Council on Foreign Relations Gets It Wrong on India

The Council on Foreign Relations just released a “Special Report,” U.S.-India Nuclear Cooperation by Michael Levi and Charles Ferguson. Mike and Charles are first rate thinkers but I disagree with almost every aspect of their report.

The report is seductively misleading because many of the recommendations make good sense given the presumptions and context of the report. But the presumptions and context are wrong. So first, we need to step back and examine the context. The authors state early on that “…the Bush administration has stirred deep passions and put Congress in the seemingly impossible bind of choosing between approving the deal and damaging nuclear nonproliferation, or rejecting the deal and thereby setting back an important strategic relationship.” [p. 3] This is true, but the problem is with the deal, not the implementation.
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NATO Nuclear Policy at Odds with Public Opinion

Almost 70 percent of people in European countries that currently store U.S. nuclear weapons want a Europe free of nuclear weapons, according to an opinion poll published by Greenpeace International. In contrast, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld suggested in an interview with Der Spiegel last November that the Europeans want to keep U.S. nuclear weapons.

Question: “Do You Want Europe to be Free of Nuclear Weapons or Not?”

Background: U.S. Nuclear Weapons in Europe