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Conclusion: The End of the Beginning

This study suggests that the Cooperative Threat Reduction program and other measures undertaken in the first decades after the Cold War to combat nuclear proliferation have been successful in many ways, but that they continue to be faced with serious impediments in their conception and execution. These impediments, many of which were identified in the earlier workshop report, are susceptible to cooperative solutions between the two governments. The report recognizes, however, that cooperative efforts are at a turning point. No longer should or can the Russian Federation be solely the recipient of assistance. It is now able, politically and economically, as well as militarily, to take its place as a true partner of the United States in the effort to contain the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the world.

It is time, therefore, for the two sides to forge a full partnership in this regard. To accomplish this, a two-pronged program is required. First, remaining impediments to existing and contemplated programs of cooperation must be removed or their effects must be diminished. A number of recommendations throughout this report are intended to accomplish this, and this would be a remarkable achievement in itself for the two governments. Second, however, is a long-term approach to the establishment of a true partnership to reduce and eliminate the threat of further proliferation of nuclear devices, the material to construct them, and their delivery systems. Thus, the joint committee recommends that a high-level commission be appointed to develop a strategic vision and a detailed plan for a renewed cooperative effort by true partners to achieve national security goals. Cooperation must evolve from its present client-supplier relationship to a true partnership in which both sides contribute to a successful outcome.



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OCR for page 33
Strengthening U.S.-Russian Cooperation on Nuclear Nonproliferation: Recommendations for Action Conclusion: The End of the Beginning This study suggests that the Cooperative Threat Reduction program and other measures undertaken in the first decades after the Cold War to combat nuclear proliferation have been successful in many ways, but that they continue to be faced with serious impediments in their conception and execution. These impediments, many of which were identified in the earlier workshop report, are susceptible to cooperative solutions between the two governments. The report recognizes, however, that cooperative efforts are at a turning point. No longer should or can the Russian Federation be solely the recipient of assistance. It is now able, politically and economically, as well as militarily, to take its place as a true partner of the United States in the effort to contain the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the world. It is time, therefore, for the two sides to forge a full partnership in this regard. To accomplish this, a two-pronged program is required. First, remaining impediments to existing and contemplated programs of cooperation must be removed or their effects must be diminished. A number of recommendations throughout this report are intended to accomplish this, and this would be a remarkable achievement in itself for the two governments. Second, however, is a long-term approach to the establishment of a true partnership to reduce and eliminate the threat of further proliferation of nuclear devices, the material to construct them, and their delivery systems. Thus, the joint committee recommends that a high-level commission be appointed to develop a strategic vision and a detailed plan for a renewed cooperative effort by true partners to achieve national security goals. Cooperation must evolve from its present client-supplier relationship to a true partnership in which both sides contribute to a successful outcome.

OCR for page 33
Strengthening U.S.-Russian Cooperation on Nuclear Nonproliferation: Recommendations for Action This page intentionally left blank.