On behalf of the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation and the nuclear community as a whole, we mourn the passing of Jonathan Tucker at the much-too-young age of 56..
Jonathan was a world-class expert on biological and chemical weapons, as well as nuclear policy issues. During his esteemed career, he worked at the Scientific American, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the U.S. Department of State, the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, as a specialist in chemical and biological arms control at the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and most recently at the Federation of American Scientists.
He served as a United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq in the hunt for Saddam Hussein’s chemical and biological weapons programs.
Tucker had the rare ability to speak eloquently on both the scientific and policy sides of the nuclear nonproliferation issue and shifted smoothly in recognition of his audience. In his work, he was a dedicated and influential nonproliferation advocate and he will be greatly missed.
John Isaacs, the Council’s executive director, worked closely with Jonathan on a variety of chemical and biological weapons projects. They worked together in the efforts to eliminate weapons of mass destruction, which culminated in the entry into force of the Chemical Weapons Treaty. They had lunch only a few months ago in which they reviewed President Richard Nixon’s decision to eliminate the United States offensive biological weapons program, which led to an international treaty to bar these weapons.
Our thoughts go out to his friends and family.