The Nuclear Turning Point: A Blueprint for Deep Cuts and De-Alerting of Nuclear Weapons

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Harold A. Feiveson
Brookings Institution Press, Dec 1, 2010 - Political Science - 402 pages

Despite the ongoing drawdown of strategic forces under the terms of START, both the United States and Russia maintain large arsenals of nuclear weapons poised for immediate launch. Under the most optimistic current scenarios, these arsenals will remain very large and launch-ready for more than a decade. This book, by a distinguished group of coauthors, critically evaluates the current policy of retaining and operating large nuclear arsenals. It reviews U.S. nuclear doctrine and strategy, and the role of nuclear weapons in deterring aggression by former Cold War adversaries and other countries with weapons of mass destruction. The risks of inadvertent as well as deliberate nuclear attack are assessed. The authors argue that small arsenals (low hundreds) on low alert satisfy all justifiable requirements for nuclear weapons. They present a blueprint for making deep cuts in U.S. and Russian deployments, and for lowering their alert level. They explain the implications of shifting to small arsenals for further constraining anti-ballistic missile defenses, strengthening verification, and capping or reducing the nuclear arsenals of China, France, and Britain as well as the threshold nuclear states. The political challenges and opportunities, both domestic and international, for achieving deep reductions in the size and readiness of nuclear forces are analyzed by the authors and by distinguished experts from other countries. The coauthors are Bruce Blair, Jonathan Dean, James Goodby, Steve Fetter, Hal Feiveson, George Lewis, Janne Nolan, Theodore Postol, and Frank von Hippel. An appendix with international perspectives by Li Bin (China), Alexei Arbatov (Russia), Therese Delpech (France), Pervez Hoodbhoy (Pakistan), Shai Feldman (Israel), Harald Mueller (Germany), and Zia Mian and M.V. Ramana (South Asia).

 

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Contents

Nuclear Arms Control at a Crossroads
1
A Strategy of Staged Reductions and Dealerting of Nuclear Forces
13
Nuclear Strategy
27
Limiting the Role of Nuclear Weapons
29
Nuclear Strategy and Targeting Doctrine
45
The Deep Cuts and Dealerting Program
59
Ballistic Missile Defenses and Deep Reductions
61
Dealerting Strategic Nuclear Forces
99
Why Not Abolition?
283
The Road to Abolition How Far Can We Go?
285
International Perspectives
301
Deep Cuts and Dealerting A Russian Perspective
303
Chinas Nuclear Disarmament Policy
323
New Stages of Nuclear Disarmament A European View
331
A View from Germany
339
A Nuclear Gordian Knot South Asia and the Limits of Deep Cuts
351

Nuclear Forces under Staged Reductions
127
Tactical and Reserve Nuclear Warheads
157
Transparency and Irreversibility in Nuclear Warhead Dismantlement
169
Completing the Deep Cuts Regime
191
Verifying Deep Reductions in Nuclear Forces
213
The Next Nuclear Posture Review?
241
Pakistan and the Deep Cuts Regime
367
Back to Sanity An Israeli View of the Effects of Deep Reductions
379
Contributors
385
Index
387
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Harold A. Feiveson is a senior research scientist at the Center for Energy and Environmental Studies at Princeton University.

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