Global Security Newswire
Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues
White House Not Considering Slashing Deployed Arsenal to 300 Nukes: Expert
The Obama administration did not request that the U.S. Defense Department examine the potential for slashing the number of U.S. strategic nuclear warheads kept at launch-readiness to as low as 300 weapons, U.S. News and World Report on Tuesday quoted one arms control expert as saying (see GSN, March 27).
"The Pentagon was never asked to look at options for going to 300," said Brookings Institution Arms Control Initiative Director Steven Pifer, relaying information learned in talks with Pentagon officials.
The Associated Press in February first reported that the Pentagon was preparing three proposals for potential new cuts to long-range deployed nuclear weapons that would go significantly beyond the 1,550 warhead limit established by the New START arms control accord with Russia. Unidentified officials told AP options under consideration involved stockpile cuts to approximately 1,000 to 1,100, 700 to 800, or 300 to 400 (see GSN, Feb. 16).
President Obama as of February had not officially received the proposals, National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said at the time.
The Defense Department has been circumspect in publicly discussing its study of alternatives, though Defense Secretary Leon Panetta recently said any new arsenal cuts would occur only alongside similar stockpile reductions from Russia.
Lexington Institute defense analyst Loren Thompson said partisan realities would probably cause Obama to not pursue new arsenal cuts.
"The Obama administration considered a series of nuclear force postures including some that were very low. However, Obama is already running up against the limits of what Congress will approve," Thompson said (U.S. News and World Report, April 3).
Building Mutual Security in the Euro-Atlantic Region: Report Prepared for Presidents, Prime Ministers, Parliamentarians, and Publics
April 3, 2013
This report is the result of a Track II dialogue including distinguished former senior political leaders, senior military officers, defence officials, and security experts from Europe, Russia, and the United States.
April 2, 2013
An op-ed in The International Herald Tribune urging today's leaders to move decisively and permanently toward a new security strategy in the Euro-Atlantic region.
This article provides an overview of the United States’ historical and current policies relating to nuclear, chemical, biological and missile proliferation.