Nuclear History Publications

Russia's Policy in the Run-Up to the First North Korean Nuclear Crisis, 1991-1993

Feb 13, 2015
Sergey Radchenko draws on Soviet and Russian documents from 1991-1993 to argue that the first North Korean crisis began partly as a result of the policy choices of key regional players. Radchenko investigates Russia’s policy towards North Korea during this period, and how this policy may have inadvertently complicated the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

Forecasting Nuclear War

Nov 13, 2014
Between 1981 and 1989 the foreign intelligence branches of the Soviet KGB and the East German Ministry of State Security launched a combined effort to develop a system for detecting signs of an impending western nuclear first strike. Codenamed “Project RYaN”, this early-warning system constituted one part of the Soviet response to the perceived threat of a surprise “decapitation” strike by NATO nuclear forces.
Portrait of R.F. "Pik" Botha

Advance Warning: Reagan and South Africa's Nuclear Testing Promise

Oct 29, 2014
Or Rabinowitz explores the nuclear understanding between Ronald Reagan and South African Foreign Minister R.F. "Pik" Botha on South African Nuclear testing.

The Breach: Ukraine's Territorial Integrity and the Budapest Memorandum

Sep 30, 2014
Mariana Budjeryn investigates the security assurances made by the United States and Russia to Ukraine after the fall of the Soviet Union. These assurances, inscribed in the so-called “Budapest Memorandum” were designed to encourage Ukraine to ratify START I—otherwise known as the Lisbon Protocol—and return their entire nuclear arsenal to Russia for dismantling.
The Euromissile Crisis and the End of the Cold War, edited by Leopoldo Nuti, Frédéric Bozo, Marie-Pierre Rey, and Bernd Rother

The Euromissile Crisis and the End of the Cold War

Jul 31, 2014
The Euromissile Crisis and the End of the Cold War explores the origins, unfolding, and consequences of the crisis surrounding the proposed deployment of new generations of nuclear missile delivery systems across Eastern and Western Europe in the later years of the Cold War.
Undated photo of the South African nuclear test site taken by a U.S. reconnaissance satellite during 1977 or 1977. See document 3 for the image in context.

Proliferation Watch: US Intelligence Assessments of Potential Nuclear Powers, 1977–2001

Dec 13, 2013
This research update co-published with the National Security Archive includes the publication of recently declassified satellite photographs of the South African Nuclear Test site from 1977, a new release of a CIA report on the September 1979 South Atlantic Mystery Flash, and Department of Energy and Defense Intelligence Agency Reports illuminating pre-war controversy over the Iraqi procurement of aluminum tubes for an alleged gas centrifuge program

Present at the Undoing: The Netherlands and the Multilateral Force

Nov 05, 2013
New records from the Dutch National Archives illuminate the negotiations around the MLF, a failed U.S. attempt to develop an integrated NATO nuclear navy.

From the Peaceful Atom to the Peaceful Explosion

Sep 05, 2013
NPIHP Working Paper #3. Jayita Sarkar explores technological collaboration between the French and Indian Atomic Energy Commissions, using new archival documents to expose how shared opposition to U.S. information censorship and the desire to preserve foreign policy independence fostered nuclear collaboration between the two nations.

Resolving the Dilemma of Nuclear Mistrust: From Foz do Iguacu to the Constitution of ABACC (1985-1991)

Aug 15, 2013
Nuclear relations between Argentina and Brazil immediately following re-democratization were not simple. Both countries still kept open the possibility of developing peaceful nuclear devices and had sensitive components of their respective programs outside the international safeguards regime, which presented a dilemma to be resolved in order to advance in other areas of the bilateral relationship.

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