A White House official confirmed that U.S. envoys will push to establish global standards for safeguarding sensitive materials at an upcoming Nuclear Security Summit.
Washington is seeking “a core group of countries” to spearhead the adoption of potentially binding rules that could help prevent atomic materials from proliferating or falling into the hands of terrorists, said Laura Holgate, a senior director on the National Security Council staff.
Delegates from more than 50 countries are slated to gather for the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague in just a few weeks, and preparations have been ongoing behind the scenes about outcomes of the March 24-25 gathering.
The summits are seen as closely tied to President Obama’s tenure in office. He conceptualized and hosted the inaugural such gathering in Washington in 2010.
Speaking at a March 3 event sponsored by Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum in Cambridge, Mass., Holgate said the efforts to further strengthen nuclear security must continue beyond formal biennial gatherings.
The core group of countries envisioned by the White House would help create an “architecture” for nuclear security, Holgate said, essentially lending a level of formality to what is now primarily a voluntary undertaking.
Global Security Newswire reported last month that the United States, the Netherlands and South Korea had begun soliciting pledges from summit participants aimed complying with international guidelines for the protection of nuclear materials.
Samantha Pitts-Kiefer, a senior program officer at the Nuclear Threat Initiative who spoke at the same event, called the time between the summits of 2014 and 2016 a “window of opportunity.”
“If it closes and this work is not done, it’s going to be a problem because there is no institution right now to pick up the slack,” Pitts-Kiefer said.
Holgate acknowledged that work also remains in convincing governments of the “base case” for securing their nuclear material — namely, that preventing its theft is in both their individual interest and that of the international community.
- 1 The Net Has Never Been ‘Neutral’
- 2 Congress Says NIH Should Have Spent Money on Ebola Instead of Puppet Shows and Rabbit Massages
- 3 Obama’s ‘Privacy Bill of Rights’ Gets Bashed from All Sides
- 4 Army Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland to Lead U.S. Fight Against ISIS
- 5 The Forgotten, Radical Martin Luther King Jr.
What We're Following See More »
President Obama became a surprise topic of contention toward the end of the Democratic debate, as Hillary Clinton reminded viewers that Sanders had challenged the progressive bona fides of President Obama in 2011 and suggested that someone might challenge him from the left. “The kind of criticism that we’ve heard from Senator Sanders about our president I expect from Republicans, I do not expect from someone running for the Democratic nomination to succeed President Obama,” she said. “Madame Secretary, that is a low blow,” replied Sanders, before getting in another dig during his closing statement: “One of us ran against Barack Obama. I was not that candidate.”
It’s all about the 1% and Wall Street versus everyone else for Bernie Sanders—even when he’s talking about race relations. Like Hillary Clinton, he needs to appeal to African-American and Hispanic voters in coming states, but he insists on doing so through his lens of class warfare. When he got a question from the moderators about the plight of black America, he noted that during the great recession, African Americans “lost half their wealth,” and “instead of tax breaks for billionaires,” a Sanders presidency would deliver jobs for kids. On the very next question, he downplayed the role of race in inequality, saying, “It’s a racial issue, but it’s also a general economic issue.”
It’s been said in just about every news story since New Hampshire: the primaries are headed to states where Hillary Clinton will do well among minority voters. Leaving nothing to chance, she underscored that point in her opening statement in the Milwaukee debate tonight, saying more needs to be done to help “African Americans who face discrimination in the job market” and immigrant families. She also made an explicit reference to “equal pay for women’s work.” Those boxes she’s checking are no coincidence: if she wins women, blacks and Hispanics, she wins the nomination.
Under pressure from a judge, the State Department will release about 550 of Hillary Clinton’s emails—“roughly 14 percent of the 3,700 remaining Clinton emails—on Saturday, in the middle of the Presidents Day holiday weekend.” All of the emails were supposed to have been released last month. Related: State subpoenaed the Clinton Foundation last year, which brings the total number of current Clinton investigations to four, says the Daily Caller.