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Disarmament Diplomacy

Issue No. 38, June 1999

Editor's Introduction

June's issue features two Opinion & Analysis papers exploring connections between military planning, strategic assumptions and political power. Nicola Butler, Senior Analyst at the Acronym Institute, considers the implications for European security of decisions taken at NATO's 50th anniversary summit in April. Butler also provides a UK Parliament Report, assessing the current debate over nuclear disarmament issues both within and between the main parties. Sumit Ganguly, Professor of Political Science at the City College of New York, examines "three explanations of India's quest for the bomb" - the "quest for prestige and status", the "more muscular view of Indian defence policy" held by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and "the inevitable culmination of a bureaucratic-scientific-technological momentum".

In CWC Update, Alexander Kelle, of the Frankfurt Peace Research Institute, reports from The Hague on the, generally productive and successful, Fourth Session of the Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapon Convention.

The second part of the Conference on Disarmament's (CD) 1999 Session concluded on 25 June with no agreement on a Programme of Work. While deploring the impasse, Rebecca Johnson, Executive Director of the Acronym Institute, warns in her latest Geneva Update of the dangers of cosmetic or unsustainable progress when the CD resumes its deliberations in late July, arguing that "it would be absurd to get agreement on a work programme for a few weeks this year unless the Conference is also prepared to make a commitment to give that work programme at least a year's try."

In addition to documenting the end of the conflict in Kosovo and the ongoing conflict in Kashmir, Documents and Sources includes statements from the CD, a US-Russian declaration aimed at rejuvenating the nuclear arms control agenda, summaries of meetings of the G-8 and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), material from the signing ceremony of the Inter-American Convention on Transparency in Conventional Armaments, and a speech by the UN Secretary-General marking the centenary of the first International Peace Conference in The Hague.

News Review includes coverage of reaction to the Cox Committee report on alleged Chinese nuclear espionage, developments in America's search for a national missile defence system, the provisional US assessment that an underground site in North Korea is not a clandestine nuclear-weapons facility, and the continuing wrangle over Iraq in the Security Council.

© 1999 The Acronym Institute.

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