US President Donald Trump administration warned against developing new nukes

January 25, 2018 7:48 am
President makes his way to board Marine One from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, January 24, 2018. (Photo by AFP)
As the administration of US President Donald Trump prepares to unveil its review of the US nuclear posture, more experts are warning that developing a new type of nuclear weapons to meet President Donald Trump’s demands would trigger an arms race.
A leaked version of the review, which the Pentagon is set to release next week, shows that military officials in Washington are calling for the development of a low-yield nuclear bomb that is designed to be used on the battlefield instead of urban areas.
“The administration’s recommendations will not increase our security,” said Congressman Adam Smith, the top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee.
“They will instead feed a nuclear arms race, undermine strategic stability by lowering the threshold for nuclear use, and increase the risk of miscalculation that could precipitate a nuclear war.”
With their limited strength, the new weapons would address one of Trump’s major concerns. The American head of state says Washington’s current nuclear weapons are so huge that no adversary believes they will ever be used against them.
Russia, on the other hand, has already developed modern low-yield bombs and holds “a coercive advantage in crises and at lower levels of conflict,” the leaked draft suggests, calling for a “strategic imperative” to fix the problem.
It is worth noting that a low-yield weapon by today’s standards has an explosive power of 20 kilotons or less of TNT. That is roughly the same blast as the two bombs US dropped on the Japanese cities Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II. They were about 15 and 20 kilotons respectively.
The draft calls low-yield bombs “supplements” and argues that developing a large enough arsenal of these weapons serves as a deterrent against Russia and other countries.
The review would also call for developing a new submarine-launched missile to deliver the low-yield warheads and a sea-launched cruise missile in the long-run.
The US is also considering upgrading its fleet of long-range strategic bombers such as B-2 and B-52 to deploy its arsenal of more than 7,000 nuclear warheads to any target around the world.
The upgrade is predicted to cost the US over $1 trillion over the next 30 years.
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