10 Big Nuclear Ideas for President-Elect Trump

Ten big nuclear ideas - President-elect Donald Trump will soon have to focus seriously on nuclear policy. With this in mind, Ploughshares Fund asked some of the best thinkers in the field for their bold ideas to help make America safer and more secure.

--The new report features groundbreaking essays from Senators Dianne Feinstein and Ed Markey, Rep. Adam Smith, former Secretary of Defense William J. Perry, former commander of the American nuclear arsenal retired Gen. James Cartwright, Valerie Plame, Kennette Benedict, Suzanne DiMaggio, Frank von Hippel, Steve Andreasen, Isabelle Williams and Tytti Erasto. Digital copy available here. http://bit.ly/2ghgo0t

Nuclear opportunities for Trump - The new administration presents serious new nuclear risks, from the use of nuclear weapons to encouraging other nations to go nuclear. But “if we can avoid the worst, it is possible that President Trump could significantly improve global nuclear security,” Ploughshares Fund president Joe Cirincione writes for The Nation.

--“It is possible that he, like previous Republican presidents, could agree on deep cuts in Russian and US nuclear arsenals...Trump (and Putin) could cancel some of the expensive, unnecessary new nuclear weapons both countries are building. It could also lead to Trump canceling any further deployments of anti-missile interceptors in Eastern Europe...Trump has also said that he’s willing to talk to North Korean leader Kim Jung-un...Trump could even decide that the Iran agreement is actually in America’s security interest, thus ending the partisan debate on this essential accord,” Cirincione writes. “The opportunity to make this world a safer place is still within reach. A great deal depends on what we, outside of this new administration, do.” Full story here. http://bit.ly/2fVShjW

See also - “Trump and the Bomb: U.S. Nuclear Policy Under the Next Administration,” by Michael Krepon for Foreign Affairs. http://fam.ag/2gijVbi

Rethinking U.S. nuclear policy - “Now that Trump has won the election, he will need to get serious and specific about nuclear policy. The nation is facing real challenges on the nuclear front, few of which were ever mentioned on the campaign trail,” writes Tom Collina for Foreign Policy.

--“The incoming Trump administration must approach nuclear policy as it did the election — by upending the status quo. Current policy does not reflect reality. Nuclear weapons are vastly overvalued in U.S. defense policy, with missions they cannot achieve and budgets they do not deserve. These weapons do not address the highest-priority threats we face, such as nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and cyberattacks.” Full story here. http://atfp.co/2f1zvpg

Tweet - @Cirincione: Admiral Mike Mullen: "Tearing up the #IranDeal would be a mistake. We've had enough wars in the Middle East." http://bit.ly/2gyzNJR

View from Israel - “The Iran deal is beneficial to Israeli security, and thus must be safeguarded,” writes Shemuel Meir, a former IDF analyst for +972. “Opponents are doing everything in their power to bring about its nullification. Thus there will be a need for a political and analytical base to stop them.”

--“The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini was quick to send a message to Trump about the obligation of all sides to maintain an agreement that has proven itself thus far. It is unlikely that Russia, which is a signatory to the deal alongside the U.S. and other world powers — a fact that is entirely ignored in Israel — will bring about its dissolving. Paradoxically, the purported honeymoon between Trump and Putin may well end up bolstering the deal.” Full piece here. http://bit.ly/2fOybKK

See also - “U.K. Will Seek to Soften Trump Opposition to Iran Nuclear Deal,” by Thomas Penny for Bloomberg. http://bloom.bg/2gdDe7Q

Tweet - @GlobalZero: Comforting to know that regardless of whose finger is on the button, scientists are working to #EliminateNukes http://wapo.st/2fnxQxS

Consequences of killing the deal - “If the US decides to withdraw from the deal, it will likely end up doing it alone, losing legitimacy in the eyes of its allies and the international community and giving Iran license to pursue nuclear weapons with significantly more economic power and less stigma than it’s had in many years,” writes Zeeshan Aleem for Vox. Full piece here. http://bit.ly/2fLSTsj

Obama works to strengthen Iran deal - “The Obama ad​min​is​tra​tion is con​sid​er​ing new measures in its final months in of​fice to strengthen the landmark nuclear agreement with Iran, se​nior U.S. officials said, with President- elect Donald Trump’s first appointments fore​shad​ow​ing an in​creas​ingly rocky road for the con​tro​ver​sial deal,” write Carol Lee and Jay Solomon for The Wall Street Journal. “Actions under consideration to buttress the pact includes steps to provide licenses for more American businesses to enter the Iranian market and the lifting of additional U.S. sanctions.”

--“The effort to shore up the agreement was under way before the election and isn’t aimed at boxing in Mr. Trump... [The Obama Administration] recognize[s] that there is little they can do from a policy perspective if the incoming administration is determined to scuttle the accord. But they plan to make a forceful case to the president- elect’s team of the grim consequences they believe the U.S. would face if it ended up being blamed for the agreement’s failure.” Full story here. http://on.wsj.com/2fvAqiR

Tweet - @SecDef19: A #nuclear free Iran is critical to Middle East stability http://nyti.ms/2eUIyZ5

A New North Korea policy - “As in so many foreign policy issues, there's considerable confusion about what U.S. policy toward North Korea will look like under President-elect Donald Trump. Pyongyang's expanding nuclear capability will not be something he can ignore,” writes Elise Hu for NPR. “‘The likelihood today of a nuclear catastrophe somewhere in the world is greater than it was than during the Cold War — greater than during the Cold War,’ former U.S. Defense Secretary William Perry said in Seoul a week after the American election.”

--“[Perry] doesn't think a catastrophe will come from a nation launching an actual attack, but rather through an accident. ‘The danger is we blunder into a nuclear war. The reason we are blundering into these positions is that people do not understand the dangers,’ Perry said.” Bruce Klingner, a North Korea expert at the Heritage Foundation added, “Having [an] uncertain Asia policy by Trump, by having the uncertainty of the domestic political crisis in South Korea, and then the uncertainty of what Kim Jong Un would do — it could be a recipe for disaster.” Full article here. http://n.pr/2f2Uo8s

See also - “Can Trump make a deal with North Korea?” by Joel Wit and Richard Sokolsky for The Atlantic. http://theatln.tc/2gGLizo

Tweet - @nukes_of_hazard: @DrJimWalshMIT analyzes the North Korean #nuclear threat & recommends sanctions with diplomacy as a U.S. response http://bit.ly/2gGKTgA

Quick Hits:

--“Sohae Satellite Launching Station: Test Unlikely in the Near Future,” by 38 North. http://bit.ly/2fvhjIT

--“World leaders anxious for Trump's nuclear policy,” by Rebecca Kheel for The Hill. http://bit.ly/2guLiSa

--“Trump and nuclear proliferation: ‘The importance of this issue to our security is clear'” by Brendan Thomas-Noone for The Guardian. http://bit.ly/2f2OMv3

--“Wherever Trump goes, nuclear 'football' to follow,” by Dugald McConnell and Brian Todd for CNN. http://cnn.it/2g2yNg6

--“Work on a solution to reduce threat of nuclear weapons,” by William Hartung for timesunion. http://bit.ly/2fZljig

--“Donald Trump’s Reagan Movement,” by Scott Ritter for The Huffington Post. http://huff.to/2gqzRep

--“Fred Iklé on the Second Nuclear Age,” by Michael Krepon for Arms Control Wonk. http://bit.ly/2fBQa3P

--“Iran begins exporting excess heavy water to comply with nuclear deal,” by Deutsche Welle. http://bit.ly/2f1cHem

--“Russia will keep nuclear-armed on Nato border to counter ‘alliance’s expansion,’” by Brendan Cole for International Business Times. http://bit.ly/2f2XV6L


--“What to Do about Russia’s Rising Profile in the Middle East,” a conversation featuring Anna Borshchevskaya, Thomas Cunningham, Alireza Nader, Aaron Stein and Barbara Slavin, hosted by The Atlantic Council. November 29 at 9:30am, at Atlantic Council, 1030 15th Street NW, 12th Floor (West Tower Elevator), Washington, DC. Details here. http://bit.ly/2ejjWfF

--“Nuclear Policy Talk with Dr. Lassina Zerbo,” a discussion on ‘Advancing Verification Science to Monitor for Nuclear Explosions: The Contribution of the CTBT,’ hosted by George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs. November 29 from 4-6pm, The George Washington University - Lindner Commons, 6th Floor of the Elliott School 1957 E St, NW, Washington, DC. Details here. http://bit.ly/2ge36R3

--“The Future of the Command and Control of Our Nuclear Weapons,” by Ploughshares Fund, featuring Eric Schlosser, author of Command and Control and Joe Cirincione, President of Plowshares Fund. At Four Seasons Hotel Seattle, 99 Union St., Seattle, WA on November 29, 2016 from 6:00 to 9:00pm. Details and registration here. http://bit.ly/2frpJT9

--“Should We Fear Russia?” a launch for Dmitri Trenin’s new book of the same name, hosted by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace featuring William Burns and Andrew Weiss. November 30, 2016 from 10:30am-12pm at The Carnegie Endowment, 1779 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20036-2103. Details here. http://ceip.org/2giitWc

--“Nuclear Explosion Monitoring: 60 Years of Science and Innovation,” by Departments of State and Energy on November 30, 2016 from 1:00pm to 6:15pm. The event is held at Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 106, First St NE, Washington, DC 20002. Details and RSVP here. http://bit.ly/2fBOnMt

--“Global Security Forum 2016,” by Center for Strategic and International Studies on December 1, 2016 from 8:00am to 4:00pm. The forum will be held at CSIS Headquarters, 1616 Rhode Island Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20036. List of panelists and registration here. http://bit.ly/2ft9fbj

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