What is New START?
The Nuclear Security Summit that just ended Friday in Washington, D.C. wrangled over several thorny nuclear proliferation and terrorism issues, and...
Despite no headway in US-Russia cooperation in cutting down nuclear arsenal, Russia has been successful in removing the highly enriched uranium from Iran and has removed 1300 tonnes of chemical weapons from Syria in recent years. It is of late evincing keenness on the New START Treaty. It must be said to the credit of George Bush that the US achieved a 50% nuclear stockpile reduction during his tenure.
He achieved the New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) with Russia. It was signed on 8 April 2010 in Prague, and, after ratification, entered into force on 5 February 2011. It is expected to last at least until 2021. The New START Treaty with Russia mandated significant nuclear weapons stockpile reductions and inspection verification protocols. Since taking office Obama has persuaded the international community to reduce their stockpiles but, the momentum has been lost. New START replaced the Treaty of Moscow (SORT), which was due to expire in December 2012. In terms of name, it is a follow-up to the START I treaty, which expired in December 2009, the proposed START II treaty, which never entered into force, and the START III treaty, for which negotiations were never concluded.
Under terms of the treaty, the number of strategic nuclear missile launchers will be reduced by half. A new inspection and verification regime will be established, replacing the SORT mechanism. It does not limit the number of operationally inactive stockpiled nuclear warheads that remain in the high thousands in both the Russian and American inventories. However, it is reported that Russia has increased its war heads, while the US has reduced them. This new armament is in violation of Russia's New START treaty with the U.S. The agreement is that both would decreased their arsenal to below 1,550 warheads by February 2018. Pentagon officials say that the US is currently under that number at 1,538 while Russia is over the limit by 1,648, according to Daily Mail. The Nuclear Security Summit that just ended Friday in Washington, D.C. wrangled over several thorny nuclear proliferation and terrorism issues, and involved over 50 countries. But the two countries on everyone’s mind were China and Russia. China, because they have started on the world’s largest nuclear build-up in 50 years. And Russia, because they decided not to attend at all, writes James Conca for www.forbes.com.