New START Treaty

Sidst redigeret d. 3/9 - 2022
foto: United States Mission Genevas Fotostream,
Link til bilede

Head of the Russian delegation, Vladimir Leontyev, left; and Head of the U.S. delegation, John Ordway, right; sign agreements on the sharing of telemetric information during the third session of the Bilateral Consultative Commission Under the New START Treaty in Geneva, Switzerland, on February 7th, 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]


Keeping an eye on the prize: divisive US-Russia nuke talks must go on

Responsible Statecraft d. 1/9 - 2022, Written by Shannon Bugos

The close of the Non-Proliferation Treaty review was a fail, but that doesn’t mean parties can’t persist in the pursuit of New START.

The clock is ticking down on the last remaining U.S.-Russian nuclear arms control treaty, leaving open the possibility that the world’s two largest nuclear arsenals may soon be entirely unconstrained — a harrowing reality understood by most countries, which urge quick action.

The 190 states-parties to the 1968 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) gathered at the United Nations headquarters in New York City in August for the treaty’s month-long review conference, which had been postponed since 2020. Unfortunately, Moscow’s rejection of certain provisions on the dangerous situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine in the draft final conference document derailed efforts to reach consensus on the status of and recommendations for improving progress on nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament.

The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), signed between the United States and Russia in 2010, is the only nuclear arms control treaty left standing after cracks in the arms control regime have emerged over the past few years. The treaty established a ceiling on the size of the U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals, allowing for no more than 1,550 warheads deployed on 700 delivery vehicles (defined as intercontinental ballistic missiles, sea-launched ballistic missiles, and heavy bombers assigned to a nuclear mission).

President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin made the right call last year to extend New START until 2026. With little more than three years left until the treaty’s expiration, it is now crunch time for the two countries to hold formal treaty negotiations, hash out the numerous divisive issues on the table, and secure the domestic support necessary to ensure a replacement arms control arrangement. If New START expires with no follow-on arrangement, the U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals will be with no limitations for the first time since 1972...

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U.S.-Russia Presidential Joint Statement on Strategic Stability

The White House d. 16/6

We, President of the United States of America Joseph R. Biden and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, note the United States and Russia have demonstrated that, even in periods of tension, they are able to make progress on our shared goals of ensuring predictability in the strategic sphere, reducing the risk of armed conflicts and the threat of nuclear war.

The recent extension of the New START Treaty exemplifies our commitment to nuclear arms control. Today, we reaffirm the principle that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.

Consistent with these goals, the United States and Russia will embark together on an integrated bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue in the near future that will be deliberate and robust. Through this Dialogue, we seek to lay the groundwork for future arms control and risk reduction measures...

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US security officials 'considered return to nuclear testing' after 28-year hiatus

Discussion held this month as way to press Russia and China into agreeing arms control deal, officials say

by Julian Borger in Washington d. 23/5 - 2020

...The last major arms control treaty left standing is the 2010 New Start agreement, limiting US and Russian deployed strategic warheads. It is due to expire in February next year but the Trump administration has said it does not want to extend it without bringing China into arms control negotiations. Beijing has refused, on the grounds that its stockpile is tiny compared with the US and Russian arsenals (estimated at just over a twentieth of the size)...

...The NNSA, an agency of the energy department, has the job of maintaining the readiness of the US nuclear arsenal, and has developed computer diagnostic tools to check the state of the warheads, drawing on data from the 1,054 tests the US carried out between 1945 and 1992...

...“They have said that they see no technical reason to resume testing for the foreseeable future. And that was the statement that was made when I left,” Klotz, a retired air force lieutenant general, said. “Whether that’s changed or not I don’t know. I doubt it, quite frankly.”...

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Q&A: New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (Start)

BBC d. 23/12 - 2010

The New Start treaty, signed by the US and Russian presidents, replaces the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (Start), first proposed by US President Ronald Reagan in 1982 and signed in 1991, as the USSR sped towards collapse.
How does New Start differ from Start?

It puts new, lower limits on the size of each country's nuclear arsenal, and updates the verification mechanism.
What are the new limits?

There are limits on warheads and on launchers, which must be implemented within seven years of the treaty's entry into force.

Warheads: Under the New Start treaty each side is allowed a maximum of 1,550 warheads. This is about 30% lower than the figure of 2,200 that each side was meant to reach by 2012 under the Start treaty (as revised in the 2002 Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty).

Launchers: Each country is allowed, in total, no more than 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, and heavy bombers equipped for nuclear arms. Another 100 are allowed if they are not operationally deployed - for example, missiles removed from a sub undergoing a long-term overhaul…

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US and Russian nuclear arsenals

BBc d. 8/4 -2010

US President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, signed a landmark nuclear arms treaty in the Czech capital, Prague on Thursday.

The treaty commits the former Cold War enemies to each reduce the number of deployed strategic warheads to 1,550 - 30% lower than the previous ceiling. Here is a breakdown of their respective arsenals.

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Global map of nuclear arsenals

BBC d. 5/4 - 2009

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The 5th Prague Agenda Conference
& the 2015 PNND Assembly

Since President Obama’s 2009 announcement of his long-term nuclear disarmament vision in Prague and the following signing of the 2010 US-Russia START Treaty, Prague has established itself as a venue for discussion and taking stock of issues related to nuclear arms control, nuclear security, disarmament and non-proliferation.

The 5th Prague Agenda Conference will explore nuclear deterrence, framing of nuclear disarmament debates, following up on the NPT and emerging nuclear powers. The 2015 Assembly of the international network of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (PNND) will follow with a parliamentary conference on eliminating the risks of nuclear weapons.

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The New START treaty is the successor to the START I. The START II was signed, but not ratified.
The START III negotiating process was not successful.

Start III - 2002

I løbet af de næste ti år forpligter USA og Rusland sig til at reducere antallet af atomsprænghoveder placeret på strategiske våbensystemer med 4.000 stk. hver. I dag har USA 6.000 og Rusland 5.500, om 12 år må USA have 2.000 og Rusland have 1.500.

Det lyder af meget, men der er så mange lempelser i aftalen, så den ikke kan kaldes en nedrustningsaftale.

Men en tidsrammen 12 år, kan de vente med at foretage sig noget til de to sidste år. Næsten ingen skal skrottes, men kan holdes i aktiv reserve.

I sammenligning med START III-traktaten fra 1997 vurderes tilbageskridtet som alvorligere. »Der var det planen at destruere både sprænghoveder og våbensystemer. Det er åbenbart vanskeligere efter den kolde krig, end under den kolde krig at gennemføre fornuftige nedrustningsforhandlinger.

Aftalen er på kun tre sider og indeholder ifølge russiske medier intet, der gør nedrustningen uafvendelig, da USA blot kan oplagre i stedet for at destruere sprænghoveder, som Moskva tidligere krævede.
I Moskva ses aftalen som afslutningen på våbenkontrol med alt nedfældet på papir som i START I og II fra 1991 og 1993, der fyldte hundreder af sider.

Det er med bekymring jeg læser Fyns Stiftstidende (lederen 26 maj 2002) for hvis det er spillets regler at den stærkeste part udnytter situationen, kan vi jo godt opgive enhver form for nedrustningsforhandlinger.

Hvilket der desværre også er meget der tyder på bliver en realitet. Men verden bliver ikke mere fredelig ved at USA, fordi de bruger en sum der svarer til 45 % af verdens samlede militærudgifter på våben, ser sig i stand til at skrotte de ene aftale efter den anden, som det har  taget årtier om at opbygge, samt nedbryde international retspraksis.

Fyens Stiftstidende skriver:

Når Putin alligevel smilede om kap med Bush, skyldes det hans grundlæggende erkendelse af Ruslands svaghed. I modsætning til sine umiddelbare forgængere, der forsøgte at nærme sig Vesten uden at opgive tanken om russisk ligeværdighed med supermagten USA, ved Putin, at Rusland skal finde sig til rette i en ny rolle.

af Poul Eck Sørensen


"Spillets regler" - leder
Fyens Stiftstidende 26 maj 2002

"Ingen reel nedrustning bag aftale"
Information 23 maj 2002, 1 . sektion side 1

"Topmøde" - leder
Politiken 21 maj 2002, Kultur side 4