Nuclear Weapons

Pakistan: Nuclear Road Rage

Fascinating peek inside the latest Atlantic (in a cover story shared with sister pub National Journal) on the perilous security of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons. Payoff grafs:

…instead of moving nuclear material in armored, well-defended convoys, the [Pakistani government] prefers to move material by subterfuge, in civilian-style

Triad & True

Interesting piece by Elbridge Colby (a member of the Pentagon’s New START* negotiation and ratification team) and Paul Lettow (on the National Security Council staff from 2007 to 2009) at the Weekly Standard (again!) defending the nuclear triad of bombers, land-based missiles and sub-launched missiles:

If an opponent figures out how

Winding Down the War: A Cynical Look Ahead

It appears that we are finally withdrawing from Iraq after eight years there. It is about time. We went in with the stated objective of finding and destroying nuclear weapons and Iraq’s other weapons of mass destruction. We also decided to topple the Saddam Hussein regime with the stated objective of bringing democracy (and

A Death in the (Nuclear) Family

The world’s biggest nuclear weapon — the infamous minivan-sized megaton B53 — died Tuesday, of old age. The five-ton bomb was about 50 years old. The Energy Department’s National Nuclear Security Administration announced its passing at the Pantex nuclear plant outside Amarillo, Texas.

Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia …

Nuclear (Triad) Warfare

As the nation grapples with its need to cut hundreds of billions of dollars from its future defense budgets every year, one category seems MIA: the nuclear triad. But it’s worth noting that those who embrace it tend to be those running it, while the nation’s top military officers — who have to juggle competing demands, and not just …

Mutually-Assured Economic Destruction



Confirming our report Friday that China is our next big enemy, the Rand Corp. has just issued a study entitled Conflict with China. It paints a pretty dire picture of U.S. military prospects in China’s ‘hood, and encourages the U.S. to keep developing weapons to keep China at bay. While the study says the prospect of war is …

Japan Worries About China Nukes

TOKYO – Never mind natural resources or national pride.

China’s rapid military modernization and aggressive territorial claims are rooted in the calculus of nuclear deterrence, according to defense analysts in Japan.

Sumihiko Kawamura, deputy director of the conservative Okazaki Institute in Tokyo, says China has claimed …

“We Must Maintain the Nuclear Triad”

That’s what Air Force Secretary Michael Donley told the Air Force Association’s annual gathering Monday. I’m sure his statement has nothing to do with the fact that his service owns two — bombers and land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles — of the triad’s three legs (the Navy’s submarine-launched missiles being the third). …

Happy History Lesson

OK — on Wednesday we posted some thoughts from an Air Force planner working for the Joint Chiefs of Staff about how to avoid the mistakes we made in Iraq when/if we invade Iran. Friday’s Iranian post is more optimistic. It’s an assessment of the Iranian nuclear threat from Cheryl M. Graham, a lecturer in international relations and …

Libya: Dirty Thoughts About Dirty Bombs

Before the rebels finish celebrating — and catch Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi (or don’t) — it’s worth noting that 42 years of dictatorship can leave some dangerous residue behind. Olli Heinonen, a senior fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University, is a former deputy director of the

Air Force Argument for New Bomber Bombs, Top General Says

Marine General James “Hoss” Cartwright, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, just made a lot of enemies in the Air Force. Over breakfast Thursday, he made clear he finds the service’s push for a new manned bomber as a part of the U.S. nuclear triad less than convincing. “I’m known as a bomber-hater, I guess,” the nation’s No. …

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