Scott Paul has a “good post”:http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/archives/002183.php up over at the Washington Note about the US slackitude in funding the “CTBTO.”:http://www.ctbto.org/ He correctly points out that the funding shortfall “threatens to undermine global efforts to monitor nuclear tests, especially in areas where the U.S. lacks access, like China, North Korea, and Iran.”
Back in March, a “a senior diplomat based in Vienna” “told _ACT_”:http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2007_03/CTBTO.asp that
bq. “While it is difficult to understand how shortfalls in contributions from specific countries will affect the CTBTO, less money is less money…*The main victim will likely be the completion of the remaining IMS stations, as well as maintenance and recapitalization for some existing stations,* some of which are nearly 10 years old”.
ACA put out a “press release”:http://www.armscontrol.org/pressroom/2007/20070521_CTBT.asp about this issue a few weeks ago which gave some specific numbers regarding the shortfall:
bq. According to documents on the CTBTO Web site, *U.S. arrears as of May 2007 total $38.3 million.* In addition, *the Bush administration in its current fiscal year 2008 budget request is only asking Congress for $18 million to fund the CTBTO even though the Vienna-based organization assessed the latest annual U.S. dues at $23.4 million.*
As Scott asked, “[D]o we really need fewer non-military tools to contain the proliferation of nuclear weapons?”