Pentagon pushes nuclear weapons expansion, modernization

Howard TerryFeb 04, 2018

To this end, the NPR proposes not only replacing an aging nuclear arsenal but further "supplement [ing]" it with two new missiles.

"Our strategy will ensure Russian Federation understands that any use of nuclear weapons, however limited, is unacceptable", the NPR said.

The NPR reaffirms that the fundamental role of US nuclear policy is deterrence and continues the clear commitment to non-proliferation and arms control, Shanahan said in a Pentagon press briefing.

"All of these [accusations] has nothing to do with the real situation".

Strategic stability has no clear single definition, but for decades American military and security experts have defined it as a state where neither the US nor Russian Federation sees an advantage in using nuclear weapons first against the other.

Moscow dismissed the US document as "an unscrupulous attempt to shift onto others one's own responsibility for the degrading situation in the field of global and regional security". "Moscow has repeatedly stated its intention to meet those limits on time, and we have no reason to believe that that won't be the case", State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Thursday.

Creating options for the president to be able to appropriately address what adversaries say is an exploitable gap in USA capability is not lowering the threshold for nuclear weapons use, it's good national security policy.

On the campaign trail and as president, Donald Trump has vowed to build up the US nuclear arsenal and has occasionally spoken flippantly about nuclear warfare.

"From our part, we are ready for such work [on cooperation]".

The US State Department said it had briefed Russian and Chinese officials on the NPR. Both China and Russian Federation are also developing new missile-defense systems, the report concludes.

"Russia considers the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to be the principal threats to its contemporary geopolitical ambitions", the Pentagon said. Therefore the Pentagon must increase the number of low-yield weapons.

"There is no scenario in which the Kim regime could employ nuclear weapons and survive", the NPR said. It is worth noting that there is already and will continue to be a sustained debate about whether either of these systems is needed to deter Russian Federation or convince it of America's nuclear deterrent capabilities.

A new budget for the Pentagon, including its nuclear forces, is expected to be released in February, which should include plans detailed in Friday's report.

US officials say the Russian program includes a drone-type device fired underwater with the potential of traveling thousands of miles and the capability of striking USA targets along the coast, including military bases and cities.

The Pentagon is adding low-yield, or less powerful, nuclear weapons to its submarine-launched cruise missile arsenal, and it will also bring back the nuclear sea-launched cruise missile. "To be clear, this is not meant to, nor does it enable, "nuclear war-fighting".

The Japanese government said Saturday it "highly appreciates" the newly released Nuclear Posture Review by U.S. President Donald Trump's administration, saying the updated policy helps enhance deterrence amid a worsening security environment partly caused by North Korea's nuclear and missile development. U.S. nuclear forces are said to contribute to the "deterrence of nuclear and non-nuclear attack", "assurance of allies and partners", "achievement of USA objectives if deterrence fails", and "capacity to hedge against an uncertain future".

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