What’s next on nonproliferation and international security, in Washington and around the globe.
— April 7-11: The theme of the University of Colorado Boulder’s 66th Annual Conference on World Affairs is “Everything Conceivable” — and, yes, it refers not only to wide-ranging topics but also a bit of sex. Kicking off with showings of “The Graduate,” some of the plentiful — but less sexy? — discussion sessions include: Eliminating Terrorism or Creating Terrorists“; “Negotiating with Iran: An Opening or a Trojan Horse”; and “Future of Nuclear.”
— April 7-25: The United Nations Disarmament Commission holds its annual meeting in New York. The body is tasked with formulating consensus principles, guidelines and recommendations for endorsement by the General Assembly. Small caveat, from the commission’s website: “However, in the past decade, it has not been able to agree on a substantial outcome.”
— April 8: Lots of hearings on Capitol Hill this week. To start, the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Intelligence, Emerging Threats and Capabilities will consider the budgets of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the Defense Department’s Chemical and Biological Defense Program. DTRA Director Kenneth Myers is among the witnesses, along with other senior Pentagon officials.
— April 8: Lawmakers are also interested in Russia, naturally. The House Armed Services Committee will hold a hearing titled, “Russian Military Developments and Strategic Implications.” Witnesses were still TBD at press time.
— April 8: The House Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces will hear testimony from Defense Department officials on “Atomic Energy Defense and Nuclear Forces.” Witnesses include representatives from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Air Force, the Navy, and the National Nuclear Security Administration.
— April 8-10: The 2014 World Nuclear Fuel Cycle conference takes place in San Francisco, organized by the industry lobbying organizations Nuclear Energy Institute and World Nuclear Association. One nonproliferation-related event is included on the mostly business-focused agenda: “Industry-Government Partnership on Nonproliferation: Where Do We Go From Here?”
— April 9: Tokyo-watchers might be interested in a seminar at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, titled, “Japan and the U.S. Nuclear Umbrella: Extended Deterrence and Nuclear Weapons.” The speaker is research fellow Terence Roehrig, who also is a professor at the U.S. Naval War College.
— April 9: The Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces will hold a hearing to illuminate the National Nuclear Security Administration’s management of the national labs and the “nuclear-security enterprise” generally. Senior officials from Los Alamos, Sandia and Lawrence Livermore will testify in a first panel. A second panel comprises Norman Augustine and retired Adm. Richard Mies, whose independent advisory group declared in a recent report to lawmakers that the National Nuclear Security Administration had failed.
— April 10: National Nuclear Security Administration leaders return to the Hill for a Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces hearing featuring Bruce Held, the agency’s acting director, and other leaders. The topics are the NNSA’s strategic forces programs and the Energy Department’s Office of Environmental Management.
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After spending a few minutes re-litigating the Democratic primary, Donald Trump turned his focus to Obamacare. “I inherited a mess, believe me. We also inherited a failed healthcare law that threatens our medical system with absolute and total catastrophe” he said. “I’ve been watching and nobody says it, but Obamacare doesn’t work.” He finished, "so we're going to repeal and replace Obamacare."
Donald Trump lobbed his first attack at the “dishonest media” about a minute into his speech, saying that the media would not appropriately cover the standing ovation that he received. “We are fighting the fake news,” he said, before doubling down on his previous claim that the press is “the enemy of the people." However, he made a distinction, saying that he doesn't think all media is the enemy, just the "fake news."
"The FBI rejected a recent White House request to publicly knock down media reports about communications between Donald Trump's associates and Russians known to US intelligence during the 2016 presidential campaign, multiple US officials briefed on the matter tell CNN. But a White House official said late Thursday that the request was only made after the FBI indicated to the White House it did not believe the reporting to be accurate."