UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

09 July 2002

Powell Urges Quick Senate Action on Moscow Treaty

(Treaty sets new strategic partnership with Russia, he says) (5810)
Secretary of State Colin Powell says swift ratification of the new
strategic arms reduction agreement between the United States and
Russia will enhance national security and help turn a strategic
rivalry into a genuine strategic partnership.
"The Moscow Treaty is one important element of a new strategic
framework, which involves a broad array of cooperative efforts in
political, economic and security areas," Powell said during testimony
July 9 before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
President Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the Treaty
of Moscow -- formally known as the Treaty Between the United States of
America and the Russian Federation on Strategic Offensive Reductions
-- at their May summit in Moscow.
The Treaty calls for the United States and Russia to reduce their
deployable strategic nuclear arsenals to 1,700-2,200 warheads by
December 31, 2012, nearly two-thirds below current levels.
"The United States and Russia both intend to carry out strategic
offensive reductions to the lowest possible levels consistent with our
national security requirements and alliance obligations, and
reflecting the new nature of our strategic relations," Powell said.
Powell said the treaty creates a Bilateral Implementation Commission
(BIC) -- a diplomatic consultative forum that is to meet at least
twice a year to discuss issues related to implementation of the
treaty. He said the BIC will be separate and distinct from the
Consultative Group for Strategic Security, which was established by
the Joint Declaration on the New Strategic Relationship Between the
United States and Russia, signed by Bush and Putin on May 24. The
Consultative Group "will be chaired by Foreign and Defense Ministers
with the participation of other senior officials" and "will be a
broader forum to discuss issues of strategic significance and to
enhance mutual transparency," he said.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will debate the treaty before
sending it to the full U.S. Senate for its advice and consent to
ratification. By tradition, the Secretary of State is the first member
of the administration to testify in support of treaties submitted to
the Senate for consideration.
The treaty "facilitates the transition from strategic rivalry to a
genuine strategic partnership based on the principles of mutual
security, trust, openness, cooperation and predictability," Powell
said.
Notable in this treaty, Powell said, is that unlike its former Cold
War counterparts, it does not call for exact equality in numbers of
strategic nuclear warheads or ban any categories of strategic forces.
And, Powell said this treaty does not contain its own verification
provisions. "United States security and the new strategic relationship
with Russia do not require such provisions," he said.
Following is the text of Powell's remarks, as prepared for delivery:
(begin text)
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesman
July 9, 2002
(As Prepared)
SECRETARY OF STATE COLIN L. POWELL
SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE
July 9, 2002
Mr. Chairman, members of the Committee, this is my tenth hearing since
January. So you know how much I value these exchanges -- and I am
confident that you do as well.
My appearance before your committee on this particular occasion has a
more formal character than the previous nine. On this occasion I am
pleased to appear before the Foreign Relations Committee to seek its
support for the Treaty Between the United States of America and the
Russian Federation on Strategic Offensive Reductions -- the Moscow
Treaty -- signed at Moscow on May 24, 2002. By long tradition, the
Secretary of State is the first member of the Administration to
testify in support of treaties submitted to the Senate for its advice
and consent.
The Moscow Treaty marks a new era in the relationship between the
United States and Russia. It codifies both countries' commitment to
make deep strategic offensive reductions in a flexible and legally
binding manner. It facilitates the transition from strategic rivalry
to a genuine strategic partnership based on the principles of mutual
security, trust, openness, cooperation and predictability. The Moscow
Treaty is one important element of a new strategic framework, which
involves a broad array of cooperative efforts in political, economic
and security areas.
On May 1st of last year, even before his first meeting with President
Putin, President Bush outlined his vision of this new framework in a
speech at the National Defense University (NDU). The President stated
that, while the United States may continue to have areas of difference
with Russia, we are not and must not be strategic adversaries. In that
regard, President Bush said that he wanted to change our relationship
from one based on a nuclear balance of terror, to one based on common
responsibilities and interests. The strategic nuclear dimension of the
framework the President laid out had several elements.
The President made a commitment to achieving a credible deterrent with
the lowest possible number of nuclear weapons consistent with our
national security requirements, including our obligations to our
allies, and stated that his goal was to move quickly to reduce our
nuclear forces.
He made clear his desire to leave behind the constraints of an ABM
Treaty that not only was outdated but also perpetuated a relationship
with Russia based on distrust and mutual vulnerability. President Bush
declared that we should work together with Russia to replace the ABM
Treaty with a new cooperative relationship that would leave behind the
adversarial legacy of the Cold War.
A little over fourteen months later, and after five meetings with
President Putin, the President has acted on all of the elements of the
strategic framework he proposed during his NDU speech and he has acted
in a way that has significantly advanced our overall relationship with
Russia. Let me briefly review that relationship to illustrate the
broader context in which it now exists.
The tragic events of September 11 brought to the forefront a major
shared objective of the United States and Russia to combat terrorism.
Pursuing that objective has had a positive impact on our relationship.
President Putin was the first world leader to call President Bush on
the morning of September 11. Less well known is the degree of trust
and cooperation that was manifest that day, and in subsequent days, in
our strategic interaction. The events of September 11 resulted in the
United States briefly raising the alert, or DEFCON [Defense
Condition], level of our strategic forces, and, for a longer period,
increasing Force Protection levels at our military bases, including
those bases where our strategic forces are located. During the Cold
War, any increase in alert levels by one side was likely to engender a
reaction in kind because of mutual suspicions and distrust. It is a
measure of the degree of transparency and trust that has developed in
the United States-Russian relationship that President Putin felt no
such need. In fact, to ensure there would be no miscalculation, the
Russians let us know they were voluntarily suspending major elements
of an ongoing strategic forces exercise and later agreed to our
request to suspend temporarily some inspection activities under the
START Treaty at bases that were placed under a heightened state of
alert.
The developing strategic relationship between the United States and
Russia was also evident on December 13 of last year, when President
Bush announced that the United States would withdraw from the ABM
Treaty. Although Russia did not agree with our decision to withdraw,
President Putin's response that same day was pragmatic in tone and
recognized that the U.S. decision did not present a threat to Russia's
security.
As the United States-Russian relationship has broadened and deepened,
the significance of U.S. withdrawal from the ABM Treaty has
diminished. Our withdrawal has not spurred an arms race or undermined
strategic stability. In fact, President Putin also used his December
13 statement to call for reductions in strategic offensive weapons to
between 1500 and 2200, thus responding positively to President Bush's
announcement during the Washington/Crawford Summit that the United
States would reduce its operationally deployed strategic nuclear
warheads to a level between 1,700 and 2,200 over the next decade.
Since December 13, Russia has focused on how to move our bilateral
relationship forward. The Joint Declaration on the New Strategic
Relationship Between the United States and the Russian Federation that
was signed on May 24th in Moscow reflects not only our agreement to
deep reductions in strategic nuclear warheads, but also records our
agreement to implement a number of steps aimed at increasing
confidence, transparency, and cooperation in the area of missile
defense.
Moreover, strategic issues are only a part of the broader 21st Century
relationship we are developing with Russia. Very early on Presidents
Bush and Putin agreed that our new relationship would be broadly based
-- encompassing political, economic, and security components. The
Joint Declaration reflected the significant progress we have made in
all of these areas.
On political issues we are already acting as partners in addressing
many of the challenges we both now face. For example, the United
States-Russia Working Group on Afghanistan has been invaluable in the
war against terrorism. Its mandate has now been expanded to include
other geographical areas and new and related threats and, as such, it
has been renamed the Working Group on Counterterrorism.
The United States and Russia are cooperating to transform Afghanistan
into a stable and viable nation. To illustrate, the degree of
cooperation with Russia on our efforts in Central Asia has been
unprecedented. Moscow's support has included intelligence sharing,
search and rescue assistance, and endorsement of Central Asian states'
decision to accept our troop presence on their territories. Russia has
even dispatched two military liaison officers to U.S. Central Command
(USCENTCOM). We are also working together constructively to resolve
regional conflicts, including those in Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh, the
Middle East and, most recently, in South Asia.
Russia and NATO are also increasingly allied against regional
instability and other contemporary threats. At the May 28 NATO-Russia
Summit in Rome, we inaugurated a new NATO-Russia Council (NRC) which
will allow NATO member states and Russia to work as equal partners in
areas of common interest. The NATO Allies and Russia are ready to
begin work in earnest on all of the NRC agenda items approved at the
Rome Summit. Initial successes in the NRC will lay a basis for further
expanding cooperation between NATO and Russia.
The United States and Russia are also cooperating effectively on
transnational issues other than terrorism such as dealing with illegal
drugs and combating organized crime. For example, the entry into force
of the Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters earlier
this year was a welcome step forward on the issue of fighting
organized crime.
Our cooperation in the economic sphere, and encouraging the
development of an efficient market economy in Russia, are also high on
our mutual agenda. We want to expand economic ties between the United
States and Russia and further integrate Russia into the world economy
with full rights and responsibilities. We support Russia's accession
to the World Trade Organization. By holding Russia to the same
standards we would any country seeking to join the WTO, we are
reinforcing Moscow's broader economic reform efforts and helping
Russia prepare for a larger role in the global economy. Success in our
bilateral economic and trade relations also demand that we move ahead.
The Department of Commerce's recent decision to treat Russia as a
market economy under the provisions of U.S. trade law is an important
step forward.
Mr. Chairman, the Moscow Treaty is emblematic of our increasingly
broader, cooperative relationship with Russia. Just as our
relationship now has a fundamentally different basis, so the Moscow
Treaty also represents a new way of doing business in the strategic
nuclear realm.
Let me take a moment and outline for you the essential parts of the
Treaty.
Reduction Requirements
As I indicated, the United States and Russia both intend to carry out
strategic offensive reductions to the lowest possible levels
consistent with our national security requirements and alliance
obligations, and reflecting the new nature of our strategic relations.
The Treaty requires the United States and Russia to reduce and limit
our strategic nuclear warheads to between 1700 and 2200 each by
December 31, 2012, a reduction of nearly two-thirds below current
levels. The United States intends to implement the Treaty by reducing
its operationally deployed strategic nuclear warheads to between 1700
and 2200 through removal of warheads from missiles in their launchers
and from heavy bomber bases, and by removing some missiles, launchers,
and bombers from operational service.
For purposes of this Treaty, the United States considers operationally
deployed strategic nuclear warheads to be reentry vehicles on
intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in their launchers,
reentry vehicles on submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) in
their launchers onboard submarines, and nuclear armaments loaded on
heavy bombers or stored in weapons storage areas of heavy bomber
bases. In addition, a small number of spare strategic nuclear warheads
are located at heavy bomber bases. The United States does not consider
these spares to be operationally deployed strategic nuclear warheads.
In the context of this Treaty, it is clear that only "nuclear" reentry
vehicles, as well as nuclear armaments, are subject to the 1700-2200
limits.
Relationship to START
The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) continues in force
unchanged by this Treaty. In accordance with its own terms, START will
remain in force until midnight December 5, 2009, unless it is
superseded by a subsequent agreement or extended.
START's comprehensive verification regime will provide the foundation
for confidence, transparency and predictability in further strategic
offensive reductions. As noted in the May 24 Joint Declaration on the
New Strategic Relationship, other supplementary measures, including
transparency measures, may be agreed in the future.
The Bilateral Implementation Commission
The Treaty establishes a Bilateral Implementation Commission (BIC), a
diplomatic consultative forum that will meet at least twice a year to
discuss issues related to implementation of the Treaty. The BIC will
be separate and distinct from the Consultative Group for Strategic
Security, established by the Joint Declaration of May 24, which will
be chaired by Foreign and Defense Ministers with the participation of
other senior officials and which will be a broader forum to discuss
issues of strategic significance and to enhance mutual transparency.
Entry Into Force, Duration, and Right of Withdrawal
The Treaty will enter into force on the date of the exchange of
instruments of ratification. It is to remain in force until December
31, 2012, and may be extended by agreement of the Parties or
superseded earlier by a subsequent agreement.
The Treaty also provides that each Party, in exercising its national
sovereignty, may withdraw from the Treaty upon three months' written
notice to the other Party.
Status of START II Treaty
The START II Treaty, which was signed in 1993, and to which the Senate
gave its advice and consent in 1996, never entered into force because
Russia placed unacceptable conditions on its own ratification of START
II. Russia's explicit linkage of START II to preservation of the ABM
Treaty and entry into force of several agreements, signed in 1997,
which related to ABM Treaty succession and ABM/TMD demarcation, made
it impossible for START II to enter into force. With signature of the
Moscow Treaty, however, the United States and Russia have now taken a
decisive step beyond START II that reflects the new era in United
States-Russia relations.
How We Arrived at What You Have Before You
Mr. Chairman, the Treaty you have before you is different from Cold
War arms control agreements because:
-- It does not call for exact equality in numbers of strategic nuclear
warheads. It is no longer appropriate to size our military
capabilities against any single country or threat, and the end of
superpower competition and adversarial style arms control negotiations
has removed any political requirement for strict parity.
-- It does not contain any sublimits or bans on categories of
strategic forces. The need for a highly regimented strategic forces
structure was the product of now outdated concepts of strategic
stability that were necessary when we needed to regulate the
interaction of the strategic forces of two hostile nations to reduce
the structural incentives for beginning a nuclear war. Now we have
nothing to go to war about.
-- The Treaty does not contain its own verification provisions. United
States security and the new strategic relationship with Russia do not
require such provisions.
What you have before you is a Treaty that is both simple and flexible.
Article I contains the single central obligation of the Treaty which
is for the Parties to reduce and limit their strategic nuclear
warheads to no more than 1700-2200 for each side. The Treaty
deliberately focuses on strategic nuclear warheads. It does not limit
the number of ICBMs and SLBMs or their associated launchers; nor does
it limit the number of heavy bombers. From the outset, our objective
was to reduce dramatically the number of strategic nuclear warheads
available for immediate use, and the Moscow Treaty clearly meets this
objective.
The Treaty is also highly flexible. Article I, by referencing the
individual statements of Presidents Bush and Putin, makes clear that
the Parties need not implement their reductions in an identical
manner. President Bush made clear on November 13 of last year that the
United States will meet the 1,700 to 2,200 limit by reducing our
number of operationally deployed strategic nuclear warheads. This is a
departure from the way in which warheads are counted under the START
Treaty, but one that more accurately represents the real number of
warheads available for use immediately or within days.
During the course of the negotiations, we proposed a detailed
definition of "operationally deployed strategic nuclear warheads," but
we did not achieve it and so the Treaty does not contain such detail.
Nor did President Putin state explicitly how Russia intends to
implement its reductions. During the negotiations, the Russians
suggested that they anticipated reducing warheads by eliminating or
converting missiles, launchers and heavy bombers in a manner similar
to the counting concepts in the START Treaties. Should Russia elect to
achieve the 1700-2200 warhead level in this way, or by using the U.S.
method, the result in either case will limit the number of strategic
nuclear warheads available for immediate use. Russia is also free to
choose another method for making its required reductions.
Some have expressed concern that the Moscow Treaty does not require
the destruction of warheads. No previous arms control treaty - SALT,
START or INF - has required warhead elimination. Contrary to what was
frequently reported in the press, the Russians did not propose a
regime for verifiable warhead elimination during the negotiations.
Given the uncertainties we face, and the fact that we, unlike Russia,
do not manufacture new warheads, the United States needs the
flexibility to retain warheads removed from operational deployment to
meet unforeseen future contingencies and possible technical problems
with the stockpile. That said, the Moscow Treaty does not prevent the
United States and Russia from eliminating warheads and we anticipate
that both Parties will continue to do so. For our part, some of these
warheads will be used as spares, some will be stored, and some will be
destroyed. Economics, our new strategic relationship with Russia,
obsolescence, and the overall two-thirds cut in U.S. and Russian
inventories mandated by the Treaty will undoubtedly result in
continued warhead elimination.
The Treaty is also highly flexible in other ways. Within the bounds of
the aggregate limit on numbers of strategic nuclear warheads, each
side is free to determine for itself the composition and structure of
its strategic offensive arms. As I noted earlier, the Treaty does not
limit the total number of strategic delivery vehicles or contain
either numerical sublimits or bans on categories of forces. We saw no
strategic need for such limits given our new relationship with Russia
and the low levels of forces to which both sides will reduce. But
today Russia is not our sole concern.
The international system is no longer bipolar. It has become more
fluid and unpredictable. We cannot forecast with confidence what
nation; combination of nations, or non-state actors may pose a threat
to our vital national interests or those of our friends and allies in
the years to come. Nor can we tell what WMD capabilities and delivery
systems such adversaries may be armed with. We must maintain the
freedom to determine the composition and structure of our nuclear
forces. Secretary Rumsfeld and General Myers will be able to discuss
with you in more detail the approach the Department of Defense has
adopted to planning our strategic nuclear capabilities when they
testify before this Committee next week.
The Treaty provides flexibility in another regard. Article IV permits
either Party the ability to withdraw from the Treaty upon three months
written notice to the other Party. This period is shorter than has
been typical in previous arms control agreements. The Moscow Treaty
thus allows greater flexibility for each side to respond to unforeseen
circumstances, whether those circumstances are technical problems in
the stockpile, changes in the international environment, or the
emergence of new threats.
In negotiating the Moscow Treaty, the Administration did not seek any
new verification measures. As the President stated last November 13,
the United States intended to carry out its reductions unilaterally,
no matter what action Russia took. President Putin's welcome decision
to reciprocate, and the recording of these reduction commitments in a
legally binding Treaty, is a welcome sign of our new, cooperative
strategic relationship -- a relationship that does not depend on our
ability to verify Russian reductions.
That said, Article II of the Treaty recognizes that the START Treaty
remains in force in accordance with its terms. The START Treaty's
provisions do not extend to the Moscow Treaty, and its verification
provisions were designed with START's different counting rules in
mind. However, we believe that the START verification regime,
including its data exchanges, on-site inspections, and provisions
concerning telemetry, conversion, and elimination, and mobile missile
forces, will continue over the course of the decade to add to our body
of knowledge regarding the disposition of Russia's strategic nuclear
warheads and the overall status of reduction in Russia's strategic
forces.
Most importantly, however, I would point once again to our new
strategic relationship with Russia. The Preambles to both the Moscow
Treaty and the Joint Declaration on the New Strategic Relationship
Between the United States and Russia state that this new relationship
will be based on a number of principles, including mutual security,
trust, openness, cooperation and predictability. These are principles
that help to define a normal relationship between two countries that
now consider themselves to be partners.
The verification regimes that have accompanied our previous arms
control agreements with Russia have, in contrast, been the product of
two countries suspicious and distrustful of one another -- two
countries that considered each other as a strategic threat. I have
submitted to the Congress a report required by Section 306 of the Arms
Control and Disarmament Act on the verifiability of the Moscow Treaty.
In that Report, I conclude that the Treaty is not constructed to be
verifiable within the meaning of Section 306, and it is indeed not. A
treaty that was verifiable under the old Cold War paradigm was neither
required nor relevant in this case.
As I indicated earlier, the Joint Declaration signed in Moscow
establishes a Consultative Group for Strategic Security, to be chaired
by Foreign and Defense Ministers, that will become the principal
mechanism through which the United States and Russia will strengthen
mutual confidence, expand transparency, share information and plans,
and discuss strategic issues of mutual interest across a broad range
of international security issues.
The first meeting of the Consultative Group will take place in
September on the margins of the UN General Assembly meeting in New
York. When we prepare for this meeting, we will consider whether to
pursue expanded transparency as one of the early issues the Group will
address. I believe the new strategic relationship will continue to
mature over time, and over the lifetime of the Moscow Treaty, and that
openness and transparency will become an accepted and normal part of
all areas of our new strategic relationship.
Anticipating Some of Your Questions
As we went about negotiating the Moscow Treaty, one of the questions
foremost in my mind as a former soldier and Chairman of the Joint
Chiefs of Staff, was how will we address tactical nuclear weapons?
We continue to be concerned about the uncertainties surrounding
Russian non-strategic nuclear weapons (NSNW), and I believe we should
discuss inventory levels of NSNW with the Russians and press Moscow to
complete the reductions it pledged to make in 1991 and 1992.
The United States has made very significant changes to its nuclear
policy and force structure since the end of the Cold War. Since 1991,
the types and numbers of NATO non-strategic nuclear forces have been
reduced by approximately 85 percent, including the elimination of
entire categories of NSNW. The Russians have also made significant
parallel unilateral reductions in their NSNW.
Through NATO, we are now focusing on developing confidence building
and transparency measures with Russia. NATO has presented Russia with
four proposals for nuclear Confidence and Stability Building Measures
(CSBMs) as part of a process established by the April 1999 NATO
Washington Summit. These proposals are intended to enhance mutual
trust and to promote greater transparency. I believe that NATO and
Russia both have recognised the value of consultations on
non-strategic nuclear forces. The Russians have agreed to continue to
engage in this process.
Moreover, in addition to unilateral reductions and confidence building
and transparency measures, the many ongoing Cooperative Threat
Reduction programs with Russia are designed to improve the safety and
security of all Russian nuclear weapons -- including NSNW.
Mr. Chairman, again as a former military professional, I also wanted
to know about Multiple, Independently Targetable Re-entry Vehicles, or
MIRVs. In short, does the Moscow Treaty allow the Russians to
restructure their strategic forces through a greater use of MIRVs, and
if so, is this in the United States' interest?
The Moscow Treaty does not restrict a Party's decisions as to how it
will implement the required reductions. The Treaty states that "Each
Party shall determine for itself the composition and structure of its
strategic offensive arms, based on the established aggregate limit for
the number of such warheads." Each Party will thus have flexibility in
structuring its forces to reach these new low levels for strategic
nuclear warheads. Specifically stated, the Moscow Treaty does not
place restrictions on Russia's potential to restructure its strategic
forces by using MIRVs. We are convinced that this will not adversely
impact U.S. national security. Since neither the United States nor
Russia has any incentive to launch nuclear weapons at each other, we
no longer view Russian deployment of MIRVed ICBMs as destabilizing to
our strategic relationship.
Mr. Chairman, some committee members may want to question the ten-year
deadline in the Moscow Treaty. Why is there such a distant deadline in
the Treaty when it would appear that both the United States and Russia
could reduce weapons much quicker? Also, why does the treaty end at
the deadline for meeting its objectives?
The Treaty will take the United States and Russia along a predictable
path to substantial reductions -- from the current levels of
5,000-6,000 warheads to 1,700-2,200 warheads. For the United States,
the reduction process will include deactivating all 50 ten-warhead
Peacekeeper ICBMs and removing four Trident submarines from strategic
nuclear service.
The process will also involve additional, yet-to-be-determined steps
to reduce the number of U.S. operationally deployed strategic nuclear
warheads to the 1700-2200 level. These reductions will be part of the
development and deployment of the New Triad that was established by
the 2001 United States Nuclear Posture Review.
These substantial United States and Russian reductions will entail
careful planning and execution on both sides, and, therefore, will
require considerable time to complete. Our best judgment is that
allowing ten years for this process to be completed will give both
Parties time to complete these actions in a sound, responsible, and
sustainable manner.
Moreover, we can extend the Treaty at any time that both Parties agree
to do so, just as either Party can leave the Treaty expeditiously.
Likewise, over the duration of the Treaty, much can happen that could
alter or modify our strategic analysis. As a consequence, we feel that
the timeframe and the deadline are just what they should be.
Another question that may arise is how the Moscow Treaty squares with
Article VI of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). In other words, in
what ways does the Moscow Treaty promote implementation of the
Parties' nuclear disarmament obligations under the NPT?
The Committee members know that the NPT is the centerpiece of the
global nuclear nonproliferation regime. It plays a critical role in
efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, including to
terrorists and states that support them. The NPT's value depends on
all parties honoring their obligations. The United States places great
importance on fulfilling its NPT undertakings, including those in
Article VI related to nuclear disarmament.
The elimination of nuclear weapons is a key goal of the NPT, but one
that will not be reached quickly or without enormous effort. All
states have a responsibility to work toward this goal. It can be
achieved only though a step-by-step process. Article VI of the NPT
reflects this reality and sets no timelines or specific milestones.
The Moscow Treaty represents an historic step in that process. It will
take the United States and Russia down to the lowest levels of
strategic nuclear warheads seen in decades. It is an important
achievement and the actions called for under the Moscow Treaty
represent significant progress in meeting the obligations set forth in
Article VI of the NPT.
Finally, as the Treaty itself suggests, where do we go next?
Of course the next step, if the Senate gives its advice and consent to
the Moscow Treaty and it enters into force, is to implement that
Treaty. It will take time and resources on both sides to carry out the
planned reductions by Dec 31, 2012.
More broadly, and covering strategic issues in general, we will use
the Consultative Group for Strategic Security, chaired by the Foreign
and Defense Ministers, to strengthen mutual confidence, expand
transparency, and share information and plans, as I indicated earlier.
The Moscow Treaty was intentionally designed to give the United States
and Russia flexibility in how each implements its obligations. Our
changed strategic relationship, and the uncertainties of external
conditions, dictated this. Throughout the duration of the Treaty, we
will closely monitor developments and assess their implications for
the Treaty's implementation and for the question of its extension. In
addition, not later than one year prior to START's expiration date
(December 5, 2009), the START Parties will have to meet to address the
question of whether to extend that treaty.
President Bush made it clear from the outset of this Administration
that he intended to reduce U.S. nuclear weapons to the lowest number
consistent with U.S. and allied security requirements. Based on the
Nuclear Posture Review, he determined that a strategic nuclear force
in a range of 1700-2200 warheads provides the flexibility and
responsiveness necessary to counter known and expected threats and
hedge against surprise, technical or other developments.
I don't want to speculate about the more distant future; but as far
out as I can see, nuclear weapons will continue to play an important
role in U.S. and allied security. Right now, I think we have enough
work before us to implement the agreement we have, to solidify the new
strategic framework we are building with Russia, and to curb the
spread of nuclear weapons and other WMD to other states.
Summary
Mr. Chairman, I believe the Moscow Treaty is fully consistent with the
President's promise to achieve a credible deterrent with the lowest
possible number of nuclear weapons consistent with our national
security requirements. It reduces by two-thirds the number of
strategic nuclear warheads available for ready use while preserving
America's ability to respond promptly to changing future situations.
These nuclear force reductions will not be accomplished within the old
Cold War arms control framework; rather the Moscow Treaty reflects the
emergence of a new strategic relationship between the United States
and Russia. We understand that this new relationship is still a work
in progress. Russia is an emerging partner with the United States on a
broad range of issues where we have increasingly shared interests and
values. However, our relationship with Russia is not yet comparable to
the kind of relationship we have with our nuclear-armed allies,
Britain and France. Russia's transformation to a democracy and a
market economy still faces a number of challenges, and its interests
and those of the United States may not always coincide. We understand
there is work to be done if we are to implement fully the Joint
Declaration on the New Strategic Relationship. But our new strategic
relationship gives us a strong foundation to stand upon -- one that
will allow us to discuss our differences candidly and work to resolve
them in a constructive manner.
The Congress also has an important role to play in furthering the
development of our new strategic relationship with Russia. There are a
number of issues where we need the Congress' help in doing our part --
ending Jackson-Vanik's application to Russia, authorizing Permanent
Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) status for Russia, and waiving
Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) certification requirements so those
important programs can continue, are all high priorities. The Senate's
approval of the Moscow Treaty will also make an important contribution
to the strengthening of our new relationship.
Some have said the Moscow Treaty will be the last arms control
agreement with Russia. I won't go that far. But it will be an
important indicator of the continued advancement of our relationship
if it is the last Treaty that is the centerpiece of a Presidential
Summit and if such agreements become increasingly less central to the
United States-Russian relationship.
Mr. Chairman, by deeply reducing strategic nuclear warheads while
preserving both Russia's and America's flexibility to meet unforeseen
future contingencies, the Moscow Treaty will enhance the national
security of both countries. I strongly recommend that the Senate
advise and consent to its ratification at the earliest possible date.
Thank you, and I am pleased to take your questions.
(end text)
(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)
      



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list