Pentagon reveals new nuclear weapons strategy, reversing Obama-era policy

Pentagon reveals new nuclear weapons strategy, reversing Obama-era policy

In its Nuclear Posture Review, the Pentagon revealed that much of its efforts aimed at nuclear deterrence are focused on Russian Federation.

Washington seeks to justify its policy aimed at lowering the nuclear threshold by accusing Russia of an alleged "aggressive strategy", the Russian Foreign Ministry has said, commenting on the latest US Nuclear Posture Review. On Tuesday during his State of the Union address, the President called for a nuclear stockpile "so strong and powerful that it will deter any acts of aggression".

North Korea was also mentioned in the review, with the U.S. describing it as a "clear and grave threat". They are good for only one goal: deterring nuclear attacks.

Moscow has condemned U.S. military proposals to develop new, smaller atomic bombs mainly to deter any Russian use of nuclear weapons.

The strategy would challenge the view that US nuclear weapons are too big to be used and therefore no longer an effective deterrent.

The US military is anxious about the nuclear arsenal becoming obsolete and potential threats from countries such as China, North Korea and Iran.

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Low-yield nuclear weapons, while still devastating, have a strength of less than 20 kilotonnes.

Moscow on Saturday denounced the "bellicose" and "anti-Russian" nature of new USA nuclear policy, warning it would take necessary measures to ensure its own security.

In reality, the review is a balanced document carefully weighing the impact of risky global trends like a resurgent Russian Federation and an aggressive China on US nuclear posture.

She added the administration was blurring the line between nuclear and conventional war-fighting.

The treaty, negotiated under President Barack Obama, entered into force on February 5, 2011, and its weapons limits must be met by Monday. US delivery platforms modernization and warhead recapitalization will cost about 6.4 percent at their peaks, or less than 1 percent of the federal budget. We're going to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in our national security strategy and we want to reduce the number. Administration officials briefed Russian and Chinese officials Friday prior to the review's public release.

"It reaffirms that the fundamental role of United States nuclear policy is deterrence and continues our clear commitment to nonproliferation and arms control", said Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.

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Weaver said the most hard task for those working on the review was trying to address the gap between Russian and American non-strategic nuclear weapons.

Called the "Status-6 Oceanic Multipurpose System", the Russian torpedo is reported to be able to deliver a thermonuclear cobalt bomb of up to 100 megatons.

Some arms control groups were not happy with the review's findings.

The report calls for the U.S.to add new low-yield weapons, which would allow for a limited nuclear strike.

The Trump administration appears poised to expand the circumstances under which the United States might use nuclear weapons, including in response to a cyberattack.

But anyone who believes that America still needs a triad of reliable nuclear weapons-fired from land, sea and air-concedes that America's ageing bombers, ballistic-missile submarines and ground-based intercontinental ballistic missiles must be replaced.

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John Blaxland, Professor of International Security and Intelligence Studies and director of ANU's Southeast Asia Institute, said the mistake was embarrassing but wasn't worth reading too much into.

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