The Senate Foreign Relations Committee held its twelfth hearing on the New START Treaty yesterday. For months Senators have scrutinized the text of the treaty, its protocol, and its three technical annexes. Senators have reviewed a national intelligence estimate on the agreement, a State Department report on its verifiability, and an analysis of Russian compliance with past arms control treaties. Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and others will soon prepare to visit the nation's nuclear weapons labs to further discuss the weapons complex. Throughout this lengthy process, support for the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty has remained overwhelming. As Secretary of Defense Robert Gates wrote in the Wall Street Journal
, "The New START Treaty has the unanimous support of America's military leadership-to include the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, all of the service chiefs, and the commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, the organization responsible for our strategic nuclear deterrent. For nearly 40 years, treaties to limit or reduce nuclear weapons have been approved by the U.S. Senate by strong bipartisan majorities. This treaty deserves a similar reception and result-on account of the dangerous weapons it reduces, the critical defense capabilities it preserves, the strategic stability it maintains, and, above all, the security it provides to the American people."