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Title: Lessons from Past Nuclear Disarmament: What Worked What Did Not

Abstract

This report studies the efforts of the international community and the United States to verif)/ the denuclearization of various countries: Ukraine, South Africa, Iraq, Taiwan, and Libya. In doing so, it considers the verification of nuclear warhead destruction and the accounting of nuclear materials. Each case study contributes to the understanding we have of which verification procedures worked and which did not and what factors contributed to that success and which did not. The most important factor contributing to successful verification is the cooperation of the subject country. If a country has made the strategic decision to cooperate, then it is possible that verification can be successful. If the country chooses not to cooperate, verification might rest on random and unpredictable events. This unpredictability of verification is politically unacceptable. Even if verification is judged to be successful by the implementing agencies, outsiders can cast doubts on it by pointing out small and potentially unavoidable errors in material amounts verified. It is vitally important to systematically preserve forensic evidence, especially shipping and receiving records to avoid just such issues. Historically, such records are the most important evidence in verifying denuclearization. Technology is far less important than forensic analysis of records. Itmore » does play a supporting role in verifying some declarations but there can be an enormous delay in drawing conclusions caused by the necessity to analyze statistically large samples of materials. The confidence one gets from such analysis can be delayed well past the time it is politically significant. The most important advance in technology would be to accelerate that sample analysis process.« less

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States). Global Security Research and Analysis
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1464881
Report Number(s):
SAND-2018-8690
666976; TRN: US1901655
DOE Contract Number:  
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
98 NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, SAFEGUARDS, AND PHYSICAL PROTECTION

Citation Formats

Forden, Geoffrey E. Lessons from Past Nuclear Disarmament: What Worked What Did Not. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.2172/1464881.
Forden, Geoffrey E. Lessons from Past Nuclear Disarmament: What Worked What Did Not. United States. doi:10.2172/1464881.
Forden, Geoffrey E. Wed . "Lessons from Past Nuclear Disarmament: What Worked What Did Not". United States. doi:10.2172/1464881. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1464881.
@article{osti_1464881,
title = {Lessons from Past Nuclear Disarmament: What Worked What Did Not},
author = {Forden, Geoffrey E.},
abstractNote = {This report studies the efforts of the international community and the United States to verif)/ the denuclearization of various countries: Ukraine, South Africa, Iraq, Taiwan, and Libya. In doing so, it considers the verification of nuclear warhead destruction and the accounting of nuclear materials. Each case study contributes to the understanding we have of which verification procedures worked and which did not and what factors contributed to that success and which did not. The most important factor contributing to successful verification is the cooperation of the subject country. If a country has made the strategic decision to cooperate, then it is possible that verification can be successful. If the country chooses not to cooperate, verification might rest on random and unpredictable events. This unpredictability of verification is politically unacceptable. Even if verification is judged to be successful by the implementing agencies, outsiders can cast doubts on it by pointing out small and potentially unavoidable errors in material amounts verified. It is vitally important to systematically preserve forensic evidence, especially shipping and receiving records to avoid just such issues. Historically, such records are the most important evidence in verifying denuclearization. Technology is far less important than forensic analysis of records. It does play a supporting role in verifying some declarations but there can be an enormous delay in drawing conclusions caused by the necessity to analyze statistically large samples of materials. The confidence one gets from such analysis can be delayed well past the time it is politically significant. The most important advance in technology would be to accelerate that sample analysis process.},
doi = {10.2172/1464881},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {8}
}