US nuclear weapons Nuclear nuclear us_interventions_project 1941 nuclear_1781 false 1 ------ President Roosevelt orders the establishment of the US Biological Warfare program. [[;part=3 | Fort Detrick website, n.d. ]] ====== ((+ Franklin Delano Roosevelt )) 1956-1958 nuclear_1779 false 1 ------ The US Army releases swarms of specially bred mosquitoes in Georgia and Florida as part of an experiment aimed at determining if disease-bearing insects could be used as carriers of biological weapons. The mosquitoes are of the Aedes Aegypti type, which is a carrier of dengue fever. [[ | Blum, 1995 ]] ====== 1967 nuclear_1780 false 1 ------ Science magazine reports that at Fort Detrick, Maryland, where the United States' offensive biological program is headquartered, dengue fever is among those diseases that are &#8220;objects of considerable research and that appear to be among those regarded as potential BW [biological warfare] agents.&#8221; [[ | Blum, 1995 ]] ------ The biological warfare program is overseen by the US Army's Chemical Warfare Service. [[;part=3 | Fort Detrick website, n.d. ]] ====== ((+ US Army Chemical Warfare Service )) June 12, 1978 nuclear_1710 false 1 ------ President Carter's secretary of state, Cyrus Vance, says in an official US policy statement: &#8220;The United States will not use nuclear weapons against any non-nuclear-weapon state party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty or any comparable internationally binding commitment not to acquire nuclear explosive devices, except in the case of an attack on the United States, its territories or armed forces, or its allies, by such a state allied to a nuclear-weapon state, or associated with a nuclear-weapon state in carrying out or sustaining the attack.&#8221; [[ | Graham and LaVera, 2003 ]] ====== ((+ Cyrus Vance )) April 11, 1995 nuclear_1712 false 1 ------ US Secretary of State Warren Christopher reaffirms the United State's commitment to its 24-year-old pledge (see [[ nuclear_1710 ]]) not to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states. He says, &#8220;The United States reaffirms that it will not use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon States Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons except in the case of an invasion or any other attack on the United States, its territories, its armed forces or other troops, its allies, or on a State toward which it has a security commitment, carried out or sustained by such a non-nuclear-weapon States in association or alliance with a nuclear-weapon State.&#8221; [[ | The Washington Times, 2/22/2002 ]] [[ | Arms Control Association, 3/2002 ]] ====== ((+ Warren Christopher )) September 24, 1996 nuclear_1708 false 1 ------ President Bill Clinton is the first world leader to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). The treaty, which will ultimately be signed by 154 nations, will extend the international ban on above-ground tests to underground testing, resulting in a total ban on all nuclear explosions. In 1999, however, the Republican-controlled Congress will vote not to ratify the treaty (see [[ nuclear_1709 ]]). [[ | White House, 7/20/1999 ]] [[ | CNN, 10/13/1999 ]] ====== ((+ William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton )) October 13, 1999 nuclear_1709 false 1 ------ In a party-line 48-51-1 vote, the US Senate decides not to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) that President Bill Clinton signed in 1996 (see [[ nuclear_1708 ]]). The vote marks the first time in US history that the Senate has rejected an arms control treaty. The treaty, which needed a two-thirds vote for ratification, would have extended the current international ban on above-ground tests to underground testing as well, resulting in a total ban on all nuclear explosions. [[ | CNN, 10/13/1999 ]] ====== January 2001 nuclear_1716 false 1 ------ The National Institute for Public Policy (NIPP) publishes a report arguing for a &#8220;smaller, more efficient, arsenal&#8221; of specialized weapons. The report claims that developing a new generation of smaller, tactical nuclear weapons is necessary for the US to maintain its deterrent. The report suggests that nuclear weapons could be used to deter &#8220;weapons of mass destruction (WMD) use by regional powers,&#8221; deter &#8220;WMD or massive conventional aggression by an emerging global competitor,&#8221; prevent &#8220;catastrophic losses in conventional war,&#8221; provide &#8220;unique targeting capabilities&#8221; (such as the use of &#8220;mini-nukes,&#8221; or &#8220;bunker-busters,&#8221; to destroy deep underground/biological weapons targets), or to enhance &#8220;US influence in crises.&#8221; Many of the report's authors are later appointed to senior positions within the Bush administration, including Linton Brooks who becomes head of the national nuclear security administration overseeing new weapons projects, Stephen Hadley who is appointed deputy national security adviser, and Stephen Cambone who becomes undersecretary of defense for intelligence. (( Rationale and Requirements for U.S. Nuclear Forces and Arms Control )) [[,12271,1013690,00.html | The Guardian, 8/7/2003 ]] ------ The document is said to influence the Pentagon's controversial Nuclear Posture Review that is submitted to Congress a year later (see [[ nuclear_1713 ]]). ====== ((+ Stephen Hadley )) ((+ Stephen Cambone )) ((+ Linton Brooks )) ((+ National Institute for Public Policy (NIPP) )) January 8, 2002 nuclear_1713 false 1 ------ Congress receives an edited version of the Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), a comprehensive review laying &#8220;out the direction for American nuclear forces over the next five to ten years.&#8221; (( Nuclear Posture Review (Excerpts) )) ------ Congress requested the review in September 2000. [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/9/2002 ]] ------ The classified document, signed by Donald Rumsfeld and now being used by the US Strategic Command to prepare a nuclear war plan, advocates that the US adopt a &#8220;New Triad&#8221; of weapon types for its strategic arsenal that would include an &#8220;offensive strike leg&#8221; (nuclear and conventional forces), &#8220;active and passive defenses&#8221; (anti-missile systems and other defenses) and &#8220;a responsive defense infrastructure&#8221; (ability to develop and produce nuclear weapons and resume nuclear testing). The new triad would replace the United States' current triad of bombers, long-range land-based missiles and submarine-launched missiles. (( Nuclear Posture Review (Excerpts) )) [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/9/2002 ]] [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/10/2002 ]] [[ | Globe and Mail, 3/12/2002 ]] ------ The report asserts that the new strategy is necessary in order to assure &#8220;allies and friends,&#8221; &#8220;dissuade competitors,&#8221; &#8220;deter aggressors&#8221; like rogue states and terrorist organizations, and &#8220;defeat enemies.&#8221; (( Nuclear Posture Review (Excerpts) )) [[ | Globe and Mail, 3/12/2002 ]] ------ The review offers several possible scenarios where nuclear weapons might be used. For example, the document explains such weapons could be deployed to &#8220;pre-empt&#8221; the use of weapons of mass destruction against American or allied troops; in retaliation for an attack involving nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons; &#8220;in the event of surprising military developments;&#8221; or against targets that the US is incapable of destroying by conventional means, such as bunkers located deep underground. The NPR even names countries that could become targets of US nuclear weapons. For example, it says that they could be used against China, North Korea, Russia, Libya, Syria, Iraq, or any Arab country that threatens Israel. [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/9/2002 ]] [[ | Telegraph, 3/10/2002 ]] [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/10/2002 ]] ------ The NPR says that nuclear weapons could be deployed using ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, or other modified conventional weapons. US Special Forces on the ground could be used to pin-point the targets and direct the weapon's deployment. [[ | Telegraph, 3/10/2002 ]] [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/10/2002 ]] ------ Arms control advocates warn that the document shows that the Bush administration does not view its nuclear arsenal only as a weapon of last resort or as a deterrent. They also say that the new policy would encourage other countries to develop their own nuclear programs. [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/9/2002 ]] ====== ((+ Donald Rumsfeld )) February 2002 nuclear_1711 false 1 ------ Referring to a 1978 US pledge not to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states (see [[ nuclear_1710 ]]), US Undersecretary of State John R. Bolton says in an interview with Arms Control Today, &#8220;We are just not into theoretical assertions that other administrations have made.&#8221; He explains: &#8220;We would do whatever is necessary to defend America's innocent civilian population.... The idea that fine theories of deterrence work against everybody ... has just been disproven by September 11.&#8221; [[ | The Washington Times, 2/22/2002 ]] [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/10/2003 ]] ------ Just five years earlier, the Clinton administration had reaffirmed its commitment to the pledge (see [[ nuclear_1712 ]]). ====== ((+ John R. Bolton )) December 11, 2002 nuclear_1714 false 1 ------ US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld sends President Bush a memo requesting authority to appoint US Strategic Command (STRATCOM) commander Adm. James O. Ellis Jr. in charge of all of the United States' &#8220;strategic&#8221; warfare options to combat terrorist states and organizations. By giving STRATCOM warplanners jurisdiction over the full range of the country's warfare options, the president would effectively remove a decades-old firewall between conventional and nuclear weapons which had served to prevent nuclear arms from being anything but a weapon of last resort. According to William Arkin, a columnist for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the request, if approved, would remove &#8220;nuclear weapons out of their long-established special category and [lump] them in with all the other military options.&#8221; Bush approves the request early the following month (see [[ nuclear_1715 ]]). (( Unnamed senior military officials at US Central Command )) (( Memo obtained by the LA Times )) [[ | Los Angeles Times, 1/26/2003 ]] ====== ((+ George W. Bush )) ((+ James O. Ellis Jr )) ((+ Donald Rumsfeld )) Early January 2003 nuclear_1714 false 1 ------ US President George Bush approves Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's December request <ref key="1714"/> to give US Strategic Command (STRATCOM) warplanners jurisdiction over the full range of the country's warfare options, including nuclear weapons. Many senior officials are concerned, according to columnist and reporter William Arkin, &#8220;that nuclear weapons&#8212;locked away in a Pandora's box for more than half a century&#8212;are being taken out of that lockbox and put on the shelf with everything else.&#8221; (( Unnamed senior military officials at US Central Command )) [[ | Los Angeles Times, 1/26/2003 ]] ====== ((+ George W. Bush )) ((- Donald Rumsfeld )) January 2003 nuclear_1718 false 1 ------ The proposed 2004 budget of the Energy Department's Nuclear Security Administration includes some $15 million for the development of a nuclear bunker-buster bomb called the &#8220;Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator&#8221; and $6 million for two of the nation's nuclear weapons laboratories, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore. The labs would &#8220;assemble design teams to study advanced nuclear concepts,&#8221; the Washington Post reports. [[ | The Washington Post, 2/20/2003 ]] [[ | USA Today, 7/6/2003 ]] ====== Early January 2003 nuclear_1715 false 1 ------ The Bush administration prepares a &#8220;Theater Nuclear Planning Document&#8221; for Iraq which includes the possible use of nuclear weapons. According to multiple sources interviewed by columnist and reporter William Arkin, nuclear weapons are being considered for use in an attack against Iraqi facilities located deep underground or to preempt the use of weapons of mass destruction. The planning is being carried out at &#8220;STRATCOM's Omaha headquarters, among small teams in Washington and at Vice President Dick Cheney's &#8216;undisclosed location&#8217; in Pennsylvania,&#8221; the Los Angeles Times reports. (( Unnamed senior military officials at US Central Command )) [[ | Los Angeles Times, 1/26/2003 ]] ====== ((+ Bush administration )) ((+ Dick Cheney )) January 10, 2003 nuclear_1717 false 1 ------ Defense Department officials and representatives from the Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos laboratories attend the &#8220;Stockpile Stewardship Conference Planning Meeting&#8221; called by Dale Klein, the assistant to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, to prepare for a secret conference on nuclear weapons during the week of August 4, 2003 (see [[ nuclear_1724 ]]). The purpose of the conference will be to discuss the construction of a new generation of nuclear weapons, including &#8220;low-yield&#8221; neutron bombs designed to destroy chemical or biological agents and &#8220;mini-nukes,&#8221; or &#8220;bunker-busters,&#8221; which could be used to destroy underground targets. Another purpose of the meeting will be to consider restarting nuclear testing and to discuss how the American public can be convinced that the new weapons are necessary. [[,12271,898550,00.html | The Guardian, 2/19/2003 ]] [[ | San Francisco Chronicle, 2/15/2003 ]] [[ | The Washington Post, 2/20/2003 ]] ====== ((+ Dale Klein )) February 13, 2003 nuclear_1719 false 1 ------ A group of 23 Republican members of the House Policy Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs issues a policy paper calling for the repeal of a 10-year ban on research on small, low-yield nuclear weapons of less than 5 kilotons. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the paper proposes a &#8220;new doctrine under which the country would be able to launch nuclear attacks not just in response to a nuclear attack, or the threat of one, but to preemptively destroy stockpiles of other weapons, such as chemical or biological weapons, in the hands of hostile countries&#8221; such as China, North Korea, Iran and Iraq. &#8220;Possession combined with evidence of the intent to use those weapons is sufficient&#8221; for a pre-emptive nuclear strike, the paper asserts. The paper also says that these weapons should be developed soon so that the military can have them available for use at its disposal. It recommends that preparations for the resumption of underground nuclear testing be accelerated at the Nevada Test Site so that testing can begin in as little as one year's time. [[ | San Francisco Chronicle, 2/15/2003 ]] [[ | San Francisco Chronicle, 2/15/2003 ]] [[ | The Washington Post, 2/20/2003 ]] ====== Early March 2003 nuclear_1720 false 1 ------ In its 2004 budget proposal, the US Defense Department asks US Congress to lift the 1992 &#8220;Spratt-Furse restriction,&#8221;a 10-year ban on developing small nuclear warheads known as &#8220;mini-nukes.&#8221; Buried deep within the proposal, is a single line statement that calls on Congress to &#8220;rescind the prohibition on research and development of low-yield nuclear weapons.&#8221; [[ | Guardian, 3/7/2003 ]] [[ | USA Today, 7/6/2003 ]] ====== Spring 2003 nuclear_1721 false 1 ------ The House of Representatives and the Senate agree to spend $15.5 million to develop a nuclear bunker-buster, or &#8220;mini-nuke,&#8221; called the &#8220;Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator&#8221; (see [[ nuclear_1718 ]]). They also agree to allocate funds to make changes to the Nevada Test Site (see [[ nuclear_1720 ]]) in order to shorten the amount of time that would be needed to resume nuclear tests to as little as 18-24 months. [[ | Guardian, 3/7/2003 ]] [[ | USA Today, 7/6/2003 ]] ====== April 22, 2003 nuclear_1722 false 1 ------ The US Department of Energy announces that the United States has reconstituted its nuclear weapons program. It is again capable of producing nuclear weapons for the first time in 14 years and is manufacturing plutonium parts for the stockpile of nuclear weapons. It will also begin plans for a new factory that could produce components for hundreds of weapons a year. The factory would be ready for production by 2018. [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/24/2003 ]] ====== ((+ Department of Energy (DOE) )) Early August 2003 nuclear_1724 false 1 ------ During the week marking the 48th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 150 people attend a secret conference at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska to discuss plans to develop a new generation of nuclear weapons, including the so-called &#8220;mini-nukes&#8221; and &#8220;bunker busters,&#8221; that could be used against rogue states and terrorist organizations. The B-29 planes that dropped the atomic bombs on the two Japanese cities, Enola Gay and Bock's Car, were both built at Offutt. Another topic to be discussed is whether the development of nuclear weapons would require a repeal of the 1992 &#8220;Spratt-Furse restriction,&#8221; which banned such weapons. Though the exact identities of the attendees are not known, unnamed sources tell the Guardian of London that the meeting is attended by scientists and administrators from the three main nuclear weapons laboratories, Los Alamos, Sandia and Livermore; senior officers from the air force and strategic command; weapons contractors; and civilian defense officials. No representatives from Congress, however, are at the meeting. According to the Guardian, &#8220;Requests by Congress to send observers were rejected, and an oversight committee which included academic nuclear experts was disbanded only a few weeks earlier.&#8221; One congressional weapons expert tells the London newspaper, &#8220;I was specifically told I couldn't come.&#8221; [[,12271,1013690,00.html | Guardian, 8/7/2003 ]] ------ According to the January meeting that had planned for this event (see [[ nuclear_1717 ]]), other issues to be addressed include the possible recommencement of nuclear testing and how to convince the American public the new nuclear weapons are necessary. ====== 2004 nuclear_1723 false 1 ------ The United States Department of Energy spends $6.5 billion on nuclear weapons research and production, 50 percent more than it did during the Cold War. [[ | Natural Resources Defense Council, 4/13/2004 ]] [[ | Los Angeles Times, 3/24/2003 ]] ====== ((+ Department of Energy (DOE) ))