Login/Logout

*
*  
"I want to thank the Arms Control Association … for being such effective advocates for sensible policies to stem the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and most importantly, reduce the risk of nuclear war."
– Senator Joe Biden
January 28, 2004
Published Op-eds

The opinion pieces and editorials below are those authored by Arms Control Association staff and leadership published in major U.S. and international media.


New START Must Be Extended, With or Without China

This op-ed originally appeared in The National Interest , May 27, 2019. The baffling non-answers from the senior administration officials strongly suggest that the president’s impulse for a grand U.S.-Chinese-Russian arms control bargain is not backed up with a realistic plan. On May 14, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo traveled to Sochi, Russia to discuss what the State Department called a “new era” in “arms control to address new and emerging threats” with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov and President Vladimir Putin. The trip follows reports that Donald Trump has directed his...

Making Nuclear Weapons Menacing Again

This op-ed originally appeared in The Nation , Mar. 21, 2019. “There is no higher priority for national defense,” the Pentagon declared last year, than for the United States to “replace its strategic nuclear triad and sustain the warheads it carries.” In plain English, this means spending an estimated $1.7 trillion to rebuild every component of the US nuclear arsenal: the entire three-legged strategic “ triad ” of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs), and long-range bombers. Military officials claim the existing force has become obsolete...

A peace treaty could be essential to North Korean denuclearization

This op-ed originally appeared in Axios , Feb. 25, 2019. As the second summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un approaches, the U.S. continues to focus its attention on the dismantlement of North Korea’s nuclear program. Yes, but: If Trump is serious about denuclearizing North Korea, he should also use the summit with Kim Jong-un to take steps toward negotiating a peace agreement and formally ending the Korean War, noting the diplomatic engagements that have taken place between North and South Korea in 2017 that help to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula. Why it...

Congress should block rule changes for firearm exports

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill , February 20, 2019. As the nation is reminded of the tragic consequences of gun violence with the one-year anniversary of the Parkland school shooting, the Trump administration is pushing forward with plans to expedite the export abroad of the same kind of military-style weapons used in many of the mass shootings that have taken place in recent years. These are not the commodities that the United States should make easier to export. Congress can and should stop the changes, which would put the Department of Commerce in charge of regulating these...

Two Ideas That Might Stop a Post-INF Arms Race, and One That Won’t

This op-ed originally appeared in Defense One on Feb. 11, 2019. Barring an 11th-hour diplomatic breakthrough that resolves Russian and U.S. concerns about the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, new arms control arrangements will be needed to avert a dangerous and costly new missile race in Europe. On Feb. 2, both sides announced that they will suspend their obligations under the three-decade-old treaty, and will likely withdraw on August 2. This will scuttle the agreement that led to the verifiable elimination of 2,692 Soviet and U.S. missiles, helped end the Cold War, and paved the...

Save the INF Treaty, Save the World

This op-ed originally appeared in Politico Magazine , Dec. 5, 2018. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Tuesday that the United States will soon “suspend” its obligations under 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty—an arms-control treaty credited with helping to end the Cold War – in response to the prolonged Russian violation of the agreement. If Russia does not return to compliance in 60 days, Pompeo said, the United States will formally announce its intention to withdraw from the treaty, as President Trump declared he would do last month. The two of us have advised...

Congress needs to wake up to nuclear security threat

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill , Nov. 14, 2018. With much of the world’s attention trained on nuclear risks from North Korea, Iran, and Russia, the unfinished work of keeping nuclear materials and know-how from criminals and terrorists cannot be ignored. As the White House emphasizes state-based threats, Congress must take up a greater leadership role to prevent a nuclear or radiological 9/11. Effective congressional oversight of this issue has been constrained in recent years by numerous obstacles, including limited institutional knowledge, misunderstanding of the subject,...

Trump’s latest blunder: Withdrawal from the US-Russian INF Treaty

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill , Oct. 25, 2018. It appears that President Donald Trump ’s hard-line security advisor, John Bolton, has persuaded him to renounce the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty signed by Presidents Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987. At least in this case, unlike with Trump’s quixotic violation of the seven-party Iran nuclear deal, the administration can point to a treaty violation by the other party . But as a practical matter, unilateral U.S. withdrawal from the treaty is reckless and will have a similarly counterproductive and...

Entering a 1984 World, Trump-Style

This op-ed was originally published on TomDispatch.com on July 24, 2018. The pundits and politicians generally take it for granted that President Trump lacks a coherent foreign policy. They believe that he acts solely out of spite, caprice, and political opportunism—lashing out at U.S. allies like Germany’s Angela Merkel and England’s Theresa May only to embrace authoritarian rulers like Russia’s Vladimir Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un. His instinctive rancor and impulsiveness seemed on full display during his recent trip to Europe, where he lambasted Merkel, undercut May, and then, in...

This Is What Trump Needs to Do to Make North Korea Get Rid of Their Nukes

This op-ed originally appeared in TIME , Jun. 13, 2018. The handshake between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will go down in history. But it’s not yet clear if the summit will produce an equally historic outcome on denuclearization. Despite Trump’s attempts to sell the summit document as a breakthrough , it reiterates a boilerplate commitment to “ complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula ,” a pledge that North Korea has made, and broken , before. This vague, aspirational language is a long way from the “comprehensive document” described by Trump in his...

Pages