Wednesday, November 19, 2014

On Nuclear War

Nuclear War: Russia Shocks US With Tactical Weapons, Pentagon Retaliates
By Athena Yenko | November 15, 2014 6:25 PM EST


Russia is in possession of strategic nuclear weapons far more advance than the United States, and it will continue to lead the game with its new generation of missiles, according to a comprehensive report. Indeed, if World War 3 erupts, Russian Vladimir Putin will win hands down, the report said.

The report claims that Russia was able to amass its massive nuclear power because the U.S. had been dismissive and neglectful of achieving innovations in decades after winning the Cold War. Specifically, the U.S. had closed the possibility of developing high-precision long-range weapons that could eradicate enemies even without coming to direct contact. But Russia never stops innovating despite much criticism and the more accepted notion that the country is weak and the west is superior.

At this point, Russia has "long-range cruise missiles of a new generation that will soon be deployed on submarines of the Black Sea Fleet and missile ships of the Caspian Flotilla," the report stated. And not only that - Russia's tactical nuclear weapons are far more superior to that of NATO's, the report said.

NATO's member countries have only 260 tactical weapons. The U.S. has 200 bombs with an overall capacity of 18 megatons - located in Germany, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Turkey. France has 60 atomic bombs, as outlined by the report. "Russia, according to conservative estimates, has 5,000 pieces of different classes" of tactical nuclear weapons "from Iskander warheads to torpedo, aerial and artillery warheads," the report from PRAVDA highlighted.

The report seemed to have solid basis. Russia's plans of sending long-range bombers to the Gulf of Mexico are being widely reported. Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu declared that Russia has to maintain its military presence in the western Atlantic and eastern Pacific, including the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico. This included sending long-range bombers as part of the drills. Russia will also be sending more troops in Crimea. Shoigu noted that the deployments are in response to the "fomentation of anti-Russian moods on the part of NATO and reinforcement of foreign military presence next to our border," CNN reported.

U.S. officials did not buy the idea that Russia has the capability of deploying long-range bombers. A source had reportedly told CNN that the U.S. found no security threat proving that such bold and destructive activity is happening. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki echoed the same opinion.

However, Pentagon retaliates with Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel announcing a proposal of an additional $1.5 billion to the $15 billion a year worth of maintenance to U.S.' nuclear arsenals.  He admitted that US Air Force and Navy were beleaguered with scandals over the years. These scandals resulted to the neglect of the country's nuclear programmes, rendering some infrastructure outdated and maintenance deteriorated, The Washington Post reported.  

At one point, inspections of the nuclear weapons became burdensome for the force, Deputy Secretary of Defence Robert Work said. For a time, there was shortage of specialised tools for the maintenance. A single tool kit for intercontinental ballistic missiles had to be shipped from base to base to conduct maintenance.

Hagel said that nuclear mission remains the military's most important job. Hence, Pentagon officials will now be working anew to improve the status of the government's nuclear programmes by modernising nuclear warheads, long-range bombers and ballistic missile submarines - with the billion worth boost to the annual maintenance budget.

Members of the Congress agreed to the budget proposal. Republicans lauded it too. They said the $1.5 billion boost to the funding is just right. The nuclear programmes had suffered too much neglect because of "insufficient resources, indifferent leadership, and poor morale," Rep. Howard McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said.


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