1991 Congressional Hearings
Intelligence and Security


Basis Date:
J. Dingell
House Energy and Commerce
Docfile Number:
Hearing Date:
DOE Lead Office:
Oversight and Investigations
Hearing Subject:
Witness Name:
J. Tuck
Hearing Text:

                              STATEMENT OF JOHN C. TUCK
                              UNDER SECRETARY OF ENERGY
                              U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
                                       before the
                           COMMITTEE ON ENERGY AND COMMERCE
                        U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
                        DOE's NUCLEAR NON-PROLIFERATION ROLE
                                    April 24, 1991
 Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity to appear before your
 Subcommittee today to discuss the role of the Department of Energy
 (DOE) in performing its nuclear nonproliferation responsibilities,
 including the interaction between DOE and other U.S. Government
 agencies and international organizations.
 As you requested in your letter of April 10, 1991, I will direct my
 remarks primarily to the Department's role in performing its
 nuclear  nonproliferation responsibilities.
 As President Bush stated in his first State of the Union message,
 "The spread of nuclear weapons must be stopped .... Our diplomacy
 must work every day against the proliferation of nuclear weapons."
 This has been  the policy of every President since the advent of
 nuclear weapons on  August 6, 1945.  The implementation of this
 policy has never been so  evident as with the actions taken with
 regard to Iraq in the past few  months.  The conditions which the
 U.S. Government insisted that Iraq  accept for a permanent
 ceasefire include several specifically designed  to halt and
 reverse Iraq's efforts to develop and produce nuclear,  chemical,
 or biological weapons and the missiles to deliver them.   Iraq's
 Scud missile attacks on Saudi Arabia and Israel were a reminder
 that these could have been launched with warheads other than high
 explosives.  If Iraq's nuclear and chemical/biological and missile
 programs were allowed to proceed unchallenged, other countries
 could be  the target of such an aggressive regime within the next
 The Department, under the direction of Secretary Watkins, is firmly
 committed to President Bush's goal of stopping nuclear proliferation
 and we take our responsibilities in this area very seriously. Because
 we recognize that this goal is one of our most difficult challenges,
 DOE has, in cooperation with other interested agencies, undertaken
 major efforts to achieve it. First let me cover recent organizational
 changes initiated by Admiral Watkins before I discuss DOE's
 nonproliferation role.
 RECENT REORGANIZATION ACTIVITIES: At the time of his appointment
 as Secretary of Energy in March 1989, it was immediately apparent
 to Admiral Watkins that the general organizational and management
 responsibilities of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for
 Defense  Programs were too far-reaching and complex for one
 individual to  oversee.  The Admiral recognized that in order to
 establish better  downsize the overall role and responsibilities of
 the ASDP to include  management and accountability of this office,
 it would be necessary to  only the  national security related
 functions of Nuclear Weapons  Research, Development and Production,
 Nuclear Materials Production, and  Arms Control and Verification.
 Admiral Watkins also became concerned with a number of issues
 related  to DOE's intelligence program as well as the status of
 safeguards and  security throughout the complex.  This caused him
 to take two separate  actions to address these matters.
 First, he asked retired Rear Admiral Sumner Shapiro, formerly Chief
 of  Naval Intelligence, who had completed a comprehensive study of
 DOE's  intelligence programs in April 1988, to once again evaluate
 the program  and provide his recommendations for setting a new
 Second, he commissioned a study conducted by retired Army Major
 General  James E. Freeze to review the broad area of safeguards and
 Based on the findings and recommendations resulting from those
 studies  the Secretary directed organizational realignments to
 clarify and  strengthen accountability and responsibility for
 intelligence and  safeguards and security related activities while
 concurrently reducing  the span of control for the overburdened
 Assistant Secretary for  Defense Programs.
 On April 6, 1990, Secretary. Watkins transferred DOE's intelligence
 programs from the Assistant Secretary for Defense Programs into a
 newly  created Office of Intelligence headed by the Honorable
 Robert W.  Daniel, Jr.  And, on April 1, 1991, the Secretary
 established an Office  of Security Affairs whose primary
 responsibilities include the  safeguards and security throughout
 DOE and the classification and  protection of Restricted Data and
 national security related information  entrusted to the Department.
 These functions will now report  directly to my office.
 On a broader front, Admiral Watkins was concerned by the
 Department's  lack of a single, high-level individual who could
 serve him as a  scientific and technical advisor.  Crosscutting
 issues that he felt  were not being adequately addressed included:
      o    the overall health of the DOE National Laboratory system,
           and, in  particular, the effectiveness of Laboratory
           efforts for both DOE  sponsors and sponsors in other
           agencies of the Federal government;
      o    priority setting and integration among DOE research
           programs; and
      o    the overall vigor and direction of the Department's
           technology  transfer program.
 To obtain impartial advice on all three areas, Admiral Watkins will
 soon formally establish a Department-wide Science and Technology
 Advisor, with Deputy Science and Technology Advisors for major
 portions  of the Department's R&D program--both for defense and
 civilian  applications. One key feature of this reorganization will
 be the  implementation to a Director of Technology Utilization
 under the  assignment of coordination of DOE technology transfer
 policy and  Science and  Technology Advisor.    This position will
 promote the  coherence of the overall Department program in support
 of technology  transfer.
 To improve the nuclear nonproliferation posture of the Department,
 on  April 1, 1991, Secretary Watkins, transferred the Technology
 Policy  Division's export control and nonproliferation
 responsibilities to the  Office of Arms Control in Defense
 Programs. This, I believe, is the  first step in an evolving
 process to combine the various nonproliferation activities and
 responsibilities within one office  reaction to any one event but
 that the Secretary has had this issue  within the Department.
 It should also be noted that this is not a  under  consideration
 since the Fall of 1989. The export control and  associated nuclear
 nonproliferation functions now complement those  responsibilities
 of the Arms Control Office relating to the control of missile,
 chemical, and  biological weapons and verification technology.
 policy  and initiatives are developed by an interagency group
 composed  primarily of representatives from the Department of
 Energy, the  Department of State, the Arms Control and Disarmament
 Agency the  Department of Defense and the Department of Commerce.
 These agencies  are represented on the Nonproliferation Policy
 Coordinating Committee  which is chaired by the Department of
 EXPORT CONTROLS: Most of the Department's export control activities
 are  based on two statutory provisions: Section 57b of the Atomic
 Energy Act  of 1954 and Section 309(c) of the Nuclear Non-
 Proliferation Act of  1978.
 Section 57b of the Atomic Energy Act requires that U.S. firms or
 individuals intending to engage, directly or indirectly, in the
 production of special nuclear material outside the United States
 obtain  the authorization of the Secretary of Energy. The Federal
 regulations  that implement this statutory requirement appear as 10
 CFR Part 810.   Because of the significance of this responsibility,
 the Atomic Energy  Act does not permit the Secretary of Energy to
 delegate the authorizing  function.
 At the present time,   U.S. persons intending to engage in
 activities  falling within the scope of 10  CFR Part 810 must
 submit an application  to the Department of Energy's Office of
 Defense Programs. A DOE staff analysis and a proposed
 recommendation to the Secretary are  circulated to the Department
 of State for concurrence and to the Departments of Defense and
 Commerce, the Arms  Control and Disarmament Agency, and the Nuclear
 Regulatory Commission  for their views. Only after the other
 agencies have been consulted does  the Secretary determine whether
 or not to authorize the activity.
 I might mention that we have had only one Part 810 case for Iraq in
 recent years. This was in 1990 and involved a U.S. company that had
 been asked to present a training course at the Tuwaitha Nuclear
 Research Center. On July 13, 1990, DOE staff informed the applicant
 that because the proposed activity was contrary to existing policy,
 they were unable to recommend approval to the Secretary.
 Section 309 (c) of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act requires the
 Department of Commerce to control dual-use exports of potential
 nuclear  concern. On June 9, 1978,  the Departments of State,
 Energy, and Commerce jointly published "Procedures Established
 Pursuant to the  Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act of 1978," to jointly
 establish and  maintain a list of such export items, known as the
 Nuclear Referral  List. Whenever Commerce receives an application
 to export an item on  refers the application to DOE for a review
 and recommendation. In  the Nuclear Referral List to a country of
 proliferation concern, it  keeping the  list up to date and in
 making reviews, the Department of  Commerce relies extensively on
 the technical experts within the  Department as well as its
 contractor facilities to assess the  significance of the technology
 involved, its value to a would-be  nuclear proliferant, and the
 ease and likelihood of its diversion to a  clandestine nuclear
 Whenever DOE's review of dual -use cases raises a potential
 proliferation concern, DOE refers the case to the Subgroup on
 Nuclear  Export Coordination (SNEC), an interagency forum mandated
 by the  Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act. The Department of State
 chairs the Subgroup and DOE serves as the Secretariat. Other
 members of the Subgroup on Nuclear Export Coordination are
 the  Departments of Defense and Commerce, the Arms Control and
 Disarmament  Agency, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The
 Central Intelligence  Agency, National Security Agency and the
 Defense Intelligence Agency  have observer status.
 proliferation of nuclear weapons, a viable and effective
 international  nonproliferation regime must be in place.  The two
 major components of  such a regime are the Nuclear Nonproliferation
 Treaty (NPT) and the  International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). To
 monitor compliance with  NPT provisions, the Treaty provides for
 the application of  international safeguards by the International
 Atomic Energy Agency.    safeguards system and technical assistance
 activities, to keep IAEA a  The Department provides and coordinates
 support for the IAEA, its  strong  viable organization and to
 maintain and monitor effectiveness  of IAEA safeguards.
 The Department also participates in varied bilateral and
 multilateral  activities with other countries to promote and
 strengthen international  nonproliferation activities including
 control of exports by supplier  countries.  In this regard, DOE has
 been an active participant in  various international export control
 mechanisms -- including the  Coordinating Committee on Multilateral
 Export Controls (COCOM), the  Zangger Committee and the Nuclear
 Suppliers Group.
 COCOM is comprised of our NATO allies, minus Iceland, plus Japan
 and  Australia. COCOM members agree to control exports of strategic
 significance to the Soviet Union, the People's Republic of China,
 and  their allies. DOE, along with the other agencies, provides the
 technical and policy support to the Department of State in
 formulating  COCOM's Industrial List (IL) of dual-use commodities;
 DOE provides the principal support in formulating COCOM's
 International  Atomic Energy List (AEL) which describes nuclear
 materials, equipment,  and technologies considered to be of
 strategic significance.
 The Zangger Committee, based in Vienna, Austria, implements Article
 III  of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which prohibits the
 export of  specially designed equipment or material used in the
 production of  special nuclear material unless under International
 Atomic Energy  Agency (IAEA) safeguards. The Committee has
 developed a so-called  "trigger list" of items that trigger the
 mandatory implementation of  IAEA safeguards to ensure peaceful
 DOE, in conjunction with the Department of State and other
 agencies,  has initiated the upgrade of the "trigger list" for the
 control of gas  centrifuge and gaseous diffusion enrichment and
 reprocessing  components. DOE has also developed and published a
 guide on gaseous  diffusion and gas centrifuge equipment to assist
 officials in this and  other countries in enforcing export control
 laws based on the Zangger  "trigger list."
 The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) -- of which France is a member --
 was  formed at the initiative of the United States and in response
 to the  Indian nuclear explosion in 1974.  The aim was to address
 the need  for more comprehensive guidelines for control of exports
 of nuclear  technology.   The Zangger list controls only equipment
 and  material especially designed for the production of special
 nuclear  material. It does not address technology, nor does it
 address dual-use  components that can contribute to a nuclear
 Last year, the U.S. Government began a series of bilateral
 discussions  with other countries to lay the groundwork for
 establishing an  International Dual-Use List of items that all
 supplier countries should control from a nuclear  proliferation
 standpoint. These bilateral discussions led to a meeting  of 26
 nuclear supplier countries in March in The Hague at which there
 was a clear consensus that such an International Dual-Use List
 should  be adopted.
 Allow me to note that the International Dual-Use List effort traces
 back to an initiative launched in March 1990 by the Department of
 Energy. And, drawing on the expertise of the DOE nuclear weapons
 laboratories, DOE developed a draft list that the U.S. Government
 is  circulating to the other supplier countries. DOE also is
 participating  DOE-drafted U.S. Government list to form the basis
 of these  in the bilateral and multilateral meetings and we expect
 the  discussions.
 INTELLIGENCE SUPPORT:  Intelligence support is key to the success
 of  our nonproliferation actions. The Department of Energy's
 national  laboratory complex provides much of the technical
 undergirding for the  U.S. Intelligence Community's extensive
 research and analysis on  nuclear proliferation. For over fifteen
 years DOE Intelligence and its  national laboratory resources have
 been leaders in the establishment  and development of the
 proliferation intelligence program, in constant  agencies.
 Resources have been arrayed in direct support of numerous  and
 close coordination with all U.S. Intelligence Community member
 U.S.  nonproliferation policy determinations and enforcement
 DOE's intelligence capabilities and performance in the nuclear
 proliferation field are second to none and have been highly
 supportive  of this Department's senior management as it carries
 out its critical  nuclear nonproliferation responsibilities. As I
 mentioned in my  introduction, DOE's intelligence program was
 removed from Defense  Programs a year ago to restore the balance
 between intelligence support  for defense and for non-defense
 programs. Additionally, we  brought in a new management team, under
 the direction of Mr. Daniel, to  augment the program's
 responsiveness to Secretary Watkins' priorities,  guidance and
 requirements. Additional resources have also been  committed to
 this important function.
 This transition was effected without disruption to our
 proliferation intelligence program which, I wish to emphasize, has
 consistently kept  our senior management informed about foreign
 nuclear programs of  proliferation concern. For example, the Iraqi
 nuclear program has been  under close scrutiny for a very long
 time, and in my two-year tenure as  Under Secretary the DOE
 intelligence program has been a U.S. Government  leader in properly
 characterizing Iraqi nuclear capabilities and  associated with the
 Iraqi nuclear program and furnished this data to  intentions. As
 another example, we identified and prioritized targets  the
 Department of Defense in support of Operation Desert Storm.
 DOE's Role in UN Military Denuclearization Plan for Iraq: One of
 the  most recent significant international non-proliferation
 actions taken  by the Department was directed at Iraq.  In the wake
 of the Gulf War,  DOE's nonproliferation community played a
 critical role in formulating  the U.S. Government's plan for
 eliminating Iraq's future capability to  intra-departmental
 cooperation, the Department organized a Task Force  develop nuclear
 weapons.  In an outstanding example of that,  in two-and-a-half
 days of intensive effort, prepared a detailed  assessment of what
 it would take in terms of personnel, time, and money  to ensure
 Iraq's military denuclearization well into the future.  Admiral
 Watkins recently wrote to Secretary of State Baker, on April  12,
 1991, that he had "...taken steps to ensure that the Department of
 Energy's considerable intelligence and technical resources stand
 ready  to support the United Nations-mandated demilitarization of
 Iraq's nuclear program."  A DOE task force is assisting Secretary
 Baker  under the direction of Dr. Victor Alessi, Director of Arms
 DOE, led by Admiral Watkins, continues to play a very important
 role in  both U.S. Government and international efforts to prevent
 the further  proliferation of nuclear weapons.  We take our
 responsibilities very  seriously and are continuously reviewing our
 performance to look for  ways in which to improve.
 Mr. Chairman, that concludes my statement.  I would be pleased to
 answer any questions that you or other members of the Subcommittee
 may  have.