The Economist on New START

By Eric Auner

The Economist has written a compelling new editorial on the necessity of New START ratification.

It is a sensible, incremental treaty that will cut America’s and Russia’s deployed strategic nuclear warheads by about a third, from the current maximum of 2,200 to 1,550, and the number of deployed missiles and bombers to 700 apiece.

It does not stop America deploying anti-ballistic missile defences, developing strategic-range non-nuclear weapons systems or updating its nuclear weapons infrastructure (indeed, Mr Obama has promised to spend $80 billion on this over the next decade).

The Economist is right to point out that New START is not a radical departure from the status quo.  Rather, it is a relatively modest piece of diplomacy that will allow the U.S. to move on to other essential initiatives, such as the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

Our allies and partners, in Britain and elsewhere, are waiting to see if the U.S. will be able to fulfill its disarmament obligations. The editorial concludes:

Momentum is vital; delay potentially lethal. The Senate should approve New START now.

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