SecDef Gates: Russia's strategic buildup requires upgrade of U.S. nukes
Nominee Obama, doesn't it become counter intuitive to deny our forces and the American people the ability to destroy incoming missiles if Russia is upgrading it's nuclear missile forces?
By the way how many new ICBM's has the US developed since or during Reagan?
ZERO. Our land based mainstay is still the Minuteman 3 of 1970's production, and our sea based the Trident of the same generational design. Nor was there a distinct need.
But that was then, and this is now.
We face huge challenges, and eliminating the money going into our tanks and then to our enemies, INCLUDING THRU LUKOIL, has got to stop. Drill - Batteries -Nukes - Biofuels -Solar..it must all be done.
Gertz: Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said last week that Russia is building up its nuclear forces to counteract the decline in its conventional military capabilities and that both the United States and NATO needed to upgrade its nuclear capabilities and policies as a result.
During a meeting with reporters during a visit to Langley Air Force Base, Virginia, Gates said Moscow was strengthening its nuclear forces instead of the regular forces, making maintenance of the U.S. nuclear arsenal increasingly important.
Russian vehicles transport 'Topol-M' missiles through the Ivanovo region on May 15. AFP/Maxim Shipenkov
Gates also said the United States needed nuclear weapons to deter potential enemies and that the need would grow in the future, not only because of nuclear efforts by Iran, but modernization by Russia as well.
"It seems clear that the Russians are focused as they look to the future more on strengthening their nuclear capabilities," Gates said. "So to the extent that they rely more and more on their nuclear capabilities as opposed to what historically has been a huge Russian conventional military capability, it seems to me that it underscores the importance of our sustaining a valid nuclear deterrent, a modern nuclear deterrent."
Problems with military reform in Russia led to the shift toward nuclear forces, he said. "Russia is really not investing very much in their conventional forces," he said.
Russia is developing new nuclear forces that U.S. officials say includes a new depressed trajectory long-range nuclear missile designed to defeat U.S. missile defenses. Moscow also is building new nuclear missile submarines and continuing to deploy road-mobile ICBMs.
Gates said later in Brussels that NATO officials discussed the modernization of "both policies and capabilities" for nuclear forces. "And I think there was basically unanimous support for moving forward," he said.
Gates said the United States had cut its tactical nuclear forces by 90 percent over the past 15 years and while specific modernization was not discussed, "there was no dissent from the fact that we needed a nuclear deterrent in NATO and needed to keep it modern."