Affirmative section consultation and cooperation through dialogue networks



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PLAN:
We offer the following plan to alleviate the existing nuclear tensions between Russia and the United States.
1. The United States, in close cooperation and consultation with Russia, will immediately de-alert all of its land-based nuclear weapons and encourage Russia to do the same.
2. This plan will be implemented by executive order to the Defense Department. Funding is guaranteed through the DOD.
OBSERVATION 2. DE-ALERTING NUCLEAR WEAPONS WILL ALLEVIATE US/RUSSIA NUCLEAR TENSIONS.
DE-ALERTING WOULD PREVENT AN ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND WOULD LEAD TO FURTHER CUTS BY THE US AND RUSSIA
Jonathan S. Landay, February 20, 1998 [The Christian Science Monitor, SECTION: UNITED STATES; Pg. 4 HEADLINE: Nuclear Disarmament With Low-Tech Approach\\jan]VT99

Rocks and dirt don't sound like a recipe for averting an atomic cataclysm. Yet, piling tons of debris atop the lids of nuclear-missile silos that would take days to clear is among a host of steps collectively called "de-alerting" - gaining support as ways in which the United States and Russia might advance post-cold-war stability. The idea: The more time the sides require to mount massive nuclear attacks, the less danger of inadvertent conflict. Furthermore, advocates say, taking most missiles off the high-alert hair-triggers on which they remain six years after the Soviet Union's demise would encourage the former foes to slash armories below levels now being contemplated.


DE-ALERTING WOULD SOLVE FOR A RUSSIAN ACCIDENTAL NUCLEAR LAUNCH EVEN IF ITS COMMAND AND CONTROL SYSTEM BREAKS DOWN COMPLETELY.
Mike Moore, February 10, 1998 [Mike Moore is editor of the Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Chicago Tribune SECTION. COMMENTARY; Pg. 15; ZON'E:N. HEADLINE: HOW SAFE SHOULD WE BE FEELING? NOT VERY\\jan]VT99

The United States and Russia are systematically reducing the numbers of strategic weapons, but not in a qualitatively equal way. While the United States can keep its nuclear enterprise in high polish, ready for instant use, Russia's nuclear capability is rusting away, figuratively if not literally.

It is inconceivable that either the U.S. or Russia would launch a preemptive strike, even in a time of high tension. But in the nuclear calculus, one must always reckon with the possibility that one side might attack, however reluctantly, if it feared that its adversary was making preparations.

That kind of Cold War reasoning is alive today. The military mind is weaned on worst-case scenarios, and in times of crisis, that makes everyone edgy. Under extreme stress, people make mistakes, miscalculate. Warning systems fail, command-and-control chains break down.

Russia's early-warning systems are clearly decaying, its bomber and submarine forces are rotting from lack of maintenance and its comm and-an d -control chain is suspect. From a Russian perspective, that makes it ever more important for Russia to keep its ground-based missiles on full alert.

Do we in the United States really want Russian land-based missiles to remain on a hair trigger? Mutual de-alerting would buy time in a future crisis, greatly adding to stability and enhancing the possibility of reasoned thought.


RUSSIA IS IN FAVOR OF DE-ALERTING
SENATOR ALAN CRANSTON, February 18,1998 [Official Kremlin Int'l News Broadcast. "PERSPECTIVES OF A NON-NUCLEAR WORLD"\\jan]VT99

Secondly, the advocacy of de-alerting nuclear weapons, taken them off the status where they can be fired instantaneously, has been taken up by both governments. The United States Joint Chiefs of Staff, the principal military leaders, have prepared a report suggesting certain ways that weapons might be taken off alert, and that is being circulated in the US government now. The foreign minister of Russia, Mr. Primakov, has stated publicly " Russia believes that we should proceed to de-alert to some degree our nuclear weapons. " So we should expect to see that happen before too long.


IT IS CRITICAL THAT THE UNITED STATES WORKS WITH RUSSIA IN ORDER TO INCREASE THE SAFETY OF THEIR NUCLEAR SYSTEM
Thomas L. Friedman, February 18, 1997 [International Herald Tribune (Neuilly-sur-Seine, France). SECTION: Opinion; Pg. 8. HEADLINE: Iraq Is Bad, but the Biggest Proliferation Threat Is Russian\\jan]VT99

The United States should be doing everything it can to work with Russia, not only on Iraq but to shrink Russia's own nuclear arsenal, which is the greatest proliferation threat in the world today.

Attention shoppers: Russia has thousands of weapons of mass destruction. It has hundreds of unemployed or underemployed nuclear scientists. And it has only the loosest controls over its nukes and nuclear materials, and it has a signed nuclear arms reduction treaty with the United States that has not been implemented.
THE US IS PROPOSING DE-ALERTING TO MAKE START II A REALISTIC TREATY
Jonathan S. Landay, February 20, 1998 [The Christian Science Monitor, SECTION: UNITED STATES; Pg. 4 HEADLINE: Nuclear Disarmament With Low-Tech Approach\\jan]VT99

But that does not mean it is ignoring the concept altogether. In fact, the US is considering adapting de-alerting steps to help implement the 1993 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START 11), which is languishing unratified by the Russian parliament. START 2 originally required the sides to cut their warheads to no more than 3,500 each by 2003. But the Russian parliament's foot-dragging forced them last year to push the deadline to 2007. Worse, Moscow can scarcely afford the huge expenses of destroying the missiles and warheads due to be scrapped. Accordingly, the US is looking at de-alerting as a low-cost alternative that would take those systems off-line as close to the original deadline as possible. A high-level administration panel is reviewing a range of options, including some forwarded by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The goal is to formulate proposals to present to Moscow once START 2 is ratified, senior officials say. They decline to discuss options under review but note Russia's objection to removing warheads. "We have not reached any conclusions," says one official. "All of the ideas that you have heard in the public discussion are among those that we have been looking at, and there are others."


ADVANTAGE: THE AFFIRMATIVE PLAN WILL DRAMATICALLY REDUCE THE PROBABILITY OF ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS.

THE RISK OF ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH IN RUSSIA IS INCREASING BY THE WEEK


Jonathan Power, March 14,1998 [NEW STRAITS TIMES-MANAGEMENT TIMES. HEADLINE: Another Cold War in the making\\jan]VT99

The second profound mistake was to allow Senator Jesse Helms to effectively torpedo ratification of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty that was meant to reduce the number of long-range nuclear weapons from 6,000 to 3,500. By holding up ratification at a crucial time in 1995, Helms allowed his obscure counterparts in the Russian parliament a chance to assault it in Moscow.

The momentum to rid the two nuclear superpowers of their massive armouries has been totally undermined. Russia's command and control systems are visibly deteriorating, as are the rockets themselves. The risks of an accidental launch are increasing by the week.
RUSSIA COULD RESPOND TO A CRISIS WITH NUKES IN A MATTER OF MINUTES
Maxim Bulantsev, February 6, 1998 [TASS. HEADLINE: Russian missile troops ready to repulse attack - commander\\jan]VT99

It will take minimum time for the Russian Strategic Missile Troops to respond to an attack of a possible enemy, troops commander-in-chief Vladimir Yakovlev said at a meeting of the State Duma on Friday.

Asked about the troops' readiness to repulse an aggression against the background of a mounting tension in the Persian Gulf and the reports on the U.S. possible use of tactical nuclear weapons against Iraq, Yakovlev said "the Russian missile troops are permanently on the alert and are ready to give an adequate response to an armed aggression of any enemy to order of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief -- the President of Russia. "
RUSSIAN COMMAND-AND-CONTROL SYSTEMS ARE RAPIDLY DETERIORATING. THERE IS A REAL RISK OF AN ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH
Jonathan S. Landay, February 20, 1998 [The Christian Science Monitor, SECTION: UNITED STATES; Pg. 4 HEADLINE: Nuclear Disarmament With Low-Tech Approach\\j an]VT99

He says the threats posed by the dire state of Russia's nuclear corn m and-an d -control systems must be addressed. They say Moscow's serious economic problems have left its systems beset by neglect, technical problems that inadvertently switch missiles to combat mode, and an unreliable early-warning radar network. Meanwhile, the officer corps is seething over poor pay and a loss of privileges. As evidence, they cite an incident in 1995, when President Boris Yeltsin came within minutes of ordering an attack on the US after Russian officers mistook a scientific rocket from Norway as a nuclear missile targeted at Moscow by an American submarine.


LAND-BASED MISSILES ARE THE BIGGEST THREAT OF ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH
Mike Moore, February 10, 1998 [Mike Moore is editor of the Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Chicago Tribune. SECTION: COMMENTARY; Pg. 15; ZONE- N. HEADLINE: HOW SAFE SHOULD WE BE FEELING? NOT VERY\\jan]VT99

Both sides can deliver nuclear warheads by bombers, submarines or by land-based missiles. In arms control argot, bomber- and submarine-delivered weapons are said to be "stable" deterrents. Submarines are hard to find and track, so they can afford to ride out an attack against their homeland before retaliating. In fact, U.S. submarine commanders are supposed to head toward the surface if they get a launch order and tune to commercial radio bands. If ballgames are being broadcast and disc jockeys still are playing golden oldies and rock, that's a tip-off that the country is still around.

Meanwhile, bombers take hours to get to their targets, which means they can be called back if there has been a mistake.

But land-based missiles are in a use-'em-or-lose-'em category. If the proper "command authority" believes the other side has attacked, the decide-to-launch time is figured in minutes.


AN ACCIDENTAL RUSSIAN LAUNCH CAUSED BY AN ERODING COMMAND-AND-CONTROL SYSTEM WOULD PLUNGE THE WORLD INTO A NUCLEAR HOLOCAUST OF MORE THAN 5,000 NUCLEAR WEAPONS WITHIN 30 MINUTES
Jonathan S. Landay, February 20, 1998 [The Christian Science Monitor, SECTION: UNITED STATES; Pg. 4 HEADLINE: Nuclear Disarmament With Low-Tech Approach\\jan]VT99

Arms controllers have been advocating de-alerting for several years, contending that it would create a more accurate reflection in strategic terms of the new political relationship between Moscow and Washington, Some say the US should take such steps unilaterally to induce a stillinsecure Russia to follow. The concept is winning new adherents as concerns grow that a lack of funds is seriously eroding Russia's nuclear command-and-control systems, raising the danger of an errant or unauthorized launch that could trigger a US response. Within 30 minutes, the sides could plunge into a nuclear holocaust, exchanging the more than 5,000 warheads they still keep on 24-hour high alert.


RUSSIANS ARE INCREASING RELIANCE ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS
BECAUSE OF ITS NUCLEAR FORCES, RUSSIA IS THE MOST IMPORTANT COUNTRY IN THE WORLD TO THE USA
John F. Harris; Washington Post Service, International Herald Tribune (Neuilly-sur-Seine, France), May 5, 1998, Pg. 1 HEADLINE: Clinton Under Pressure to Test Bond With Yeltsin // acs-VT99

There is only one country in the world that has some 10,000 nuclear weapons that still could be turned against the West, said Michael McFaul, a Stanford University political scientist who travels frequently to Russia and knows many of the Clinton administration's Russia experts. ''It's still the most important relationship we have,'' he said, ''but you would not know that from Clinton's agenda or how he is spending his time.''


RUSSIAN EXPENDITURES FOR LONG RANGE NUCLEAR WEAPONS WILL INCREASE BY 100% TO 150%
Thomas L. Friedman; International Herald Tribune, August 1, 1997, Pg. 8, HEADLINE: But What About the U.S.-Russian Relationship? acs-VT99

Mr. Arbatov said that even with a smaller defense budget he expected that appropriations for long-range nuclear weapons would grow by 100 to 150 percent over the next two years.


RUSSIA PLANS TO LET ITS CONVENTIONAL MILITARY DISINTEGRATE OVER THE NEXT FEW YEARS
Pavel Felgenhauer, Segodnya's defense and security affairs editor, The Moscow Times, October 30, 1997, HEADLINE: ICBMs Won't Boost Reform acs-VT99

After hearing what the liberal Yabloko deputies had to say, high-ranking Defense Ministry officials, who were also present, could only say "thanks" and agree with every word. Sergeyev is a career strategic nuclear missile general, and the "comprehensive" reform draft he has put together is in essence a nuclear reform plan.

One of Sergeyev's close military advisers told me last week that the "gist of our plan is to run military reform under a nuclear umbrella." This means that conventional forces are not essential and may be allowed to disintegrate further for several more years, until economic growth begins to fill state coffers. In the meantime, nuclear deterrence will guard Russia against all of its foes.
BECAUSE RUSSIAN CONVENTIONAL FORCES ARE WEAK, GREATER RELIANCE IS BEING PUT ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS, INCLUDING FIRST USE AND LIMITED USE DOCTRINES
The Toronto Star, December 8, 1997, Pg. A8, HEADLINE: Nuclear arms strategies in flux U.S., Russia say they'll use weapons to deter attacks acs-VT99

"A number of Russian observers advocate placing greater reliance on nuclear weapons to compensate for the deficiencies of (Moscow's) conventional forces," the CIA told Congress in material released last week. Some Russian officials, the agency added, even "have called for developing first-use and limited-use nuclear options to prevent a regional conflict from expanding into a broader war."


RELYING ON NUCLEAR FORCES AND NOT FUNDING CONVENTIONAL FORCES MAY REQUIRE RUSSIA TO ACTUALLY USE NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN A BORDER SKIRMISH
Pavel Felgenhauer, Segodnya's defense and security affairs editor, The Moscow Times, October 30, 1997, HEADLINE: ICBMs Won't Boost Reform acs-VT99

Still, the Sergeyev nuclear umbrella reform plan does not sound good. A sudden U.S. nuclear attack is hardly possible while Russia still has at least a dozen operational ICBMs. So to find new targets, some Russian generals are already spreading nuclear deterrence strategy to possible local and regional conflicts. But if Russia were ever to use nuclear weapons in a local conflict against hostile guerrillas - in Chechnya, for example - it would never win or gain lasting military advantage. The only result would be a devastating political, moral and radioactive fallout.


RUSSIAN MILITARY DESPISES PLANS TO RELY ON NUCLEAR FORCES FOR DEFENSE
Pavel Felgenhauer, Segodnya's defense and security affairs editor, The Moscow Times, October 30, 1997, HEADLINE: ICBMs Won't Boost Reform acs-VT99

The war in Chechnya showed the Russian army to be in dire need of modern conventional weapons and better organization to fight or successfully deter regional threats from rogue forces. It hardly needs new ICBMs without delay. Sergeyev may have persuaded Arbatov and Lukin, but not the vast majority of Russia's military that despises him as a nuclear rocket professional.


NATO EXPANSION HAS SLOWED RUSSIA’S ATTEMPT TO DEEMPHASIZE ITS NUCLEAR FORCES
William Drozdiak The Washington Post, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN), May 2, 1998, Pg. A5, HEADLINE: RUSSIA'S ANTI-NATO ROLE CREATES CONCERN // acs-VT99

While costs and internal politics might be the true causes for the delay, NATO experts say they are troubled by recent comments from senior Russian defense officials emphasizing that nuclear weapons must assume greater military importance because NATO-allied troops and conventional weapons will be closer to Russia's border.


RUSSIA IS BEGINNING TO PERCEIVE THE UNITED STATES AS A ROGUE SUPERPOWER WHICH COULD LEAD THEM TO INCREASE THEIR RELIANCE ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS
Pavel Felgenhauer, February 19, 1998 [Pavel Felgenhauer is defense and national security affairs editor for Segodnya. The Moscow Times HEADLINE: DEFENSE DOSSIER: U.S. as Rogue Superpower.\\jan]VT99

But the United States could not care less about international law. Washington apparently believes it can attack Iraq or any other nation at will, especially if that nation has no means of retaliating against U.S. territory.

The U.S. military has thousands of megatons of weapons of mass destruction. The United States is the only nation to have ever used nuclear weapons to destroy hundreds of thousands of civilians in 1945. The United States used poisonous chemical agents in Vietnam. The United States has killed many more innocent civilians during this century than Saddam Hussein. The United States is apparently ready to kill again.

More and more Russians believe the United States is a rogue superpower and that only nuclear warheads aimed at U.S. cities can keep the Big Satan at bay. If bombs fall on Baghdad, this may become the prevailing view in Moscow.


A MOVEMENT IS INCREASING AMONG YELTSIN'S OPPOSITION TO UPGRADE THE MILITARY AND TO INCREASE ITS RELIANCE ON NUCLEAR DETERRENCE
Radio Russia, February 11, 1998 [Moscow, in Russian 1400 gmt I I Feb 98. BBC Summary of World Broadcasts. February 13, 1998 HEADLINE: Opposition leaders call for stronger armed forces.\\jan]VT99

[Correspondent] Gennadiy Zyuganov, the leader of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, believes the statement claiming that Russia has no external enemies to be a harmful delusion. He is convinced that the country's military doctrine should be aimed at preserving the missile umbrella into the 21 st century. The People's Patriotic Union's efforts, with the help of nationally orientated capital, are capable of preventing the disintegration of the army, Zyuganov stressed. But this is possible only if the leadership of the country changes.

Army cuts are not acceptable, Gen [Lev] Rokhlin, the head of the State Duma's Defence Committee, said and promised demonstrations under the slogan "The people and the army are united" on an unprecedented scale, which would coincide with the celebrations to mark Russian Army Day.
START 2 IS THREATENED IN THE STATUS QUO
WITHOUT PASSAGE OF START-2, BOTH RUSSIA AND THE USA WILL HAVE TO SPEND HUGE SUMS ON DEFENSE SYSTEMS
Alexei Bausin, Russian Press Digest, May 28, 1998, HEADLINE: Warhead Will Not Be Counted Before Autumn, SOURCE: OBSHCHAYA GAZETA, p. 6, acs-VT99

Duma Defense Committee deputy chairman does not expect early ratification of START-2 Treaty by lower house of parliament.

Alexei Arbatov, Deputy Chairman of the Duma Defense Committee and Director of the Center of Geopolitical and Military Prognosis, says in an interview for NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA that he does not expect early ratification of the START-2 Treaty by the lower house of parliament. He notes that the reason why Washington has indicated that a new Russo-American summit is ruled out before Duma ratification of the START-2 Treaty is that the U.S. Administration wants know where it stands before making a decision to earmark funds for military programs for many years ahead. If the State Duma does not endorse it, the United States will have to channel enormous sums of money into its strategic forces. If the Treaty is ratified, more funds will spent on conventional weapons.
WITHOUT THE RATIFICATION OF START 2, THE USE OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS IS INEVITABLE
Naomochi Fujimoto and Debra Lau, September 14, 1997 [The Daily Yomiuri. HEADLINE: Engagement the key to pacifying the dragon McNamara also emphasizes need for elimination of nuclear weapons; Japan urged\\jan]VT99

With the United States and Russia yet to ratify START 2, McNamara expressed the fear that the "indefinite combination of human fallibility and the large stocks of nuclear weapons will lead to the destruction of nations."

He credited a report by the Canberra Commission recommending the elimination of nuclear weapons, praising former Ambassador Ryukichi Imai, one of the signatories to the document. Following this move, the U.S. Naval Academy of Scientists issued a similar report, and, earlier this year, 19 retired U.S. four-star generals and admirals and 42 non-U.S. high-ranking admirals and generals also expressed support for the proposal.

"So, this idea that we should dramatically reduce existing nuclear forces and actually go to elimination is not pie-in-the-sky--it's not only the view of idle dreamers, but (also of many senior civilian and military security experts," McNamara said.


START III WOULD DRAMATICALLY CUT THE NUCLEAR ARSENALS OF THE US AND RUSSIA
Andrew F. Krepinevich Jr., 1997 [The Christian Science Monitor. April 29, 1997. HEADLINE: It's Time to Break the Nuclear Monopoly\\jan]VT99

The news from Helsinki of a possible START III accord is certainly welcome. The agreement between President Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin could reduce United States and Russian strategic arsenals to as low as 2,000 warheads each in 10 years. But US policymakers should not feel constrained by the parameters of this new agreement. Nor should they necessarily wait to implement further reductions in our current 7,000 nuclear warheads until this agreement is ratified. Rather, old arms control notions of nuclear parity should yield to new realities that are the product of two revolutions - one geopolitical and one military.


USA IS WILLING TO PAY FOR WEAPONS DISPOSAL COSTS IF START-2 IS RATIFIED
Official Kremlin Int'l News Broadcast, MAY 12, 1998, HEADLINE: ROUND-TABLE DISCUSSION ON THE START II RATIFICATION PROCESS // acs-VT99

Leonov [Nikolai Sergeyevich Leonov Professor of MGIMO and a constant participant on Channel 3 program "Russky Dom"]: According to US media reports, if I remember them correctly, and if I don't, I think our colleagues from the Foreign Ministry will correct me, the US is willing to provide funding if we ratify and implement the treaty, but it will not give us even a penny to keep these weapons at their present level.


DE-ALERTING SOLVENCY EXTENSIONS
THE MAJORITY OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS EXPERTS FAVOR DE-ALERTING
Mike Moore, February 10, 1998 [Mike Moore is editor of the Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Chicago Tribune. SECTION: COMMENTARY; Pg. 15; ZONE: N. HEADLINE: HOW SAFE SHOULD WE BE FEELING? NOT VERY\\jan]VT99

De-alerting is not a radical idea. The International Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons endorses it, as do a passel of retired U.S. and Russian generals and admirals. The National Academy of Sciences is for it. Virtually all of the heavy-hitters in the arms control field advocate it. Most important, Lee Butler, former head of the Strategic Air Command and a principal architect of today's nuclear doctrine, favors it.


DE-ALERTING WOULD PREVENT A FIRST STRIKE
Mike Moore, February 10, 1998 [Mike Moore is editor of the Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Chicago Tribune. SECTION: COMMENTARY; Pg. 15; ZONE: N. HEADLINE: HOW SAFE SHOULD WE BE FEELING? NOT VERY\j an]VT99

De-alerting, like everything else in the world of nuclear weapons, has complexities and nuances. But at its core is a simple notion: Do something to ensure that missiles cannot be fired quickly. The Russians would monitor our de-alerting procedures; we would monitor the Russians. Given that, neither side would be able to launch a surprise attack, which means that neither would fear a "bolt from the blue," to use Reagan-era terminology.


ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH EXTENSIONS
AN ACCIDENTAL RUSSIAN LAUNCH WOULD INVOLVE HUNDREDS IF NOT THOUSANDS OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS. CURRENT US DOCTRINE WOULD CAUSE A MASSIVE RETALITORY STRIKE
Stephen S. Rosenfeld, 1997 [The Washington Post. January 31, 1997. HEADLINE: Wake Up -The Nightmares Not Over\\jan]VT99

Hence the nightmare scenario of an accidental Russian launch that, under prevailing American doctrine, would trigger a first strike or quick second strike aimed at a full range of Russian military targets, including command and control, nuclear and conventional forces and the capacity to wage war. Since Russian missiles are similarly postured, the Henry L. Stimson Center reports, "an accidental Russian launch could trigger an overwhelming and unnecessary disaster for both countries." Against this remote but imaginable contingency, the much-cited dangers of a rogue missile attack begin to be reduced to size. A rogue attack would presumably involve only a missile or two; an accidental Russian launch, hundreds if not thousands. A defense can be devised against a limited attack, not against a concerted attack. There is a chance of deterring a rogue launch by a credible threat of nuclear response, but by definition an accidental launch cannot be deterred.


THE RISK OF AN ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH IS UNACCEPTABLY HIGH
Jim Lobe, 1997 [Inter Press Service. June 19, 1997. HEADLINE: U. S.-DISARAMENT: SCIENTISTS CALL FOR NEW NUCLEAR POLICY\\jan]VT99

"As a result, the dangers of initiation of nuclear war by error (e.g. based on false warning of attack) or by accident (e.g. by a technical failure) remain unacceptably high." It also noted that "the end of the Cold War has created conditions that open the possibility of serious consideration of proposals to prohibit the possession of nuclear weapons."

The report, prepared by a NAS committee headed by retired Army Major General William F. Burns, joined a swell of criticism from experts over the failure of the administration to move more aggressively to defuse the nuclear threat. It began last December when the former commander of Washington nuclear arsenal, ret. Air Force George Lee Butler, called on all countries to rid the world of nuclear weapons.
AN ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH FROM RUSSIA IS A REALISTIC THREAT BECAUSE OF THE DETERIORATION OF THERE COMMAND AND CONTROL SYSTEMS
Donald M. Rothberg, 1997 [The Chattanooga Times. February 20, 1997. HEADLINE: U.S., Russian missiles still on alert\\jan]VT99

Blair said the threat of an accidental nuclear exchange is made greater by "clear signs of continuing deterioration of the Russian nuclear command and control system."

He said the bureau responsible for command and control of the Russian nuclear rocket forces "is virtually bankrupt. "
IF AN ACCIDENTAL LAUNCH WERE TO OCCUR FROM RUSSIA, IT WOULD LILT THE UNITED STATES
Donald M. Rothberg, 1997 [The Chattanooga Times. February 20, 1997. HEADLINE: U.S., Russian missiles still on alert\\jan]VT99

He also said that despite statements by Yeltsin, Russian missiles remain targeted on the United States.

"If a Russian missile does fire accidentally, it's going, to go to its Cold War target," said Blair. "It's not going to land in the ocean the way U.S. missiles have been programed to do."

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