The United States and Russian Federation reached an important arms control milestone on December 5 when both sides completed reductions in the strategic nuclear arsenals to 6,000 accountable weapons each, as required under the START I Treaty. These reductions are a massive reduction from the size of the nuclear arsenals both countries deployed when the agreement was signed in 1991, and demonstrate the value of negotiated, verified arms reduction agreements in U.S. security policy.
Bad weather twice postponed the intercept test scheduled for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense program, previously known as National Missile Defense. Weather plays a much greater role than most realize in the success of these demonstrations. The official reason for cancellation is that the poor weather at Vandenburg Air Force Base "did not meet range safety requirements." High winds at the test site may have been enough to force a postponement, but less than ideal weather could mean that the interceptors cannot intercept at all.
Released ten years after the fall of the Soviet Union, Building Capitalism, by world renowned economist Anders Åslund, provides the most comprehensive empirical analysis of the economic transformation of the countries comprising the former Soviet bloc during the past decade and challenges conventional wisdom.
The new US military presence in Uzbekistan is one more sign of how the dominant geopolitical paradigms of the last half of the twentieth century are no longer operative. The Cold War and its aftermath post-Cold War period are at an end.
President Bush said in May that he wanted to build a new "strategic framework" for nuclear relations between the United States and Russia. Six months later, he has taken a significant step in that direction with the announcement Tuesday of intentions to reduce U.S. nuclear forces and of a hoped-for compromise on missile defense to be worked out at Crawford, Texas, in days to come.
Homeowners all across America are renegotiating their mortgages to lock in historically low interest rates. President Bush should do the same this week with nuclear weapons. He and President Vladimir Putin should take advantage of historically good relations to lock in deep reductions to both nations’ nuclear arsenals.