Links – May 23, 2017

Russia has been violating the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, but the United States won’t say exactly what the violation is. The INF Treaty prohibits intermediate-range missiles with nuclear warheads. Back in the 1980s, both the US and Russia had such missiles aimed at each other in Europe. The problem with missiles like this is that there is no warning time whatsoever, and thus a heavy motive to strike the other party first. James Action suggests a strategy for getting the treaty back on track. Top photo from here: Soviet inspectors and their American escorts standing among dismantled Pershing II missiles in Colorado as other missile components are destroyed nearby under the INF Treaty, January 1989.

What are North Korea’s targets?

The first draft of a nuclear ban treaty is out. Here’s a critique of some of the points that could cause problems. Discussions will continue and the draft will be modified. But there are some issues that will cause big arguments, like which states must ratify in order for the treaty to come into force.

How to watch a declassified nuclear test film like a weapons physicist.

FiveThirtyEight attempts to evaluate the probabilities of nuclear war. This is inherently a difficult task, I would say impossible to make quantitative. But it’s worth looking at where the situations are the worst and what may be changing in them.

How to dismantle a nuclear weapon.  There are some things wrong with this article, but it gives a general idea of something that people tend to forget has tom happen if we are going to get rid of nuclear weapons.