How to Secure "Loose Nukes"

Pavel Podvig

MIT Press web site, October 2004

"President Bush has asserted that the issue of Russian "loose nukes" is a major threat to international security. First of all, we should understand the complexity of the problem. Ensuring safety and security of Russian nuclear materials is not simply a matter of allocating more money for the task or identifying a few unsecured facilities and building fences around them.
An effective solution of the problem would be impossible without a determined effort on the part of the United States and Russia to build a mechanism that would help them discuss the problems associated with security and safety of nuclear weapons in an open and transparent manner, develop solutions for these problems, and share the expertise necessary to implement the solutions. The immediate task should be resolving the legal and bureaucratic issues that exist today, but eventually the United States and Russia will have to find political will to bring their relationships to a new level of trust and cooperation that would allow them not only work on securing nuclear materials within Russia, but also lead the international effort in this area."