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The Ultimate Nuclear Test

NEW YORK – On 1 November, a team of over 35 experts will launch an exercise to inspect a simulated nuclear test site near the Dead Sea in Jordan—a step forward in completing the global verification system of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Then on 12 November, the world’s Nobel Peace Laureates will hold a summit in Hiroshima to stress the priority of nuclear disarmament and affirm their commitment to promoting it.

Countless other international initiatives are also underway that reflect a wider revolution in thinking about nuclear weapons—a revolution that is welcome and long overdue.

After all, despite much talk of nuclear disarmament when the Cold War ended 20 years ago, more than 20,000 of these weapons still exist, with many on high alert, and each much larger than the devices that devastated Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Nine countries are known or believed to possess them, and all are improving them in various ways.