George W. Bush President of the United States The by vap12861


									September 19, 2001

George W. Bush                   Vladimir V. Putin                 Director General
President of the United          President of the Russian          Mohamed El-Baradei
States                           Federation                        and IAEA General
The White House                  The Kremlin                       Conference Delegates
1600 Pennsylvania                Moscow, 103073                    International Atomic
Avenue, NW                       Russian Federation                Energy Agency
Washington, DC 20500                                               P.O. Box 100
                                                                   Wagramer Strasse 5
                                                                   A-1400 Vienna, Austria

Dear President Bush, President Putin, Dr. El-Baradei, and Delegates to the General
Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency:

We are appalled by the terrorist attacks last week in New York and Washington D.C.
Our sympathies are with the innocent victims and their families and friends. But we are
also extremely alarmed by this event. There can now be little doubt that if such terrorists
obtain weapons of mass destruction in the future they will use them. It is imperative,
therefore, that preventing terrorists from gaining access to the technologies and materials
of weapons of mass destruction – including nuclear materials – be a high priority
component of the new global battle against terrorism.

Such an effort must ensure that all weapons-usable nuclear materials worldwide are
secure and accounted for, to stringent standards. The United States and Russia, as the
holders of the largest stockpiles, bear a special responsibility to re-double their
cooperation to secure and control nuclear warheads, materials, technology, and expertise.
But in a world with knowledgeable and well-organized terrorist groups with global reach,
inadequately secured nuclear material anywhere is a threat to all nations everywhere.
Therefore, we call on all countries to increase their attention and financial and political
support to these vital efforts as well.

Unfortunately, over the past five years, many of the major U.S.-Russian cooperative
nuclear security programs have slowed, and many activities have been under-funded or
had their timelines unnecessarily extended into the future. Bureaucratic disputes,
disagreements on levels of access to facilities, and other political differences have eroded
the vital U.S.-Russian nonproliferation partnership, hampering the implementation of
many important international security programs.
But recent events have underscored the urgency of this mission and the demand for
accelerated action. This will require increasing the pace and the scale of efforts to ensure
that all warheads and potential bomb material are secure and accounted for, and that
excess scientists and engineers with expertise relating to nuclear-weapons production
receive effective conversion assistance.

We call on Russia, the United States, and the other nations attending the International
Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference this week in Vienna, to commit the
resources necessary to achieve these goals in the shortest possible period of time.

The United States, Russia, and the rest of the international community should move
urgently to take the following steps:

•      Expand cooperative material protection, control, and accounting (MPC&A)
       activities in Russia. The U.S.-Russian program is now entering its eighth year.
       However, by the end of 2001, security upgrades will have been completed on less
       than 40 percent of the over 600 metric tons of highly-enriched uranium (HEU)
       and plutonium in the former Soviet Union located outside Russia’s nuclear
       weapons stockpiles. And completion of the upgrades is not expected before 2010.
       Expanded funding is necessary to speed the overall pace of the effort, consolidate
       the nuclear materials into fewer facilities, initiate performance testing of installed
       security systems under a variety of threat scenarios, and to ensure that the security
       systems are maintained and sustained. The goal should be to ensure that all
       weapons-usable nuclear material is sustainably secured and accounted for as
       rapidly as technologically possible.

•      Expand international cooperative efforts to interdict illicit trafficking of nuclear
       and other WMD materials and technologies, including increasing intelligence
       assets focused on this threat and expanding the sharing of intelligence.

•      Expand international cooperative efforts to ensure high levels of security and
       accounting for nuclear material around the world – in particular doubling or
       tripling the budget of the IAEA’s International Physical Protection Advisory

•      Move forward rapidly to place all plutonium and HEU no longer required for
       military purposes under IAEA verification, including reaching agreement rapidly
       on the specific arrangements and necessary resources.

•      Accelerate efforts to reduce stockpiles of potentially vulnerable nuclear material,
       including accelerating the blend-down of excess highly-enriched uranium, and
       expediting the disposition of excess weapons plutonium. The U.S. and Russia
       have declared their joint intention to dispose of 68 metric tons of this plutonium
       but the disposition program has stalled over cost concerns and other issues. We
       urge the international community to provide the resources and leadership
       necessary to move quickly to reduce global stockpiles of excess plutonium.

•      Undertake data exchanges among IAEA members on national nuclear material
       stockpiles, which would be updated regularly.

•      Greatly increase help to Russia in downsizing its nuclear weapons complex and
       converting excess weapons workers to civilian work or helping them retire.
       While the United States has significantly reduced its nuclear weapons complex,
       Russia still maintains an enormous and unstable complex that has changed little
       since the end of the Cold War. Russia has stated that it wants to downsize this
       complex, but greater and more effective international support is necessary for
       alternative employment for the thousands of workers that will be displaced.

It is our sincere hope that the recent tragedy will galvanize accelerated and effective
international action in these areas in the coming months and years. The inadequate
funding and bureaucratic, administrative, and political disagreements that have slowed
nuclear security cooperation in recent years seem petty in comparison to the devastating
loss of life last week. We call on Russia, the United States, and the international
community to renew their efforts to keep weapons of mass destruction from falling into
the wrong hands.


Matthew Bunn                                    Kenneth N. Luongo
Assistant Director                              Executive Director
Science, Technology, and Public Policy          Russian American Nuclear Security
Program                                         Advisory Council (RANSAC)
Harvard University                              Former Director, Office of Arms Control
Former Advisor to White House Office            and Nonproliferation, U.S. Department
of Science and Technology Policy                of Energy

                              Frank N. von Hippel
                              Professor of Public and International Affairs
                              Princeton University
                              Former Assistant Director for National Security, White
                              House Office of Science and Technology Policy

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