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by
Bridget Johnson

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June 19, 2013 - 7:30 am

President Obama used his speech before the Brandenburg Gate this morning to tout further planned reductions to the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

“This is the latest in a series of concrete steps the President has made to advance his Prague agenda and the long-term goal of achieving the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons,” the White House said in a fact sheet. “…The guidance narrows U.S. nuclear strategy to focus on only those objectives and missions that are necessary for deterrence in the 21st century. In so doing, the guidance takes further steps toward reducing the role of nuclear weapons in our security strategy.”

Obama’s latest initiative “directs DOD to strengthen non-nuclear capabilities and reduce the role of nuclear weapons in deterring non-nuclear attacks” and “directs DOD to examine and reduce the role of launch under attack in contingency planning, recognizing that the potential for a surprise, disarming nuclear attack is exceedingly remote.

“The President has supported significant investments to modernize the nuclear enterprise and maintain a safe, secure, and effective arsenal,” it continued. The president, though, never followed through on his promises to modernize the arsenal after then Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) made a deal with the administration to secure ratification of the New START treaty.

“The U.S. intent is to seek negotiated cuts with Russia so that we can continue to move beyond Cold War nuclear postures,” the White House said. “The resulting strategy will maintain strategic stability with Russia and China, strengthen regional deterrence, and reassure U.S. allies and partners, while laying the groundwork for negotiations with Russia on how we can mutually and verifiably reduce our strategic and nonstrategic nuclear stockpiles and live up to our commitments under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.”

Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah), who along with 33 other lawmakers sent a letter to Obama in February 2012 concerning previous reductions to nuclear weapons systems, immediately slammed the address.

“President Obama is not Dick Cheney, and he is most certainly not President Reagan either. In fact, he’s nothing like Presidents Truman, Eisenhower, or FDR who all recognized the importance of growing and improving upon national defense. Since no discussions have even started with Russia, and the President has no actual plan to implement the reductions, this appears to be more of a publicity stunt than any substantive plan for the U.S.’s future nuclear armament capabilities,” said Bishop.

“The President’s idea to further diminish our nation’s nuclear weapons systems seems to embrace and even encourage the decline of America as a superpower. Making further reductions to our defense systems could leave our country vulnerable, especially as other countries are aggressively advancing their weapons programs and nuclear capabilities,” the congressman continued. “Our land, air, and sea defense systems are essential to the security of the United States and while we all wish we lived in a world free of nuclear weapons, the reality is that we don’t. We need to have the ability to adequately defend our country and allies and today’s decision will hurt our ability to do so.”

“I remain concerned by the fact that the United States is far behind the curve of nuclear advancements, which is only exacerbated by the constant reductions to missile defense made by the current Administration. The U.S. weapons systems are antique compared to some of the modern technologies that have been developed by other countries, including Russia and China, in the last decade.  We are not modernizing our arsenal to provide for future deterrence and today’s announcement does nothing to address this. Cutting our nose off to spite our face isn’t a sound national security plan.”

Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said any additional limitations of the U.S. nuclear arsenal without first fulfilling commitments to modernization of existing forces could amount to “unilateral disarmament.”

“While the administration has assured me that no further reductions will occur outside of treaty negotiations and the advice and consent of the Senate, the president’s announcement without first fulfilling commitments on modernization could amount to unilateral disarmament,” he said. “The president should follow through on full modernization of the remaining arsenal and pledges to provide extended nuclear deterrence before engaging in any additional discussions.”

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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All Comments   (14)
All Comments   (14)
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I was rather startled to find out the other day that the military budget is larger now in real dollars that at any time during the Cold War. Meanwhile the deficit and national debt are the largest ever. Yet the enemy we face - Al Quaeda - doesn't have a single nuke or an army worthy of the name. Nor can China or North Korea remotely match the Soviet arsenal. This strikes me as crazy and I can only conclude that the people who depend upon war and the threat of war for their livelihood have seized control of the debate. Republican demagogues blame the budget problems on parasites and deadbeats (like pensioners who vote Republican?) while ignoring the 800 pound gorilla.
I'm fine with maintaining a solid nuclear deterrant but the devastation inflicted by nuclear weapons is such that a couple hundred ought to be enough. Meanwhile, given the greatly reduced offensive capability of our current enemies, a Star Wars system seems eminently doable and should become the focus. I just don't understand the mentality of someone who thinks the "War on Terrorism" requires the sort of expenditures required to face down international Communism. We have soldiers all over Africa and the Pacific chasing after Muslims and I think it's an artificially created crisis. IT would be infinitely cheaper to simply bribe these guys. And if you say that's unmanly then go and fight yourself rather than asking the economically disadvantaged of our youth to bear the burden.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Nukes are a cheap deterrent.

In Europe during the 1960s and 1970s, NATO was out numbered and out gunned by the Warsaw Pact. We faced more than 2:1 disadvantage in troops, tanks, artillery, fighters, and missiles. The Soviets had arsenals of chemical weapons and the systems to deliver them. The Russians conducted exercises with real VX and sarin. We had no chem weapons and little defense against them.

In 1976, US Army General James Hollingsworth was ordered to assess the threat of a large scale invasion of Western Europe using only Warsaw Pact forces in place. His report to the Senate Armed Services concluded that the Soviets could drive through the Fulda Gap to Frankfort or across the North German Plain to the north Sea in two weeks. His report spurred a build up of ground forces. However, it begs a question: Why didn't the communists attack when Jimmy Carter was president?

The answer is simple - B61. The USAF had fighters on 5 minute alert armed with B61 tactical thermonuclear weapons. A mass tank attack would meet F4s dropping "silver bullets." In ones of hours, silo based and submarine launched MIRVs, plus manned bombers would attack the Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Many can't believe that the leader of the free world is not interested in preserving America. They erroneously think that he has its best interests at heart, even if seemingly misguided. Not at all. More to the point, if a nuke destroyed a city, then so be it. He viscerally feels America deserves its comeuppance and that is that.

This is the main reason he has spent 5 yrs jaw jawing Iran's Hitlerite regime. Not only does he despise Israel but he detests America. While other administrations also tried a fruitless path of negotiations with a genocidal regime, the POTUS is giving them the time to reach the home stretch. Therefore, in an act of grave malfeasance, bordering on treason, he is directing DOD to denuke America.

A complicating factor is that the head of DOD is Islamist leaning Hagel, and CIA's Brennan, a Muslim convert, also the wayward Commander-in-Chief's back - http://adinakutnicki.com/2013/05/26/obama-incs-trial-balloons-re-containing-iran-assorted-think-tankssurrogates-have-his-back-commentary-by-adina-kutnicki/

He is fine with rogue regimes upping their nuke arsenals, all the while America descales its. Why? Exactly.

Adina Kutnicki, Israel http://adinakutnicki.com/about/
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
This is what VLAD was giving him space to accomplish before the election..."I'll give Vlad what he wants, but I need some space until after my last election" - speaking to Russian "President" Medvedev near a hot microphone last year. The American Ayatollah in the White Mosque sells us out again.

Remember BENGHAZI!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Would obama act any differently if he was or is a muslim? As CraigZ pointed out, obama is not stupid, but is simply on the other side.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I used to have a t-shirt that said:
"One nuclear bomb can ruin your whole day"

Likely or not, one is enough to be a threat.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment

"One of the most important reasons for studying history is that virtually every stupid idea that is in vogue today has been tried before and proved disastrous before, time and again." --Dr. Thomas Sowell
Oh, I forgot. BO probably doesn't read Thomas Sowell.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
This is called surrender. Maybe his next proposal will be to cut the Navy to about 100 ships, no carriers, no SSNs, and just a few destroyers. Oh, and I guess we no longer need either the Marines nor their amphibious capability.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
No, No, No.

Mr. Obama wants a LARGE Navy -- with no Carbon Foot Print.

Based on PROVEN Technology. ... Battle Proven Technology.

So, the Navy will revert to propulsion by S A I L !

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Shhhh! Don't give him any ideas.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Obama is an idiot. If he and his cronies knew any history, they would have known how stupid many prominent Americans and Europeans sounded after WWI, with all their grandiose and imbecillic plans to "outlaw war" and whatnot. But at least they had the excuse of having witnessed the trauma of WWI while not having a clue of what was to follow in only two more decades. Obama and other "progressives" have no such excuse. Imbeciles and cretins -- and they have the reins of power? God help us.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
No, Obama is not an idiot, imbecile or cretin.

He's simply on the other side.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
...and Obama can be trusted because . . .
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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