Iran Debates the IAEA Roadmap

Nima Gerami
PolicyWatch 2467, August 2015

The Rouhani administration is insisting on the confidentiality of its 'roadmap' with the IAEA in order to quell domestic criticism of the JCPOA and bolster the nuclear program's security.

The History of Biological Weapons Use: What We Know and What We Don’t

W. Seth Carus
Health Security, 2015

This article critically reviews the literature on the history of biological warfare, bioterrorism, and biocrimes. The first serious effort to review this entire history, made in 1969, had numerous limitations. In recent decades, several authors have filled many of the gaps in our understanding of the past use of biological agents (including both pathogens and toxins), making it possible to reconstruct that history with greater fidelity than previously possible. Nevertheless, there are numerous remaining gaps, and closer inspection indicates that some supposed uses of biological weapons never took place or are poorly substantiated. Topics requiring additional research are identified.

North Korea's Evolving Nuclear Strategy

Shane Smith 
North Korea's Nuclear Futures Series, August 2015
This paper examines the history of North Korean nuclear strategy, including their capabilities, possible intentions, and threats. Dr. Smith then explores several other potential nuclear strategies that the U.S. could adopt with regard to North Korea.

Rethinking Deterrence and Assurance

Paul I. Bernstein
Wilton Park, June 2015
This report serves to summarize the main points and conclusions of the June 2015 conference. In particular, it addresses discussion on hybrid vs. conventional warfare, the practice of deterrence, the situation in Ukraine, and how this will affect NATO's and Russia's view on deterrence strategy

The WMD Challenges Posed by a Collapse of North Korea

Robert J. Peters
38 North, April 2015

North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD) pose a number of challenges, particularly how to find and secure those weapons if the regime collapses. This paper will look briefly at 1) North Korea’s nuclear, chemical and biological programs; 2) activities coalition forces might conduct in a collapse scenario; and 3) challenges posed by an operation to eliminate the North’s WMD.

Background on the 'Possible Military Dimensions' of Iran's Nuclear Program

Nima Gerami
PolicyWatch 2269, June 2014

Iran's compartmented nuclear program and fears of sabotage have complicated efforts to address IAEA concerns about the program's suspected military side.

Political Chasm Deepens Over Nuke Program

Nima Gerami
Iran Primer, May 2014

Iran’s political elite has become increasingly divided over the course of nuclear negotiations with the world’s six major powers, which began last fall. The current debate appears to fall into three camps.

Leadership Divided? The Domestic Politics of Iran's Nuclear Debate

Nima Gerami
Policy Focus 134, February 2014

Iran expert Nima Gerami examines the evolution of the country's domestic nuclear politics before and since Geneva, discussing how the underlying elite divisions and general culture of secrecy could complicate long-term efforts to convince Tehran to abandon its nuclear ambitions.

Star Wars Rebooted:  Global Missile Defense in 2017

Bruno Gruselle
WMD Proceedings, October 2012
This edition of the Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction's Proceedings series is the first to feature an international contributor, Bruno Gruselle, a Senior Research Fellow at the Foundation for Strategic Research (Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique) in Paris.  Mr. Gruselle's article projects the political, security and programmatic challenges for missile defense (MD) in 2017 and the choices that will confront the U.S. administration that will assume office that year.  As he observes, "...the 2017 administration's policy on missile defense will have to deal with an environment where MD has become a reality more than a possibility or a project...Whoever will sit in the White House will indeed find the margin for maneuver to be very limited internally as well as internationally." 

Proliferation Risks of Civilian Nuclear Power Programs

Paul I. Bernstein and Nima Gerami
WMD Proceedings, June 2012
This paper discusses proliferation risks associated with civil nuclear power and ongoing efforts to manage those risks.

Nuclear safety in Iran, post-Fukushima

Nima Gerami
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, August 2011

Although the Fukushima disaster has stalled the ambitions of some developing countries to deploy new power reactors, the Japanese crisis has not seriously affected the expansion of Iran's nuclear energy program. Among the 45 countries that are actively considering plans to build their first power reactors, Iran is farthest along in the process and claims it will connect its Bushehr nuclear power plant to the national grid and begin producing electricity in August.

Future Foreign Perceptions of Chemical Weapons Utility

John P. Caves, Jr.
WMD Proceedings, October 2010
This paper offers some educated guesses about how rational actors might view the future utility of chemical weapons on the basis of open source information about relevent technological trends and assumptions about pertinent aspects of the future international security environment.

Countering WMD in the 2010 QDR

John P. Caves, Jr.
March 2010
This article explores the emphasis put on countering WMD capabilities in the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR).

Avoiding a Crisis of Confidence in the U.S. Nuclear Deterrent

John P. Caves, Jr.
Strategic Forum 252, January 2010
The United States needs to modernize and ensure the long-term reliability and responsiveness of its aging nuclear deterrent force and nuclear weapons infrastructure. It cannot otherwise safely reduce its nuclear weapons, responsibly ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, confidently deter and contain challenges from rising or resurgent nuclear-armed near peers, and effectively dissuade allies and partners from acquiring their own nuclear weapons. Modernization is fundamental to avoiding a future crisis of confidence in the U.S. nuclear deterrent.

Aligning Disarmament to Nuclear Dangers: Off to a Hasty START?

David A. Cooper
Strategic Forum, July 2009
This article argues that a positive outcome to the New START negotiations between the U.S. and Russia would provide modest ancillary benefits for several higher priority objectives - for example, incentivizing China to participate in a wider follow-on strategic nuclear arms reduction process, or bringing greater international pressure to bear on nuclear proliferators such as Iran. 

Are We Prepared? Four WMD Crises That Could Transform U.S. Security

June 2009
This report presents four weapons of mass destruction (WMD)-related scenarios that could plausibly occur and radically alter American domestic and national security agendas.

Nuclear U-Turns: Learning from the South Korean and Taiwanese Rollback

Rebecca K.C. Hersman and Robert Peters
Nonproliferation Review, November 2006
This article explores the decisions made by South Korea and Taiwan to rollback their nuclear programs.

Combating WMD: Challenges for the Next 10 Years

February 2005
This report is grounded in, but further elaborates on, the presentations and discussions conducted at a conference hosted by the Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction in May 2004 which addressed the key challenges that the combating-WMD community will need to address in the coming decade.

Eliminating Adversary WMD: Lessons for Future Conflicts

Rebecca K.C. Hersman and Todd M. Koca
Strategic Forum, October 2004
This article describes how the failure to find substantial evidence of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons in Iraq exposed serious weaknesses in the U.S  understanding of the WMD threat posed by its adversaries and in its ability to deal with these threats; however, it also outlines some of the lessons learned by Operation Iraqi freedom.

"At the Crossroads:" Counterproliferation and the New National Security Strategy

April 2004
This report is grounded in, but further elaborates on, the presentations and discussions conducted at conference hosted by the Center for Counterproliferation Research in May 2003. 

The Best Defense: Counterproliferation and U.S. National Security Policy

Jason D. Ellis
The Washington Quarterly, Spring 2003
This article explains the need for counterproliferation in addition to nonproliferation; it argues that the best defense against WMD threats is a good offense. 

Toward a National Biodefense Strategy: Challenges and Opportunities

April 2003
This report is grounded in, but further elaborates on, the presentations and discussion conducted at a conference hosted by the Center for Counterproliferation Research in May 2002. 

Anthrax in America: A Chronology and Analysis of the Fall 2001 Anthrax Attacks

November 2002
This paper describes the 2001 anthrax attacks on the United States and provides a one-year snapshot of the attacks and             subsequent response. 

The Counterproliferation Imperative: Meeting Tomorrow's Challenges

November 2001

This monograph describes the current state of the field with respect to the intelligence, policy, operational, and programmatic issues related to counterproliferation. It seeks to present the counterproliferation imperative within the broader context of strategy and deterrence developing in the Bush administration and highlights key contemporary issues. Finally, the monograph suggests areas for future emphasis in improving our understanding of the NBC threat in further developing appropriate responses.  

Adversary Use of NBC Weapons: A Neglected Challenge

John F. Reichart
Strategic Forum, December 2001

This article describes how thinking regarding how an adversary might use nuclear, radiological, biological, or chemical weapons against the United States changed in the last decade of the 20th century.  

Beyond Nonproliferation: Secondary Supply, Proliferation Management, and
U.S. Foreign Policy

Jason D. Ellis
Comparative Strategy, January-March 2001
This article addresses both the supply motivations and the behavior of the three most significant secondary suppliers of proliferation technology  (Russia, China and North Korea) as well as various U.S. policy responses designed to mitigate these activities.

Bioterrorism and Biocrimes: the Illicit Use of Biological Arms in the 20th century

W. Seth Carus
Working Paper, February 2001
This working paper is an updated study of research that began in 1998;  it provides a descriptive analysis of the illicit use of biological agents by criminals and terrorists in the 20th century and draws on a series of specific case studies. 

China Rising: New Challenges to the U.S. Security Posture

Jadon D. Ellis and Todd M. Koca
Strategic Forum, October 2000
This article describes how the nature, scope and viability of the strategic relationship between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the United States has emerged as a key security policy issue. 

DOD and Consequence Management: Mitigating the Effects of Chemical and Biological Attack

Rebecca K.C. Hersman and W. Seth Carus
Strategic Forum 169, December 1999
This article aims to analyze the potential threat of chemical and biological weapons to the U.S. It also offers recommendations on how to approach these situations and respond appropriately..