Assuring destruction forever: nuclear weapon modernization around the world

mod-coverThis new, groundbreaking study by Reaching Critical Will explores in-depth the nuclear weapon modernization programmes in China, France, India, Israel, Pakistan, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and analyzes the costs of nuclear weapons in the context of the economic crisis, austerity measures, and rising challenges in meeting human and environmental needs. 

soft cover • 152 pages • March 2012
PDF available online for free

As of March 2012, the nuclear weapon possessors are estimated to possess approximately 19,500 nuclear weapons. All of them have plans to modernize—upgrade and/or extend the lives of—their nuclear weapons.

In this study, non-governmental researchers and analysts provide information on each country’s modernization plans. There are eight country chapters followed by three “thematic” chapters that address issues of international law, divestment, and political will. The country chapters are chock full of detailed information about nuclear weapon programmes and policies while the thematic chapters analyze these policies in a broader context.

(An update to the executive summary, Still assuring destruction forever, was published in March 2013.)

Edited by Ray Acheson • Published by Reaching Critical Will, a project of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

Full report
Executive summary
Author biographies

Press release

Sample op-eds and letters to parliamentarians on modernization

Hui Zhang, Harvard University
Hans Kristensen, Federation of American Scientists
M.V. Ramana, Princeton University
Merav Datan, Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy
Zia Mian, Program on Science and Global Security, Princeton University
Russian Federation
Pavel Podvig, Russian Nuclear Forces Project
United Kingdom
John Ainslie, Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
United States
Andrew Lichterman, Western States Legal Foundation
International law
John Burroughs, Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy
Tim Wright, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
Political will
Andrew Lichterman, Western States Legal Foundation

We are delighted to offer the online version for free, but please consider making a donation to Reaching Critical Will to help us cover the costs of producing this book and the other materials and information services that Reaching Critical Will provides.