NYT: New US Strategy Expands Nuclear Use

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NYT: New US Strategy Expands Nuclear Use Capabilities

According to the newspaper, the draft; Nuclear Policy Review allows for the use of such weapons in response to devastating conventional attacks

A newly developed US nuclear strategy aimed at endorsement by President Donald Trump will allow the use of nuclear weapons in response to a wide range of destructive but non-nuclear attacks on American infrastructure, including the most destructive cyberattacks..

Reported by the New York Times newspaper.

The newspaper writes that for several decades, American presidents have threatened the “first use” of nuclear weapons against enemies only in narrowly defined and very limited circumstances, for example, in response to the use of biological weapons against the United States..

The new document expands this list for the first time. It now includes attempts to destroy vast infrastructure, such as the country’s power grids or communication lines, which are most vulnerable to cyberattacks, the newspaper said..

A draft document entitled “Nuclear Policy Review” was drawn up at the Pentagon and is under consideration at the White House. According to the New York Times, the final version of the document is due in the coming weeks and will represent a new look at the US nuclear strategy..

Gary Seymor, chief adviser on nuclear weapons under President Barack Obama, told the publication that the draft strategy in many ways “repeats the main elements of Obama’s declarative policy word for word.” In particular, the statement is repeated that the United States “will consider the possibility of using nuclear weapons only in exceptional circumstances to protect the vital interests of the United States, its allies or partners.”.

But the biggest differences appear in the new language describing these “exceptional circumstances,” writes The New York Times..

In a draft developed by the Trump administration, these circumstances “could include significant non-nuclear strategic attacks.” It says that these could include “attacks on the civilian population or infrastructure of the United States, its allies or partners, attacks on the nuclear forces of the United States or its allies, their command and control systems, and systems for warning and assessing the means of attack,” the newspaper writes..

The draft strategy also includes US production of a new generation of compact, low-yield nuclear weapons. Some of these types of weapons were under development during the Obama administration..

NYT: New US Strategy Expands Nuclear Use Capabilities

The document explicitly states that Russia is testing its first autonomous nuclear torpedo. American officials speculate that it will be largely controlled by artificial intelligence and be able to strike at the United States even if communication with Moscow is lost, the publication said..

The famous Russian dissident Andrei Sakharov in the 1970s and 1980s foresaw a gigantic torpedo capable of covering a distance of several hundred kilometers and causing serious damage with a warhead thousands of times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, recalls the New York Times.

Although his predictions were rejected at the time, the draft Nuclear Posture Review states that Moscow is working to create similar weapons..

The document calls it “a new intercontinental nuclear submarine autonomous torpedo.” This is a cigar-shaped submarine missile that is supposed to be launched from a submarine..

In a chart entitled “New Nuclear Delivery Vehicles in the Last Decade,” this torpedo is codenamed Status 6..

According to the New York Times, the document calls Moscow’s actions so destabilizing that the United States may be forced to abandon Obama’s commitment to reduce the role and size of the American nuclear arsenal..

Russia is adopting “military strategies and tools that rely on nuclear escalation to succeed,” says US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis’ introduction to the report..

“These events, coupled with the Russian invasion of Crimea and nuclear threats against our allies, testify to Moscow’s undisguised return to great power competition,” the Pentagon chief said..

The strategy provides for the creation of other new types of American nuclear weapons. The draft document calls for an “accelerated creation” of a cruise missile that will be launched from submarines, writes the New York Times. He also calls for the development of a low-yield warhead for submarine-launched ballistic missiles..

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