One of the documents released by WikiLeaks yesterday is a transcript of a December 2009 meeting of experts that was part of the U.S-Russia Joint Threat Assessment Talks (hat tip to Marko Beljac). The discussion is extremely interesting and definitely reflects the differences in thinking about threats - Russia seems much more skeptical than the United States about various exotic arrangements that could help Iran or North Korea build militarily useful long-range missiles (e.g. clustering of engines or deployment of large missiles in silos).

The most important thing about these talks is that they take place - it is clear that both countries have something to discuss and even though they probably won't be able to change each other's minds the exchange will help establish a useful channel of communication. I have long been arguing that a discussion of missile threats would be extremely helpful in addressing the missile defense controversy, so it is good to see progress in this area.

As I understand, a joint threat assessment document will be ready some time later this year. It probably won't be made public, but this is not really necessary - the discussions are much more valuable than the documents that they produce.