The Telegraph Obama is expected to call for a drop in the number of nuclear weapons we have.There is a lot of speculation about what Obama is going to say in this evening’s State of the Union. While much of what the president is rumored to be planning to say will be of little reassurance to those of the libertarian persuasion there is one proposal that Obama might make that I would welcome. According to
From The Telegraph:
Although Mr Obama is not expected to give precise numbers in his speech, reports yesterday claimed that the number of warheads could be cut from 1,700 to as low as 1,000, if a mutual agreement can be secured with Russia.
Mr Obama believes that "pretty radical reductions" can be made to the arsenal, a left-over from the Cold War, and US military leaders have "signed off" on the proposed reductions, the New York Times reported, citing anonymous administration officials.
I still think 1,000 nuclear weapons still sounds a little excessive, but some progress is better than none.
Cuts to our nuclear arsenal would accelerate compliance with the NEW START treaty with Russia, which requires the U.S. and Russia reduce the total number of warheads both countries have to 1,550 by 2018.
America’s greatest external threats are not nations that have their own nuclear weapons. Terrorists that are not a part of any military or loyal to any nation are more of a danger to American national security than a nuclear Iran or North Korea. In the unlikely event of a terrorist detonating a nuclear weapon on U.S. soil it is far from obvious what the target of our nuclear response should be. Even were Russia and China threats to our national security 1,000 nuclear weapons are still an effective deterrent. The U.S. is fighting wars that are very different to the wars that were being fought during the Cold War; it is time that we adapted our arsenals accordingly. Cutting back on our nuclear arsenal is especially worth doing now considering the state of the American economy.
Don’t forget to follow me and others from the Reason crew tonight as we live tweet the State of the Union. Reason senior editor Peter Suderman has put together drinking game rules for the occasion especially for those who prefer to experience these sorts of things through the bottom of bottles and shot glasses.