U.S. seeks new nukes, leaked draft shows
WASHINGTON – A leaked draft of the Pentagon’s forthcoming nuclear weapons review shows that senior defense officials are keen to not only modernize the aging U.S. arsenal, but add new ways to wage nuclear war as Russia, China and other adversaries bolster their own arsenals.
Among the new weapons proposed are so-called “lowyield nukes” that could be mounted to existing Trident ballistic missiles launched from submarines.
Despite the nickname, the warheads would still likely pack a punch larger than the explosions that leveled the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II.
The draft, first published by the Huffington Post, states that the smaller nuclear weapons are necessary due to the “deterioration of the strategic environment,” a nod toward existing tensions with Russia, in particular.
The Pentagon’s thesis: If an adversary has an arsenal of nuclear weapons that are not controlled by existing treaties, the United States should have one to match and retaliate if necessary.