Missile defenses remain an obstacle to U.S.-Russia agreement on a new nuclear arms control accord. Both sides will need to address the offense-defense relationship in the Strategic Stability Dialogue, agreed by President Joseph Biden and Vladimir Putin at their June 2021 Geneva summit.
What could such measures look like? How can Russia and the United States avoid new arms races? At what point should China be brought into discussions on the offensive-defense relationship? How would a possible Russia-U.S. agreement affect NATO missile defenses? What role can Europeans play in managing offense-defense relationships?
Two distinguished members of the Deep Cuts Commission, namely Steven Pifer and Andrey Bakltiskiy, as well as guest author James Cameron from the University of Oslo discussed how missile defenses affect strategic stability and offer practical suggestions to limit the uncertainty over future missile defense capabilities. The briefing was moderated by Maren Vieluf, Researcher at the IFSH Berlin office.
Two summits in June will set the course for discussions on nuclear arms control.
NATO Heads of State and Government will gather on 14 June in Brussels to initiate the process leading to a new Alliance Strategic Concept. Two days later, on 16 June, Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden will meet in Geneva and discuss how to restore predictability and stability in Russian-US relations, including through new bilateral Strategic Stability talks. What are the implications of these meetings for future discussions on nuclear arms control? What can and what should we expect for future nuclear reductions? How are discussions on the Alliance’s deterrence and defence posture linked to the US-Russia bilateral track? How can Europeans ensure that Washington and Moscow take their interests into account?
One week ahead of the NATO summit, we discussed these and related questions with three distinguished members of the Deep Cuts Commission, namely Sarah Bidgood, Ambassador Walter J. Schmid and Andrei Zagorski, moderated by Oliver Meier.
Nuclear arms control faces an uncertain future. The last remaining nuclear arms control treaty, New START, will expire in February 2021, unless Russia and the U.S. extend the accord. Looking beyond the near-term, bringing in additional actors, such as China, and capturing new technologies are some of the longer-term challenges.
One day after the U.S. Presidential elections, the Deep Cuts Project discussed these and related questions with Rose Gottemoeller, Frank E. and Arthur W. Payne Distinguished Lecturer at Stanford University’s Freeman Spogli Institute. She presented her recommendations on how to move forward in the realm of nuclear arms control, based on her recent article Rethinking Nuclear Arms Control in the Washington Quarterly.
Deep Cuts Commissioners Andrei Zagorski, Head of the Department of Disarmament and Conflict Resolution at IMEMO, and Götz Neuneck, Senior Research Fellow at the IFSH, commented on the proposals, followed by Q&A. Moderated by Oliver Meier, Senior Researcher at the IFSH Berlin office.
Watch the full briefing