FAS Roundup: April 7, 2014

By April 7, 2014

New START data, classified nuclear weapon drawings missing at labs and more.

From the Blogs

Classified Nuclear Weapon Drawings Missing at Labs: According to a report released by the Department of Energy Inspector General, classified design drawings used in the manufacture of nuclear weapons have not been properly and reliably maintained by nuclear weapons labs managed by the National Nuclear Security Administration. “NNSA sites could not always locate as-built product definitions or associated drawings for nuclear weapons and components in official records repositories.” At the Pantex Plant, “officials were concerned and surprised at the difficulty in finding as-built product definitions for the nuclear weapons,” the DoE IG report said.

New START Data Shows Russian Increase, U.S. Decrease of Deployed Warheads: The latest data released by the State Department for the New START treaty shows that Russia has increased its counted deployed strategic nuclear forces over the past six months, while the United States has decreased its deployed launchers. Both countries are slowly reducing their strategic nuclear weapons to meet the New START treaty limit by 2018 of no more than 1,550 strategic warheads on 700 deployed launchers.

“Too Mild a Nuclear Option”? National Security in the 1970s: U.S. nuclear weapons strategy evolved during the Nixon administration from a reflexive policy of massive retaliation against a Soviet attack to a diverse range of options for more limited nuclear strikes. A declassified 1974 memo recorded that National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger at first needed some persuading about the efficacy of limited strikes. The formerly Top Secret memo (document 36) is one of many that appeared in a richly informative 1,000-page new volume of the State Department’s Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) series on National Security Policy, 1973-1976 that was released last week.

Constitutional Challenges to NSA Collection and More from CRS: Secrecy News has obtained recently released CRS reports on topics such as review of the FISA courts, overview of Constitutional challenges to NSA collection activities and foreign assistance to North Korea.

Pacific Scholars Policy Papers

Pacific Security Scholars (PSS) policy papers are now available, examining  security issues and policy implications of emerging security issues in the Pacific region. The inaugural class of the PSS program provided leading post-graduate and research degree students from Pacific Island countries with an opportunity to be part of the global discourse on “International Security and the Pacific Islands.” Lora Vaioleti examines the impact of climate change on food security in Tonga and Briar Thompson examines the impact of 3D printing on security in Pacific Island Countries.

Read the papers here. 


Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament Policy Papers

Last year, the Pacific Islands Society launched a new program entitled the Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament. The program was designed to provide young leaders from the Pacific Islands Region with an opportunity to have their voice heard on contemporary disarmament topics. The participants wrote “Statements to the Conference on Disarmament,” reflecting their personal views on how Conference on Disarmament can better advance the global discourse on disarmament and thereby promote the interests of the Pacific Islands Region.

Read the statements here.

Screening and Panel Discussion of “Garwin: Witness to History”

On Tuesday, April 22, FAS, Syracuse University, and AAAS are hosting a screening of a new documentary exploring the distinguished (and controversial) career of Dr. Richard Garwin, “Garwin: Witness to History.” The event will be held at AAAS  in Washington, DC.

Dr. Garwin was a principal member of the team that designed the first hydrogen bomb in 1952 and has served as an advisor to every president since Eisenhower on issues of war and peace. He has dealt with important security issues such as nuclear proliferation, arms control, missile defense, and global warming. The filmmakers traveled across the country with Dr. Garwin as he pursued these and other issues.

Following the screening, there will be a panel discussion with Dr. Garwin and filmmakers Professor Richard Breyer and Mr. Anand Kamalakar.

RSVP and event schedule available here. 

Conference: Faith Communities on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons                            

Soka Gakkai International-USA, the Federation of American Scientists, Abolition 2000, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, Pax Christi International, Pax Christi USA and Women’s Action for New Directions invite you to a one-day conference examining the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons and means for collaboration between the faith and advocacy communities on Thursday, April 24, 2014 at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, DC. The event will be held from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm.

Leaders from faith-based organizations, advocacy groups and government will come together to examine topics such as how faith views nuclear weapons, areas for partnership and U.S. nuclear policy.

The conference is free but advanced registration is required.

To RSVP and for conference agenda, click here. 

Short Course on CBRN Weapons, Science and Policy

FAS and George Mason University will host a short course from July 7-9, 2014 as part of GMU’s 2014 summer program in International Security. This three day, non-credit short course is designed to introduce participants to the science, security, and policy dimensions of the threats of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) weapons as well as ballistic and cruise missile.

This course is aimed at professionals in energy policy, nuclear policy, nuclear industry, public health, life sciences, law enforcement, emergency management and national security who have responsibilities for preventing, preparing for, or responding to acts by states, criminals, or terrorists using chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons. Early bird registration is $1,300 until May 15 and 2.1 Continuing Ed Units will be awarded upon completion of course.

Click here for course information and registration. 

FAS in the News

Categories: FAS Roundup