by Kingston Reif [contact information]
Romney strikes out on nukes
Published in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists Online on October 22, 2012.
Article summary below; read the full text here.
Where does the Republican nominee, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, stand on the issues of nuclear threat reduction, including arms control treaties, non-proliferation, and missile defense? Apart from a major speech at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) annual convention in July, Romney has said very little about foreign policy, including in his nationally televised convention speech in Tampa this August. What Romney has said, however, does not inspire confidence: Romney's statements and proposals to date on nuclear weapons policy and related issues reflect an obsolete Cold War mindset that, if implemented, would undermine US economic and national security.
If Romney is elected, it remains to be seen whether he would side with the far-right fringe on these issues, as he did on New START and has on the campaign trail, or if he would heed the advice of many former Republican government officials and national security leaders, who believe that the United States can maintain a strong and effective deterrent with a smaller number of nuclear weapons at a reduced financial cost. Unfortunately, the early signs are not encouraging.
Kingston Reif is the Director of Nuclear Non-Proliferation at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, where his work focuses on arms control, nuclear nonproliferation, nuclear weapons, and preventing nuclear terrorism. He has published letters and articles on nuclear weapons policy in such venues as the Washington Post, Washington Times, Wall Street Journal, Survival, Defense News, and Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.