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Nuclear Weapons

Beyond Nuclear advocates for the elimination of all nuclear weapons and argues that removing them can only make us safer, not more vulnerable. The expansion of commercial nuclear power across the globe only increases the chance that more nuclear weapons will be built and is counterproductive to disarmament. We also cover nuclear weapons issues on our international site, Beyond Nuclear International.

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Tuesday
Jul302019

New Documents Show Corporate and Foreign Interests Seek to Influence U.S. Nuclear Policy

U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (Democrat-Maryland), Chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and ReformWH [White House], Agencies Still Refuse to Produce Documents in Committee’s Investigation
See the press release posted on the website of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Reform, chaired by U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (Democrat-Baltimore, MD).
Links to primary documents, as well as the two interim staff reports (July 29, 2019, as well as Feb. 19, 2019) are provided there.

Chairman Cummings issued the following statement:

“Today’s report reveals new and extensive evidence that corroborates Committee whistleblowers and exposes how corporate and foreign interests are using their unique access to advocate for the transfer of U.S. nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia. The American people deserve to know the facts about whether the White House is willing to place the potential profits of the President’s personal friends above the national security of the American people and the universal objective of preventing the spread of nuclear weapons.”

The Washington Post has reported on this news. So too has The Daily Beast. The New York Times has published closely related coverage, re: Thomas J. Barrack, Jr., a close friend of President Donald J. Trump for decades, top fundraiser for Trump's 2016 campaign, top Trump Transition official, top advisor, the chair of his Inaugural Committee, and behind the scenes lobbyist. The Times reports: "[Federal] Investigators have also questioned witnesses about Mr. Barrack’s involvement with a proposal from an American group that could give Saudi Arabia access to nuclear power technology."
Monday
Jul292019

Inside the Secret Campaign to Export U.S. Nuclear Tech to Saudi Arabia

Industry coalition’s push to win over the Trump administration is concerning officials on Capitol Hill who are fearful that it could threaten U.S. national security.

As reported by the Daily Beast.

Thursday
Jul252019

Boeing drops out of massive Pentagon nuclear missile program, citing unfair competition

Wednesday
Jul172019

House Votes to Block Arms Sales to Gulf Nations, Setting Up Trump’s Third Veto

As reported by the New York Times.

Although this is in the context of conventional U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia, there are close parallels re: nuclear power technology that risks nuclear weapons proliferation. The Trump Dept. of Energy has allowed nuclear power technology to flow to Saudi Arabia, despite the Saudi Crown Prince's admission on CBS News's "60 Minutes" that, if Iran pursued nuclear weapons, Saudi Arabia would follow suit. These U.S. nuclear power technology transfers, done by DOE exemptions that sidestep congressional Atomic Energy Act due deligence to prevent nuclear weapons proliferation, thus run such risks.

Typically, Congress must approve nuclear power technology transfers to foreign countries, under Section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. But the Trump DOE has done an end run around this, granting exemptions.

DOE has gone so far as to keep secret the identity of the U.S. nuclear power companies transferring this technology to Saudi Arabia, absurdly and outrageously claiming some sort of trade secret exemption from such disclosure.

A growing number of Congress members are seeking ways to do something about this.

Monday
Jun172019

Iran threatens to increase enriched uranium stockpile beyond limits set by nuclear deal in 10 days