Obama Releases Nuclear Posture Review
President Barack Obama recently released his Nuclear Posture Review (NPR). Among other things, Obama’s nuclear strategy is to limit the circumstances in which the U.S. would launch a nuclear weapon and cease development of new nuclear warheads. The review also calls for more reductions for Russia and the U.S. (Source)
Supporters of strong and comprehensive defense criticize the report for what appears to be a reversal of U.S. nuclear policy, a reversal that puts us at a disadvantage. The report erroneously presumes that maintaining a safe, credible, and effective nuclear deterrent is incompatible with combating proliferation and the threat of nuclear terrorism.
A defense strategy entails both protection against nuclear strikes and reduction of the nuclear proliferation threat. Both NPR and START demonstrate that Obama is intent on a strategy of taking the “road to zero” by diminishing U.S. nuclear forces. These actions likely will have the opposite effect than what is intended. Others won’t follow Obama’s course of action; they may end up acquiring more weapons and threatening to use them as a fundamental part of their military strategies.
At the Heritage’s The Foundry, Ariel Cohen notes that while the U.S. is promising not to develop new weapons, “Russia is doing so, and so are China, India, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea. Will they stop only because Obama promised not to modernize? Hardly.”
Obama seems to be viewing the world through Utopia-tinged glasses, hamstringing our ability to protect ourselves. As Cohen notes, countries like Iran and North Korea won’t stop developing weapons just because we say we will. There’s a reason they’re referred to as rogue states.
“Beyond START, the Obama policy has more than a whiff of unreality. It is ambition enveloped in naïveté, wrapped in inexperience.”