The Project on Nuclear Issues (PONI) and Ploughshares Fund are pleased to invite you to the fourth in a debate series on a range of nuclear challenges and policy decisions the Trump administration will face in 2017. The debate series aims to provide a forum for in-depth exploration of arguments on both sides of key nuclear policy issues.
Interacting with senior military leadership and visiting the maintainers, operators, and trainers responsible for two legs of the nuclear deterrent creates a vitally important relationship, one that can close that technical gap and ensure future civilian leaders are able to make informed decisions.
It may seem clear that – at the very least – technology-based sanctions slow technical progress and raise procurement costs. However, other research suggests that sanctions have improved North Korea’s ability to procure WMD-related goods.
SSBNs are proliferating, they are getting quieter, and methods for detecting SSBNs are improving. These three trends set the nuclear powers up for a competition that may diminish the stabilizing role SSBNs have historically played.
A national policy in support of nuclear energy development is necessary to change this trend: as the Nuclear Energy Institute observes, public-private partnerships are critical for success on the scales that matter.
At a time of a qualitative reordering of the Asia-Pacific, stability in the Indian Ocean region hinges on collaborative efforts by India and the United States to keep the seas open and peaceful.
Sensible policy aspirations must balance aspirational visions of the future with a clear understanding of the cost and value of the nuclear weapons engineering enterprise.
In early 2014, the ICBM community was rocked by a cheating scandal that has profoundly affected the way they train. In response to the scandal, Air Force Global Strike Command initiated the Force Improvement Program to improve training, evaluation, and morale in the nuclear community.
Having a better understanding of threats and knowing what to do in emergency situations allows people to make safer decisoins and makes them less likely to panic. Experts in the radiological emergency response field and agencies prepare to respond to radiological emergencies, but widespread and general knowledge on the topic could be improved.
Because both the space shuttles and the U.S. Trident D5 SLBMs rely on solid propellant fuels, NASA’s decisions about its space programs have repercussions in the defense industry. In 2017, NASA plans to launch the first mission of the new Space Launch System (SLS). In 2016, NASA will decide how exactly the SLS will be propelled.