The last few weeks have been bad for advocates of arms control and other deniers of the Russian and Chinese military threat. While these people continue to stubbornly claim that nuclear weapons are “useless” against the security threats the US faces, the opposite is true, and more facts that refute their blatant lies are coming to light every week.
The latest New START “compliance” report was released last month. It shows Russia has increased its deployed strategic nuclear arsenal dramatically since March 1st (the date of the previous report), building up from 1,512 to 1,643 deployed strategic warheads – an increase of 131 deployed warheads in just 6 months!
Russia’s declared fleet of deployed strategic delivery systems (intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, bombers) also increased, from 498 to 528 – and even that is a vast understatement that excludes the vast majority of Russia’s SLBMs and bombers. (In the coming weeks, this website will publish a credible report on Russia’s real arsenal of warheads and delivery systems).
Thus, under New START, Russia’s nuclear arsenal has grown significantly rather than shrink – exactly as we, New START opponents, predicted, and exactly as Russian officials promised. Under New START, Russia is permitted to, and is, BUILDING UP rather than cutting its nuclear arsenal.
This means that those of us who opposed New START and other cuts in America’s nuclear deterrent were right ALL ALONG, and those who supported it, including arms controllers and then-Sec. of State Hillary Clinton – were WRONG ALL ALONG.
The increase in warheads is probably attributable to the deployment and arming of Russia’s two newest ballistic missile submarines, the Yuri Dolgoruki and Alexander Nevsky, both capable of launching 20 ballistic missiles. And since each Bulava or Liner missile can deliver 10-12 warheads, that means a single Russian submarine can deliver 240 nuclear warheads to the Continental US.
Now why does this matter (other than proving the growing need for a large US nuclear arsenal)?
Because arms control advocates have, for years, been falsely claiming that the US must not withdraw from, or even suspend its participation in, the New START and INF treaties because doing so would allegedly “free” Russia from constraints on its nuclear arsenal, prod it to stop supposed reductions in its nuclear arsenal, and allow it to grow that arsenal. In other words, arms controllers are blatantly lying that Russia is now reducing its arsenal and that New START withdrawal would allow it to grow that stockpile.
This is completely false. Russia is not cutting ANYTHING. Russia has not reduced its nuclear arsenal by a single warhead, missile, or bomber. Under New START, it is BUILDING UP its arsenal of nuclear warheads and their associated delivery systems.
In addition, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced last week that Russia will develop new, “offensive” nuclear and nonnuclear weapons aimed at the US and its NATO allies. (So much for the US nuclear arsenal being supposedly “useless” and an “anachronism.”)
In other news, the Washington Free Beacon’s Bill Gertz has just reported that the Chinese military has recently tested a new ICBM – the DF-31B – and increased the number of the DF-31/31A ICBMs it deploys to 40 (which may be even higher). Each DF-31 can carry 3-4 warheads, so this works out to 120 DF-31 missile warheads being aimed at the US (with more to be added soon). Every day, the PLA adds more missiles and warheads to its arsenal.
Also, the Heritage Foundation reported recently that the Israeli Iron Dome system has intercepted 90% of the missiles it has attempted to shoot down, contrary to missile defense critic Ted Postol’s ridiculous claims of a 95% failure rate. Postol makes that ridiculous claim on the grounds that Iron Dome interceptors have not been hitting offensive missiles from Gaza head-on, but rather from the sides or from the rear; that counts as a “failure to intercept” in his fantasyland. In reality, the only thing that counts is intercepting the enemy’s missiles, and it doesn’t matter from what aspect it’s done. In fact, in real warfare, it is PREFERRABLE to strike the enemy from the sides or the rear; head-on attacks usually fail.
The proof of Iron’s Dome success is not just its 90% interception rate, but also the fact that NO Israeli has died in areas protected by this system in 2014 or even 2012. This cannot be attributed just to shelters as Postol as tried to do.
Another piece of bad news for arms controllers seeking to disarm the US is, of course, the fact that the Republican Party is fully on course to win the upcoming House and Senate elections – and it will likely win big. It is poised to gain its largest majority in the House since 1946 and projected by RealClearPolitics to win, on net, 7 Senate seats, giving it a 52-47 majority (with 1 Republican-leaning independent). This will result in Republicans completely stopping the Left’s unilateral disarmament agenda dead in its tracks.
The very first thing the next Congress should do – after publicly reading the Constitution – is to immediately pass the bills proposed by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) to suspend US participation in the New START and INF treaties.