CANCELLING THE PLAN TO REPLACE THE ENTIRE U.S. ARSENAL WITH ENHANCED WEAPONS
Over the next 30 years, the United States plans to spend an estimated $1.7 trillion dollars to replace its entire nuclear arsenal and the bombers, missiles, and submarines that delivers the weapons with more capable versions. Such a tremendous investment of money and effort is unnecessary. Instead, the United States should eliminate some types of nuclear weapons, refurbish the remaining weapons where possible, and make any replacements without enhancing capabilities.
It also sends a counterproductive message to the rest of the world by making it clear that the United States continues to see its nuclear arsenal as central to its security and intends to keep it for the foreseeable future. This will only encourage other states to believe that they also need to develop or improve their own nuclear arsenals, leading to dangerous proliferation and an accelerating arms race.
Instead, the United States should deemphasize the importance of nuclear weapons in its security policy as it works with the other nuclear armed states to eliminate these weapons altogether.
“What is it we’re really trying to deter? Our current arsenal does not address the threats of the 21st century.”
Gen. James E. Cartwright, retired vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a former commander of US nuclear forces