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Articles on Nuclear war

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This Russian short-range cruise missile, the Iskander-K, can carry nuclear warheads for several hundred miles. Russian Defense Ministry Press Service photo via AP

What are tactical nuclear weapons? An international security expert explains and assesses what they mean for the war in Ukraine

Tactical nuclear weapons were designed to be used on the battlefield rather than for strategic defense, but that doesn’t mean there’s a plausible case for using them.
A man reads an Iranian newspaper with a headline in Farsi that says, ‘The night of the end of the JCPOA,’ or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Atta Kenare/AFP via Getty Images

Iran and the US appear unlikely to reach a new nuclear deal – leaving everyone more unsafe

A nuclear nonproliferation expert explains why Iran was always unlikely to return to the 2015 international agreement that limited its nuclear weapon development.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is introduced to the US Congress by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on March 16, 2022 in Washington, DC. J. Scott Applewhite-Pool/Getty Images

Ukraine’s information war is winning hearts and minds in the West

The reasons for the prominence of the Ukraine war in the West are many – and include the Ukrainian government’s strategic efforts to tailor presentations of the conflict for Western sensibilities.
A Russian military intercontinental ballistic missile launcher rolls by during the 2019 Victory Day military parade celebrating the end of the Second World War in Red Square in Moscow in May 2019. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Is Russia increasingly likely to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine?

The sort of scenarios that might lead to the use of nuclear weapons in the Ukraine war would require a significant deterioration in Russian fortunes — and greater western involvement in the conflict.
A caution sign marks the Hanford Nuclear Reservation near Richland, Wash., where plutonium for nuclear weapons was made. Jeff T. Green/Getty Images

Russia is sparking new nuclear threats – understanding nonproliferation history helps place this in context

Despite decades of progress on nonproliferation, Russia’s new threats of nuclear strikes bring to mind that convincing countries to reduce their nuclear weapons has long been very difficult.
A U.S. Air Force jet performs a test drop of a B61-12 bomb in December 2021. That bomb can contain a nuclear warhead for use in wartime. Los Alamos National Laboratory

What countries have nuclear weapons, and where are they?

Both the Russian and US arsenals boast thousands of nuclear weapons, located in various places around their own countries and, for the US, in Europe as well.
Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko, left, shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Feb. 18, 2022. Sergei Guneyev/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

3 reasons Belarus is helping Russia wage war against Ukraine

Belarus’ alliance with Russia is a strategic factor in the Ukraine war. The country’s long-term dictator, Alexander Lukashenko, has indicated he will do as Russian President Vladimir Putin says.

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