secure nuclear materials and assets, to prevent leakageto terrorists and proliferant states;

Irreversibility

We first want to make sure that fissile material is withdrawn from militarystockpiles and never again used in nuclear weapons.

-- We have established fissile material transparency regimes for HEUand plutonium.

-- We're building confidence that the HEU we're dealing with is fromdismantled nuclear weapons, and that the plutonium is weapon-grade andnewly produced.

-- We're close to completing negotiations with Russia and the InternationalAtomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on a model legal agreement to make sure that,once fissile material is removed from nuclear weapons programs, it willcome under IAEA verification.

Transparency regimes have a dual challenge: to be sure that the subjectmaterial is of the declared quantity and quality, while protecting informationsensitive to national security. One can see the sensitivities this raises-- the first objective calls for more intrusiveness; the second for less.Somewhere in between, we have to strike a workable balance.

Removing Excess Material From Weapons Programs

Once we are confident what we're dealing with, the ultimate answer,of course, is permanent disposal of the material.

As a start, combining non-proliferation goals with commercial activities,we're buying 500 tons of Russian HEU from weapons, blended down for useas civilian nuclear reactor fuel. About 30 tons will be blended down thisyear -- in essence, transforming material for weapons into electric powerfor consumers.

Plutonium is harder. The first step is to keep the problem from gettingworse. Several Russian plutonium-producing reactors also produce neededelectricity. We concluded in 1997 the Plutonium Production Reactor Agreement(PPRA), designed to convert those reactors and stop all production of weapon-gradeplutonium.

For disposal, burning plutonium requires special fuel fabrication andspecially designed or modified reactors. As a matter of policy, the U.S.does not favor a plutonium fuel cycle, because there is very little differencebetween the plutonium used in weapons and the plutonium used in bombs.But there is a big difference between making new plutonium and designingreactors to burn it, on the one hand, and using existing reactors to getrid of plutonium on the other.

In Moscow last weekend, President's Clinton and Putin announced a plutoniumdisposition agreement, under which each country must dispose of at least34 metric tons of weapon-grade plutonium by irradiating it as fuel in reactorsor by immobilizing it with high level radioactive waste, rendering it suitablefor geological disposal.

Further arms reductions will likely make more plutonium excess to defenseneeds. So additional plutonium declared excess in the future will alsobe disposed of under this agreement.

Securing Fissile Material

But these are long term solutions. The HEU agreement is for 20 years,and Russia has additional HEU beyond the first 500 tons. Plutonium dispositionwill start out at two to three tons a year, and then move up to four tons,so, again, it's a multi-year effort, even to dispose of 34 tons on eachside.

So in the meantime, the key to our efforts is improving the securityof weapon-usable material to prevent its theft, loss or unauthorized use.The security of these materials is the first line of defense against nuclearsmuggling that could lead to nuclear proliferation or nuclear terrorism.

-- To prevent the unauthorized removal of nuclear material, we're providingRussia with radiation monitors; modern access control devices; perimeteralarm systems; and tamper-indicating devices.

-- We're providing super containers, to ensure the safety and securityof nuclear weapons during transport, and we're helping to improve the securityof nuclear weapon storage.

-- We're helping Russia consolidate material in fewer, more secure sitesand to install effective accounting and security systems. The fewer siteswe need to worry about, the less is the risk of diversion, and the moreefficient the use of U.S. funds.

-- We're helping to design and construct a facility at Mayak to storefissile material from dismantled nuclear weapons. The facility, which weexpect to be completed by February, 2002, will provide for the safe, securestorage of up to 25,000 containers of former weapons
material.

-- And we're taking steps to strengthen border controls, including radiationdetection technologies, to make it harder to take nuclear materials acrossborders.

Together, these steps help make sure that Russia's nuclear materialdoes not leak out, while awaiting ultimate disposition.

Conclusion

This is a broad overview focused specifically on materials. Other programsaddress other aspects of the problem, for example, the International Scienceand Technology Centers in Moscow and Kiev that employ literally thousandsof former weapons scientists who might otherwise be tempted by job offersfrom unsavory regimes.

All of this adds up to a broad, and expensive, agenda that will requirenot only U.S., but international, leadership and determination.

We've consolidated a number of our non-proliferation efforts throughoutthe NIS. We think this is the best way to prevent the proliferation ofweapons materials, technology and expertise. The President's Enhanced ThreatReduction Initiative proposes over $4.5 billion over five years for theseefforts.

We're encouraging other nations to join in as well. Plutonium disposition,for example, is estimated as a $1.75 billion program. Thanks to Senator(Pete) Domenici's (Republican, New Mexico) leadership, the U.S. has alreadyput $200 million on the table, and expects to add at least another $200million. Now that agreement is in hand, we are working hard to secure additionalcommitments in the context of the G-8 Summit in Okinawa.

We have a great opportunity to turn nuclear swords into plowshares,but we need to act while the international consensus for action remains.

To its credit, Congress has largely supported these efforts althoughright now there are holds that are actually stopping work on such activitiesas border security, NIS export control, and the Science Centers, and we'relooking at cuts for 2001. The Secretary has been working very hard to getthe holds lifted and the cuts reversed.

I might add here that these programs add another reason to pursue theformal strategic arms reduction process under START. With the Russian economya mess and their forces headed downward anyway, some question why we shouldn'tjust let it happen, and set our own force levels as we see fit. Aside fromissues of force structure, verification, and long-term stability, anothervery good purpose to negotiate on strategic arms is to foster the cooperativeclimate that is indispensable to our joint non-proliferation efforts. STARTgives Russia confidence that we're pursuing non-proliferation and armscontrol objectives in ways that are reciprocal, stabilizing, transparent,and legally binding.

And the relationship isn't simply procedural. It's easy to foresee,for example, that proposed START III warhead transparency measures andongoing programs to assist with the dismantlement and safe and secure transportof Russian warheads could be mutually reinforcing.

Similarly, whether Russia will close or convert some of its nuclearfacilities may depend on programs that are providing jobs for displacedRussian weapon scientists and engineers -- programs that let us deal withthe expertise that went into making Russia's nuclear weapons, even as wedo something about the materials and components coming out.

So I think we're going about this business the right way, but let meleave you with one thought: we've got to continue to pursue our nuclearobjectives on a number of fronts. We can't let progress in one area obscurethe need for sustained efforts in another. In the end, all our effortshave one common objective -- enhancing U.S. security. That's what all thisis really all about.
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B. Deep Cuts; De-Alerting

1.
Trapped in the Nuclear Math
        Bruce G. Blair
        New York Times
        June 12, 2000
        (for personal use only)
 
WASHINGTON -- Both President Clinton and Gov. George W. Bush wouldlike the Pentagon to get along with fewer nuclear  warheads, and theRussians are eager for talks to push the numbers down. But top Americanmilitary officers insist that current nuclear policy  prevents themfrom shrinking our arsenal to fewer than 2,000 to 2,500  strategicweapons -- and that going lower would threaten our security.  Thereason for their position is a matter of simple arithmetic, buried in the nation's strategic war plan and ultimately linked to presidential guidance.

Defense officials do not talk openly about the nuclear targets in the strategic plan. But for 25 years, beginning with a background in the Strategic Air Command, I have studied strategic policy and operations and have had extensive contacts with officials who are knowledgeable inthese areas. I have been able to develop current estimates, and they lead inexorably to a conclusion that our leaders are clinging to outdated planning that helps keep an unnecessarily large number of American and Russian missiles pointed at one another on hair-trigger alert.

The strategic war plan consists of a very long list of targets in Russiaand  a shorter list of targets in China. The Pentagon says the UnitedStates  must be able to destroy these targets to meet current presidential guidance on nuclear war planning, a directive issued in late 1997 to getthe number of warheads down from even higher levels required in earlier plans.

Oddly enough, the target list has been growing instead of contracting since the last strategic arms reduction treaty, Start II, was signed in1993.  The list has grown by 20 percent over the last five years alone,according  to top military and former administration officials. Thevast bulk of the  targets are in Russia. Three other former republicsof the Soviet Union --  Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan -- were droppedfrom the strategic  plan in 1997, yet the list of sites the Pentagonsays we must be ready to  destroy has grown from 2,500 in 1995 to3,000 now.

My research and interviews indicate that there are about 2,260 so-called vital Russian targets on the list today, only 1,100 of them actual nuclear arms sites within Russia. By this calculation, we have nuclear weapons aimed at 500 "conventional" targets -- the buildings and bases of a hollowRussian army on the verge of disintegration; 160 leadership  targets,like government offices and military command centers, in a  countrypractically devoid of leadership; and 500 mostly crumbling  factoriesthat produced almost no armaments last year.

American strategic planners have historically set the level of damagethat  they wish to inflict on vital targets at 80 percent. This istantamount to  requiring our forces to be able to destroy 80 percentof the 2,260  Russian targets, which in turn requires the abilityto deliver nearly 1,800 warheads to their targets. It is no accident thatwe have about 2,200  strategic warheads on alert, according to numbersprovided by Strategic  Command officers. Virtually all of our missileson land are ready for  launch in two minutes, and those on four submarines,two in the Atlantic and two in the Pacific, are ready to launch on 15 minutes'notice, officers  say. The land-based missiles must leave the groundfast enough to be  sure of being in the air before Russian missilescan destroy them.

If 1,800 warheads have to be delivered quickly, the Pentagon says, we need a larger arsenal because of the demands of maintenance. For instance, typically 6 to 7 of the 18 nuclear-armed submarines are port-bound at any time and cannot be counted on to survive and delivernuclear warheads if we are attacked. Thus the United States needs one-third more sea-based strategic weapons than it can expect to deliver in wartime.

And Russia is not our missiles' only target. Responding to the 1997 presidential guidance, the Pentagon put China back into the strategic plan after a hiatus of about 20 years. For China, we now have two so-called limited attack options, involving a handful of nuclear weapons on submarinesand bombers, for striking nuclear targets, leadership sites and  criticalindustries. Compare this with scores of limited attack options  againstRussia, each using from a handful of weapons to more than 100,  aswell as a few major attack options, the smallest of which would send more than 1,000 strategic warheads to attack Russia's nuclear complex.

There are also many hundreds of secondary targets in China, Iran, Iraq and North Korea that have weapons assigned to them, though not on immediate alert, further driving up the size of the arsenal.

Add it all up, and at least 2,500 American warheads are deemed necessary to carry out nuclear war against Russia and China, countries that Al Gore recently said represent our vital partners, not our enemies.

Getting to below 2,000 warheads will be difficult unless the target requirements are eased by new presidential guidance. Of course they could be, if our leaders would bring our war plans up to date. No thoughtful American general, much less any political leader, really believes that deterrence depends on the scale of nuclear bombing with which Russia and the United States now threaten each other.

Almost without exception, our leaders regard the attack options that unleash thousands of nuclear warheads as absurd and grotesque. They do not believe that a cold-blooded, deliberate nuclear strike by either Russia or the United States is remotely plausible. The only  circumstances for nuclear war that they do consider plausible involve the use of oneor a  handful of nonstrategic weapons, like nuclear-tipped cruisemissiles,  against a country other than Russia.

Deterrence would remain robust with far smaller arsenals on far lower levels of alert. The United States and Russia should aim to cut the numbers of their nuclear weapons to the low hundreds and to take all of them off hair-trigger alert, with a view to eventually eliminating them under existing treaty obligations. As a first step, the United States could drop to 1,500 warheads, the ceiling the Russians are pushing for.

Such a force could consist of 10 submarines armed with a total of 480 warheads; 300 Minuteman III land-based missiles with one warhead apiece; 20 B-2 bombers with 16 weapons apiece, for 320; and 50 B-52 bombers modified to carry 8 warheads apiece, for 400.

A better option would be to retire the B-2 and B-52 nuclear bomber force from the arsenal and have the submarines in this mix carry 1,200 warheads. But planners cringe at the thought of removing a leg from the vaunted triad -- the mix of missiles, submarines and bombers carrying nuclear weapons -- a vestige of cold war rivalry between the Navy and the Air Force.

Even without relying on launch on warning, 1,500 warheads would be more than adequate to destroy 250 targets of any choice in retaliationfor  any surprise attack under normal conditions, and to destroy 1,000targets  in retaliation to an attack in a crisis. If the threat ofthis much nuclear  retaliation does not deter a prospective adversary,it is difficult to  conceive of anything that would.

Bruce G. Blair, a former Minuteman missile launch officer, is president of the Center for Defense Information and a co-author of "The Nuclear Turning Point."
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C. START

1.
Ivanov Says Start-3 Agreement Possible This Year
        RFE/RL
        June 12, 2000
        (for personal use only)

Speaking to journalists in Moscow on 9 June, Russian Foreign MinisterIvanov said he believes that Russia and the U.S. could reach "concreteagreements" on START-3 as early as this year. In 1997, the two sides agreedto reduce the number of warheads to 2,000-2,500 each, but since then, Moscowhas proposed slashing that figure to 1,500. Russia and the U.S. are dueto continue talks on START-3 later this month, Ivanov noted.
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D. Russian Nuclear Forces

1.
Russia Publishes Nuclear Arms Book
        Bill Gertz
        Washington Times
        June 12, 2000
        (for personal use only)

Russia's Defense Ministry and military industry have produced the firstpublic encyclopedia on its strategic nuclear arsenal that provides unprecedenteddetails about Moscow's weapons systems.

The book was produced in cooperation with arms exporters and is a comprehensivecollection of photographs and diagrams on most Soviet, and now Russian,strategic weapons systems, including intercontinental ballistic missiles,nuclear missile submarines, bombers, and testing and support facilitiesand equipment.

For example, the book lists the nuclear yield of the warhead for Russia'snewest road-mobile ICBM, the SS-27, at 0.55 megatons — or the equivalentof 550,000 tons of TNT. It also states that the missile is accurate enoughto place the warhead within 0.9 kilometers of its target.
 
A diagram shows the flight path of a 10-warhead missile fired froma submarine. The re-entry vehicle maneuvers during flight and guides eachwarhead to a target over an ocean — an implicit reference to the UnitedStates.

The book also shows a photograph of the 1-kiloton nuclear warhead usedon Russia's anti-aircraft missile interceptors that is "designed to engagesingle and multiple air targets at altitudes of 7.5 kilometers . . . upto 40 kilometers.  The highly detailed information contained in thebook on Russian missiles has raised questions among some U.S. nationalsecurity officials and experts that Moscow is preparing to put its nuclearwarhead and missile know-how up for sale.
 
One U.S. defense official said the book appears to be a "sales brochure"for Moscow's weapons exporters, who helped to produce the publication.The information also could be used by states like North Korea, Iran andIraq to assist the development of their long-range missiles, the officialsaid.

A copy of the book, "Russia's Arms and Technologies: The XXI CenturyEncyclopedia," was obtained by The Washington Times from its U.S. distributor,TommaX Inc., a New Jersey company that specializes in defense and aerospacetechnical data. The 511-page first volume on Strategic Nuclear Forces costs$495.

TommaX President Thomas J. Langan said the book provides a never-beforelook inside the Russian nuclear complex. "Some specific information hasbeen released for the first time and will be very useful to our intelligencecommunity," Mr. Langan said.

A Defense Intelligence Agency spokeswoman had no immediate comment onthe book.  Russia's Defense Minister Marshal Igor Sergeyev statedin the introduction that the series on the Russian weapons will help boostexports of Russian arms and technology.

In addition to providing information about Russia's weapons systemsand equipment, the series will show the "major directions of the Russia'smilitary-technical policy at the beginning of the 21st century and itspotentialities to export arms, military equipment and defense technologies,"the defense minister said.

As for the strategic nuclear arsenal, Mr. Sergeyev stated that nuclearweapons still are needed after the Cold War because of new dangers, includingthe increasing number of countries with nuclear arms.

"Under these circumstances, Russia's nuclear weapons, strategic aboveall, continue to be the most important deterrent and strategic stabilityfactor," he said.

Mr. Sergeyev did not say Moscow intends to sell nuclear weapons andequipment. However, he said conventional arms sales will continue. Thebook will “help Russia implement its new strategy in the field of military-technicalcooperation with other countries," he said.

He made no mention of Russia's new nuclear doctrine that places a greaterreliance on the use of nuclear weapons in conflicts because of the declinein conventional forces since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.

The book has new details on Russian nuclear command and control facilities,including mobile command posts, spy satellites and communications networksused to send orders to nuclear missile submarines.

It also contains diagrams that show the layout of nuclear missile submarinesand mock-ups showing the placement of components inside missiles.

Facts about Russia's mobile missile launchers, including important specificationsthat could be useful in making copies, also are included.

The book reveals details about once-secret Russian nuclear researchcenters, and contains photographs of the remote arctic nuclear weaponstest facility at Novaya Zemlya, where several secret tests were recentlydetected by U.S. intelligence agencies.

As for bombers, Russia's air-launched nuclear cruise missiles are shownand details about the characteristics of the missiles are included, aswell as diagrams showing aerial refueling capabilities.

Nuclear storage facilities, bomb containers and their security systemsalso are shown, information that analysts say would be useful to saboteursor thieves.

Henry Sokolski, a former Pentagon weapons proliferation specialist,said the book highlights the danger of spreading strategic nuclear weaponsinformation to rogue states.

"It is not just people pulling stuff down from the Internet or fromthe United States that people can learn about strategic weaponry or proceduresfor their use," said Mr. Sokolski, director of the Nonproliferation PolicyEducation Center.

Russia has been identified by the CIA as a major proliferator of weaponsof mass destruction and missile systems, including sales to China, Iran,Egypt, Libya and Syria.
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E. Department of Energy (DOE)

1.
Russian Nuclear Secrets Missing From Los Alamos
        RFE/RL
        June 13, 2000
        (for personal use only)

Citing the Website of "The New York Times," Western agencies on 12 Junereported that the FBI is searching for two hard drives missing from theLos Alamos nuclear research laboratory that include classified U.S. andRussian nuclear information as well as other sensitive data. Accordingto the newspaper, the hard drives were discovered to have gone missingfrom a vault at the laboratory, which had been evacuated for five daysin mid-May during nearby wildfires. Energy Department officials first learnedabout their disappearance at the beginning of this month. The New Yorkdaily also reported that the hard drives contained data used to respondto nuclear accidents and terrorist threats as well as information aboutRussia's nuclear weapons program.
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F. Arms Control -General

1.
Interview: Grey Describes "Real Progress" in Arms Control
        USIA
        June 9, 2000
        (for personal use only)

QUESTION: What will be the arms control priorities of the United Statesin the Conference on Disarmament (CD) during the remainder of the yearand what are the main obstacles to achieving those goals?

AMBASSADOR GREY: The main objective we have had here for several years is unchanged. We want to get a negotiation started on a ban on the production of fissile materials, the Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty (FMCT). This has been our objective for the past five years. We attacha great deal of importance to it. And we hope that finally maybe we can get the CD's procedural logjam broken and negotiations started.

The problem is that there are other delegations which are pressing for a more active engagement on nuclear disarmament and for a negotiation preventing the militarization of outer space. Neither one of these are issues that we think the CD is in a position to handle at this time. Weare not interested in multilateral negotiations on these two  particularsubjects, so we are continuing to try to agree on a work  programthat will get us started on FMCT and maybe enable us to  discuss thepossibilities of what we could do with the other two at  some futuredate. But they are certainly not ripe for negotiation now.

Q: During the effort to negotiate a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) one of the main obstacles was the effort by some nations to link those very specific negotiations to other topics. Are similar linkages now blocking the commencement of negotiations on an FMCT?

AMBASSADOR GREY: This is exactly the same thing. The Chinese allegethat they would like to see negotiations on all three subjects within the CD -- the demilitarization of outer space, multilateral nuclear disarmament, and the FMCT -- and that they should all be treated equally.We think there is a substantive difference. We have all agreed for yearsthat FMCT was the first priority, so we think we should start negotiatingon that now. On the others, the best outcome would be to discuss what thepossibilities are. Is there anything that could be usefully done in theCD on these subjects? Frankly, we are very skeptical.

Q: Why does the United States believe that the demilitarization of outerspace, and nuclear disarmament, are not ripe for negotiations in the CDat this time?

AMBASSADOR GREY: We have always taken the position that in nuclear disarmamentthe principal negotiations will be for the foreseeable future between theUnited States and the Russian Federation. And it is complicated enoughto get agreement between those two countries. As you know, START (StrategicArms Reduction Treaty) II was finally ratified by the Duma. Even in a bilateralrelationship, where the rules of the game are pretty clearly understood,progress in nuclear disarmament is difficult to achieve. We think thereis no possibility at this stage of the game of negotiating in a multilateralforum on nuclear disarmament. The best way forward is for us and the Russiansto keep bringing the numbers down and ultimately, over time, when the numbersget low enough, be joined by the Chinese, the French, and the British indriving the numbers still lower down, and only then would we be willingto consider bringing it into the CD or some other multilateral forum. Sothat's just the most practical way to proceed. This is an incremental step-by-stepprocess; it is not something that one can do all at once and clearly itis hard enough to negotiate at 2. One can barely contemplate how difficultit would be at 66.

Now on the question of outer space, frankly there is no arms race inouter space as far as we are concerned. We don't see anything that couldbe usefully served in trying to negotiate on that. We have a space treatywhich bans the placing of weapons of mass destruction in outer space; wethink that is sufficient. And so we are very skeptical about the need tonegotiate anything in the CD or anywhere else in that respect.

Q: Do you see any indication that the logjam could be broken this year,and what will be the impact on the prestige and viability of the Conferenceon Disarmament if the deadlock continues?

AMBASSADOR GREY: Well, there have been logjams before that have lasted for a considerable time. We have had five or six successful  negotiationsover the last two or three decades. There are periods  when progressis difficult. Other events outside the CD obviously  shape the agenda.So continued stalemate is frustrating, but I think that at the end of theday we'll get the CD back to doing what it is supposed to do, which isto negotiate multilateral arms control treaties. And obviously the firstcandidate is the FMCT treaty, which everyone agrees is the next logicalstep in multilateral arms control. So while it is frustrating and annoyingthat we can't get going, I don't think at the end of the day that it willbe fatal to the Conference on Disarmament. I think we will get a negotiationeventually. We cannot have nuclear disarmament without an FMCT agreement.If countries continue to produce fissile material that can be used fornuclear weapons, you can't have total and complete nuclear disarmament.You need to stop the production and gradually reduce the stockpiles, whichis what we are trying to do in an FMCT negotiation. Therefore, ultimatelyand inevitably this agreement has to be negotiated, and it will be negotiatedin the CD just like the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and the NuclearNon-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). So while it may take time, we have to bea little patient.

Q: Why does the U.S. consider the CD to be important to its overallnon-proliferation goals?

AMBASSADOR GREY: It has really a bigger role in arms control than innon-proliferation. I would think that the fundamental objective here isto control the weapons, and of course non-proliferation contributes tothat, but it is 50/50: -you have to have a little of each to get progress.But the CD has proven its value over the last several decades because almostevery major multilateral arms control agreement that we have achieved hascome through the CD. It is the logical place to do it. If it didn't exist,you'd have to invent it.

Q: How is the discussion in the U.S. about the possibility of a limitedNational Missile Defense affecting discussions within the CD?

AMBASSADOR GREY: The Chinese are very concerned about it. They claimthat negotiations to prevent the militarization of outer space are themost crucial concern they have. They claim that they have to have a negotiationon that in the Conference on Disarmament and appear to be blocking progresson any other negotiation until they get that. So obviously it is havinga negative impact in that sense.

The reality is that no treaty is 100 percent effective forever. Treatieshave to be adjusted to reflect changing times and changing circumstances.I think there is a growing appreciation that there is a perceptible threatout there that we have identified as something a limited ballistic missiledefense system could conceivably protect us from. That is the threat ofthe so-called rogue states. But clearly this is an unsettling propositionfor a number of countries because it means that a number of things comeinto play. Some people might think that their strategic systems will bein some way less effective because this shield exists, although the shieldis designed to protect against only 40 or 50 missiles. When you have acouple of thousand, it doesn't have much impact. But there is a lot ofexpense involved here. There is a lot of concern that it might de-couplethe United States from Europe. There is a lot of concern that it couldhave some impact in terms of the relationship between the Chinese and theJapanese, and above all, there is the concern that this kind of technology,which is terribly expensive and costly, can upset people's plans for defenseand their military spending in ways that are unpredictable.

Q: You've just returned from the NPT Review Conference. What lessonsdo you think can be drawn from it?

AMBASSADOR GREY: I think it was a successful outcome. We agreed to aforward-looking statement that reiterated the importance that we all attachto the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and we did this following a difficulttime when two countries proceeded to test. The signatories to the NPT reiterateda commitment to the treaty. They made it clear that the only way that thenations not currently participating in the NPT can participate is as non-nuclearstates, not as nuclear states.  And, we reaffirmed our commitmentto the process of moving ahead toward a world that is going to be freeof nuclear weapons. So it was a significant achievement in the face ofsome pretty discouraging events, with two countries going nuclear in thefive-year period leading up to the Review Conference.

Q: U.S. arms control officials take every opportunity to express commitmentto the universality of the NPT. How is the United States working behindthe scenes to express that commitment and to bring other countries on board?

AMBASSADOR GREY: Well, we are trying to persuade both India and Pakistanthat it is in everyone's interest to join this regime as a non-nuclearweapons state. Now this is obviously difficult in the context of Indiaand Pakistan. But we have made the point repeatedly and will continue tomake it. We cannot have normal, effective, businesslike relations withcountries that are non-adherents to the NPT. It just is not possible tohave the same kind of a relationship with them that you have with othercountries. We have made that clear. This cuts across the whole varietyof the areas of concern.

Q: Is the United States working with India and Pakistan to narrow ourdifferences on non-proliferation and, if so, how are we doing so?

AMBASSADOR GREY: We are having intense conversations with both countries,trying to persuade them not to field these weapons or to further test themor test missiles designed to go with them, and we are trying to persuadethem that ultimately the only way forward is to join the NPT as non-nuclearstates. Whether we will be successful in that or not remains to be seen.

Q: Do you think that there are lessons that other nations could takefrom the fact that South Africa has voluntarily stepped away from beinga nuclear-weapon capable state?

AMBASSADOR GREY: I would say that the South African model is a goodone. It already has had an impact and that is, of course, that both Braziland Argentina have taken a hard look at whether or not the nuclear optionmade sense to them and they both decided to join the NPT as non-nuclearstates. I think the South African example is one that was demonstrablyof interest to those two countries and to others as well. The fact of thematter is that there are only a few states  outside the NPT at themoment.

Q: What do you think about the recent suggestion that there should bean international conference on nuclear disarmament, which would be separateand apart from the NPT Review Conference?

AMBASSADOR GREY: We don't think it is a very good idea at all. We haveplenty of conferences to discuss these things. You have the General Assemblyof the United Nations. You have the U.N. Disarmament Commission. You havethe Conference on Disarmament. You have all sorts of places. The last thingwe need is still another conference. What we need are some positive negotiations.The best contribution the membership of the United Nations could make onthis issue would be to get the CD down to work on negotiating an FMCT.

Q: So in the U.S. view, the FMCT is the next logical step in arms control?

AMBASSADOR GREY: Absolutely, in terms of multilateral arms control.Obviously the START III negotiations between the Russian Federation andthe United States are very important, and obviously we need to make progresson that and we will.

Q: What has the Russian Duma's ratification of START II done for thehopes of arms controllers, and do you expect further strategic reductionsto pick up speed now?

AMBASSADOR GREY: My expectation is that now that START II has been ratifiedby the Duma, we can proceed to get to work on a START III agreement. TheSTART III numbers will be substantially lower than what we agreed in STARTII. The numbers could be anywhere from 2,500 down to 2,000, and some saythe Russians are even prepared to go to 1,500. So the numbers will dropand it will be a significant step forward. After START III, we may be ina position where we will have reduced our nuclear holdings on both sidesby around 80 percent.

Q: Do you think that arms control in general is on the wane or in aperiod of ascendancy?

AMBASSADOR GREY: Arms control is happening all the time. The numbersof both American systems and Russian systems are diminishing rapidly aswe talk. Fissile material is being eliminated, being put under internationalsafeguards and blended down so that it can only be used for commercialpurposes. The reality is that we are probably doing more arms control nowthan we have ever done. The problem is that it is not encapsulated in formalnegotiations or formal settings like the CD or in ongoing bilateral relations,but it is occurring every day of  the week. There is an illusion thatnothing is happening, but the reality is quite different. And I think thatis something that people have to understand -- that a lot of the work weare doing with the Russians is not generally well known. We are spendingseveral million dollars to assist them in protecting their stockpiles anddisposing of these weapons, etc, etc. This is real progress as opposedto talk.

Q: Critics of the United States sometimes say that we are only periodically committed to arms control just before the NPT conference eachtime it rolls around. How would you respond?

AMBASSADOR GREY: Well that is just nonsense. If you look at the recordof what we have done over the past ten years or since the end of the ColdWar, it is a huge accomplishment. And it's a systematic one. And frankly,we put our money where our mouth is. A lot of people just talk.
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G. ABM, Missile Defense

1.
Group Urges President To Bar Missile Defense
        Washington Post
        June 13, 2000
        (for personal use only)

A group of arms control advocates and prominent U.S. experts on Russiayesterday made public a letter urging President Clinton not to approvedeployment of a National Missile Defense system when he makes a decisionon the program later this year.

"Current plans for NMD present Russia with an intractable policy dilemmathat could trigger major security and economic problems," says the four-paragraphletter, signed by 33 university professors, former diplomats and scholarsat various think tanks, including Arthur Hartman, President Ronald Reagan'sambassador to the Soviet Union; Timothy Colton and Marshall Goldman ofHarvard; Robert Legvold of Columbia; David Holloway of Stanford; BruceParrott of Johns Hopkins; and William C. Potter of the Monterey Instituteof International Studies.

Even the limited missile defense system proposed by the Clinton administration,which would consist of 100 interceptor missiles in Alaska, "poses an implicitthreat to Russia's deterrent force," they wrote. "Russian military analystsconsider this an unacceptable risk" that would require Moscow to maintain,rather than reduce, its "still enormous" nuclear arsenal, the letter adds.

The administration contends that Russia could easily overwhelm the proposedsystem, which is designed to handle small-scale attacks from unpredictablestates, such as North Korea and Iran, and bears an estimated price tagof up to $60 billion.

Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush has called for a muchmore ambitious program to build space-based as well as land-based interceptorsthat could protect not just the United States but also its allies.
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