Nuclear Security: The Problems and the Road Ahead Examines Worldwide Efforts to Control Threat of Nuclear Weapons

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Nuclear Security: The Problems and the Road Ahead by Secretary George Shultz

The Hoover Institution Press released Nuclear Security: The Problems and the Road Ahead by Secretary George Shultz, a distinguished fellow at the Hoover Institution. In this book, Shultz and his coauthors examine worldwide efforts to control nuclear weapons and ensure the safety of nuclear weapons and reactors against catastrophic accidents.

Drawing from papers presented at the 2013 meeting of the American Nuclear Society, the contributors, all known for their long-standing interest in getting better control of the threats posed by nuclear weapons and reactors, discuss what we can learn from past successes and failures and identify the key ingredients that can lead us toward a world free of nuclear weapons.

Nuclear Security: The Problems and the Road Ahead by Secretary George Shultz
Nuclear Security: The Problems and the Road Ahead by Hoover fellows George Shultz, Sidney Drell, Henry Kissinger, and Sam Nunn.

“Concern about the threat posed by nuclear weapons has preoccupied the United States and presidents of the United States since the beginning of the nuclear era. This book offers specific recommendations for reducing risks that should be adopted by the nuclear enterprise, both military and civilian, in the United States and abroad, with no reasonable effort being spared to ensure safety and security,” states Shultz.

The existence of nuclear weapons poses a constant danger to everyone. Although great progress has been made since the Reagan-Gorbachev negotiations of 1986, which created a feeling of hope for the future, the atmosphere has changed sharply in recent years, with new threats of proliferation and use. As a result of the global spread of nuclear knowledge, technology, and material, the nuclear weapons and reactors are currently facing new and increasingly difficult challenges. Nuclear Security asks and attempts to answer two key questions: What can we learn from the earlier positive negotiations?  What has gone wrong and where do we go from here?

In the book, former secretaries of state Henry Kissinger and George Shultz offer their thoughts on what is necessary to eliminate Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon. They agree that any final deal with Iran must ensure the world’s ability to detect a move toward a nuclear breakout, lengthen the world’s time to react, and underscore its determination to do so.

The authors conclude by asking, Is trying to create a world free of nuclear weapons consistent with establishing a strategic stability among nations on a global scale? In light of the fact that the policy of mutual assured destruction is useless against today’s most dangerous threats,  achieving the vision of a world without nuclear weapons is indeed a critical and urgent challenge.

AUTHORS: Sidney D. Drell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a professor of theoretical physics emeritus at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, Stanford University. Henry A. Kissinger was a national security adviser and secretary of state under Presidents Nixon and Ford and is currently chairman of Kissinger Associates, an international consulting firm, and a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution. Sam Nunn is the cochairman and chief executive officer of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a former US senator from Georgia, and an Annenberg Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution (2012–13). George P. Shultz is the Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford Distinguished Fellow at the Hoover Institution and a former US secretary of state.

CONTACT INFORMATION:  Jenny Mayfield, Director of Media Relations | Office of Public Affairs | jennymayfield [at] stanford [dot] edu | 650-723-0603