US develops strategy for first use of nuclear weapons against WMD
Monday 12 September 2005
Under the scheme, developed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff but yet to be ratified by Donald Rumsfeld, the Defence Secretary, commanders would be able to request permission from the President to use nuclear weapons in a variety of scenarios. According to The Washington Post, one scenario is of an enemy that is using, or "is about to use", WMD against US military forces or the civilian population. Another is where nuclear weapons could be used against biological weapons that an enemy was close to using, and which could only be safely destroyed by nuclear weapons and their after-effects.
In practice, the strategy would update existing guidelines, drawn up in 1995 under the Clinton administration. It would fit in with plans mooted by the Pentagon to develop a new generation of nuclear weapons, specifically designed to attack enemy bunkers holding WMD, which could be buried deep underground.
Congress has thus far declined to provide funds for a study into the so-called "Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator", not least because of criticism that such a move would make a mockery of US-led efforts to prevent nuclear-weapons proliferation, and make it more, rather than less likely, that such weapons would be used.
The Pentagon document argues that proliferation has already made it more likely that nuclear weapons could be used. It claims that some 30 nations have WMD programmes - not to mention terrorists, or "non-state actors", some of them acting with state sponsorship.
- 1 Hair loss explained: How and why men go bald
- 2 Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe Ned Stark's son may have a twin sister
- 3 Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
- 4 iPhone 6s camera: features to include 4K video camera and flash for selfies
- 5 A pint of water every day is the key to losing weight, scientists say
Most expensive city to live in for expatriates: Luanda, Angola takes number one spot with Hong Kong and Zurich in top three
Video of Irish 'professional boxer' fighting Istanbul neighbourhood goes viral in Turkey
If Surrey were Syria: Social experiment shows what it's like to live under siege
Irish tourist filmed fighting with shopkeepers in Turkey says they 'messed with the wrong man'
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal get peerages
Dresden riots: Protesters in Germany attack refugee buses shouting 'foreigners out'
France train shooting: US soldiers speak of the moment they stopped gunman and 'beat him until he was unconscious'
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Unpaid - £4 lunch allowance plus travel to and from work: Barnardo's: Purpose ...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£15000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...