On January 22, 2021, the United States and Russia extended the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), a bilateral agreement that limits the number of nuclear warheads and delivery systems that each country can possess. The extension of this treaty was a critical step in maintaining global stability and reducing the risk of a nuclear war.
This treaty was initially signed in 2010 by former US President Barack Obama and former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. It reduced the number of deployed strategic nuclear weapons to 1,550 per side and limited the number of deployed and non-deployed land, sea, and air-based ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments to 800 per side.
The extension of the treaty was a significant diplomatic achievement for both countries. It came after months of negotiations and marked one of the first positive developments in US-Russian relations since the election of President Joe Biden. The treaty extension was particularly important for the United States, as it prevented a lapse in nuclear arms control and provided a foundation for future negotiations on other arms control measures, such as the potential inclusion of China in future talks.
The extension of this treaty also demonstrated the willingness of the United States and Russia to work together on issues of global importance. Both countries recognized the importance of reducing the risk of a nuclear war, and their willingness to extend the treaty reflects their commitment to this goal.
While the extension of the New START treaty is a significant achievement, much work remains to be done in the area of nuclear arms control. The United States and Russia possess the vast majority of the world`s nuclear weapons, and the continued proliferation of these weapons poses a significant threat to global security.
In the coming months and years, both countries must work together to address the underlying issues that contribute to the risk of nuclear war. This includes reducing tensions between the two countries, increasing transparency in their respective nuclear programs, and exploring new arms control measures that reflect the changing nature of modern warfare.
In conclusion, the extension of the New START treaty was a critical step in maintaining global stability and reducing the risk of a nuclear war. It demonstrated the willingness of the United States and Russia to work together on issues of global importance and provided a foundation for future negotiations on other arms control measures. While much work remains to be done in the area of nuclear arms control, the extension of this treaty is an essential step towards a safer and more secure world.