What’s next on nonproliferation and international security, in Washington and around the globe.
— Aug. 26: North Korea continues its work on nuclear weapons, while China modernizes its deterrent force. This dynamic will be the focus of a Stimson Center event, “Extended Deterrence and Strategic Stability in Northeast Asia.” The featured speaker: Brad Roberts, the former deputy assistant Defense secretary for nuclear and missile defense policy. Can’t make it there? A video of the discussion is to be posted on the linked event page a day after the event.
— Aug. 28: A Brookings Institution event in Washington is to focus on “what comes next” in the U.S.-Russia relationship. Ties between the two Cold War adversaries were to “reset” under an Obama first-term initiative, but has been strained of late with alleged chemical attacks in Syria lately topping the list of matters over which Washington and Moscow have sharply diverged. And then there’s President Obama’s effort to negotiate a new round of strategic nuclear arms-control reductions, amid disagreements over missile defenses and tactical atomic weapons. Expert panelists Clifford Gaddy, Steven Pifer and Angela Stent will weigh all the prospects.
— Sept. 2-6: A summer program for grad students and professionals pursuing careers in eliminating global weapons of mass destruction is to be held in The Hague, Netherlands, sponsored by the T.M.C. Asser Instituut in cooperation with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. A number of high-profile officials and seasoned experts will headline the event, which is to include site visits related to nuclear- and chemical-arms nonproliferation.
— Sept. 3: “The Need for Speed”: That’s what the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is dubbing an event at which two of its scholars, James Acton and George Perkovich, will discuss the “military, strategic, technical and financial” aspects of U.S. Defense Department efforts to develop “conventional prompt global strike” weapons. A new report by Acton on the topic — called “Silver Bullet?” — is set for release the same day.
— Sept. 3: Watch for the PIR Center in Moscow to hold an international seminar on nuclear-security standards. The event is intended to highlight issues in the run-up to the Amsterdam Nuclear Industry Security Summit 2014, and also to look beyond.
— Sept. 3-4: Happen to be in Kuala Lumpur? The Malaysian capital is to play host to a regional workshop on implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention in South and Southeast Asia. The U.N. Office for Disarmament Affairs is organizing the training,
— Sept. 5: What are the diplomatic options and proliferation risks of a nuclear-armed Iran? A double-P/double-D panel of issue experts — Thomas Pickering, George Perkovich, David Albright and Daryl Kimball — will seek to address that question at a discussion in Washington sponsored by the Arms Control Association and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
— Sept. 5: U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon will headline a United Nations event, featuring a number of international officials and issue experts, to explore “The Path to Zero: The Role of the United Nations in Nuclear Disarmament and Nonproliferation.” The discussions are to occur at U.N. headquarters in New York and webcast on the international body’s website.
— Sept. 6: The Czech Foreign Ministry is co-sponsoring an exploration of “The Prague Agenda: Prospects and Challenges,” to be held at that city’s Czernin Palace. A number of international officials and issue experts will discuss arms control and nonproliferation initiatives associated with President Obama’s vision for moving toward a world without nuclear arms.
What We're Following See More »
The Supreme Court announced "that it would consider a challenge to President Trump’s latest effort to limit travel from countries said to pose a threat to the nation’s security." The case concerns Trump's most recent attempt to make good on a campaign promise "tainted by religious animus" and only questionably justified by national security concerns. The decision to take the case, called Trump v. Hawaii, comes almost exactly a year after Trump issued the first travel ban. The ban under consideration affects Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea.
Trump wants to move the two grants, the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas grant and the Drug Free Communities Act, to the Justice and Health and Human Services departments, respectively. This would result in a $300 million plus reduction in funding, about 95 percent of the cost of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. "'I’m baffled at the idea of cutting the office or reducing it significantly and taking away its programs in the middle of an epidemic,'" said Regina LaBelle, who served as ONDCP chief of staff during the Obama administration. This is the second time the Trump Administration has proposed gutting the agency.
A new report assembled by the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has identified more than 500 potential conflicts of interest in President Trump's first year. First, the report notes, Trump spent 122 days at his properties during his first year. He has been accompanied by 70 federal officials and 30 members of Congress. "Second, far from this signaled access to power being an empty promise, those who patronize President Trump’s businesses have, in fact, gained access to the president and his inner circle." Lastly, about 40 special interest groups and 11 foreign governments have held events at Trump properties.