Modernizing America’s Nuclear Capabilities Is a Must

A Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile in its silo in Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, circa 1980. (Image source: U.S. Department of Defense)

 

 

  • In 1989, America had 1,000 nuclear missile silos, and a small number of additional bomber and submarine bases and submarines at sea, facing 13,500 Soviet warheads. Today, the U.S. has 450 such silos facing 1,750 Russian warheads. That is a switch from a ratio of 13 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo, to a ratio of 4 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo. Getting rid of Minuteman ICBMs would reverse that progress and make the ratio even worse, with 175 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo. How is that an improvement?
  • The U.S. “cannot afford to delay modernization initiatives” while the “American people and our allies are counting on congressional action to fund our nuclear enterprise modernization efforts.” — General Robin Rand, the commander of the Air Force Global Strike Command.
  • America’s ability to defend itself is at stake.

In April 2017, the Pentagon launched the U.S. Defense Department’s legislatively mandated quadrennial Nuclear Posture Review to determine American policy, strategy and capabilities. The process now underway involves testimony from experts arguing over how the estimated $27 billion spent annually (growing over the next decade by an additional $10 billion a year) on America’s nuclear arsenal should be allocated. Continue reading

Like Iran, pacts with USSR ignored foe’s behavior

Complaints nuke deal must demand Tehran change conduct ignore long history of arms control accords with Cold War enemy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Critics of the Iran nuclear deal claim it is flawed, among many reasons, because it does not demand that Tehran also change its behavior at home and abroad. That complaint ignores the United States’ long history of striking arms control agreements with the Soviet Union, a far more dangerous enemy.

Dating as far back as the Limited Test Ban Treaty in 1963 — less than a year after the Cuban missile crisis — US administrations engaged the Soviet Union in agreements to limit nuclear threats while not linking deals to abhorrent Soviet human rights abuses and the active arming and funding of leftist, anti-American revolutionary movements around the world. Continue reading