John Holum Nominated To Head Arms Control Agency
WASHINGTON (AP) _ President Clinton has decided to nominate John Holum as director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, congressional sources said Wednesday.
A former State Department official in the Carter administration, Holum worked on the transition for the Clinton administration and later assisted the Pentagon on the issue of ending the ban on gays serving in the military.
Holum is a Washington, D.C., lawyer with the firm of O’Melveny and Myers and once was an aide to former Sen. Gary Hart, a Democratic candidate for president in 1988.
The appointment of Holum comes at difficult time for the agency as the administration has been reevaluating the purpose of a government branch born at the height of the Cold War.
Earlier this year, the administration considered a State Department effort to absorb ACDA into its fold, a proposal that drew criticism from some in Congress and many in the arms control realm.
Clinton pledged during the campaign to institute an arms control policy that stops the spread of nuclear, chemical, biological and missile technologies to other countries.
But the president also had vowed to streamline the nation’s bureaucracy with some contending that he should start with ACDA.
Within the past month, Secretary of State Warren Christopher notified members of Congress that ACDA would remain independent from his department, as it has for the past three decades.
Meanwhile, two top Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Claiborne Pell, D-R.I. and the panel’s chairman, and Sen. Paul Simon, D- Ill., introduced legislation to revitalize ACDA.