Nuclear Policy News – January 8, 2019

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Top News

With Kim’s Visit, China Shows U.S. It Has Leverage on Trade
New York Times

New House, new vision for America’s nuclear weapons?
The Hill

Nuclear Security and Arms Control Policy Panel

East Asia

China hosts surprise visit by Kim Jong Un amid US tensions
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un this week made his fourth visit to China, arriving in the country for a three-day stay at the invitation of President Xi Jinping, according to state media.

With Kim’s Visit, China Shows U.S. It Has Leverage on Trade
New York Times1/8/2019
China’s leader, Xi Jinping, has offered carrots to President Trump to stop a trade war that has contributed to a sharp slowdown in the Chinese economy. On Tuesday, he also seemed to brandish a stick.

Middle East

EU Agrees Fresh Sanctions on Iran Over Assassination Plots
Wall Street Journal1/8/2018
The European Union on Tuesday imposed its first sanctions against Iran since the nuclear accord was implemented three years ago, in response to alleged plots against Iranian opposition figures in Denmark and France.


Meet “Dead Hand”: This Might Be Russia’s Most Terrifying Nuclear Weapons Idea Yet
National Interest1/8/2018
Perhaps the most terrifying was a Cold War doomsday system that would automatically launch missiles—without the need for a human to push the button—during a nuclear attack. But the system, known as “Perimeter” or “Dead Hand,” may be back and deadlier than ever.

Opinion and Analysis

New House, new vision for America’s nuclear weapons?
The HillKenneth Keulman
A new House of Representatives has taken power. And with it comes much needed change to how the U.S. approaches nuclear weapons. It’s about time.

‘Global Zero’ Double Standard For Nuclear Weapons
Breaking DefensePeter Huessy
In the coming clash between President Trump’s $750 billion defense budget and House Democrats’ desire to cut Pentagon spending, especially on nuclear weapons, there will be tremendous fiscal pressure to shortchange the almost $30 billion annual cost to modernize America’s strategic deterrent. The ideological cover for such penny-wise, pound-foolish cuts is the so-called Global Zero movement to eliminate all nuclear weapons.

Another Trump-Kim summit? The first one hasn’t accomplished much.
USA Today1/7/2019
President Donald Trump emerged from his historic summit last June with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and proclaimed on Twitter that “there is no longer a Nuclear Threat. … Sleep well tonight!”

Special Interest

Nuclear Security and Arms Control Policy Panel
Video – The Brookings Institution hosted a panel discussion with former diplomats and defense officials on nuclear security and arms control policy. Speakers talked about prospects of extending the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), which establishes limits on nuclear weapons in the U.S. and Russia. The treaty was entered into force in February 2011 and is scheduled to expire in February 2021. In addition, panelists discussed nuclear modernization efforts and the Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review.

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