By Diane Barnes, Global Security Newswire

WASHINGTON — The United States is “almost certain” never to conduct another test detonation of a nuclear device, a former top U.S. nuclear weapons official said on Monday (see GSN, Oct. 21).

In the nearly 20 years since the nation’s last nuclear trial, technological alternatives to such detonations have advanced substantially while political obstacles to testing have grown close to insurmountable, said Linton Brooks, who headed the National Nuclear Security Administration from 2002 to 2007 under President George W. Bush.

The negotiation in the early 1990s of a global ban on atomic trial blasts marked “the beginning of the end of the U.S. nuclear testing era,” Arms Control Association head Daryl Kimball added in a panel discussion.

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