Sunday, April 11, 2010

Obama Eliminates Much of The Intentional Ambiguity in Nuclear Deterrent Policy

Until last month, if you were considering a chemical attack against the United States you had to be concerned our retaliation would be intimidate as our nukes rained down on your country. You do not want to lose your cities in a nuclear fireball, so you do not attack us with the chemical weapons. This is the basic principle of deferents. The possibility of nuclear retaliation deters their actions. That deterrent is gone with Obama announcing that non-nuclear countries who are signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. We have just said that we will not retaliate with nukes to a chemical or biological attack. I think that it is a foolish move that almost invites attack. The saving grace of this policy may just be that potential aggressors will not believe it.

"It eliminates much of the ambiguity that has deliberately existed in American nuclear policy since the opening days of the cold war. For the first time, the United States is explicitly committing not to use nuclear weapons against nonnuclear states that are in compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, even if they attacked the United States with biological or chemical weapons or launched a crippling cyberattack.

Those threats, Mr. Obama argued, could be deterred with “a series of graded options,” a combination of old and newly designed conventional weapons. “I’m going to preserve all the tools that are necessary in order to make sure that the American people are safe and secure,” he said in the interview in the Oval Office.


  1. its pretty egregious fear mongering on your part to say that it "almost invites attack". From who?
    I think what you misunderstand about detterent/compellence policy is the aspect of credible second strike capability. Only the United States can credibly tell any other country in the world that even without nuclear weapons, we will still destroy you, or at the very least throw out your state

  2. @Ian Spencer Dubrowsky - If someone wants to punch you in the face, but will not because they are afraid of you hitting them back; then you announce 'as long as you do not use your feet I will not hit back', do you think that encourages them or discourages them?

    "Only the United States can credibly tell any other country in the world that even without nuclear weapons, we will still destroy you" - Even if think France and England should not count, how can you justify saying Russia could not?


Related Posts with Thumbnails

Like what you read; Subscribe/Fan/Follow