Nuclear Policy News – October 11, 2019

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New missile warning satellites pass design test

Iran oil tanker is hit by missiles, state media report
New York Times

ROK Navy seeking to secure nuclear-powered submarines for self-defense capabilities
Yonhap News Agency

United States

New missile warning satellites pass design test
The Air Force’s next generation early warning missile defense satellite passed a preliminary design review, the service announced October 10.

Trump administration expected to announce exit from ‘Open Skies’ treaty
The Trump administration is expected to soon announce that it plans to exit the “Open Skies” treaty, a US official tells CNN, a move that has already drawn condemnation from Democrats in Congress.

Middle East

Iran oil tanker is hit by missiles, state media report
New York Times10/11/19
Explosions rocked an Iranian oil tanker in the Red Sea early Friday, in what the state news media described as a missile attack, raising fears about increasing tensions in an already volatile and economically crucial region.

East Asia

ROK Navy seeking to secure nuclear-powered submarines for self-defense capabilities
Yonhap News Agency10/10/19
The Navy said Thursday it has been running a task force on the potential construction of nuclear-powered submarines as part of efforts to bolster its nuclear deterrent and boost defense capabilities.


Are U.S.-North Korea nuclear negotiations dead?
National InterestDavid Axe
Pyongyang seems to realize it possesses an advantage. With a growing nuclear arsenal, it can escalate its demands and its rhetoric.

On North Korea, the chickens are coming home to roost
The AtlanticUri Friedman
One of the downsides of highly personalized diplomacy is that when the person in question is debilitated, the diplomacy suffers.

Does the U.S. government need to assess economic sanctions better?
Washington PostDavid W. Drezner
No one in the U.S. government appears to be assessing whether the sanctions are accomplishing their policy goals in real time.

Open Skies Treaty allowed eyes over Russia; Trump wants to give them up
New York TimesEditorial Board
The president seems set to withdraw from a pact that provided transparency over military buildups.

China’s ballyhooed new hypersonic missile isn’t exactly a game-changer
Washington PostJames Acton
In the show of military might Tuesday to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China, one of the highlights among the weapons trundling through Tiananmen Square in Beijing was a hypersonic boost-glide missile.

NATO has a secret plan to destroy Russia’s Kaliningrad base
National InterestDavid Axe
Moscow’s Kaliningrad territory is bristling with missiles and would need to be dealt with during any conflict.

Israel may have 300 nuclear weapons (including submarine-launched missiles)
National InterestSebastian Roblin
The exact details of Israel’s nuclear arsenal is a tightly-held secret.

Special Interest

Iran’s Nuclear Program: Status
Congressional Research Service10/9/19
The United States has assessed that Tehran possesses the technological and industrial capacity to produce nuclear weapons. But Iran has not yet mastered all the necessary technologies for building such weapons.

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