Nuclear Option Becoming More Likely

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Wednesday briefing: US aims to make nuclear option more ‘usable’ | World news

Graham Russell

The White House has drafted a significantly more hawkish nuclear policy that would create low-yield warheads that were more “usable”, a move arms control advocates say makes a war more likely. The nuclear posture review envisages modifying Trident D5 submarine-launched missiles to deter Russia from using tactical warheads in a conflict in eastern Europe, according to Jon Wolfsthal, who was special assistant to Barack Obama on arms control and nonproliferation. The review, the first in eight years, also expands the circumstances in which the US might use its nuclear arsenal, including a non-nuclear attack that caused mass casualties, or one aimed at critical infrastructure.

Wolfsthal said the review “makes clear that any attempt by Russia or North Korea to use nuclear weapons would result in a massive consequence for them and I think that’s actually moderate, centrist and probably very much needed”.“Where they go overboard, is where they say that in order to make that credible the US needs to develop two new types of nuclear weapons.”

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