House Renews Ban on CRS Publication of Its Reports
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) will continue to be barred from releasing its reports to the public, the House Appropriations Committee said in its report on legislative branch appropriations for the coming year. Because Congress prohibits CRS from publishing its own reports, most CRS reports are only available to the public from non-governmental organizations that take the initiative to gather and publish them. Many of the reports can be found in a collection that is maintained and regularly updated by FAS.LEARN MORE
Pentagon Report: China Deploys MIRV Missile
The Pentagon's latest annual report on Chinese military power claims that China's ICBM force now includes the "multiple independently-targetable re-entry vehicle (MIRV)-equipped Mod 3 (DF-5).” Hans Kristensen writes that for China to join the MIRV club strains China’s claim of having a minimum nuclear deterrent and is another worrisome sign that China – like the other nuclear-armed states – are trapped in a dynamic technological nuclear arms competition.LEARN MORE
Obama Admin Releases New Nuclear Warhead Numbers
In a speech to the Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry disclosed new information about the size of the U.S. nuclear weapon stockpile, declaring that as of September 2014 there were 4,717 warheads. Additionally, Kerry disclosed the official number of retired warheads in line for dismantlement (2,500), which had not been revealed before. Hans Kristensen writes that this surprise disclosure is an important diplomatic gesture that will help the United States make its case at the NPT review conference that it is living up to its obligations under the treaty.LEARN MORE
Is China Planning to Build More Missile Submarines?
Over the past few months, several U.S. defense and intelligence officials have stated for the record that China is planning to build significantly more nuclear-powered missile submarines than previously assumed. Recently, the commander of US Pacific Command (PACOM), Admiral Samuel Locklear, stated that in addition to the three Jin-class SSBNs currently in operation, “up to five more may enter service by the end of the decade.” Hans Kristensen writes that there are many questions related to the building of more subs, including the timetable and operation, as China does not have much experience operating SSBNs on lengthy patrols.LEARN MORE