In addition to landmark healthcare legislation passed Sunday and signed into law yesterday, President Obama has succeeded in breaking a logjam in arms control negotiations, the New York Times reports, leading to a significant reduction in deployed strategic weapons.
All of this happened while you were paying attention to the healthcare debate. Amazing that we have a president who can do more than one thing at a time.
The United States and Russia have broken a logjam in arms control negotiations and expect to sign a treaty next month to slash their nuclear arsenals to the lowest levels in half a century, officials in both nations said Wednesday.
After months of deadlock and delay, the two sides have agreed to lower the limit on deployed strategic warheads by more than one-quarter and launchers by half, the officials said. The treaty will impose a new inspection regime to replace one that lapsed in December, but will not restrict American plans for missile defense based in Europe.
President Obama and President Dmitri A. Medvedev of Russia plan to talk Friday to complete the agreement, but officials said they were optimistic that the deal was nearly done. The two sides have begun preparing for a signing ceremony in Prague on April 8, timing it to mark the anniversary of Mr. Obama’s speech in the Czech capital outlining his vision for eventually ridding the world of nuclear weapons.
The new treaty represents perhaps the most concrete foreign policy achievement for Mr. Obama since he took office 14 months ago and the most significant result of his effort to “reset” the troubled relationship with Russia. The administration wants to use it to build momentum for an international nuclear summit meeting in Washington just days after the signing ceremony and a more ambitious round of arms cuts later in his term.