US, Russia Could Halve Nuclear Arsenals

Agreement Expected When Obama Visits Moscow Next Week

When President Barack Obama visits Moscow next week, the negotiations on a replacements for the soon to expire START agreement are expected to be a high priority. It is being reported that the decommissioning could begin as soon as December.

Though such deals are not yet finalized, observers say the US and Russia could agree to cut their respective nuclear arsenals by up to half, taking thousands of warheads that are currently deployed out of circulation. Both sides have expressed serious interest in decreasing their enormous arsenals.

The agreements currently in place allow both sides to have 2,200 warheads, though they each have dramatically more than that and the disarmament has gone far slower than the agreements would suggest.

Though Presidents Obama and Medvedev issued a statement in April pledging to make a “fresh start” in the disarmament process, it remains to be seen if the new agreement will have any more meaning than the previous ones, or if it will simply provide another, even lower limit that neither side will ultimately respect.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.