On January 25, 1995—20 years ago Sunday—a routine scientific experiment in Norway led Russia to prepare to launch a nuclear attack on the United States.
January 27th, 2015
December 17th, 2014
The Cold War ended 25 years ago this month, according to many historians. On Dec. 2 and 3, 1989, Presidents Bush and Gorbachev met on a ship off the island of Malta in the Mediterranean and announced an end of hostilities between the United States and the Soviet Union.
The two presidents quickly turned to addressing the most dangerous legacy of the Cold War: the bloated nuclear arsenals in both countries. Within a few years, they cut their nuclear stockpiles in half, and have continued to cut them in the decades since. With U.S.-Russian tensions high again, it’s worth remembering what progress has been made. Read More
December 1st, 2014
September 25th, 2014
The New York Times recently ran an excellent story on the administration’s ambitious plan for the future of the U.S. nuclear arsenal, which includes building new generations of nuclear-armed bombers, missiles, and submarines. But I want to discuss an important issue that the article didn’t mention: The United States also intends to develop and produce new types of nuclear warheads rather than simply refurbishing existing warheads as they age. There are both technical and political reasons why this is a bad idea. Read More
August 6th, 2014
August 4th, 2014
As every high school student learns, the first amendment to the U.S. constitution guarantees the right to freedom of speech. That’s why government employees have the right to express their opinions as long as they make clear that their opinions do not represent those of their employer.
Apparently some folks at Los Alamos National Laboratory—one of the two labs that design and help maintain U.S. nuclear weapons—missed that day in class. Read More
December 17th, 2013
A fascinating 2-minute video from Global Zero features short surprise interviews with members of Congress, who are asked the simple question: How many nuclear weapons does the U.S. have? Most couldn’t answer the question and resorted to responses like “I don’t have the exact number,” “It’s classified” and “It changes every day.” The two who provided numbers responded with “300” and “more than 15,000.” According to the Global Zero press release, the organization polled more than 70 members of Congress and “99% of then did not know—even roughly speaking—how many nuclear weapons the United States has.” Read More