Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Preventing a Nuclear Iran: US Policy Options

On July 20, 2006, Dr. James Walsh, a nuclear non-proliferation expert who has recently returned from direct discussions with Iranian leaders in Stockholm, testified before the Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Iran.

In his testimony, Dr. Walsh said that Iranian development of a nuclear weapon, while not the end of the world as some have suggested, would adversely affect US, regional, and global security, and would add to the risk that nations or non-state actors might one day use nuclear weapons. This outcome can be avoided, in part, by a smart US nonproliferation strategy. On the other hand, ill-conceived or poorly executed US actions my have the counter-productive effect of making an Iranian bomb even more likely. The importance of getting this right and the complexity of the challenge are apparent but all the more obvious given recent events in Israel and Lebanon. His full testimony is available on the Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation’s website.

Dr. Walsh is a board member of the Council for a Livable World and a Research Associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Security Studies Program.

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