Will START Talks Go MAD

Will START Talks Go MAD

All carrots on the American side and all sticks on the Russian side — that is how the prospective START follow-on Treaty with Russia is shaping up right now. To capture the deliberate, self-inflicted vulnerability of the U.S. side try this thought experiment. What if U.S. negotiators at the signing ceremony issued the following unilateral declaration:

The U.S. Government recognizes that the Russian Federation has the ability to inflict damage on the United States with the nuclear weapons in its arsenal and accepts that this circumstance constitutes the cornerstone of the U.S.-Russian bilateral relationship. On this basis, the U.S. Government pledges that it will not take steps that could weaken the Russian nuclear deterrent. Specifically, the U.S. Government will neither improve qualitatively nor expand its existing system for countering long-range ballistic missiles.

Far-fetched? Not really — except in terms of the explicitness of the American embrace of vulnerability. During the course of the talks, the Russians have made it clear that they expect the U.S. government to accept the Russian Federation’s ability to inflict widespread damage on the United States with nuclear weapons. In fact, they seem to see this as the cornerstone of an improved United States-Russian bilateral relationship. Worse, the U.S. government seems to be moving toward accepting this idea.

Russia has tried to use these treaty talks to lock in its nuclear advantages and take away any potential American defenses, and our side seems ready to agree it will neither improve nor expand its existing system for countering long-range ballistic missiles. Meanwhile, true to Obama’s dream, the U.S. government doesn’t seem to think that having the ability to inflict widespread damage on Russia would be essential to an improved bilateral relationship.

“The issues of missile defense and offensive weapons are closely interconnected,” as Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin put it on December 29. “There could be a danger that having created an umbrella against offensive strike systems, our partners may come to feel completely safe. After the balance is broken, they will do whatever they want and grow more aggressive.”

A few weeks ago, the Obama administration responded substantively to the Russian position. In its Ballistic Missile Defense Review Report, it stated: “While the [Ground-based Midcourse Defense system for countering long-range missiles] would be employed to defend the United States against limited missile launches from any source, it does not have the capacity to cope with large scale Russian or Chinese missile attacks, and is not intended to affect the strategic balance with those countries.”

President Reagan saw this kind of balance of terror relationship with Russia’s predecessor (the Soviet Union) for what it was: deranged.

On March 23, 1983, he stated that even though both sides might be willing to reduce their numbers of nuclear weapons, “Nevertheless, it will still be necessary to rely on the specter of retaliation, on mutual threat. And that’s a sad commentary on the human condition. Wouldn’t it be better to save lives than avenge them?” An effective defense will make America safer, not more aggressive.

Congress has, wisely, warned the Obama administration that it shouldn’t use the START follow-on negotiations to impose limits on U.S. missile defense options. So by moving in the direction of re-codifying with Russia the old balance of terror relationship the U.S. had with the Soviet Union, the Obama Administration is all but inviting the Senate to reject ratification of a START follow-on treaty.

Initially, such a rejection would likely be seen as a failure of U.S. diplomacy. In fact, it would represent an opportunity, if only President Obama would grasp it.

President Reagan pointed the way. Polls show the American people want (and the Russian people should want this, too) defensive strategic postures between the two countries to form the basis of an improved bilateral relationship. Neither side should want — or accept — a balance of terror. Public opinion throughout the world would likely warm to this idea if President Obama uses the power of public diplomacy to make the case for it.

In 1967, President Lyndon Johnson took the U.S.-Soviet relationship in the wrong direction by using arms control as a means to attempt to convince Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin that both the U.S. and Russia should abandon strategic defenses. The summit took place in Glassboro, New Jersey. It took years of effort in public diplomacy, but the U.S. and the Soviet Union codified the balance of terror relationship in 1972 with the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.

Senate rejection of the START follow-on treaty could prompt President Obama to pursue an arms control policy with Russia that seeks a Glassboro in reverse. Clearly, Russia wouldn’t be receptive at this time, just as Kosygin wasn’t receptive to the balance of terror in 1967. But establishing an improved U.S.-Russian relationship on the basis of defensive strategic postures on both sides will make sense to the American people, the Russian people and world opinion. And it may move us closer to the eventual elimination of nuclear weapons, a “difficult but achievable goal,” as President Obama puts it.

Baker Spring is F. M. Kirby Research Fellow in National Security Policy in the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies, a division of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies, at the Heritage Foundation. Helle C. Dale is Senior Fellow for Public Diplomacy in the same institute.

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Wow, Obama fails to defend American security and embraces weakness. I’m shocked.

I thought your reporters were supposed to report news and events, which would lead to discussions on the topic. This is an incredibly biased piece representing only one side of the nuclear deterrent policy debate. If you’re going to take that publishing perspective, you’ll need to change your format to a side-by-side point-counterpoint, like the old 60 Minutes show.


You’ll see that this story is listed as commentary. We run these occasionally from all sides of the political spectrum. Cheers,


Good Morning Folks,

A most interesting article that as usual for a Heritage Foundation funded article makes no sense.

Somebody I guess forgot to inform Heritage that the Soviet Inion is gone, like in never coming back so what are they referencing pre Russian Federation nuclear history? Well the answer of course is that post Soviet era data just can support this silly article.

Unanswered is, how long has it been since the Russian Federation had built or tested a nuclear weapon? How many armed SSBM’s does The Russian Federation have? How many operational Topol M’s/Bulava’s does Russian have? How many Tu-160 bombers does the Russian Federation have active? How many silos does the Russian Federation and how many have a weapon in them? I could go on but I thinks I makes my point here.

Come on Heritage how about some answers to what is happening now and forget the ancient history. How many ICBM’s does The Russian Federation have this weekend that can be fired at the United States?

As for The Russian Federation and BMD, since they have only theater level short to long ballistic missiles and no ICBM’s and a high level of distrust of the EU, with a lot of justification I would say that The Russian Federation has reason to be concerned about a BMD under EU/NATO control.

For the US theater BMD is not an issue since we scrapped the last of our theater level ballistic missiles in 1985. Our Patriot Block 3 is the only combat tested BMD in the world.

This is just old 20th. Century Cold War propaganda. We won the Cold War and it’s time to move on.

Byron Skinner

What’s the point of limiting U.S. strategic options in some misguided attempt to rid the world of nuclear weapons?

Leave the status quo the way it is. Nuclear weapons won’t disapear until some other weapon comes along that guarantee a country that its adversaries won’t attack less the suffer mutual destruction.

The President is so tone deaf when it comes to foreign policy that what the writer described might just happen.

The Heritage foundation is a semi-covert PR group for defense contractors. I’m shocked that you print their garbage!

How about signing a peace treaty with them. That will end any conflict of interest including nuclear missile race.

Very interesting commentary, I disagree with the conclusions but it is enlightening to hear his point of view. One thing that he (his real name is Baker Spring??? No wonder he is so angry!!) does not mention is that deterrence is both conventional and nuclear. Certainly in conventional forces — the US plus NATO has a tremendous advantage. And the reliability of the Russian ICBM forces is always in doubt. Still, the trend in forces should cause us to worry, and might embolden a resurgent Russia. Our friends in Moscow are also increasingly aggressive and encourage radical nationalists in their country. We do need to negotiate from strength.
The author appears to be unhappy that we are not deploying more ABMs — the ones we have are of limited reliability. That is a technology that is not ready for prime time.

Good Morning Drake 1,

I don’t see where anyone here is discussing limiting the United States “…strategic options…”, Without getting into details, discussing nuclear issues get dicey because you can put two unclassified items together and end up talking about something classified. On this issue I think the Bush (43) administration got it about right. The US has reduced it stock pile, mostly by getting rid of old obsolete weapons some went all the way back to the 1950’s and settled on a reasonable number of “active” weapons. The closing of a nuclear manufacturing facility (won’t name) is just a normal part of the reduction process.

Since the end of WW II, the United States Military Nuclear programs have soaked up more then $2.5 trillion dollars from our economy, the return on that investment has been at best marginal. A while back the WSJ did a profile on the head of one of the big five defense contractor/manufacturing companies that has a big steak in Nuclear weapons. This gentleman has who served in the military, flag officer rank, not of sufficient celebrity so I can’t mention his name as I’ve been told, has accumulated a personal wealth depend on his companies stock on a given day of $3–5 billion. Every nickel of that was money paid by US tax payers.

The down side of the US nuclear program of course is the creation of” The Global Strike Command” and putting it under the control of the USAF, which has demonstrated in past performances that it lacks the command, control and management skills to run a program like this. The USN would have been a much better choice for this global command.

“Our friends in Moscow…” blow a lot of smoke as they are radically reducing their military foot print. The Russian Federation has three major areas of military concern, the black sea and fermenting Islamic inspired militant groups. The former ‘stan Republics of the Soviet Union where China is dumping millions of “new Muslim citizens” into rather large, underpopulated countries, that don’t have any tradition of self government, the economic resources nor the social structure to deal with these new instant populations. Finally the Russian arctic area, that has because of Global Warming for lack of a better phrase is exposing new land being exposed that appears to be resource rich, and is being eyed by several of Russia’s neighbors.

On Heritage Foundation, I think Ginny said all that needs to be said about that peculiar group.

Byron Skinner

Byron,____For the suggestion to move on all i have to say is Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. I only say this because the government tends to forget the past.____Now as for everything else. The Russians have approx. 430 active ICBM’s, which equals about 1605 independently targeted warheads. They have a range between 10,000 and 11,000 km depending on which type they are and are approx. 550 kt yield. Granted about 200 of these ICBM’s are old satan and stiletto systems, but the Russians claim they are still operational. As for they lasted time they tested a weapon, i believe was 2007 of a bulava that failed.____They claim to have 15 completely operational TU-160’s, and are building more with the ability to carry 12 ALCM’s each. They also claim to have 10 operational SSBN’s, though the weapons load for them is unknown.____Now i dont believe for one sec they would launch against us due to the fact that NATO/EU nukes put them at a severe disadvantage. all those weapons however would deal a heavy blow to the US, and cause mass chaos. But The only way to completely destroy the US would be to invade us after the strike, and that would never happen.

Good Evening folks,

In response. While in 1990 at the end of the Soviet era there were said to be about 500 Soviet ICBM’s most have been converted to use as satellite launch vehicles and to support the ISS. None of these are in silos, you can access goggle earth and see the open Russian missile silos for satellite inspection.

The Russian Federation has technically 16 Tu-160 Backfires but the one that went for a show and tell to Venezuela in 2008 is still grounded in Cuba so they I guess they have written it off. As of the end of 2009 The Russian Federation has no military air craft under construction and is in the process of closing down manufacturing facilities, I would think that the antique Tu-160 would be way down the list of air frames to put back into production. The Russian Federation bomber force has as operational aircraft about 5, the have 64 1950’s era turbo prop Tu-95’s still flyable, Tu-95’s that patrol it Northern border.

I doubt that any of these air craft even on a one way suicide mission could reach US air space. If by some miracle they did they would be greeted by both US. F-15 E’s, F-16D’s and Canadian CF-18’s that would be ready to do more then ask for the crews passports.

The Russian Federation has either 6 or 8 Delta 4 SSBM’s half in the Pacific and half in the Northern Fleet. The number is uncertain because under SALT II Russian can have ten SSBM’s and the two extra might just be empty hauls to keep up the count. None are armed, it is doubtful even if any are crewed and none have been to sea in over a decade. The Soviet Union made 6 Typhoons of which one is used as a test vessel for the Bulava missile, two have been defuelded and are in “storage” and three are being scrapped.

The Borie Class that is currently under construction has in the water and certified to be weaponized in Sept. 09 and is in the White Sea, one is still at the builders dock and hauls 3 and 4, the Class is/was to be four hauls, have had production suspended indefinitely. As said earlier the Bulava the missile for the Borie Class, like the Topol M is years away from being operational.

The number of nuclear warheads the Russian Federation is “classified” by both the Russian Federation and the United States.

It is known that Russian plutonium from decommissioned nuclear weapons has been sent to the Nuclear Processing Plant at Hartford Washington for at least a decade and converted in Industrial grade material.fuel rods and sold to the EU to fuel reactors.

It’s been at least 20 years since the last Soviet/Russian Federation nuclear weapon has been constructed, it is doubtful that any testing and maintenance has been done to keep the stock pile active. A typical nuclear weapons has an unattended shelf life of from 2–3 years before it requires batteries to be replaced and a diagnostic to be ran. I would be surprised if the Russian Federation had any serviceable weapons.

Right now besides the United States the only other countries to have the ability of Global Nuclear Strike are France and the United Kingdom.

Byron Skinner

“t’s been at least 20 years since the last Soviet/Russian Federation nuclear weapon has been constructed, it is doubtful that any testing and maintenance has been done to keep the stock pile active. A typical nuclear weapons has an unattended shelf life of from 2–3 years before it requires batteries to be replaced and a diagnostic to be ran. I would be surprised if the Russian Federation had any serviceable weapons.”

Well Mr Skinner, then I wouldn’t be surprised to see you willing to take some back to your home town and whack the nose of each one with a sledge hammer. I think that in reality you would be sweating harder than a pedophile in a nursery.

The capability to manufacture and maintain nuclear weapons is not something that can be developed overnight. It is key to maintain these facilities and it is thus occasionally necessary to give them some work, which also ensures our nuclear stockpile is up to date and ready for use.

The Russians may be cutting their arsenal according to treaties but they are also making the attempt to modernize those nuclear weapons they do have in. Despite the military problems they face they want to ensure they have an effective nuclear arsenal ready, as we must as well. Obama’s and the left’s dream of “no nukes” is pure fantasy, and is not a valid alternative to ensuring we have a modern nuclear stockpile. The Minuteman III is still a deadly weapon, but the design itself is quite old and is outdated in terms of countermeasures, accuracy, and other areas. If we ever have to use our nukes we need to ensure they are powerful, accurate, and will go boom if needed.

Your and Ginny’s opinion on the Heritage Foundation are hardly credible, especially since I no complaints from you boys when an article from a rag like the Huffington Post is shown here.

Good Morning Folks,

I will not respond to the two posts in regard to my post because they contain no counter arguments, and Pete’s is just personal attack, which means he is ignorant of the topic, has nothing to say.

The other post offer no data or evidence to support it claims and is attempting to change the subject. As usual from this poster it lacks any creditability.

So until the paid supporters of Heritage can come up with some argument that has merit, I stand. And Gunny’s statements are indeed creditable.

I’m out of here.

Byron Skinner

Remember barry Obama’s goal is making the USA safe for the world as trained by his mentor USofKKA jerimiah wright.

Th Russian arsenal is atrophying so rather than maintain OU advantage Barry is going to unilaterally disarm the USA.

Peace through strength is something Barry will never understand because he blame us for being too capable.

Does this Byron guy not have a real job? He may soon however have anal poisioning from being so close to Obama’s six.

His point that the ussr no longer exists and now we have the peace and love russian federation must make the heritage foundation just cringe in front of his ‘brilliance.’. Talk about a lack of argument.

The heritage foundation continues to defend us from people such as he. Thankfully.

This gentleman has who served in the military, flag officer rank, not of sufficient celebrity so I can’t mention his name as I’ve been told, has accumulated a personal wealth depend on his companies stock on a given day of $3–5 billion. Every nickel of that was money paid by US tax payers.

Good for him!

Sounds like little Byron is jealous and a bit anti capatialist. How dare someone make money?

If that Byron guy buys global warming anything he said must be taken with a grain of salt.

Why is he not concerned with how much money has been wasted on that farce an where is his complaint of al gore becoming rich on it ?

The Heritage Foundation is akin to the American Enterprise Institute, a Jewish Zionist stink tank that spews propaganda and stirs up bull as their main source of revenue. What did you expect?

All a massive Jewish conspiracy eh? That didn’t take long.

Russia would like us to believe that they are a basket case when it comes to strategic weapons, and it may be so. That doesn’t mean that our deterrent should have its teeth pulled. S U P E R P O W E R baby…until all of the commies, latent commies and islamo– fascists have been crushed.

To Byron and especially to that lunatic who said AEI/Heritage are Jewish conspiracies. Are you out of your freaking minds? I agree that a world without any nuclear weapons would be great but maintaining a superior posture in all aspects of warfare is the duty of this country,at least until some other global super power can take center stage and act as an overall guarantor of freedom and liberty to the legitimate best of it’s ability. Until that day arrives, this is a moronic policy of neutering ourselves for the sake of others. If this is some sort of PR stunt by Obama and behind the scenes (to which we will never be privy) there is some deal to legitimately eliminate nuclear weapons on both sides, and by doing it in this manner publicy, allow Russia to save face while Obama has nothing to save in the first place, then fine. i can live with it. Until I hear that the latter is reality (which won’t be until the history books are written long after I am gone) this is just another example of Obama’s utter naivete and incompetence in matters of national security and international diplomacy.
–Dwayne Swanson
Retired Col. USMC
Semper Fi

No. That was the last guy. Bush and his parade of dumbasses…

Despite what many believe, nuclear deterrence is not solely intended to destroy cities as a last ditch solution in retaliation. It is a strategic weapon — not a throw down weapon. Targets of intrest are those that would not only cripple thier ability to make war but also to split a country up to prevent them from being able to freely traverse north — south –east — west. Cripple a countries ability to reder aid to its population ecept by air drop or ports of entry (which will be monitored and attacked conventionaly). By doing this you can cause the population to turn on thier own government and themselves without the need to set foot on thier soil. The same thing could happen to us, biggest thing we have going for us is that most of the country is surrounded by ocean and crops are grown everywhere unlike in other countries. But it would still cause great civil unrest upon us just the same. I’m for a strong nuclear program, I feel we need to bring back the Tomahawk ALPHA that WARSAW demanded we stop deploying because they could never defend against it, I’m for more FBM submarines as well. No other country can match us in this way, but it only takes one rouge nation with nothing to fear to launch 8 to 10 warheads at us to make us realize we are not as bad as we thought. Truth is we have no ideal what russia really has because they themselves dont know the real answer or the answer to how many were pilferated after thier fall and sold on the black market. In reality the world is a scarrier place to live in right now than it was during the cold war.

Good Morning Folks,

I have to share this with you, it’s from a reader who doesn’t post and is from over seas.

What we have here is a right wing bayonet charge going on here, he reminded me of an old Glenn Ford Civil War movie where the Colonel lines up his troops to get ready for the attack against the yankees.

The Colonel give the order to fix bayonets and assume front thrust position in ranks. The line attached their bayonets.

The Colonel say about face, the ranks do an about face.

The Colonel the stands in his stirrups and sword extended and yell CHARGE.

This observation explains the quality, or lack of quality from the paid posters. To the winger tanks, find better people, perhaps you should make Erin from P&W an offer she just can’t refuse. She at least had the courage to ID who is paying her and can make a credible argument in support of an issue. The current crew is hopeless.

Byron Skinner

“I feel we need to bring back the Tomahawk ALPHA that WARSAW demanded we stop deploying because they could never defend against it…”

Ah-heh. According to game theory, if the Russians think we’re deploying an uncounterable first-strike weapon, then they should immediately attack with everything they’ve got. We WANT our strategic arsenal to be big slow nukes that are easy to see coming, because strategic deterrence is about _response_ and not _threat_.

“I have to share this with you, it’s from a reader who doesn’t post and is from over seas.”

How incredibly lame… reminds me of Kerry who mentioned all those mysterious unnamed European leaders who told him that they wanted him to be president.…

This Byron guy needs to get a life — or at least a few facts.… Who is paying you Byron?? barry obama?

Obama rose to power as a member of the hard Left Progressives who hate americas’ strategic deterrent– as they hate most forms of American power projection. They simply don’t like or trust the average American and don’t believe America deserves our superpower status.

Remember, to the radical Obama-Left, America is not a good, noble, or decent country. They look at American history and see only genocide, slavery, and colonization. If I believed that idiocy, I would want to neuter America, too.

We have, for the first time, an ideological hard Left President who views his own countrymen as the enemy.

exactly DLW -
Obama’s foundation tutored during his career with left-wing marxist radicals such as Bill Ayers and USofKKA J Wright, instruct him that in any argument or confrontation it’s always America’s fault. If America could only mend its ways – or have them mended by someone else – the world would live In peace, harmony and love. In this world view, America and especially the American military must be cut down to size, to make it no more consequential in world affairs than Canada.

I wish it were that barry were just “Naive” rather than an anti-American Marxist bent on cutting us down to size in homage to his drunk polygamist muslim daddy…

“While Mr. Obama ended financing last year for a new nuclear warhead sought by the Bush administration, the new strategy goes further. It commits Mr. Obama to developing no new nuclear weapons, including a low-yield, deeply-burrowing nuclear warhead that the Pentagon sought to strike buried targets, like the nuclear facilities in North Korea and Iran. Mr. Obama, officials said, has determined he could not stop other countries from seeking new weapons if the United States was doing the same.”


I feel that conservatives often overuse the word naivete when describing the President, but I have to say in this case it’s warranted.

This country is being run by a dumbass. No wonder other countries think we are becoming weak.

is it just me or has everyone forgot the minute man sites the trillions of dollar invested in nuclear arsenal that we did theres a reason why we call it mad people!!!! (Mutual assured destruction) they fire we fire everyone dies. this idea they we are defenseless and its Obama fault is crazy. we are still going to have nukes people that work !!! We look to history to not repeat our mistakes. we were a genocide, slavery, and colonization country and heres the kicker we change that already moving forward. to sweep it under the rug like it never happen is beyond me. we know how we got into this mess now we got to get out of it. ‘you can’t buy new high tech toys if u ain’t got no money” So thank deregulation for the debt.

this is going to be a long road that we are going to be on and there will never be a quick fix not the presidents that came before not obama no one party is going to fix this in 2 terms. this is a long term goal for the country and the world. so get ready fro the long hall of

Density Duck — the purpose of the ALPHA was to get in under thier defences during an ICBM strike in order to keep them from doing just that, and not to replace an ICBM, I agree with what you are saying, I just dont think we should have given up our upper hand.

So, reducing our arsenal from the ability to destroy the entire world several times over to the ability to destroy the entire world once over is making us less safe. Gotcha.

Where is bobbymike when you need him? He seemed to be among the most knowledgeable on nuclear issues here.

The biggest question here is how do we benefit from another START treaty with the Russians at this time? Again the idea that we could convince the Russians or the Chinese to scrap all of their nuclear weapons is pure fantasy, and even if we did, the greater danger is “unstable” regions like Iran, Pakistan, and North Korea. This course the left wants to follow would simply leave us exposed to any nuclear power. A nuclear exchange with the Russians is far less likely than North Korea going off the deep end. So why should we go through the political and military hassle of further cuts when it achieves nothing?

When it comes to nuclear modernization, one issue that has not been touched is the state of the airpower portion of the nuclear triad. With the retirement of the stealthy AGM-129 cruise missile, I believe we are left only with nuclear gravity bombs and some nuclear warheads for the old AGM-86 cruise missile. As we no longer have the numbers of bombers or AGM-86s that we used to, a better design may be necessary.

But there it is. Having an “upper hand” is a provocative act.

See, that’s the thing. People insist that during the USA/Soviet cold war, both sides were not just willing to retaliate but actively seeking to conduct a first strike. If that were the case then the war would have been over and done with in the mid-Sixties.

“Having an “upper hand” is a provocative act. ” Which is exactly why the US missile shield put conveniently near Russians western border annoyed them, and just as Kennedy was annoyed when the Soviets were allowed to set up some missiles not far from the US just like NATO countries had missiles not far from the USSR.

It might escape a lot of people given the military or quasi military background of those that visit and post on this site, but what Obama and the US is doing is diplomacy — it is politics. Its a sign that Obama at least wants to put to bed the Cold War mentality toward Russia (which is obviously still strong in the US and would justifiably make Russia suspicious, as can be seen in Putins choice of words) by having an ‘equal footing’ at least diplomatically. This has been maligned in the article. The concession that both countries could nuke each other till they glowed is a statement of fact, it is not the basis on which the relationship will exist. Its an act of humility and respect the likes of which occurred in the past where you stowed your weapons during a truce or you entered a sacred location.

Now when the Sec Gen of NATO says NATO will never ever attack Russia and with Russia is so inextricably linked with Europe with trade (LNG exports, automotive imports etc) if the US wanted to do anything the rest of Europe wouldn’t want any part of it. Therefore, as Obama has stated, its time to forge closer relations with them. In fact I think there is potential for a NATO/US/Russia partnership against China in 20–40 years if China starts to throw their weight around.

If Obama said he was going to scale back the US nuclear arsenal without any reciprocating reduction by Russia then you could feel aggrieved but he is not and will not. Both sides are going to need to hang on to their nukes for other emerging powers.

As for Baker. A Research Fellow? For the sake of the US I sure as hell hope he doesn’t end up as any National Security advisor. “An effective defense will make America safer, not more aggressive”. Uh huh…sure…keep believing that. Pursuit of defense will only lead to innovation by competitors and continued suspicion and you are never any safer. Engagement and communication is far cheaper and more effective. Besides considering the Russians helped Lockheed early on with the JSFs ancestor maybe they can lend a hand to fix the F-35. Heck, maybe the US could just place an order for some T-50s — license built ;)

William C your post is as good as I could produce. There is really no benefit and quite a lot of danger to continue to reduce our arsenal below Moscow Treaty limits of 2200 deployed warheads. What is most alarming is that in this “atmosphere” of disarmament we are losing key industrial capacities to produce next generation warheads and delivery vehicles. The recent cancellation of NASA’s Constellation program now has some worried that we won’t be able to produce large solid propellant missiles. Can you believe that is being said about the United States of America?

My question to anyone who feels that if the US disarms they rest of the world will disarm please give me one example of any nation that has stopped its’ pursuit of WMD’s despite the US arsenal shrinking from over 11000 strategic warheads to around 2200 today?

The article neglects the most significant development of the post-Cold War Era — nuclear proliferaion among Islamic and rogue nations.
Even as kid practicing air raid drills during he Cold War Ear, I could’t believe that the Russians wanted global desruction anymore than we did-frankly, it never worried me. But, as “Nuclear Tipping Point” argues, “suicide bombers are, by definition, not deterrable.” Neither is North Korea. Also, much of the U.S. — Soviet hostility was ideological, but not any more. What does the U.S. and AMerica have to fight over, anymore? Whose economy will collapse first? Frankly, it’d be great if the Russians would police their sphere of influence a bit better, as we discovered with Afgahnistan and later Chechnya: the rags are not “freedom fighters”. The real danger lies with Iran and North Korea-crazy, rogue states that are quite likely nuclear, already, and have no inhibition, against whom pre-emptive strikes makes a lot more sense than disarmament. The article is really irrelevant. The real concern is this: how can the civilized west maintain peace in a world of escalting violence while their economies slip into bankruptcy?

Your talking Russia.

Whats really sad is that Once again, we have a president with no backbone, playing the games they play. If we had just gone into Russia during WWII like Patton wanted and took them out, there would never have been a korean war, Vietnam war or an ongoing arms race. They were on thier backs after almost losing to Germany and we should have finished the job..The world would have been a better place, but no..Once again the games began!And now enters Obama!

Someone tell me the problem with bargaining from a position of strength. The Russians certainly have no problem with it. Most of the posts here express some bitterness at the defense contractors who are men and women patriots just like the posters here claim to be. Did Boeing not want to hire you?

I am pleasantly surprised by the logical and level headed responses to this story. As many have said quite eloquently “Why are we still negotiating with the Soviets.……er I mean Russians to disarm ourselves.” With regard to the reality of today’s strategic environment we should be rebuilding and modernizing our entire nuclear enterprise rather than neglecting it, we should be building new warheads and ICBM’s not refurbishing systems first deployed in the 60’s. Does anyone in France or Germany or Canada feel threatened by US nukes (as in is there any chance the US will attack those countries)?

That said there should be certain countries that look in awe and fear and are forced by the massive strategic weapons over match of the US to say “We attack the US or its strategic interests and we risk being wiped out!” Believe it or not there are people in this world that only understand “strength” and “fear”.

Chernobyl has shown the Russian’s the folly of nuclear exchange.
yet they fear to trust The United States government.
I think like a spooked homeowner they just want that firearm of a major caliber just as insurence.

You’re an airhead. Russia still has nukes that they’re testing constantly, not to mention other countries. Give up the hippee, no more war gig and welcomeyourself to the 21st century.

Good Morning Logan,

That’s interesting. What is your documentation of Russia testing nuclear devices since 1990, I would be very interested to read them.

I have found in the past when someone resorts to personal insults, they really don’t have anything to add to the discussion.

I would say Logan that you are more into ideology ten in information and reason. The Soviet Union is no more, the myths are over.

Byron Skinner

Would you like a list of ballistic missiles the Russians are testing or have been testing since the 1990s?

Good Morning Folks,

Yes the Russians are in fact testing ballistic missiles and in fact testes an ICBM just this past week. What does that have to do with operational nuclear weapons?

In fact you might even mention that the Russians announced test of a Bulava in the White Sea on January was canceled.

As usual you lost in ideology and are clueless.

Go back to you video game.

Byron Skinner

bush’s first policy was security obama’s first policy is image, who would you rather have president

Rakektnye strategic forces the most efficient kind of armed forces of Russia, they compensate backlog in conventional armaments and cruise missiles


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