Nuclear Policy News - September 29, 2010

Sep 29, 2010

FISSILE MATERIAL

Iran nuclear plant hit by two-month delay: official
AFP

Why is Pakistan stalling on disarmament?
Foreign Policy by Colum Lynch

Military Space Programs at Risk, Experts Say
Congress Daily by Otto Kreisher

North Korea: Next of Kim
The Guardian

What Nuclear Gaming Tells Us About New START
Heritage Foundation by Baker Spring

EAST ASIA
North Korean Leader Elevates Son to General
Global Security Newswire
North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has given his youngest son the rank of four-star army general in a move that appears to validate international assertions that Kim Jong Un is his father's chosen successor, the Associated Press reported today (see GSN, Sept. 27).

North Korea's New Boy-General
The National Interest by Michael Green
This week North Korea watchers were treated to a rare display of succession propaganda when it was announced at a Congress of the Korean Workers Party in Pyongyang that Kim Jong Il’s twenty-seven-year-old third son was promoted to the rank of General in the Korean Peoples Army.

US to consult allies on N.Korea
AFP
A senior US official announced Monday he would travel to Japan and South Korea to compare notes on North Korea's leadership meeting, which he said Washington was treating with caution.

Nuke talk partners ‘closely observing’ changes in N.K.
The Korea Herald
Partners of international talks aimed at denuclearizing North Korea were observing with interest the reclusive state’s father-to-son power transition, while emphasizing “no shift” in their ultimate goal of persuading the country to give up its nuclear ambitions, news reports said Wednesday.

MIDDLE EAST
Jordan sees nuclear accord with U.S. by year-end
Reuters by Amena Bakr
Jordan expects to reach a compromise and sign a nuclear cooperation accord with the United States by the end of this year, although it will not forfeit its right to enrich uranium, an official said Tuesday.

U.S. Continues Aid to Israeli Missile Defense Effort
Global Security Newswire
The United States yesterday inked a deal to continue support for development of an Israeli defense system against short-range ballistic missiles, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency announced (see GSN, Aug. 4).

Iran nuclear plant hit by two-month delay: official
AFP
Iran's atomic chief said on Wednesday that the country's first nuclear power plant will be ready to generate electricity by January -- two months later than announced.

Iran Demands Affirmation of Atomic Rights From World Powers
Global Security Newswire
Iran said today it would seek formal acknowledgment of its atomic rights in future discussions of its nuclear program with the five permanent U.N. Security Council member nations and Germany, Agence France-Presse reported (see GSN, Sept. 27).

Iran to press for recognition of 'nuclear rights'
AFP
Iran will press to have its "nuclear rights" recognised in talks with world powers who accuse Tehran of seeking atomic weapons, a foreign ministry spokesman told reporters on Tuesday.

Iran urges more talks on fuel swap
Press TV
Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki has stressed the significance of continued consultations on ways to implement the Tehran Declaration for a potential nuclear fuel swap.

SOUTH ASIA
Why is Pakistan stalling on disarmament?
Foreign Policy by Colum Lynch
Last week, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon took Pakistan to the diplomatic equivalent of the woodshed, organizing a high-level New York disarmament conference where foreign ministers and other dignitaries excoriated Islamabad for blocking international negotiations aimed at banning the production of nuclear weapons fuel.

Pakistan in IAEA chair doesn't bother India
The Times of India
Western countries are collectively choking at the thought of nuclear renegade Pakistan heading the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)'s governing board for the next year. But not India.

RUSSIA/FSU/EUROPE
Bob Ainsworth clashes with ex-aide over Trident
BBC by Brian Wheeler
Shadow defence secretary Bob Ainsworth has had a public spat with his former aide over the replacement of Trident nuclear weapons.

MULTILATERAL ARMS CONTROL AND NONPROLIFERATION
Unwilling to Back Full Nuclear Disarmament
IPS by Pavol Stracansky
More than a year ago U.S. President Barack Obama came to Eastern Europe to announce his vision of a world without nuclear weapons. One year later, in the same place, the Czech capital Prague, he signed a deal slashing nuclear weapons stocks with his Russian counterpart Dmitri Medvedev.

Chavez to develop nuclear program
The Examiner by Robert Moon
Marxist Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez is taking the first steps toward building a full-scale nuclear program, which, like his friend Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Holocaust-denying fundamentalist lunatic in charge of Iran, he assures us he is developing for purely "peaceful purposes"...because what would a bloody, fanatical tyrant bent on challenging U.S. power want with nuclear weapons, right?

U.S. NUCLEAR WEAPONS STRATEGY AND POLICY
Military Space Programs at Risk, Experts Say
Congress Daily by Otto Kreisher
U.S. national security space capabilities, so critical to deployed combat forces and national missile defense, and the supporting industrial base are at a dangerous "tipping point" and need focused leadership and long-term stability in programs and budgets to avoid a crisis, a panel of administration officials and defense space experts warned yesterday (see GSN, July 27).

Zeal for Dream Drove Scientist in Secrets Case
New York Times by William Broad
Many people who know P. Leonardo Mascheroni describe him as a maverick and a technology zealot. Now, the Justice Department will try to prove that he is dangerous, too — a man willing to sell atomic secrets in exchange for a chance to realize his dream.

OPINIONS
Stop holding onto dangerous nuclear material
The Hill by Alan Kuperman and Miles Pomper
After depending for decades on imported medical radio-isotopes – produced in foreign facilities that use bomb-grade, highly enriched uranium (HEU) – the United States recently acquired medical isotopes made with safer, low enriched uranium (LEU), a move that holds great potential for reducing the risk of nuclear terrorism.

North Korea: Next of Kim
The Guardian
North Korea generates reams of comment, but few hard facts. We learn from the propaganda machine, which has begun extolling his qualities in poetry and song, that Kim Jong-un, the ailing leader's youngest son, is being groomed as successor. Five others were promoted to the rank of general, according to the Korean Central News Agency, including Kim Jong-il's elder sister Kim Kyong-hui.

Going nuclear: Arab-Iranian fissure
Al Jazeera
The demonisation of Iran as a threat is all too common by Western and Arab states, based more on rhetoric than reality.

What Nuclear Gaming Tells Us About New START
Heritage Foundation by Baker Spring
As the debate over whether the United States should ratify the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) with Russia continues, Americans would do well to examine the treaty’s underlying assumptions and assertions before we sign on to an international agreement that will last for 10 years. President Barack Obama believes that U.S. nuclear disarmament is the sort of leadership by example that can help to rid the world of nuclear weapons. Reducing nuclear warheads and delivery systems under New START is a key component of his “road to zero” effort to achieve the total worldwide elimination of nuclear weapons.

Why the US doesn't talk to Iran
Asia Times by Ismael Hossein-zadeh and Karla Hansen
The unrelenting diplomatic and geopolitical standoff between Iran and the United States is often blamed on the Iranian government for its "confrontational" foreign policies, or its "unwillingness" to enter into dialogue with the United States. Little known, however, is that during the past decade or so, Iran has offered a number of times to negotiate with the US without ever getting a positive response.