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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES OF RUSSIAN – U.S. COOPERATION IN THE NUCLEAR ARENA: A REVIEW OF OPPORTUNITIES AND THREATS Lev D. Ryabev, Rosatom NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT A standoff between the United States and the U.S.S.R. was the main motif in global security from the end of WWII through the early 1990s. A nuclear arms race that began soon after the first nuclear bomb was detonated in 1945, led to the accumulation by the United States and the former U.S.S.R. of tens of thousands of nuclear munitions. It also produced some new nuclear weapons states. In the 1970s, parity was reached between the United States and Soviet nuclear stockpiles. Each side could retaliate against the other by inflicting unacceptable damage from which no anti-ballistic missile (ABM) defense system could protect. The nuclear arsenals that had been accumulated could lead to the mutual destruction of the two countries. Military equilibrium became an insurance policy against possible aggression. Gradually, an understanding was reached that neither side could win this race, and different (i.e., not force-based) foundations of international relations had to be found. At the same time, it was clear that the enormous nuclear stockpiles could not provide a long-term basis for international security. It is in this environment that a series of negotiations regarding reductions in the numbers of nuclear and other weapons began between the United States and the U.S.S.R., eventually leading to several arms control treaties. This initial period of nuclear disarmament coincided with the collapse of the Soviet Union. With respect to all military nuclear activities, Russia became the legal successor of the U.S.S.R. In the early 1990s, the economic situation in Russia was grim. Industrial production fell; there was not enough funding to resolve even the most urgent problems; people were not paid salaries for months on end; and government control was weak. Those years were also characterized by lax export control and a never-seen-before threat of theft of nuclear materials by individuals employed in the nuclear weapons complex. A trend was developing for nuclear weapons experts to leave the country and move elsewhere. Indeed, the situation in the Russian nuclear weapons complex was worrisome both to the Russian political leadership and to the United States. In 1992, the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) program – also known as the Nunn-Lugar program – was established to help Russia reduce its arsenals by providing it with
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop necessary financial assistance.23 Russia was also fully aware of its own responsibility for the safety and security of its nuclear arsenals and took a number of effective steps to ensure this. Specifically, Russia: developed and implemented an up-to-date regulatory regime implemented a government-administered nuclear materials accounting and control system improved physical security at nuclear facilities commissioned storage facilities for nuclear materials and munitions that were built to the most stringent specifications adopted a new export control law and reassessed the dual-purpose item list consolidated nuclear materials at a smaller number of facilities introduced safe containers for transporting and storing special items and materials improved the living standards of nuclear weaponeers Within the framework of the CTR program, Russia received assistance with: destruction of strategic offensive arms transportation and containers to move nuclear munitions and materials construction at the Mayak site of a modern storage facility for de-weaponized fissile materials provision of equipment to ensure physical protection of storage facilities for nuclear munitions and nuclear materials funding to replace the power-generating capacity of three breeder reactors in Seversk and Zheleznogorsk so that they could be shut down In addition, hundreds of tons of weapons-grade uranium have been converted for use in commercial power reactors following the 1992 Russian-U.S. Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) Agreement.24 Activities to dispose of excess weapons-grade plutonium are still ongoing. Bilateral collaboration has been raised to a new level thanks to the 2002 Global Partnership Initiative.25 Its primary objective is to provide financial assistance—mostly to Russia—to prevent the spread of weapons and materials of mass destruction. The initiative has been instrumental in the elimination of chemical weapons, as well as the disposition of nuclear-powered submarines and weapons-grade materials. Activities continue, and they are becoming increasingly routine in nature. For example, political, technological, and logistical issues in the field of nuclear submarine disposition have been resolved; a wealth of experience has been accumulated; the overall scope and timeline of activities are clearly understood; the completion of this work is near. 23 For further information regarding the Cooperative Threat Reduction programs, see http://www.nti.org/db/nisprofs/russia/forasst/nunn_lug/overview.htm; accessed April 8, 2008. 24 For further information regarding the HEU Agreement, see http://www.nti.org/db/nisprofs/russia/fissmat/heudeal/heudeal.htm; accessed April 6, 2008. 25 For further information regarding the G8 Global Initiative to Counter Nuclear Terrorism, see http://www.g8.gc.ca/2002Kananaskis/gp_stat-en.pdf; accessed on April 6, 2008. See also, http://www.state.gov/t/us/rm/69124.htm; accessed May 1, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop Today, we can already summarize some of the results of the enormous amount of work that has been done to reduce weapons stockpiles. From 1990 through December 2001, the number of delivery vehicles for strategic offensive weapons has been reduced from 2,500 in the former Soviet Union and 2,246 in the United States to 1,600 on either side. The number of warheads has been cut from approximately 10,000 to 6,000. According to public Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I) strategic data exchange information, in January 2006, Russia had 771 delivery vehicles and 3,319 nuclear munitions in its strategic nuclear triad, and the United States had 1,079 delivery vehicles and 4,986 nuclear munitions.26 Many hundreds of missiles (specifically, 1,846 in Russia and 846 in the United States) have been eliminated in compliance with the Treaty on Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces.27 A large number of nuclear-powered submarines (148) have been dismantled in Russia. Additionally, nuclear stockpiles, including tactical nuclear weapons, have been dramatically reduced further accumulation of nuclear weapons materials (uranium and plutonium) has been stopped production of nuclear munitions has been reduced by a factor of more than 10 in Russia and has been suspended altogether in the United States five hundred tons of Russian weapons-grade uranium has been de-weaponized, along with 34 tons of plutonium on each side a portion of weapons-grade materials has been downblended to non-weapons grade material nuclear testing has been banned several production facilities in the nuclear weapons complex have been shut down personnel of the military industrial complex have been significantly reduced We are seeing tangible results of the joint efforts to eliminate the accumulated military capabilities. These efforts have been based on mutual interest and funding by the United States and other countries. This work will be completed in 2012. In 2003, the Treaty on Strategic Offensive Reductions entered into force between the United States and Russia.28 It calls for strategic offensive reductions to 1,700 to 2,200 warheads on either side by 2012. Unfortunately, however, the treaty has no clear schedules, interim milestones, or verification provisions. This is the first treaty that does not call for a commensurate reduction in delivery vehicles and does preserve (for the United States) the warheads which can easily be returned to operationally deployed status. In 2009, START I and its verification mechanisms are scheduled to expire, and so far no steps have been taken to extend them. All of this is reversible at any time. The United States has clearly lost interest in future steps to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles. At the same time, it has become abundantly clear that even the 1,700 to 2,200 warheads that will be left on either side in 2012 are still 26 To read the text of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), see http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/start1/text/index.html; accessed April 6, 2008. 27 To read the text of the INF Treaty, see http://www.state.gov/www/global/arms/treaties/inf2.html; accessed April 6, 2008. 28 To read the text of the Treaty on Strategic Offensive Reductions see http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/05/20020524-3.html; accessed April 6, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop excessive for the purposes of national defense and can only be used by the United States and Russia to target the opposite side. On several occasions, Russia has introduced proposals to reduce the stockpiles to as few as 1,000 warheads on either side. The principle of mutual deterrence that serves as the underpinning of U.S.-Russian security relations will remain in place, albeit at a lower quantitative level. Although a full-scale nuclear war is no longer a viable prospect, it is still a serious risk factor. Stagnation in the realm of disarmament is unacceptable because it can lead to potentially hazardous destabilization of international relations. With such huge nuclear arsenals, incidents cannot be ruled out. For example, in August 2007, a U.S. bomber made an unauthorized flight with nuclear weapons onboard. There has also been rhetoric invoking the possibility of WWIII if Iran were to succeed in acquiring nuclear weapons. So, what is it, exactly, that gives us grounds for concern? Absent clear mutual arms agreements among countries, technological progress, if left to its own devices, leads to the development of new means of destruction. Several examples come to mind. Precision-guided munitions are increasingly emphasized. Cruise missiles of different kinds of basing are assigned more and more combat functions. Proposals are floated to look at the use of intercontinental ballistic missiles tipped with conventional warheads so that rapid worldwide target coverage will be assured. Restrictions on the development of a ballistic missile shield have been lifted. Space deployment of weapons is back on the agenda again. We see that technological progress has changed the relationship between offensive and defensive weapons. In the new version of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy, a new strategic triad was unveiled.29 It is different from the classic triad of intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, and heavy bombers in that it also includes an offensive non-nuclear component, active and passive defenses including an ABM defense, and a responsive defense infrastructure. This bespeaks a clear desire on the part of the world’s most powerful country to secure a technological breakthrough in new weapons systems. Since these weapons systems are not subject to arms control, this brings an element of unpredictability and uncertainty into the picture. Further, the United States has taken several unilateral military and political steps: While the Warsaw Pact no longer exists, NATO continues to expand eastward opening doors to more and more countries, including some former Soviet republics, and is getting closer and closer to the Russian border. There is, however, no clarity as to what the threats are from which NATO will be defending Europe. The ABM Treaty,30 which Russia considered a cornerstone of strategic stability, has been annulled. The decision has been made to deploy ballistic missile interceptor defenses in Poland and the Czech Republic. This was done without any prior discussion with Russia and clearly impacts Russia’s interests—in contravention of the spirit of the 2002 U.S.-Russian Declaration on New Strategic Relations.31 29 Alexei Arbatov and Vladimir Dvorkin, eds., Nuclear Weapons After the Cold War, Carnegie Moscow Center (Moscow: ROSSPEN, 2006). Available at: www.carnegie.ru/en/pubs/books/74780.htm; accessed July 13, 2008. 30 To read the text of the AMB Treaty, see http://www.state.gov/www/global/arms/treaties/abm/abm2.html; accessed, April 8, 2008. 31 Arbatov and Dvorkin, eds.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop The hard-to-explain unwillingness of the United States to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT)32 is very disappointing. The Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty33 has been stalled. Such unilateral actions speak to a lack of trust between our two countries and symbolize a disregard for earlier agreements. Changes have been introduced to military doctrines. In the Russian doctrine of 2000, for example, the role of nuclear weapons was defined as that of a tool deterring aggression, ensuring security of Russia and its allies, and maintaining international peace and security. In other words, nuclear weapons are still looked to as the main guarantors of national security. Further, waiving of the no-first-use pledge is also a prospect. Some other themes under discussion in the United States also present a cause for concern. They are the: lowering of the nuclear threshold, which means, in effect, that nuclear weapons are turning into usable battlefield weapons (e.g., very low-yield nuclear munitions) possibility of using nuclear weapons in non-nuclear conflicts possibility of using nuclear weapons to deliver a preventive or preemptive strike A new foreign policy doctrine is being shaped. In one of his speeches, President George W. Bush rejected the strategy of deterrence as incapable of coping with threats of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation. He declared his determination to “take the fight to the enemy, foil its plans, and counter the most serious threats before they even materialize.”34 As Zbigniew Brzezinski has noted, “in effect, the United States has monopolized the right to identify the adversary and deal the first strike without bothering to build an international consensus regarding the nature of the threat.”35 This creates “a situation of strategic unpredictability.”36 One must not think that Russia will not step up its weapons systems development efforts in response. It would be appropriate to provide a quote from President Vladimir V. Putin’s statement of November 2004: “I am confident that in the near future they37 will be delivered to our military. These are products that other nuclear weapons states do not have now and will not have in the foreseeable future.”38 Russia’s responses are based on the military threats to its national security with which it is faced. These threats were defined in a speech by the Chairman of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, General Yuri Baluyevsky in early 2007.39 In his opinion, the most tangible military threats to the national security of the Russian Federation in the near future will continue to be dominated by the following factors: 32 To read the text of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, see http://www.ctbto.org/; accessed April 6, 2008. 33 For further information regarding the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty, see http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/fmct/index.html; accessed April 6, 2008. 34 Z. Brzezinski, The Choice: Global Domination or Global Leadership, (New York: Basic Books, 2004) p. 7. 35 Ibid, p. 57. 36 Ibid, p. 270. 37 President Vladimir V. Putin was referring to new nuclear missile systems. 38 Statement by President Vladimir V. Putin, November 2004. 39 General Yuri Baluyevsky, “Index bezopasnosti [The Security Index],” Scientific and Research Magazine of the Russian Center for Political Studies, V. 13, N. 1, 2007, p. 81.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop U.S. policies aimed at preserving American global superiority and expanding its economic, political, and military presence in regions of traditional Russian influence implementation of plans for continuing NATO expansion the western practice of taking military and force-based actions in contravention of generally recognized principles and norms of international law existing and potential hot spots of local wars and armed conflicts (primarily those in the immediate vicinity of the Russian national border) possibility of an upset in strategic stability through the violation of international arms control and reduction agreements, be that in the form of qualitative or quantitative buildups by other states proliferation of nuclear and other kinds of WMD, their means of delivery, and new military industrial capabilities in conjunction with attempts by certain countries, organizations, and terrorist groups to bring to fruition their military and political aspirations challenges to Russia’s military and security interests through expansion of military blocs and alliances territorial claims of other states vis-à-vis the Russian Federation and its allies competition for access to energy resources international terrorism unlawful activities by nationalist, separatist, and other organizations seeking to destabilize the domestic situation in the Russian Federation hostile information operations against Russia and its allies There must be certain guiding principles that apply to arms control work. First, the dialogue between the United States and Russia must be ongoing and uninterrupted. Then, we need to jointly discuss and analyze all threats that drive the concerns on each side (that of the United States and Russia) and identify these concerns. It would not be a bad idea to jointly study how the deployment by the U.S. of missile defense components in Europe may impact U.S. and Russian security at various points in time. This would make it possible to determine whether or not the two countries share any common denominators with respect to defense from third countries. Finally, it is no less important to analyze military doctrines as well. Further, we need to proceed in compliance with the principle of equal security, keeping in mind both the nuclear and non-nuclear aspects of the picture, the placement of elements of forward base deployment, and the presence or absence of any hostile states at the border. As far as our two countries are concerned, future steps toward disarmament and greater security may actually end up being progressively asymmetrical in nature. At first glance, it would seem that of all countries, the United States needs nuclear weapons least of all. It could take additional nuclear disarmament steps without jeopardizing its security. This would serve as an example to other countries. In contrast, Russia with its geopolitical concerns, fledgling economy, and weak non-nuclear forces may be best suited by taking a different approach. Most certainly, this complicates the process of disarmament and requires that special confidence-building measures be put in place. What is important is that the balance of security must not be upset. Both countries must be interested in this. Only an open and unbiased discussion of our disagreements can direct us onto the right path. When the United States and the Soviet Union had piles of weapons, the disarmament process moved forward on a neck-and-neck basis. In the future, when the two countries reduce
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop their arsenals to, perhaps, 1,000 warheads each, all subsequent nuclear weapons reductions must be viewed in the context of the overall security posture of each of the two countries. The sequence of future steps to be taken toward nuclear disarmament matter a great deal as well. So too does the content of these steps, including transparency and verification. In studying these issues and providing appropriate recommendations, an ever-increasing role belongs to non-governmental organizations and academic institutions. The role of nuclear weapons in today’s world appears to be a worthwhile subject for a joint study. While we attempt to convince other countries not to have nuclear weapons it would be instructive to try to understand why it is that the United States and Russia do need these weapons and others do not. Is it possible to suffice without nuclear weapons? What must happen for this to become a reality? There can be only one explanation for the significant U.S. and Russian stockpiles that will still exist in 2012: they will continue to serve the purpose of mutual deterrence. To summarize, the process of nuclear disarmament has somewhat stalled, security- and confidence-building measures have been insufficient. Ultimately, this jeopardizes the effectiveness of steps seeking to strengthen the nuclear non-proliferation regime. NON-PROLIFERATION OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS The Treaty on Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) entered into force in 1970 and continues to be a positive influence in the context of resolving issues of nuclear security.40 Over the last 35 years, however, its drawbacks have become visible as well. The NPT has failed to completely stop the process of nuclear proliferation. India and Pakistan have since become nuclear weapons states. It is generally believed that Israel also possesses an unacknowledged nuclear weapons program. Some other countries are suspected of being engaged in some proscribed nuclear activities. So why is it that some countries still insist on possessing nuclear weapons? Possessing nuclear weapons is still a matter of political prestige. By having them, a state increases its outward political status. The state of international uncertainty—is the world to be multipolar or unipolar?—creates new opportunities and piques interest toward the preservation or acquisition of the status of a nuclear weapons state. Some countries simply do not feel completely secure when new global threats continue to emerge and replace old ones. To this day, there is no international security system that would guarantee a country’s security in the face of external threats. At the initial stages of nuclear weapons development, they were the prerogative of economically and technologically powerful states. Today, given the current spread of nuclear technology and knowledge, even poor countries can afford them if they make a political decision to “go nuclear.” So, by obtaining nuclear weapons, countries acquire at least an additional insurance policy against pressure from outside. It is doubtful that the United States and its allies would dare to attack Iran if the latter possessed nuclear weapons. Many of us do not like particular regimes that are currently in power in certain countries. This is not, however, a justification for eliminating these regimes using outside force unless, of course, they commit an act of aggression against some other state. Increasing reliance on the use 40 To read the text of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, see http://www.iaea.org/Publications/Documents/Infcircs/Others/infcirc140.pdf; accessed April 6, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop of force, especially military force, in settling international disputes outside of the legal framework of the United Nations Security Council only adds to the determination of a number of states to acquire nuclear weapons. It is not quite clear why the United States and others would not, for example, engage in direct contacts with Iran or provide it with security guarantees in exchange for steps in the direction of openness, transparency, and predictability in its peaceful nuclear sector. The very question of nuclear weapons non-proliferation is fraught with controversy vis-à-vis the enormous nuclear arsenals of the five nuclear weapons states. This rift causes resentment among non-nuclear weapons states, undermines any attempts to strengthen the nuclear non-proliferation regime, makes this regime unstable, and leads to delays in implementation of Article VI of the NPT (i.e., negotiations regarding nuclear disarmament). The large nuclear capabilities are not compatible with commitments made by the nuclear weapons states at the time of entering into the NPT. Nuclear weapons states have preserved the role of nuclear weapons as a deterrent of aggression and guarantor of military security in their military doctrines. Other countries may well decide to put forth the same argument. In the mid-1990s, when the draft of the CTBT was being discussed in Geneva, the Indian ambassador voiced sharp criticism directed at the nuclear weapons states because they called upon others to forego nuclear weapons but did not lead by example. Today, it is evident that nuclear weapons states are compromising their leadership position and initiative with respect to nuclear disarmament. At the same time, nuclear disarmament is part and parcel of non-proliferation, threat reduction, and greater security. Nuclear weapons states are still a long way away from resolving the issue of nuclear disarmament so that the end objective – complete elimination of these weapons – could be pursued (Article VI of the NPT). What is worse, this issue is not even on the agenda. No possible steps toward a world free of nuclear weapons are being examined or discussed. Meanwhile, in 2015, the world will have lived with nuclear weapons for 70 years and with the NPT for 45 years. 3. As the number of countries pursuing peaceful nuclear activities increases, scientific and technological conditions arise for the development of nuclear weapons. This is especially true for the closed nuclear fuel cycle.41 As capabilities grow, so too does the quantity of nuclear materials in circulation. This, in turn, increases the probability of theft. Finally, the spread of knowledge is conducive to allowing a large number of countries to gain mastery of nuclear technologies at minimum expense. Of course, the non-proliferation regime continues to improve. We now have the Additional Protocol to the NPT, providing the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) with strengthened mechanisms for monitoring and verifying the use of nuclear materials and technologies.42 The Protocol expands the contents of the verification “toolbox.” Some other important measures have been implemented as well. As far as practical approaches to non-proliferation are concerned, however, the two leading nuclear weapons states, the United States and Russia, often hold diametrically opposed views. This results in uncoordinated actions. There is no single universal non-proliferation approach applicable to all countries, which is to 41 The Russian Corporation TVEL notes that “(t)he closed nuclear cycle envisages transportation of irradiated fuel assemblies to radiochemical plants to extract unburned uranium rather than transportation to disposal site. Recoverable uranium could amount up to 95 percent of initial uranium mass. Then, this material is subject to same processing stages as the one mined.” Presently the majority of countries use an open fuel cycle. For more information, see http://www.tvel.ru/en/nuclear_power/nuclear_fuel_cycle/; accessed April 6, 2008. 42 For further information regarding the Additional Protocol, see http://www.iaea.org/OurWork/SV/Safeguards/sg_protocol.html; accessed April 6, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop say that double standards have prevailed and countries have, in effect, been divided into “good” ones and “bad” ones although they all have subscribed to the same NPT obligations. Iran is a typical example. Iran has signed the NPT, accepted the Additional Protocol that allows the IAEA to visit any facility at any time without prior notice, placed its facilities under IAEA safeguards and pledged, alongside Russia, to return spent nuclear fuel to Russia. The United States does not find these commitments sufficient and demands that Iran shut down its nuclear program completely, suspecting it of nuclear weapons ambitions. Iranian domestic and foreign policy is probably also a contributing factor, but so far it has not been officially characterized as such. Ultimately, someone does not like the existing Iranian regime. Besides, the United States believes that Iran does not need nuclear energy because the country is rich in oil and gas. The U.S. demands extended to Iran go far beyond the NPT and the Additional Protocol. This implies that compliance with the NPT and the Additional Protocol no longer serves as an ironclad guarantee of Iran’s inability to produce nuclear weapons. These demands are accompanied by threats, sanctions, and declarations of possible use of force – perhaps even to bring about regime change. In contrast, no such demands have been extended to Brazil, a country that is also developing its nuclear energy sector and pursuing an indigenous nuclear fuel cycle, including uranium enrichment. Also, the United States has a whole different attitude toward countries that have not signed the NPT and have developed nuclear weapons (e.g., India and Israel). The United States is even prepared to enter into full-fledged nuclear cooperation with India. To justify a more stern approach to a selected few countries, first of all to Iran, there is talk of their past clandestine nuclear activities. Without doubt, these instances have to be investigated, but in this regard Iran is definitely not the only culprit (e.g., North Korea). It is also important to understand the reasons for the behavior of some states.43 So, on the one hand, there is a need to make the NPT regime more stringent, and on the other hand, the existing international agreements are being weakened. Norms and rules of non-proliferation must be universal for all and must be based on a commitment by states to disrupt any and all terrorist activities on their territory. Terrorists exist outside the NPT framework, and some of them are attempting to acquire nuclear weapons and materials. In recent years, the ‘black market’ for nuclear materials and technologies has expanded to include a number of private companies and individuals who possess nuclear weapons-related knowledge and expertise. The U.S. initiative to interdict illegal transfers of weapons and materials is therefore commendable and deserves international support. We also need to have a more in-depth study of a variety of other situations as well. The fact of the matter is, experience tells us that even an NPT member state can come very close to developing nuclear weapons. After acquiring the nuclear technology within the NPT regime, a state can withdraw from the NPT and suffer no consequences for it. Put differently, the right of a country to withdraw from the NPT if extraordinary events jeopardize its supreme interest (Article X) is also in need of revision. There is no confidence in the effectiveness of measures taken vis-à-vis an NPT member state suspected of weapons-related nuclear activities. In what cases and under what conditions can we switch from economic and other sanctions to military action? It has become apparent that we need to review whether it would make sense to switch from voluntary to mandatory (with 43 Z. Brzezinski and W. Odom, “Reasonable Approach to Iran Problem,” Sankt-Peterburgskie Vedomosti, N. 101, June 4, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop an element of coercion, if necessary) compliance with non-proliferation commitments. There is also no legal provision should a non-NPT country be engaged in nuclear activities or even seeks to obtain nuclear weapons. Perhaps, new norms of behavior have to be established now that the world community is equipped with these potentially hazardous technologies. Perhaps the NPT no longer meets today’s requirements, and perhaps some additional conditions must be put in place to ensure that peaceful nuclear activities are safeguarded against the possibility of diversion for military use. In the most general terms, we are talking about a new system of international relations as we move away from the Cold War era and its rigid bipolar world order. The NPT has to be adjusted to fit the new security environment. In effect, the United States has deployed a new strategy with respect to WMD proliferation. It reaches well beyond the NPT framework and includes unilateral preventive and preemptive strikes with global coverage. We have not, however, done anything to discuss or study this new strategy, much less think through what international agreements could be warranted or what roles the IAEA or the United Nations could play in their implementation. All these issues could be put on the agenda for U.S. and Russian working groups to discuss via non-governmental channels. For many years now, the United States and Russia have been engaged in close cooperation on non-proliferation. Relevant bilateral agreements have been concluded. First, they had to do with measures to strengthen the non-proliferation regime in Russia (e.g., physical protection, export control, control and accounting of nuclear materials, etc.). Russia has done a lot in the course of these years to instill order in its nuclear complex and has proven by deeds that it is a responsible country (there have been no recorded cases of theft or loss of weapons-grade nuclear materials—much less nuclear munitions—or leaks of nuclear experts or technologies). It has had nothing to do with India’s, Pakistan’s, or Israel’s nuclear weapons capabilities or with North Korea’s or Libya’s nuclear ambitions. In particular, now that terrorism is increasing, the west still chooses to embrace its consistent views about proliferation threats emanating from Russia. For example, Senator Richard Lugar stated in his interview with Izvestiia on January 12, 2005, “Of great importance is not only the control over (Russia’s) nuclear-tipped missiles, but also over … tactical nuclear warheads, which can fall prey to terrorists.”44 Based on such argumentation, the main thrust of U.S.-Russian cooperative non-proliferation programs was directed at the countries of the former Soviet Union – for the most part, Russia. At the same time, Russia’s National Security Concept, adopted in 2000, characterizes the need to strengthen the non-proliferation regime with respect to WMD as one of the main national security objectives.45 This issue has been receiving, and will continue to receive, the priority attention that it deserves by Russia.46 In recent years, interest in collaboration between U.S. and Russian national laboratories has unfortunately waned. Meanwhile, these organizations could significantly contribute to the science and technology aspects of non-proliferation activities, including efforts to combat 44 “Ukraine is Not a Field for Battle between the U.S. and Russia,” Izvestiia, January 12, 2005. Available at www.izvestia.ru/comment/article993435; accessed July 13, 2008. 45 Russia’s National Security Concept. Approved by Order No. 1300 of the President of the Russian Federation, December 17, 1997 (as amended by Order No. 24 of the President of the Russian Federation, January 10, 2000). Available at www.iss.niiit.ru/doktrins/doktr01.htm, accessed July 13, 2008. 46 To an increasing degree, cooperation in the area of non-proliferation will be aimed at solving this problem worldwide.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop nuclear terrorism and resolve other salient nuclear security issues. During meetings of the heads of national laboratories, there have been numerous proposals made to increase collaboration along these lines. In particular, the following opportunities for joint work have been identified: development of means of detecting signs of undeclared nuclear activities development of technical means to combat terrorism design of highly sensitive devices to monitor small quantities of nuclear materials and explosives development of instruments for remote monitoring of reactors and nuclear fuel cycle facilities risk assessment with respect to the proliferation of nuclear technologies identification of nuclear material other specific proposals Additionally, lab-to lab collaboration could expand to include other counties and take on such areas of research as nuclear fusion, computers and programming, laser technologies, and nanomaterials. This could also contribute to the building of trust and goodwill among weapons scientists and the redirection of their activities to peaceful pursuits. Non-proliferation cooperation between the United States and Russia must be comprehensive and have an international dimension. The problem of non-proliferation cannot be unilaterally resolved even by the most powerful country in the world. It has to be coordinated at the level of the entire international community. A special cooperation program led by the two most influential nuclear states has to be developed. Priority has to be assigned not to force-based methods of conflict resolution, but to overall improvement of the international climate and to threat reduction measures. NUCLEAR ENERGY AND NON-PROLIFERATION PROBLEMS The author does not believe that it would be helpful to reduce U.S.-Russian partnership and cooperation to just nuclear arms reduction and non-proliferation. The United States, Russia, and other countries should be seeking opportunities for constructive collaboration. The energy sector, including nuclear energy, could be one of the most prominent areas for cooperation. In the future, energy demands will rise and nuclear energy will play a significant role in meeting these demands. This will be especially helpful given that many acute problems that breed terrorism (e.g., poverty, economic under development) are associated with a lack of access to energy. The NPT is inherently discriminatory with respect to the possession of nuclear weapons. For the purposes of this Treaty, a nuclear-weapon state is one which has manufactured and exploded a nuclear weapon or other nuclear explosive device prior to January 1, 1967 (Article IX, paragraph 3). Also, there is a provision that nuclear weapons states would take steps to reduce their nuclear arsenals and assist other countries in reaping the benefits of peaceful nuclear energy. At the same time, nuclear technologies and related knowledge may be of the dual-use variety and can therefore be used for military purposes or as a disguise for undeclared nuclear activities. This is why numerous attempts have been made to constrain the development of
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop especially sensitive nuclear technologies. In 1978, for example, U.S. President Jimmy Carter called on nuclear power countries to give up reprocessing activities to curb the proliferation of nuclear materials, most notably plutonium, that can be extracted from spent nuclear fuel produced by nuclear power plants. However, restricting the transfer of peaceful nuclear technologies to non-nuclear member states in good standing with the NPT or prohibiting them from development of such sensitive technologies as uranium enrichment and spent nuclear fuels reprocessing would be yet another step in broadening the gap between the “haves” and the “have-nots.” It goes without saying that prohibitive measures will not stop technological progress. Moreover, such measures are in contravention of the guiding principles of the NPT. We need to seek a way out of this situation. One of the promising prospects is closely connected with President Vladimir V. Putin’s initiative voiced at a UN Summit in 2000.47 Russia proposed that new designs for nuclear reactors and proliferation-resistant fuel cycles be developed. Russia is already engaged in such research, and it should join efforts with other countries, first and foremost, with the United States. Recently, Russia has also put forth a proposal regarding the return of spent nuclear fuel to countries that have the appropriate infrastructure for, and experience with, safe management of spent nuclear fuel. Several countries have already championed the idea of consolidating uranium enrichment, spent nuclear fuel reprocessing, and fresh fuel fabrication at so-called international fuel service centers. In this vein, Russia has proposed the establishment of a uranium enrichment center at the Rosatom chemical electrolysis facility in Angarsk. Pursuant to directives of the two presidents after the U.S.-Russian summit in 2002 (see Appendix D), issues pertaining to the development of advanced reactors and innovative nuclear fuel cycles have been addressed. Recommendations have been reviewed and approved at the ministerial level but remain unrealized because of the disagreements on the Iran issue. Signing of the 123 Agreement on the peaceful use of nuclear energy has been deferred.48 Over the last several years, quite a few initiatives to expand the use of nuclear energy (in addition to the Russian Angarsk proposal) have been made public. They are: the U.S. Global Nuclear Energy Partnership,49 the IAEA International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles,50 and Generation IV International Forum.51 After the U.S.-Russian summit in the summer of 2007, the two presidents stated their intention to initiate, in conjunction with other 47 Statement by Russian Federation President Vladimir V. Putin during a press conference at the United Nations Headquarters, September 8, 2000. Available at www.newsru.com/world/08sep2000/spich.html. 48 The 123 Agreement refers to Section 123 of the U.S. Atomic Energy Act of 1954, which requires a bilateral agreement between the United States and any country wishing to receive U.S. exports of technology and equipment related to civilian nuclear energy. The U.S. Atomic Energy Act of 1954, can be found at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/nuregs/staff/sr0980/ml022200075-vol1.pdf; accessed April 8, 2008. The 123 Agreement was signed May 6, 2008, in Moscow and submitted for ratification. For further information, see Vestnik Atomproma, N. 5, May 2008. See also the papers by Orde F. Kittrie and Alexander Pikaev in this volume and Appendix E for the text of the U.S.-Russian 123 Agreement. 49 For further information regarding the U.S. Global Nuclear Energy Partnership, see http://nuclear.inl.gov/gnep/index.shtml; accessed April 6, 2008. 50 For further information regarding International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO), see http://www.iaea.org/OurWork/ST/NE/NENP/NPTDS/Projects/INPRO/index.html; accessed May 1, 2008. 51 For further information regarding Generation IV International Forum (GIF), see http://gif.inel.gov/; accessed May 1, 2008.
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Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015: Proceedings of a Russian—U.S. Workshop countries, a new kind of in-depth cooperation on peaceful use of nuclear energy (see Appendix D). In order to expedite the implementation of these initiatives, it is necessary that countries see the economic benefits of nuclear cooperation. They must also feel that they really are equal participants in this process. To prevent discrimination, the prohibition on enrichment of uranium or on reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel must be in effect for all countries. Control over these technologies must be handed over to international institutions. If we were to embark upon this path, however, another issue that will have to be resolved is the development of nuclear energy using fast reactors. These reactors work on mixed uranium-plutonium fuels. One cannot simply outlaw their construction as a matter of policy. A better way to proceed would be through the development of comprehensive methods for the detection of undeclared nuclear activities. For example, we could develop techniques for remote monitoring of nuclear fuel cycle facilities and nuclear reactors to prevent any unauthorized modifications or other proscribed activities. We could also introduce the practice of assessing various technologies and facilities with respect to their proliferation potential. In summary, these proposals merit in-depth study and the development of corresponding rules and norms. Possibly, a set of requirements will have to be established so that all countries interested in developing peaceful nuclear energy will adhere to them. CONCLUDING REMARKS The United States and Russia must lead the process of perfecting the NPT and the entire non-proliferation regime as a whole. We must pay greater attention to progress in nuclear disarmament and peaceful use of nuclear energy for the benefit of the international community. We should gradually move away from programs that deliver economic and science and technology assistance to Russia, and embrace joint programs based on partnership and collaboration. We must be responsive in identifying and analyzing existing impediments, difficulties, and differences of opinion, as well as work to find ways to resolve them. This global partnership must include not only such activities as dismantlement of nuclear-powered submarines, disposition of nuclear materials and elimination of chemical weapons, but must also seek to create a new non-proliferation regime and make major scientific and technological breakthroughs that would enable this regime. We must find a mechanism and establish a process for resolving the most salient non-proliferation issues and overcoming existing disagreements. Differences of opinion between the United States and Russia on a number of issues must not undermine the foundations of our cooperation because we agree on the most important issue. We agree that U.S.-Russian cooperation in the field of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation has fundamental importance for strengthening strategic stability and is in the interest of our two countries and the international community as a whole. Finally, it is also critical that U.S. and Russian working groups, both ones comprised of government officials and those staffed by non-governmental organization leaders, continue to talk about issues of security and non-proliferation and provide sensible recommendations.
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