What Was New
on START-2 and Further Nuclear Arms Reductions page?

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February, 1998

February 27, 1998
"...The United States neglected our strategic concerns. How can we reduce our most powerful strategic weapons when relations are put into question?..." - Vladimir Lukin, the Chairman of the Russian Duma's Committee on International Affairs answered to the question of National Public Radio: "How will NATO enlargement affect the Start II vote in the Duma?" (Telephone press briefing with Vladimir Lukin, February 24, 1998 at 11 a.m. EST, Global Reporting Network - Center for War, Peace, and the News Media) 

The key Duma members do not support START-2: A Lunch Against START-2,  - in Russian (by Vyacheslav Tetyokin, Zavtra, N 4, January 27, 1998)

Rather comprehensive picture of the state of affairs in US-Russian mutual disarmament is presented in The U.S.-Russian Strategic Arms Control Agenda, (by Jack Mendelsohn Arms Control Today,  November/December 1997, Volume 27, Number 8)

Arguments for abolition of nuclear weapons and an assessment of the role of strategic bombing in the XX-th century in Mutually Assured Destruction Revisited Strategic Doctrine in Question, (by Col Alan J. Parrington, USAF, Airpower Journal, Winter 1997)

Nuclear  Notebook, Russian Strategic Nuclear Forces, End of 1997,  (The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, March/April 1998, Vol. 54, No. 2)

Our report Nuclear Arms Reduction. The Process and Problems ( in Russian) still attracts much attention of experts. The excerpts from official responses by Admiral Vladimir Kuroyedov, CinC of the Russian Navy, and Colonel General Vladimir Yakovlev, CinC of the Strategic Missile Forces, are available on our site (in Russian).

The Hot on the Traces... page is updated.

February 23, 1998 
We begin publishing proceedings of the conference The Future of Russian-U.S. Strategic Arms Reductions: START III and Beyond 

State Duma on START-2: Alexei Podberyozkin, Deputy Chair of the Committee on Foreign Relations of the State Duma, and Anton Surikov, arms control expert, think, that Russia should reject START-2 and re-open  production of heavy land based ICBMs in order to preserve strategic parity with the US (The Treaty, Which Gives an Advatage to the US, (NVO-NG, N 7, February 20-26, 1998, p.6).With the same goal, Alexei Arbatov (Deputy Chair of the Committee on Foreign Relations of the State Duma) and Petr Romashkin (consultant, "Yabloko" faction) insist on ratification of the Treaty and beginning START-3 talks (There Is No Alternative to Ratification of START-2, (NVO-NG, N 7, February 20-26, 1998, p.6).

An independent expert argues against "Topol-M" (Nuclear and Missile Gamble, by Petr Belov, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, February 20, 1998, p.7)

De-alerting has both supporters and  opponents in the US: Nuclear Disarmament With Low-Tech Approach  (by Jonathan S. Landay, The Christian Science Monitor,  Friday, February 20, 1998). See also

US experts urge President Clinton's administration to begin START-3 negotiations immidiately. Their main arguments are the threat of Russian nuclear weapons proliferation and a possibility of accidenatal or mistaken launch of strategic missiles. (Ending Nuclear Terror, by Daryl Kimball, Executive Director of the Coalition to Reduce Nuclear Dangers, from National Debate - Point-Counterpoint Commentary and Public Policy News, Winter 1998).

On Wednesday, February 18, Center PIR held  a seminar "Future of Russian Nuclear Weapons". The speakers included Sergei Kortunov, first Deputy Director, Russian Federation Defense Council Staff (Russian Strategic Nuclear Forces: Options for Development and Disarmament), Ambassador (ret.) Roland Timerbayev, President of the Center PIR, Ivan Safranchuk, Research Associate at the Center PIR (Tactical Nuclear Weapons in the New World and Russian Non-Strategic Nuclear Forces). Participants of the seminars, who included Russian arms control experts, presented differing views on the utility of nuclear weapons.

December's issue (N 21, 1997) of Yadernoye Rasprostraneniye includes full texts of presentations by Alexei Arbatov, Senator Richard Lugar, Anton Vasiliev and Gennady Khromov at  the seminar "START 2 Ratification: Endgame in Moscow?" on November 21, 1997 organized by  Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Moscow. The report on the seminar  is also available in World Wide Web. 

End of Cold War requires working out new nuclear deterrence criteria (On Providing the Ground for Criteria of Unacceptable Nuclear Damage To Ensure Nuclear Deterrence, by Petr Romashkin, Yadernoye Rasprostraneniye, December, 1997, Issue 21, pp. 47-53).

February 16, 1998
A conference "The Future of Russian-U.S. Strategic Arms Reductions: START III and Beyond" took place in Cambridge, MA during February 2-6, 1998. The meeting was jointly sponsored by the Security Studies Program of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Center for Arms Control, Energy and Environmental Studies of MIPT. Russian participants of the conference included Rear Admiral Alexei Ovcharenko (Russian Navy), Petr Romashkin and Valerii Yarynich (Defense Committee staff, the State Duma), Prof. Anatoli Diakov (Director of the Center in MIPT), Timur Kadyshev, Eugene Miasnikov and Pavel Podvig (the Center in MIPT). From the U.S. side the conference was attended by Ambassador James Goodby, Michael Stafford (U.S. State Department), Major General Roland Lajoie (recently - Deputy Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for CTR program), Prof. Frank von Hippel (Princeton University), Prof. Theodore Postol (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Rear Admiral Robert Wertheim (consultant on national security issues), Bruce Blair (Brookings Institution) and many other arms control experts. 
The following issues were discussed in a conference: 

We plan to publish a summary report about the conference in February-March, 1998. For more information, please, contact Prof. Theodore Postol (617-253-8077, U.S.A.) or Prof. Anatoli Diakov (095-408-6381, Russia). 
Prospects of the Strategic Missile Forces: Colonel-General Vladimir Yakovlev, CinC of the SMF  (A New Nuclear Missile Philosophy of Russia in XXI-st Century, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, February 12, 1998, p.1) and Lev Solomonov, General Designer of the Moscow Institute of Thermotechnics ("Topol-M" is an Optimal Weapon for Russia, by Sergei Sokut, NVO-NG, N 5, February 6-12, 1998, p.6).

Former CinC of the US Strategic Command, General Lee Butler presented  a speech for abolition of nuclear weapons (The Risks of Nuclear Deterrence: From Superpowers to Rogue Leaders, by General Lee Butler, National Press Club, February 2, 1998)

General Belous continues the discussion on utility of nuclear weapons (Nuclear-Free World: Slogans and Reality, NVO-NG, N 4, January 30- February 5, 1998, p. 4).

From the history of development of Russian sea-based strategic forces (The Sea Leg of the Nuclear Triad,  by Yuri Kuznezov, NVO-NG, N 4, January 30- February 5, 1998, p. 6)

January, 1998

January 23, 1998
Following initiatives of arms control experts deserve an attention:

This Sunday marks the third anniversary of an incident that brought the Unites States and Russia to within minutes of accidentally starting a nuclear war. This argument is widely used by advocates of de-alerting of strategic nuclear forces (Taking Nuclear Weapons off Alert, by Andrew Koch, Weekly Defense Monitor, Issue 3, 1998). The opposite opinion about the Norwegian missile incident is expressed by Nikolai Sokov (Could Norway Trigger a Nuclear War?  Notes on the Russian Command and Control System, Program on New Approaches to Russian Security Policy Memo Series, Memo N 24, October 1997).

Anton Surikov suggests, that the State Duma should not approve START-2 Treaty. Moreover, a 5 to 10 years moratorium on further strategic arms negotiations should be established (START-2 Treaty and Future of Russia's Strategic Forces, Yadernoye Rasprostraneniye, 1997, Issue N 20, November, pp. 34-39).

January 19, 1998
A meeting of U.S. Senate staff members with Russian arms control experts took place last Friday, January 16, 1998, at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Moscow. U.S. delegation included John Ruts, Randy Rydell, Madelyn Creedon, Monica Chaves, Scott Bunton and Richard Combs. Both sides expressed their opinions on a possible START-2 ratification by the Russian parliament and possible ways to solve related problems.

According to the statement by Sergei Yastrzhembski,  the Russian president  shares the opinion that the long delay in ratification of START-2 Treaty is not in the  interests of Russia's armed forces, or for the prospects for Russian-American relations. Vladimir Ryzhkov, first deputy Duma  speaker, has said the fate of  START is unclear.  He says deputies have raised many  questions about START-2, which  remain unanswered and that ratification will take time. (Yeltsin Regrets Duma Delay on START 2, Russia Today, January 16, 1998; Yeltsin Urges START II Ratification, Associated Press, January 15, 1998).

"Bellona" urges START-2 ratification as well: (US urges ratification of START-II: Duma may consider the ratification in 1998 first decade, by Igor Kudrik, Bellona press release, January 12, 1998).

"RAU-Corporation" experts believe that, the U.S. consecutively try to weaken our strategic nuclear forces and ensure unilateral advantages for themselves in START-2 and New-York 1997 agreements. (On the START-2 Treaty, - in Russian, Obozrevatel-Observer , N 1, 1998, p. 11).
The U.S. develops plans to equip "Ohio" SSBNs with "Tomahawk" SLCMs instead of "Trident-2" SLBMs. At the same time the U.S. continues to object against considering SLCMs as a strategic weapon. An "Ohio" class submarine can accommodate 168 "Tomahawk"  SLCMs (7 SLCMs in each SLBM launcher). On the other hand, thus far, the U.S. has not reacted on Russia's concern, that some "Trident-2" missiles actually carry more warheads, than U.S. stated in START-1. These and other arguments are raised in the paper by V. Apanasenko, Chief of Missile Armaments Directorate of the Russian Navy (To Keep a Capability to Confront a Threat from the Sea, Morskoy Sbornik, N 11, 1997, pp. 3-6).

According to experts, after the end of the Cold War , the center of gravity of deterrence shifts from ballistic missiles to high precision conventional cruise missiles (V. Antonov, Strategic Deterrence in Current Situation Morskoy Sbornik, N 11, 1997, pp. 13-16).

The Institute of World Economics and International Relations of the Russian Academy of Sciences has recently published its regular  yearly issue "Disarmament and Security. 1997-1998. Russia and International Arms Control System: Development or Decay?" (by A.G. Arbatov, O.N. Bykov, A.N. Kalyadin, etc. - M.:, Nauka, 1997, 303 p.). Among the issues considered:

Strategic Deterrence of the Threat of Nuclear War Is the One of the Main Tasks of the Navy to Ensure National Security of Russia. The Role of Sea Based Strategic Forces in the System of Strategic Deterrence ( the title of a chapter from B.N. Makeyev's monograph " Naval Aspects of National Security of Russia", Committee on Non-proliferation of Critical Technologies, Moscow, 1997, 166 p.).

January 14, 1998
Ratification of the START-2 Treaty is Not Expected Soon (Segodnya, January 13, 1998).

Bob Edwards talks with NPR's Mike Shuster about the prospects for arms control in 1998. Both Russia and the United States will consider START-2 treaty. The US Senate hasn't shown any strong opposition, but the Russian legislature has reservations. The President may have to use diplomatic pressure to bring it on board. (January 5, 1998, NPR Report, Audio file,  4:29)

Strategic Nuclear Forces Integration. The First Results. - in Russian (by Colonel General Vladimir Yakovlev, CinC of the Strategic Missile Forces,  Military News Bulletin, N 12, 1997).

January 5, 1998
Doug Roche, Owen Greene, Xia Liping and other experts discuss the future of nuclear disarmament in November's issue (# 14) of The INESAP Bulletin.

The report on Carnegie Moscow Center Seminar  "START 2 Ratification: Endgame in Moscow?" held on November 21, 1997 is published on Policy Architects International home page. See also a paper START 2 and 3: Through the Eye of the Needle, An American Perspective on Treaties and the Russian-American Security Relationship, by Rodney W. Jones, at the same page.

What Was New in 1997?

©  Center for Arms Control, Energy and Environmental Studies at MIPT, 1997-98.