The following on Iran's WMD capabilities is taken from the CIA's biannual "Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions," from January1 - June 30, 2003. This report was released November 10, 2003.
The International Atomic Energy Agency has found that "there is no evidence that the previous undeclared nuclear material and activities ... were related to a nuclear weapons program." Not yet, anyway. Director General Mohamed ElBaradei's report adds that Iran's past "pattern of concealment" means "it will take some time before the agency is able to conclude that Iran's nuclear program is exclusively for peaceful purposes."
<IMG style="PADDING-RIGHT: 5px; DISPLAY: block; FLOAT: left; PADDING-TOP: 3px" height=60 src="http://carnegieendowment.org/images/article_images/NAFTA_cover1.jpg">This report from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace examines the impact of NAFTA after ten years.
Charles E. Bennett was a war hero, a man of deep religious belief, a southern conservative Democrat, and a member of the House of Representatives for 44 years. He believed in a strong military, large defense budgets, a powerful Navy and integrity in government.
The following is an extended excerpt of a speech by former national security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski from the October 28-29 Conference, "New American Strategies for Security and Peace." Dr. Brzezinski concludes, "American power worldwide is at its historic zenith. American global political standing is at its nadir." He warns, "Since the tragedy of 9-11 which understandably shook and outraged everyone in this country, we have increasingly embraced at the highest official level what I think fairly can be called a paranoiac view of the world...The state of isolation in which the United States finds itself today is due in part because that skewed view of the world is intensified by a fear that periodically verges on panic that is in itself blind. By this I mean the absence of a clearly, sharply defined perception of what is transpiring abroad regarding particularly such critically important security issues as the existence or the spread or the availability...of weapons of mass destruction."
The Political and Security Committee of the Council of the European Union outlined its Basic Principles for an EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction. Later that week, the EU issued an Action Plan to implement the strategy.
The NPT has been a huge success story for 35 years in stemming nuclear proliferation. In the 1990s, however, cracks began to emerge in that regime and they have grown and become serious enough to threaten the stability of the entire regime.
Trenin and Malashenko examine the implications of the war with Chechnya for Russia's post-Soviet evolution. Considering Chechnya's impact on Russia's military, domestic politics, foreign policy, and ethnic relations, the authors contend that the Chechen factor must be addressed before Russia can continue its development.
The challenge of building democratic societies in Central Asia is becoming more profound with each passing year, and unfortunately there are no easy answers to the question of how to alter this situation.
Europe is celebrating the British, French and German foreign ministers' diplomatic coup in Tehran last week. The three foreign ministers succeeded in convincing Iran to agree to suspend uranium enrichment activities and to sign the Additional Protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement, authorizing more intrusive inspections. Most European commentators are hailing this breakthrough as an important achievement for Europe. The Austrian Der Standard called it "the greatest success for European diplomacy in ten years of political union, since the Maastricht Treaty."
Major oil producers in West Africa and Latin America can make an important contribution to US energy security, since they are not affected by the intractable problems of the Middle East. They have problems of their own, however, and to mitigate them, the U.S. should encourage transparency and democratic processes in the distribution of oil revenue.
On October 21, Iran announced that it would temporarily suspend its uranium enrichment program and sign the Additional Protocol, requiring more robust inspections. Iranian officials declined to specify the duration or form of this suspension. The tougher inspection system would authorize International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors to perform spot checks of any suspicious sites, without prior notice. Dr. Rowhani, head of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, stated that Iran would probably sign the protocol before the November 20th IAEA board meeting.
Contrary to claims that the war on Iraq was the product of a vast conspiracy peddled by a small band of neoconservatives, history shows that, even under the Clinton administration, Iraq was perceived as a strategic threat due to Saddam's proven record of aggression and barbarity, his admitted possession of weapons of mass destruction, and the certain knowledge of his programs to build more.
A General Accounting Office investigation into the Defense Department's disposition of excess lab supplies revealed that the Pentagon is selling equipment usable for bio-terrorism, over the Internet at discount prices.
The international aid field of law and development focuses too much on law, lawyers and state institutions, and too little on development, the poor and civil society. In fact, it is doubtful whether "rule of law orthodoxy," the dominant paradigm pursued by many international agencies, should be the central means for integrating law and development.