Joseph Cirincione

Washington, D.C.

Joseph Cirincione is president of Ploughshares Fund, a global security foundation. He is the author of the books Nuclear Nightmares: Securing the World Before It Is Too Late, Bomb Scare: The History and Future of Nuclear Weapons and Deadly Arsenals: Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Threats. He has worked on nuclear weapons policy in Washington for over 35 years and is considered one of the top experts in the field. He served previously as vice president for national security at the Center for American Progress, director for non-proliferation at Carnegie Endowment, and senior associate at Stimson. He worked for nine years as professional staff on the U.S. House of Representatives Committees on Armed Services and Government Operations. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a former member of the International Security Advisory Board for Secretaries of State John Kerry and Hillary Clinton. He also teaches at the Georgetown University Graduate School of Foreign Service.

Cirincione is an MSNBC nuclear security expert and his commentary has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Financial Times, Kyodo News, Moscow Times, Foreign Policy, The Hill, Daily Beast, and Huffington Post.


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Recent content

Tell Congress, Stop Trump From Starting Nuclear War

Many would say that Donald Trump should be the last person authorized to launch US nuclear weapons. In fact, he is the only person that is.  As shocking as it sounds, President Trump alone has the power to launch thousands of nuclear weapons — enough to end life on Earth as we...

February 14, 2017 - By Joe Cirincione
The Trump Era Begins

This will be an inauguration like no other. Donald Trump is breaking tradition at almost every turn, which may be one reason he is the most unpopular incoming president in history. As Vice President Joe Biden recently told The New York Times, when it comes to national security and...

January 19, 2017 - By Joe Cirincione
PETITION: Keep Donald Trump’s Finger off the Nuclear Button

It’s too late to stop Donald Trump from becoming president. But it is not too late to stop him from impulsively blowing up the planet. With the stroke of a pen, President Barack Obama could take our nuclear missiles off high alert, making sure that President Trump could not launch them rashly....

December 21, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
What President Trump Means for Nuclear Policy

Next week at a special Washington, DC event, we will release a new report, "10 Big Nuclear Ideas for the Next President."

November 10, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
The UN Makes History on a Nuclear Weapons Ban. Does the US Care?

This is the situation confronting proponents of the process begun October 27, when—by a vote of 123 for, 38 against, and 16 abstaining—the First Committee of the UN agreed “to convene in 2017 a United Nations conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons.”

November 3, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
Historic UN Vote on Banning Nuclear Weapons

For the first time in its 71 years, the global body voted to begin negotiations on a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. All nine nations with nuclear arms (the United States, Russia, China, France, the United Kingdom, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea) opposed the resolution. However, with a...

October 27, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
Testimony of Joseph Cirincione

While most of us have forgotten that nuclear weapons still exist today, national security leaders have not. They take seriously former Secretary of Defense Bill Perry warning that we 'are on the brink of a new nuclear arms race' with all the perils, near-misses and terrors many thought ended...

June 20, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
Five Things Obama Could Do Now

In Hiroshima, Obama has said that he will only make brief remarks and speak on the nature of war in general. President Abraham Lincoln’s remarks at Gettysburg were also brief, a mere 10 sentences. He also spoke on the...

May 26, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
North Korea Just Got a Little Scarier

South Korea claims that North Korea has miniaturized a nuclear warhead to fit on the tip of a missile. They are probably right.

April 6, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione
The Iran Agreement: A Victory for Diplomacy

The Iran Agreement is working. Not by force, but by diplomacy. On January 16, 2016, Iran's four pathways to a nuclear weapon were verifiably blocked. Since then moderates and reformers won major victories in elections in Iran, new channels of communication between the US and Iran helped quickly...

March 17, 2016 - By Joe Cirincione