April 8, 2010
Posted: 1638 GMT

Russia and the United States, the two former Cold War enemies, may still have enough of a nuclear arsenal to obliterate each other several times over, but today's signing of landmark arms reduction deal is still hugely significant.

First of all, it signals a rapprochement between Moscow and Washington after a period of tension. Secondly, it sets the stages fro future reductions of nuclear arsenals. Thirdly, and perhaps in the short term most importantly, it gives the Obama administration a certain moral legitimacy when asking Iran for nuclear containment.

Numbers aren't what make this START treaty pivotal – both Russia and the United States will reduce the number of deployed nuclear warheads to 1,550 – it's the symbolic message being sent to the world.

It also gives Barack Obama a significant foreign policy victory less than a year and a half into his presidency.

We are live in Prague with White House Correspondent Ed Henry and in Moscow with Matthew Chance for a look at this story from both the U.S. and Russian perspectives.

Also today, we are live in Kyrgyzstan for the latest on what is still an entirely confusing situation. After several days of violence, opposition leaders say they've toppled the government and are now in charge. But the man they say has been ousted, Kurmanbek Bakiyev, says he refuses to leave.

We'll also show you Tiger Woods' new television ad for Nike, featuring the voice of his deceased father. It's certainly generating a lot of talk. Already, late night talk show hosts have aired spoofs of the ad. We'll show you the one Jimmy Kimmel's team put together.

That plus the all the major news stories and how today's jobless claims numbers are affecting Wall Street.

See you at the IDesk!


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Filed under: Kyrgyzstan •U.S.-Russia-Nuclear

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Ray Emmanuel   April 8th, 2010 5:26 pm ET

This a landmark achievement. It marks the begining of a new dawn for the both countries. Ray Emmanuel. Nigeria

Sayan Majumdar   April 8th, 2010 5:30 pm ET

Hala, the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) indeed is much more than symbolic. Besides still retaining a formidable nuclear weapons punch both United States and Russia realises they have to cooperate in meaningful terms to stop proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) as well as in combating international terrorism.

So no one should be surprised if further conciliatory and cooperative measures follow the new START.


chibuzo   April 8th, 2010 5:51 pm ET

yes, the amount of reductions are ok. their are still threts out there that might need the nuks silence.

Padma Sethi   April 8th, 2010 8:27 pm ET

On paper it appear to be a mutual desire to reduce WMD which is fairly straightforward for Russia Duma but USA is not as it has to pass through another sets of 'Dog-fight-dog' Legislature where Come back kid No 2 Obama might still be disappointed.
On Iran WMD, it has to be fought on ground of religion where Islam forbid WMD and all Islamic Nations have to cooperate to issue religious 'Fatwa' on Iran or MA leadership for having WMD. Perhaps USA and Russia could rally support. Further Global/UN sanctions would only strenghtened the leadership of MA where the ruling class would continue their elitist life of luxury like Mr Kim of North Korea (Kim has copies of latest Hollywood films to enjoy privately, obtained legally through their own embassies). Sanctions also gives MA legitimacy to violation of human rights or murdering his own people as Iran isolation protects Iran from the world media.
Krygyz new Interim government under Roza O should be recognised by both USA and Russia as a Caretaker government until proper election can be safely implemented and perhaps supervise by UN democratic observers, to save further blood-letting among general population where they have a genuine grievances against the last corrupt government of President Bekiyev. Perhaps Mr Putin can offer President Bekiyev a holiday villa in Kremlin Black sea resort and USA paid Bekiyev pension for licensing US Airbase in Krygyzstan.
As for our beloved Tiger Woods he should be left alone now to play his Golf and his future decided by his fans; nobody should have any rights to hinder his return to playing Golf – Tiger take note 'don't care a damn what other's thinks' you just play golf and concentrate on winning the Masters for the fifth time; if you win people will love you again. A word for the Chairman of Augusta, your complaint was too late and opportunist for closing the gate after the horse has bolted. If the Chairman is seeking a man who is purer than Jesus for a role model then you are not living in a real world; every single 'able' man on this planet whether married or unmarried or celibate priest has a tendency to stray; could the Chairman tells the world that he is a man of greatest integrity and challenge any journo to fault in his life.
Finally, many thanks to Hala for airing all the world great 'live' issues on every episode of Idesk.

markmarks   April 8th, 2010 11:07 pm ET

Apparently Russia and America are going to aim to reduce their nukes by a 3rd. just imagine… you can now destroy the world a few times less! Seriously though I understand that governments need to start somewhere but I can’t help thinking that ridding the world of nukes is impossible. I mean nice old Russia, America, and most of Europe gives up their arsenal…err what about Iran?? Let them get their own nukes so they can rule the world. This got me thinking!

earle,florida   April 9th, 2010 1:01 am ET

All that's needed is a delivery system,which by the way most countries in the world will find on the web with accurate ,and ample instructions. No big deal,and has anyone failed to notice the elephant in the room called "China"? All this talk ,in and about a meaningless treaty is a ruse. It's about pinning,and aiming the bulls-eye squarely on defiant Iran's back,..afterall if Russia,and the United States are willing to reduce their vast arsenal,I find it only responsible for Iran to oblige,or,..else,...?

Biruzz   April 9th, 2010 2:55 am ET

I am not a big fan of Mr. Obama, but congratulations on dismantling some of the nuclear weapons. Both leaders should be commended even though there a still a lot of weapons they have provided a good example and leadership to everyone around the world. Great work by America and Russia.


Muthyavan.   April 11th, 2010 11:00 am ET

Looks like a personnel strong relationship is developing between these two heads of the old arc enemy supper powers. It is because threats have already started to come from various other corners to their super power status as world leaders in stock file of nuclear arsenals.

These new found close relationship should be directed in achieving a broad coalition of all states who are capable of manufacturing nuclear arsenals. With the view of any further spreading of nuclear arsenals in the world by spreading friendly diplomatic relationship among all war mongering nations.

Only by achieving a close friendly relationship among all religious and various ethnic communities around the world peace can be achieved among all communities in the world.

Smith in Oregon   April 13th, 2010 10:18 pm ET

Watching foreign diplomacy once again in action after the horrific Republican Bush-Cheney administration of 'your'e with us or again us' cowboy diplomacy of fear and threatening Nuclear War against those that disagreed, is very refreshing.

To the utter demise of the Republican party of NO, it's really good to see a re-start on America's relationship with Russia which leads America into a protracted safer and happier future.

TonyInLargo   April 18th, 2010 4:28 pm ET

Reagan said: "Trust but verify" when signing the Arms control treaties with the Soviet Union. That should continue to be our policy with Russia, especially and more so re: one led by Vladimir Putin.

lisaweyn   April 24th, 2010 11:02 am ET

We would be better off without nukes.

anrupb   May 18th, 2010 9:13 am ET

Landmark deal

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