Disarmament DiplomacyIssue No. 22, January 1998
News reviewCongressional Subcommittee Report on Proliferation
On 12 January, the US Senate's Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on International Security, Proliferation and Federal Services published a report - The Proliferation Primer - summary extant and possible threats to the US from the acquisition of weapons-of-mass-destruction and their means of delivery. The report - which follows a year-long investigation - was launched at a press conference by the Subcommittee's Chair, Republican Senator Thad Cochran. Cochran said that, overall, the Primer "contains information which paints an alarming picture."
The report is particularly critical of China - "the most significant supplier of WMD-related goods and technology to foreign countries," in Cochran's words - and Russia, which Cochran said was "helping Iran to build a missile that could be capable of attacking Israel in 12 months, and another one that could have Europe in range in as little as three years." The Primer also identified North Korea's ballistic missile capability and development-programme as a cause of grave concern. Cochran was clear about the required response to these and other threats: "We need to get busy to deploy a more effective system for protecting ourselves against ballistic missiles... It's hard to predict exactly when rogue States or some of these smaller nations may have ballistic missiles that threaten US forces that are deployed in overseas locations such as South Korea and the Middle East..."
Report: Senator unveils new report on weapons proliferation, Congressional Report, 12 January.
© 1998 The Acronym Institute.