WASHINGTON — The INF treaty under consideration in the Senate is flawed enough to require renegotiation with the Soviets despite concerns that such a move could kill the pact, Richard Perle and other former government arms control experts said today.
Perle, former assistant secretary of defense and President Reagan's one-time chief arms control expert, and four other members of the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative-leaning "think tank," released a detailed study of problems they see with the intermediate-range nuclear forces treaty.
They said the treaty does not do many of the key things the Administration says it does, including eliminating production of all stages of Soviet SS-20 missiles and doing away with their launchers.
The Soviets have said they will use the launchers for civilian purposes after rendering them incapable of carrying SS-20s as required by the treaty.
"I'm just a little bit suspicious by nature" of that pledge, said Perle, who will testify on the treaty before the Senate Armed Services Committee Thursday.
Perle, the father of the "zero-zero option" calling for elimination of all U.S. and Soviet shorter- and medium-range nuclear missiles, and others said parts of the accord should be renegotiated "as if this was a treaty on tuna fishing."
He called on the Senate to delve deep into the details of its provisions instead of taking its usual "smell the roses approach" despite Administration assertions that renegotiation could kill the pact.