As negotiations on a comprehensive nuclear deal with Iran reach a critical phase this week in Vienna, experts speaking at the Arms Control Association's annual meeting on Oct. 20 will discuss the prospects for a nuclear deal with Iran.
In March, the Obama administration announced it would delay key elements of its "3+2" plan to rebuild the U.S. stockpile of nuclear warheads amidst growing concern about the program's high cost and its technically ambitious approach.
Congress gave full funding to the program to rebuild the B61 nuclear gravity bomb, but required detailed reports on alternatives and the eventual retirement of a different bomb, the B83.
This week, House and Senate appropriators will vote on how much money to spend on the B61 gravity bomb, a $10 billion program to upgrade a weapon that President Obama said last week he wants to reduce. Given the high cost of this effort, the declining military justification, and the fact that less expensive alternatives exist, Congress should scale back this program dramatically.
As the possibility of automatic cuts looms over the ongoing debate on reducing U.S. defense spending, the former head of U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM) has called for cutting the nuclear weapons budget by roughly $120 billion over the next two decades.
Volume 3, Issue 7, May 8, 2012
Tomorrow, the House Armed Services Committee is scheduled to approve its version of the fiscal year (FY) 2013 defense authorization bill. Committee chair Buck McKeon (R-Cal.) and strategic forces chair Michael Turner (R-Ohio) are expected to add $3.7 billion more than the Defense Department requested. This includes hundreds of millions of dollars for nuclear weapons and missile defense programs that the military does not want and the nation cannot afford.
After months of review and debate, a bipartisan Senate majority approved the resolution of ratification for the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) on Dec. 22, 2010. But now, Rep. Michael Turner (R-Ohio) and the leading critic of New START in the Senate, Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), are trying to rewrite New START policies and understandings approved only six months ago.