||[FREE IRAN Project] In The Spirit Of Cyrus The Great
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Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Location: SantaFe, New Mexico
|Posted: Fri Nov 18, 2005 10:04 pm Post subject: The Challenge of Nuclear Noncompliance
|Compliance Assessment and Compliance Enforcement: The Challenge of Nuclear
Dr. Christopher A. Ford, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Verification,
Compliance, and Implementation
Remarks to the American Branch of the International Law Association
New York City
October 22, 2005
The question posed for this panel, about the relationship between weapons of
mass destruction (WMD)-related noncompliance findings and what you have
tactfully described as "exceptional actions by states acting together or acting
unilaterally," is a provocative and important one. In order to help enrich your
deliberations, I would like to offer some observations upon these matters from
the perspective of an official whose job it is at the State Department to do
compliance assessments. To begin with, I'd like to say a few words to outline
what we mean when we talk about a noncompliance finding.
I. The Compliance Assessment Process
I serve as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and as Deputy Assistant
Secretary for Compliance Policy in something called the Bureau of Verification,
Compliance, and Implementation at the U.S. Department of State. "VCI" is a very
young bureau, having been established by statute only in 1999, but it is in
many ways the direct descendent of the Intelligence, Verification, and
Information Support Bureau (IVI) of the former Arms Control and Disarmament
Agency (ACDA). Among our responsibilities is taking the lead role within the
U.S. Government in arriving at compliance findings for arms control,
nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements and commitments. This includes,
most prominently, drafting the President's Congressionally-mandated annual
report to Congress that identifies instances of noncompliance with such
agreements and commitments and outlines compliance concerns related thereto.
The most recent report the longest and most detailed ever, running to a total
of over 700 pages in three versions published at different levels of
classification was just issued in August. You can find the unclassified
version on our Bureau's website, at http://www.state.gov/t/vci/rls/rpt/
Anyway, we do compliance assessments for a living, and I'd like to talk a
little bit about what goes into them. In our diplomatic engagement with other
governments on compliance-related matters, it has become apparent that many do
not understand the complexity and rigor of the U.S. compliance assessment
process. They sometimes seem to assume that we reach compliance findings as
mere issues of policy preference as if we just sit around a table and someone
declares that "I don't like that country, so they must be guilty of
noncompliance with something." In fact, I fear that is how some governments
probably make such decisions. But we certainly don't.
The U.S. process, as shown in the preparation of the annual Noncompliance
Report, is a long and complex process that involves the entire interagency
community and detailed clearance procedures in which officials sometimes argue
at length over subtle nuances of phrasing and, yes, even punctuation. The text
of the report is cleared by all relevant parts of the policy community
including the Departments of State, Defense, and Energy and the National
Security Council staff as well as by the U.S. Intelligence Community. This
elaborate and often difficult process is quite appropriate: the report is, by
law, the President's report and it represents the findings of the U.S
Government as a whole . . . not just one or more components of it.
Conceptually, the process begins with trying to ensure that we have a clear
understanding of the obligations in question. These obligations can come in
many forms, ranging from formal treaties such as the Nuclear Nonproliferation
Treaty, to informal, voluntary arrangements among a group of countries such as
the Missile Technology Control Regime, to United Nations resolutions such as
UNSCR 1540, which commits nations to undertake efforts to stem the
proliferation of WMD.
It is often imagined that compliance analysts spend most of their time arguing
over facts and over interpretations of intelligence information, but
interestingly, it is often the meaning of the underlying obligation that causes
intense discussion and debate. This highlights the point that compliance
analysis is different from intelligence analysis. To be sure, compliance
analysis depends upon intelligence, which must be assessed and understood. But
compliance analysis also involves legal analysis, because one needs to be able
to explain what a country is required to do before one can judge whether that
country has done it. Ultimately, all this requires a policy judgment as to
whether the facts constitute a violation when held up against a promise or an
It's also worth noting that for compliance assessment purposes, some of the
things over which intelligence analysts spend their time arguing are not always
of primary importance. There may be different views, for instance, about when a
certain country will have come into possession of a workable nuclear weapon, or
how many weapons they currently have. Those are vital questions for the
Intelligence Community, and for policymakers whose job it is to reduce or
counter the national security threats represented by such capabilities. For a
compliance analyst, however, the key is whether the country in question is
trying to develop nuclear weapons at all which, for NPT non-nuclear weapons
states, is the key to identifying a potential Article II violation.
II. Noncompliance and Enforcement
So that's the compliance assessment process. But for today's purposes, the most
interesting discussions will likely be about the implications of noncompliance.
And this is where some of the most important challenges lie in our world of
verification and compliance.
Dr. Fred Ickle, who went on to become head of the Arms Control and Disarmament
Agency, wrote an article in 1961 for Foreign Affairs magazine which made a very
important point that holds true today. The title of his article was "After
Detection . . . What?" and this title nicely summaries his point.
Verification capabilities are clearly crucial in the arms control,
nonproliferation, and disarmament world: one needs to be able to detect
violations in time to be able to do something about them. But that's the rub.
Detection alone is of little value. Detection serves its purpose only by
providing a foundation for, and warning timely enough to permit, effective
action in compliance enforcement. There is no way around the need for taking
action to counter the threat posed by a violation, return the violator to
compliance, and deter others from following in his footsteps.
This is a lesson unfortunately underscored by recent events. Even though the
world has long since learned of Iran's flagrant noncompliance with its nuclear
safeguards obligations and with Article II of the NPT, the international
community is still having a difficult time making such noncompliance costly and
unattractive either to Tehran or to any country that might contemplate
following Iran's path in the future. The international community is also
struggling to agree upon how to provide a "what" in response to North Korea's
even more obvious violations of the NPT. Dr. Ickle was, I believe, right to
suggest that it can often be even harder to mount an effective response than it
is to detect violations in the first place.
But what sort of response is appropriate and when is it permitted?
A. Finding the Balance
You will probably find our Bureau second to none in advocating firm responses
to compliance problems. After all, it is important that all violations elicit
some compliance pressure aimed at making noncompliance expensive, difficult,
annoying, or dangerous. The proliferators of today have learned lessons from
how the international community has handled noncompliance in the past, and it
seems clear that tomorrow's would-be proliferators will learn from the choices
we make in responding to today's proliferation challenges. Not taking
violations seriously wherever they occur thereby sending the message that
compliance is not important, or is negotiable can have grave consequences in
undermining our ability to stand firm when it matters most. As a result, we
believe it important for the U.S. to be a stickler for compliance rigor, and to
engage in vigorous efforts to ensure compliance enforcement a role,
incidentally, which we feel to be the responsibility of all members of the
international community, jointly and severally.
But it is also clear that not all failings are equally dangerous. South Korea,
for instance, engaged in a few undeclared uranium enrichment and
plutonium-separation experiments inconsistent with its obligations under its
nuclear safeguards agreements with the IAEA. In stark contrast, Iran carried on
a 20-year clandestine program to develop a full nuclear fuel cycle capable of
producing, and clearly intended to produce, fissile material usable in nuclear
weapons. Clearly, Iran's activities are far more threatening to international
peace and security.
Both cases represented compliance difficulties, but the dangers they present
and the responses these different efforts should therefore elicit vary
enormously. South Korea quickly cleaned up its act when the IAEA brought the
problem to its attention, so no response beyond mere chastisement was needed.
Iran, however, seems intent upon retaining the fuel-cycle capabilities it
secretly acquired as part of its nuclear weapons effort, while North Korea
actually brags about achieving a weapons capability. Both of those countries
appear to need a good deal more compliance pressure than mere admonishment.
Another interesting comparison is the case of Libya. The Libyans clearly
violated Article II of the NPT by engaging in a program to manufacture nuclear
weapons. Their program included undeclared possession of uranium hexafluoride
centrifuge feedstock in noncompliance with Article III and their safeguards
agreement. As a nuclear weapons development program, this was a very serious
noncompliance problem indeed. But the context in which we learned the full
details of these problems, however, was one in which it was clear that Libya
was on the road to reforming its proliferating ways and eliminating its WMD
So while noncompliance is always bad and should always elicit compliance
pressure in response, context is critical. Decisions about appropriate
responses to noncompliance can raise very complex and difficult questions, and
they require all sorts of policy, and sometimes legal, determinations. There is
no substitute for good judgment and policy sense, and it may not be possible to
set down precise recipes ahead of time for which responses will be appropriate
in any particular case.
B. Counter-WMD Intervention
In extreme cases, particularly given the nature of the potential threats that
can be posed by the possession of weapons of mass destruction by a rogue state
particularly one with ties to international terrorism the repertoire of
potential responses to proliferation noncompliance may include military action.
Of course, any decision to take this course of action would require careful
analysis of legal authorities and policy considerations and would ultimately be
made at the highest levels of our government.
We are often asked when such action would be consistent with the United Nations
Charter and other principles of international law. It is impossible to state a
general rule here because in the end, each use of force must look for its
legitimacy in the facts and circumstances that the state believes have made it
necessary, and each such use of force should be judged not against abstract
concepts, but on the particular events that gave rise to it. In the case of
Iraq, for instance, the United States had ample authority under pertinent
Security Council resolutions to use force to compel compliance with WMD
obligations in the face of material breaches of Iraqi obligations under
relevant resolutions of the Security Council, including conditions that had
been essential to the establishment of the ceasefire in 1991. This is not to
say, however, that Security Council action is a sine qua non for the use of
force in such cases, as the doctrine of self-defense may be available to
justify use of force in cases where the Council has not acted. Each case must
be judged on the particular facts. This is why so many attempts to define
bright-line rules describing the circumstances in which the use of force is
justified have come to naught.
C. Diplomacy and Counter-Proliferation
I would like to emphasize, however, that if we spend all our time debating
hypothetical scenarios of military intervention we will likely miss some very
important points about what can be done and in fact is being done to fight
WMD proliferation and prevent things from ever having to come to such a pass.
After all, it is now clear that skillful diplomacy can help create
opportunities for compliance enforcement far short of military intervention.
Let me offer you some examples:
* This Administration's Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) and Dangerous
Materials Initiative (DMI), for instance, are innovative approaches to some
of these problems that rely upon coordinated applications of existing legal
authorities to increase the costs and risks to proliferators and smugglers
of dangerous material around the globe. We are working with like-minded
friends and allies, using well-established rules regarding ascertaining the
true nationality of vessels on the high seas or conducting medical, safety,
and customs inspections in ports of call, and securing ship-boarding
agreements with major flag states such as Panama and Liberia. The United
States is, by such means, making it much harder for countries such as Libya
to receive black market centrifuges, for countries such as North Korea to
ship missiles or illegal drugs around the world, and for other rogue states
to acquire chemical weapon precursor materials or ballistic missile
* The U.S. is also now working with the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to halt
the spread of enrichment and reprocessing technologies while we endeavor to
ensure reliable alternative nuclear fuel supplies for countries that
forswear such proliferation-risky capabilities.
Incidentally, just this past week, in accordance with its recently revised
guidelines, the NSG also held an extraordinary plenary meeting to consider
the Iran issue in light of the IAEA Board of Governors' resolution
declaring Iran in noncompliance with its safeguards obligations (and noting
that this requires a U.N. Security Council report). I'm pleased to note
that at the NSG plenary, the European Union announced that it would make no
transfers of NSG "Trigger List" items to Iran and would exercise special
vigilance with regard to non-listed items that could nonetheless be useful
in enrichment and reprocessing.
* The United States also uses a range of bilateral economic and diplomatic
pressures to fight WMD-related proliferation. These pressures include
sanctions laws passed by the U.S. Congress, many of which are explicitly
linked to specific international nonproliferation norms such as the NSG
guidelines or the Missile Technology Control Regime. Through such
mechanisms, we have made it harder and more costly for would-be
proliferators to do the wrong thing by making it clear that one cannot be
both a WMD proliferator and a full trading partner of the world's largest
* Finally, the example of our successful efforts first to negotiate and then
to assist in the implementation of and ultimately to verify Libya's
elimination of its WMD programs is also a very important illustration of
the innovative approaches being taken to handle proliferation challenges.
While we worked closely in Libya with both the International Atomic Energy
Agency (IAEA) and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
(OPCW), it is important to note that most of our work in country was done
on a cooperative trilateral basis between the United States, our British
allies, and our Libyan partners. Once Libya had made its strategic
commitment to renounce WMD, for example, it was possible to work with the
Libyans to eliminate their nuclear weapons program not merely to place
seals on it and monitor it pursuant to IAEA safeguards. As far as we're
concerned, dismantlement and removal beats mere monitoring any day.
Thanks to patient diplomatic efforts and a keen U.S. focus upon stopping
WMD proliferation during 2004 coming on the heels of years of
international pressure on Libya in connection with terrorism, human rights,
and regional security problems this Administration was able to achieve a
tremendous success in WMD rollback on a voluntary and cooperative basis.
So I hope these examples make clear that there exist a great many tools for
policymakers whose job it is to cope with the threats posed by noncompliance
with arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements and
commitments. The military variety of compliance enforcement constitutes only
one tool in the toolbox. A finding of noncompliance should always produce
compliance enforcement response, but it does not, and should not, automatically
produce any particular response. Which tools will best suit the circumstances
at hand is something that we need to consider anew for each problem that
arises, as we tackle the policy challenges of fashioning remedies that address
the wrong and that best serve U.S. national security interests and the
interests of international peace and security.
I hope that my discussion of the compliance assessment process and the
challenges of "After Detection . . . What?" will help you better understand the
sometimes somewhat arcane world of compliance enforcement. So while I am sorry
that I offer today no bright line rules and clear recipes, I am not sure that
such things exist. Nonetheless, I hope I have been able to impress upon you
both the seriousness and the complexity of these challenges, and I look forward
to hearing some very interesting discussions today.
See http://www.state.gov for Senior State Department
Official's statements and testimonies
Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Location: SantaFe, New Mexico
|Posted: Fri Nov 18, 2005 10:13 pm Post subject:
|The New U.S. Approach to Verification
Paula A. DeSutter, Assistant Secretary for Verification, Compliance, and
Remarks at the Carnegie International Non-Proliferation Conference "Sixty Years
Later" Panel on The Future of Verification
November 7, 2005
Thank you. I am pleased to have been asked to participate on this panel at this
important conference. I am grateful to the Carnegie Endowment for arranging
this extremely timely event. How we approach verification of arms control,
nonproliferation and disarmament agreements and commitments is obviously a key
component of meeting our core objective for our nonproliferation policies
namely preventing rogue states and non-state actors from obtaining nuclear,
chemical or biological weapons and their means of delivery.
Many of you know the difficult battles that were waged in the nineteen sixties,
seventies and eighties, first over the idea of enshrining in bilateral arms
control agreements the concept of noninterference with national technical means
of verification and later, over incorporating on-site inspection. I daresay
that changing concepts today is not any easier. In my role of Assistant
Secretary of State for Verification, Compliance, and Implementation, however, I
am seeking to do just that. The changes we seek fall into four primary areas:
First, the United States has worked hard to make sure that our own house is in
order when it comes to examining the concepts underlying verification, in
organizing to take on this important work, and in ensuring that our ability to
assess verification and compliance, is robust and rigorous.
Second, resulting from our own examination of verification concepts, we have
concluded that the old term "National Technical Means of Verification," and the
concepts and practical implications of that term needed to be replaced by the
term "National Means and Methods" with a new conceptual approach. As a part of
adapting the old concepts of verification, we have undertaken and urged a more
balanced assessment of the relative merits of cooperative measures and the
proper balance between such measures and National Means and Methods.
Third, we believe that consideration of verification requirements independent
from consideration of the challenges of compliance assessment and compliance
enforcement makes no sense.
Finally, we are trying to do a better job of articulating our views on these
matters and the reasoning behind them.
U.S. Evaluation of Verification Concepts and Assessments of Compliance and
One of the first elements that I should mention in describing the new U.S.
approach to verification is the creation of the Bureau I lead. Creation of the
Department of State's Bureau for Verification and Compliance was mandated by
Congress when the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, known as ACDA, was
merged into the Department of State. Congress has long had a keen interest in,
and been a key advocate for, verification, compliance, and enforcement issues.
Congress believed strongly that the former Verification Bureau from ACDA needed
to be retained as a separate entity lead at the Assistant Secretary level, and
so created our Bureau in law and charged it with three key missions:
assessments of compliance, seeking to make new agreements as verifiable as
possible and assessing verification, and working with the U.S. intelligence
community to urge collection capabilities to maximize verifiability. More
recently, Secretary Rice enhanced the Bureau by moving responsibility for
implementation of some existing agreements and for missile defense and some
elements of space policy to the VC Bureau, which she renamed the "Verification,
Compliance, and Implementation Bureau."
We have issued two reports on "Adherence to and Compliance with Agreements",
commonly called the "Noncompliance Report" since I took my current position in
2002-- most recently in August of this year. We have sought to strengthen the
rigor of these highly classified Presidential reports, which are submitted to
Congress by the Secretary of State on behalf of the President, to make them
more readable, and to try to ensure that the report is a solid document to
explain how we assess other nations' activities against their obligations and
commitments. The reports include our assessments of not just those activities
that we believe violate agreements or commitments, but also activities about
which we have compliance questions. In this way, the Report serves as an early
call to action for policy makers. We have also tried very hard to include as
much information as possible in the unclassified versions of the Report, and
these are available to anyone interested on the Department of State web site.
Upon my arrival in the position of Assistant Secretary, it seemed to me that
our concepts of verification and compliance needed to be reviewed and
strengthened. In some cases this merely required revisiting the earlier
articulations of verification concepts and policy. In some, it required
adapting these to today's circumstances.
We still use two different terms to describe our assessments of verification.
The first is the "degree of verifiability." This is a technical assessment in
which we evaluate the wording of the agreement and what it seeks to govern and
weigh it against our ability to detect noncompliance. The second term is
"effective verification." In assessing whether verification is effective, the
U.S. considers an arrangement or treaty to be effectively verifiable if the
degree of verifiability is judged sufficient given the compliance history of
the parties involved, the risks associated with noncompliance, the difficulty
of response to deny violators the benefits of their violations, the language
and measures incorporated into the agreement and our own national means and
methods of verification. The degree of verifiability must be high enough to
enable the United States to detect significant noncompliance or a pattern of
noncompliance in sufficient time to counter the threat presented by the
violation and deny the violator the benefits of his wrongdoing.
As I mentioned, our assessments of verification are informed by factors that go
beyond technical and legal assessments, including: the proven reliability of
our negotiating partners in adhering to agreements; the incentives given
parties may have to cheat on a given agreement; the difficulty of responding to
deny a violator the benefits of his violation; and the relative significance of
cheating pursuant to the obligations. Significantly, this means that if we
cannot get violations corrected and cannot deny violators the benefits of their
violation, all of our verification assessments are likely to be negatively
Verification Concepts: National Means and Methods and a Balanced Assessment of
In the early years of arms control, the use of satellite imagery for
verification was controversial. The U.S. fought hard in our earlier arms
control agreements with the former Soviet Union to include agreement that these
forms of information collection, called National Technical Means, or NTM, could
be legitimately used. Later, especially in the Intermediate Nuclear Forces, or
INF, Treaty, we were able to agree on on-site and other cooperative measures.
These were significant elements that were then later included in the strategic
arms treaties and in the Chemical Weapons Convention.
Over time, however, a common misperception developed that led many to conclude
that a combination of international data declarations, international
cooperative measures (including technical measures) and on-site inspection
regimes by themselves would be sufficient for verification. Nations that did
not have access to U.S.-style NTMs were inclined to reject NTM as a means of
verification and advocated reliance on international inspectorates. In fact,
data declarations, cooperative measures and on-site inspections can provide
useful and often invaluable information. They are useful tools for
investigating indications of noncompliance -- as we've seen the IAEA do in
Iran, for example -- and for detecting inadvertent violations. However,
inspections provide information according to the agreed access negotiated by
the parties, and only provide such information as is available at the specific
time and place of the inspection. They provide, at best, a snap-shot in time.
Even cooperative measures, such as remote cameras and seals for continuous
monitoring -- while quite powerful -- are limited to those locations where they
The degree of verifiability should not, therefore, be judged solely on the
basis of whether or not an agreement contains detailed provisions for data
exchanges, on-site inspections or other types of cooperative arrangements.
Recall that on-site inspections can only tell you what is happening at the time
and place of the inspection, and only to the degree that inspectors have the
access and capability to discover whether or not noncompliance is taking place
at that time and at that location. When, for example, an agreement seeks to
govern dual use activities, an inspector may be able to tell you that dual use
activities are underway, but is not very likely to be able to gain salient
information regarding the intention of the activity. On-site measures are tools
that may let the inspected party demonstrate that the activities observed are
consistent with a declaration and may provide some confidence that other states
are complying. They may or may not, however, facilitate detection of
noncompliance even at the time and place of the inspection. Moreover, if
significant prohibited activities can take place at other times or at other
locations, the efficacy of such measures may be quite limited.
Some have come to believe that the mere inclusion of 'anytime, anywhere'
inspections will solve the verification challenge. The problem, in addition to
the challenges associated with all on-site inspections, is that you have to
know where to go and be able to get there at the time a violation is underway,
and be able to confirm that the activity detected is noncompliant. Such
challenge inspections, even those of the 'anytime, anywhere' variety, may have
value, but again, they are not a panacea.
Such cooperative measures must therefore be supplemented by the best possible
means of trying to determine what is happening at times and locations other
than those subject to inspections. What is new in this regard, is that there
are sources of potentially significant information well beyond what was
imagined in the past. Commercial satellite imagery is available to all nations
and to international organizations. Open source information is available in
quantities and qualities that was not possible before the development and
expansion of the internet.
Nations therefore have access to information that they didn't when they
rejected the old concept of National Technical Means. We believe, therefore,
that this term needs to be replaced with the new concept of National Means and
Methods. This enables us to recognize that all nations can play a constructive
role in conducting their own compliance assessments, either on a national basis
or together with others.
The United States considered all these factors, for example, when we conducted
our verification assessment of the proposed Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty
(FMCT). After two years of concerted effort studying the problem, we concluded
that an "internationally and effectively verifiable Treaty," is not
realistically achievable, even with a highly intrusive inspection regime.
Having come to such a conclusion, we believe that attempts to negotiate "good
enough" cooperative means for verification, as some have suggested, are not
only futile, but also harmful, delaying completion of the treaty. Furthermore,
an ineffective regime could lull the international community into a false sense
of confidence that obligations were being adhered to.
It is for this reason that the United States urges our colleagues at the
Conference on Disarmament to join us in supporting an FMCT negotiating mandate
that either does not refer to verification measures or that says that
verification will be by National Means and Methods. Pending the conclusion of
such a mandate and negotiation of an FMCT, the United States has and continues
to call on all nuclear weapon states and states not party to the NPT to make a
public commitment to not produce fissile material for nuclear weapons or other
nuclear explosive devices. Four of the five nuclear weapons states, including
of course, the United States, already have made such a commitment.
There has been a view for too long that nothing can be done without the
creation of an international institution and long negotiated access agreements.
We are trying to move to a new approach where we adapt our tools to the task at
hand. Suppose verification were done by National Means and Methods, and one
nation gets information of concern. Some have argued that without a negotiated
arrangement for dispute resolution, nothing could be done. I think that this is
old think. Suppose we simply asked a country if we, and perhaps we and a group
of like-minded countries with additional tools, could come take a look at
something that we have compliance questions about? They might say no, but they
can do that even with agreed procedures. They might say "yes," and we might be
able to resolve at least part of our compliance concerns. This, I believe,
should be considered as part of our future approach to verification and
compliance. But however verification is to be implemented, it loses its
relevance if verification of noncompliance has no consequences.
Verification, Compliance, and Enforcement: Three Legs of a Stool
The United States and most other nations have sought to supplement our national
efforts at strengthening security with multilateral tools. These tools have
included arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements. When the
United States adheres to a treaty, we want to discover noncompliance early
enough to be able to deny violators any benefit from such noncompliance.
Thus, the United States views verification, compliance and compliance
enforcement as critically interrelated, as being the three legs of a stool that
cannot stand if one leg is removed. To put it simply: verification is designed
for detection and deterrence of noncompliance. If detection has no consequences
for the violator, then verification has no meaning, and deterrence is
It is undeniable that today the international community is facing significant
challenges to our nonproliferation regimes, none more dangerous than verified
and intentional noncompliance with nuclear nonproliferation obligations by
North Korea and Iran. In both of these cases, parties to international
agreements undertook actions over years and even decades to cheat. Their
noncompliance isn't what is sometimes called "technical." These weren't
accidents or oversights. If they were, it would be reasonable to expect that
expressions of concern would result in timely resolution. We have seen efforts
at resolution of unintentional noncompliance work numerous times, including
cases described in the U.S. noncompliance report I referred to earlier.
In Iran and the DPRK we are dealing with cases of intentional noncompliance.
North Korea and Iran made strategic decisions to pursue programs and undertake
activities that they knew full well violated their obligations. They invested
vast national resources to pursue these covert programs resources their
people may well have wished were being invested in other ways. These programs
were pursued covertly. These regimes took advantage of the period before
discovery to reap benefits, such as technical cooperation and assistance, which
flowed from being parties to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
If arms control, nonproliferation and disarmament agreements and commitments
are to support the security of all nations, then all nations must respond when
confronted with noncompliance. Unilateral U.S. action to encourage compliance
is not enough. Detecting a violation is not an end in itself: it is a call to
action. Without strict compliance and without the concerted action of all
parties to insist upon strict compliance--and to hold violators accountable for
their actions--the national security of all nations will erode and global
stability will be undermined.
Much of our diplomacy is therefore focused on convincing States to take
seriously--more seriously--their role in this effort and not acquiesce quietly
in violations of fundamental obligations. Certainly, States Parties should be
willing to devote at least as much time and effort in enforcing agreements as
is expended in devising and negotiating the agreement in the first place. In
practical terms, this means that diplomacy cannot end with the conclusion of
arms control, nonproliferation and disarmament agreements.
We believe that the diplomatic or operational tools that we use to bring about
or enforce compliance should be dependent upon our strategic requirements. In
the past we may have been too wedded to a particular tool or approach that may
have been ill-suited to what we were actually trying to accomplish. For
instance, this Administration has launched a major nonproliferation initiative
called PSI --- the Proliferation Security Initiative. PSI is an additional tool
in our nonproliferation tool box which also includes the Nonproliferation
Treaty (NPT), and various export control regimes such as the Nuclear Suppliers
Group. Our missile defense efforts, both nationally and with others, are also
designed to deny those who have circumvented efforts to slow or stop missile
proliferation, the benefits of their illicit trade and to deter such programs
by ensuring that the missiles they develop will not be able to be used
effectively to threaten peaceful nations.
This Administration believes that to secure our own national security interests
as well as to lay a sound basis for international security, we need to develop
a wide array of tools and be willing to employ them under the right
circumstances. Relying upon one specific tool, particularly when its efficacy
has been challenged, not only makes no sense, but is potentially dangerous.
I believe that the recent resolution on compliance passed by the United Nations
First Committee reflects a growing understanding of the importance of these
issues. As for the United States, and my Bureau in particular, we are trying to
do a better job of discussing these issues publicly and with our international
partners. We call this our "compliance diplomacy" initiative, and we are trying
to make ourselves available to our international partners for ongoing dialogue
on these matters. My first such trip took me to Brazil, Argentina, and Chile,
where I learned much about the perspectives of these nations. More work of this
type needs to be done, however, and I think this Conference offers a useful
venue for conversations and understanding of how we think about these matters
and the directions we want to take in the future.
This Administration's approach to verification, compliance assessment and
compliance enforcement is shaped by our concern that the proliferation of WMD
presents opportunities for rogue states, perhaps working in conjunction with
non-state actors, who may view so-called "asymmetrical warfare" as a viable
option for altering the strategic landscape. A key to strengthening deterrence
in today's international security environment lies in our ability to detect
noncompliance and to mobilize robust compliance enforcement by the
international community, so we have become more rigorous in our approach to
verification, compliance assessment and compliance enforcement, and in our
efforts to explain to our treaty partners why and how we have adopted this
See http://www.state.gov for Senior State Department
Official's statements and testimonies
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