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Nuclear Weapons
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Venezuela’s Military Build-up: Who’s Watching the Guns?

On November 29th, Venezuela received the final shipment of the 100,000 AK-103 assault rifles that it purchased from Russia last year. Despite the high-profile nature of this sale, little is known about Venezuela’s plans for safeguarding the rifles, which would be a hot commodity on the region’s vibrant black market. It’s time to start asking […]

12.19.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Entrenched Views of the Defense Science Board

Hans Kristensen has just posted an excellent analysis of the new Defense Science Board (DSB) report Nuclear Capabilities. The report presents what is known to the military as a “target rich environment” so we might make a few more comments over the next couple of days. I want to focus here on the section, starting […]

12.15.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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U.S. Nuclear Posture at a Crossroad, Defense Science Board Says

The Defense Science Board concludes in a new report that the United States has lost its “national consensus” on what the nation’s nuclear deterrent should look like and the role it should serve. The consensus has been replaced by an “entrenchment” of “sharp differences” of opinion. Therefore, urgent action is needed by the White House […]

12.15.06 | 4 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Britain’s Next Nuclear Era

After having spent the last several years sending diplomats to Teheran to try to persuade Iran not to develop nuclear weapons, the British government announced Monday that it plans to renew its own nuclear arsenal. If approved by the parliament, Monday’s decision means that the United Kingdom will extend its nuclear deterrent beyond 2050, essentially […]

12.07.06 | 6 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Jason Releases Summary of Long-awaited Plutonium Aging Report

A key uncertainty affecting our confidence in the long-term reliability of nuclear weapons is the stability of the plutonium in the core, or “pit.” The pit is a sphere or shell of plutonium that is compressed by conventional explosives to create the supercritical mass required to sustain a nuclear chain reaction. In hydrogen bombs, this […]

12.03.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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New Report: Chinese Nuclear Forces and U.S. Nuclear War Planning

An incipient nuclear arms race is emerging between China and the United States, according to a new report published today by the Federation of American Scientists and the Natural Resources Defense Council. The 250-page report, Chinese Nuclear Forces and U.S. Nuclear War Planning, outlines the status and possible future development of China’s nuclear weapons, describes […]

11.30.06 | 5 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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US-China Commission Report Toned Down; Errors Remain

The annual report published Monday by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission is different – kind of toned-down – compared with the report published in 2005. The Commission hasn’t gone soft on China, and the report continues the strong critique of China that has characterized the Commission since it was established in 2000. But […]

11.22.06 | 4 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Arms to Somalia: Déjà vu

The latest report from the UN group that monitors the arms embargo on Somalia has caused quite a stir, generating extensive news coverage and eliciting vehement denials from governments accused of violating the embargo. But, as underscored by declassified US intelligence documents from the 1990s, such disregard for the embargo is nothing new. The documents, […]

11.20.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Update: Shoulder-fired Missile Proliferation

There have been several recent reports of the acquisition and (attempted) use of shoulder-fired missiles by terrorists and insurgents. Below is a quick summary of these reports: El Salvador: Foiled Assassination Attempt The most dramatic of these reports is that of a foiled assassination attempt against Salvadoran President Tony Saca. During a 6 October interview […]

11.14.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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New Article: Where the Bombs Are

B83 thermonuclear bombs at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana.                     Image © Paul Shambroom Ever wondered where all those nukes are stored? A new review published in the November/December issue of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists shows that the United States stores its nearly 10,000 nuclear warheads at 18 locations in 12 states and six European […]

11.09.06 | 3 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Sally Lilienthal, Founder of Ploughshares Fund, Dies

Sally Lilienthal, the founder of the Ploughshares Fund, died on 24 October at age 87. All who knew her agreed that she was a force of nature. Some who have heard about the Ploughshares Fund do not realize how it actually works. It does not have an endowment. It is, itself, a fund-raising organization that […]

10.27.06 | 1 min read
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Nuclear Weapons
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Defense Industry Gears Up for “Phase Two” of Arms Export Control Reform Campaign

The Defense Industry is laying the groundwork for yet another attempt to “reform” the US arms export control system. At a briefing held at the Heritage Foundation last week, Mark Esper of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) announced that the AIA is “fine tuning” Phase two of its campaign, which will, according to AIA’s newsletter, […]

10.26.06 | 1 min read
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