Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States
Read the findings and recommendations of the Strategic Posture Commission, as presented to Congress on May 6, 2009.
Following the release of its final report in May 2009, the Strategic Posture Commission presents this companion volume of papers on nuclear deterrence, strategic infrastructure, arms control and nonproliferation written by its team of expert advisers.
Latest News and Resources
April 14, 2010 | Op-ed
The release last week of the Obama administration’s Nuclear Posture Review brings long overdue attention to the vital issue of U.S. strategic posture. Issues raised in the NPR and START have reinvigorated a crucial national nuclear dialogue that has been missing. Read more at POLITICO.
April 8, 2010 | On the Issues
Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala explains the significance of the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), as signed by U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on April 8, 2010.
April 7, 2010 | News Releases
President Barack Obama on April 6 unveiled a new nuclear strategy in its just-released Nuclear Posture Review, calling it a significant step forward in reducing the role of nuclear weapons in security strategy. This new policy announcement comes shortly before the U.S. and Russia will meet in Prague to sign a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, and in advance of the Global Security Summit in Washington, D.C. on April 12 and 13.
March 26, 2010 | News Releases
As the U.S. and Russia announce that an agreement has been reached on a new START treaty today, the wider issues of nuclear weapons and security come to the forefront of international discussion. USIP has a range of experts, activities and programs on negotiations, arms control and Russia.
March 23, 2010 | Event
The issue of nuclear arms control and disarmament is gaining momentum on the global agenda with the Nuclear Security Summit to be held in Washington on April 12-13, 2010 and the 8th Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in New York from May 3-28. Please join USIP and the George Washington Elliott School as Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala, USIP Jennings Randolph senior visiting scholar, discusses the role of nuclear weapon-free zones and their contribution to the nuclear non-proliferation regime.
The bipartisan commission, facilitated by USIP from 2008-2009, was tasked by Congress to "examine and make recommendations with respect to the long-term strategic posture of the United States." Chaired by former Secretary of Defense William J. Perry, Congress created the Commission as part of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008. The final report, consisting of over one hundred findings and recommendations, was delivered to Congress and the White House on May 6, 2009. An interim report was submitted on December 15, 2008.
USIP's Paul Hughes served as the Executive Director of the Commission.
Read more about the Commission as well as a summary of the Commission's findings and recommendations.
Quick Facts About the Commission
- The Commission consisted of twelve members nominated by Congress - 3 Democrats and 3 Republicans were selected by the House Armed Services Committee; 3 Democrats and 3 Republicans were selected by the Senate Armed Services Committee.
- USIP contracted with the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA), which provided substantive expertise and support for classified discussions and materials.
- Fifty policy experts served in five Expert Working Groups that advised the Commission. Working Groups examined: (1) national security strategy and policies; (2) deterrent force posture; (3) countering proliferation; (4) nuclear infrastructure; and (5) external conditions and threats.
- There were 12 plenary meetings of the Commission from May 2008 to April 2009.
- The Commission met with 75 people in and out of government as it prepared its report, including representatives of foreign governments.
- The Commission and its supporting Expert Working Groups traveled to several key sites of the U.S. nuclear complex, including Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the Y-12 National Security Complex.