Nuclear Policy News

Nuclear Policy News – February 23, 2017

Nuclear Policy News – February 23, 2017



S. Korea, U.S., Japan nuke envoys to discuss N. Korean missile, assassination

Turkey mulls purchase of Russian S-400 air defense system
Defense News

Russia to Arm 90 Percent of Strategic Nuclear Forces With Modern Weaponry by 2020
The Diplomat


S. Korea, U.S., Japan nuke envoys to discuss N. Korean missile, assassination
The three countries' top envoys on the North Korean nuclear issue will sit together on Monday in their first joint meeting since the President Donald Trump administration took office last month.

N.K. condemns China over comment on missile test, suspension of coal imports
The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said that a neighboring country which often claims itself to be a "friendly neighbor" is showing an unkind attitude towards North Korea. It claimed that China downplayed the meaning of its test-fire of an intermediate ballistic missile on Feb. 12.



Iran says has increased precision of its long-range ballistic missiles
Tehran Times
Tehran insists that its missiles are not capable of carrying nuclear warheads and are for defense only. Iran uses its “conventional” missiles to “legitimately” defend its territory, Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif stated.


IDEX 2017: Fantom emerges with new weapons system
IHS Janes 360
Ukraine's Spets Techno Export has integrated an anti-tank missile launcher onto its Fantom unmanned ground vehicle. Full firing tests of the missile systems are set to take place in the coming months.

Turkey mulls purchase of Russian S-400 air defense system
Defense News
In what would be a snub to NATO, the Turkish government has said it may buy the Russian-made S-400 for its near-mystery program to build the country’s first long-range air and anti-missile defense system.

Russia to Arm 90 Percent of Strategic Nuclear Forces With Modern Weaponry by 2020
The Diplomat
The Russian military’s modernization efforts include new missile systems, modern ballistic missile submarines, and upgraded strategic bombers such as the Tupolev Tu-160 and Tu-95MS. 


Pacific Ocean: US Navy Submarine Fires 4 Ballistic Missiles
The Diplomat
The test launches were conducted over a three-day period from February 14 to 16 as part of a so-called  Follow-on Commander’s Evaluation Test (FCET). The primary objective of an FCET is to obtain, under operationally representative conditions, valid reliability, accuracy, and performance of the missile system for use by Commander, Strategic Command and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Minot Air Force Base bomb wing wins strategic bomber award
Associated Press
The trophy is awarded to the best performing wings in five categories. The 5th Bomb Wing won in the strategic bomber category.  It is the fifth time the bomb wing has won an Omaha Trophy, and the second time in three years. 

Pentagon studies ways to counter hypersonic missile threat from China, Russia
The Washington Times
Hypersonic missiles are under rapid development in China and Russia as a way to penetrate advanced air and missile defenses such as those developed by the Army and Navy. A major problem for current U.S. missile defenses is that all were designed from the ground up to target missiles with predictable and unchanging trajectories. 

US ‘nuclear sniffer’ plane deployed in Europe amid mysterious spike in radiation
The Independent
The WC-135 can detect and identify nuclear explosions from the air and is also used to track radioactivity after nuclear incidents. Two devices on either side of the aircraft collect atmospheric gases, filtering them to detect particles from nuclear fallout.



As China ups heat on North Korea, U.S. faces questions
Matthew Pennington,Military Times
Years of failed efforts to stem North Korea's nuclear and missile programs have followed a usual pattern. The United States seeks tougher action from China, the North's traditional ally. Beijing urges U.S. diplomatic engagement.

The Real Nuclear News
Peter Huessy, Real Clear Defense
The Russian, Chinese and North Korean threats are real indeed and need to be taken seriously. We cannot just stand still or go backward. As the new administration says, it is about making America great again. A strong military—both conventional and nuclear-- is part of that effort.

Can a treaty banning nuclear weapons speed their abolition? (Roundtable)
Janice Sinclair, The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists
Outright prohibition of nuclear weapons would contrast starkly with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which allows five countries to retain nuclear weapons for an unspecified time—as they "pursue negotiations in good faith… on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control." What should a ban treaty entail, and could it truly succeed in speeding the disarmament process? 


3D Printing: Bringing Missile Production to a Neighborhood Near You
Nuclear Threat Initiative
Employed strategically, 3D printing could reduce cycle times in development of missiles and other military systems – and with the right printers and software – even reduce the number of skilled engineers needed for such programs.

Reviving Cold War Doomsday Devices Could Patch America’s Broken Nuclear Controls
Elaine Grossman, War is Boring
This is the third article in a three-part series on how limited foreign attacks could endanger America’s fragile command and control over nuclear weapons. Read parts one and two.

The U.S. Air Force’s New Push to Brace for War in Space
Defense News
The Air Force welcomes the discussion to realign policy, strategy and resources. By openly embracing our commitment to defend American space assets, we send a strong signal to potential foes that waging such a battle is a losing proposition, period. 




Friday's Top Nuclear Policy News


Having nuclear weapons ‘matter of life and death’ for North Korea: RIA

Ending Iran nuclear deal would worsen North Korea situation: Kerry

North Korea writes open letter to Parliament urging Australia to move away from Trump administration
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Russia’s Lavrov warns one-sided changes could sink Iran deal
Associated Press

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