Tag Archives: nuclear weapons

An Important Leap Forward in US National Security

US national security took an important, but little noted leap forward yesterday when President Obama announced the restoration of full diplomatic relations with Cuba. Most of the media coverage focused on the economic and political consequences of this bold move, and what little I’ve seen on its national security implications quotes opponents as calling it “appeasement.” This is a clear reference to Britain’s vain attempts to mollify Hitler prior to World War II, and therefore an attempt to slam Obama’s move as naive and dangerous. So why do I maintain that his move did the opposite and, instead, dramatically improved our national security? Continue reading

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Foreign Policy Lessons Applied to Iran

Harvard Professor of International Relations Stephen M. Walt has an excellent article at Foreign Policy, entitled “The Top 5 Foreign Policy Lessons of the Past 20 Years.” I’ve included some short excerpts after my signature line, and encourage you to read … Continue reading

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John Oliver on Nuclear Weapons

As the movie Dr. Strangelove shows, comedy may be the best way to break through society’s reluctance to face the risks posed by nuclear weapons. In that tradition, I highly recommend John Oliver’s recent comedy routine about nuclear weapons. Well done, John!! Please share this with friends. If enough of us do that, who knows what effect it might have? Maybe we’d even come to our senses?
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What Are Acceptable Nuclear Risks?

When I read Eric Schlosser’s acclaimed 2013 book, Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety, I found a tantalizing revelation on pages 170-171, when it asked, “What was the ‘acceptable’ probability of an accidental nuclear explosion?” and then proceeded to describe a 1957 Sandia Report, “Acceptable Premature Probabilities for Nuclear Weapons,” which dealt with that question. Continue reading

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Ukraine and Nuclear Risk

The Ukrainian crisis and Putin’s annexation of Crimea badly soured Russian-American relations. But an even more dangerous situation would result should Putin move Russian troops into additional portions of the eastern Ukraine. Certain events that are almost unknown in America increase the chance that will happen. In its own small way, this post hopes to combat that lack of information and thereby reduce the risk that the Ukrainian crisis will escalate further – potentially even to nuclear threats. Continue reading

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Is the Ukrainian Crisis Spiraling Out of Control?

Today’s news indicates a heightened nuclear risk due to a dangerous feedback process at work in the Ukraine. The New York Times’ page 1 ominous headline was, “Striking Town, Ukraine Forces Defy Warning,” and the Wall Street Journal echoed that warning, “Ukraine Sends Troops East As Pro-Russia Forces Strike.” Is the Ukrainian crisis spiraling out of control, and if so, what might we do to reverse that dangerous process? Continue reading

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Significant Progress on Reducing Iran’s Uranium Stockpile

With all the bad news coming out of the Ukraine, it’s nice to report significant progress on rolling back Iran’s nuclear program. For the first time in a year, that nation’s stockpile of 20% enriched uranium has shrunk to the point that it can no longer be further enriched to make a weapon. While cautious optimism is in order, that is really good news. Here are some key excerpts from a February 26 article covering this development (emphasis added): Continue reading

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