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US to Trot Out More ‘Assertive’ Nuclear Strategy - Report

© AP Photo / Lt. Rebecca RebarichIn this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS Wyoming approaches Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Ga., Jan. 9, 2008.
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS Wyoming approaches Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Ga., Jan. 9, 2008. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.06.2024
Given the West’s increasingly belligerent rhetoric and actions as part of the ongoing proxy conflict in Ukraine, Russia was forced to suspend its participation in the New START Treaty last year. Nonetheless, Moscow noted that it remained open to dialogue on the issue.
The White House is about to roll out an amended, “more assertivenuclear weapons strategy, the news site, Semafor, has reported.
Washington sees the need "to adopt a more competitive approach to non-proliferation and arms control" and "make certain adjustments to our posture and capabilities," the portal cited a senior administration official as saying.
Specifically, the plans may refer to developing a new nuclear gravity bomb, as well as efforts to extend the life of several Ohio-class nuclear submarines, said the report.
The administration intends to consider how US nuclear forces may have to “evolve further” and will discuss work to ensure that key allies “have long-range strike capabilities and surveillance abilities”, added the unnamed official. The plans will reportedly be announced by the National Security Council’s Senior Director for Arms Control, Disarmament, and Nonproliferation Pranay Vaddi at an arms control conference on Friday.
The report went on to remind that the New START treaty is set to expire in 2026. Thinking ahead for a possible Biden reelection, “If there’s a second term, a key consideration for our administration is how we approach that date, February 6, 2026... We have to think about an environment in which we’re unconstrained, but so is Russia, and so is China,” added the cited official.
The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) entered into force in 2011. Amid NATO's proxy war in Ukraine, Moscow suspended its participation in the accord on February 21, 2023.
At the time, President Vladimir Putin during his February 2023 speech to the Federal Assembly pointed out that the principle of reciprocity when it came to mutual inspections of nuclear sites under New START was not fully observed by the US. He mentioned that NATO's two other nuclear-armed powers, the UK and France, have never been bound by New START. Putin referenced everything from Washington's unilateral withdrawals from milestone strategic weapons treaties, to NATO's enlargement towards Russia's borders in violation of previous verbal agreements.
The deployment of massive ballistic missile installations in Europe under the pretext of an alleged "nuclear threat" from Iran along with the more recent pledge by the West to impose a strategic defeat on Russia forced Moscow to temporarily freeze its participation in New START. Meanwhile, the Russian president made it crystal clear that Moscow is open to dialogue on the issue.
It was added that Russia would continue to comply with quantitative restrictions on strategic offensive arms and exchange notifications with Washington about ballistic missile launches.
A deactivated Titan II nuclear ICMB is seen in a silo at the Titan Missile Museum on May 12, 2015 in Green Valley, Arizona - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.06.2023
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In June, the US announced its "countermeasures" in response to Russia’s suspension of the treaty, which included a decision to stop giving Moscow key information regarding intercontinental and submarine-launched ballistic missile launches.
Amid the surge of belligerent moves by the West, the Kremlin announced drills on the use of non-strategic nuclear weapons of Russia and Belarus to "talk sense into western opponents about the consequences of escalation," as Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov put it. Additionally, the presidential administration noted that the drills were focused on ensuring Russia's territorial integrity and sovereignty in response to provocative statements and threats coming from certain Western officials.
President Joe Biden delivers the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol, Thursday March 7, 2024, in Washington.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 31.05.2024
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