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New Air Force Intelligence Report Available

The NASIC report dispels many web-rumors. By Hans M. Kristensen The Air Force Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) has published an update to its Ballistic and Cruise Missile Threat. The document, which I obtained from NASIC, is sobering reading. The latest update continues the previous user-friendly format and describes a number of important assessments […]

06.09.09 | 6 min read
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Strategic Failure: Congressional Strategic Posture Commission Report

The final report from the Congressional Strategic Posture Commission seems focused on hedging rather than leading. By Ivan Oelrich and Hans M. Kristensen The Congressional Strategic Posture Commission report published today is definitely not the place that the President or the nation should look for new ideas on how to reduce the role of nuclear […]

05.06.09 | 10 min read
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Briefing on US-Russian Nuclear Forces

Vast inventories of nuclear weapons remain after the Cold War arms race ended. . By Hans M. Kristensen Russia’s nuclear forces are expected to drop well below 500 offensive strategic delivery vehicles within the next five years, less than one-third of what’s permitted by the 1991 START treaty. Unless the next U.S. Nuclear Posture Review […]

04.27.09 | 1 min read
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Russian Foreign Ministry Responds to FAS/NRDC Study

By Hans M. Kristensen Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Ryabkov, gave a lengthy reaction to the FAS/NRDC report From Counterforce to Minimal Deterrence during a press conference Wednesday. The transcript from the press conference shows that in response to a question that the “report [is] suggesting a possible retargeting of US missile from […]

04.23.09 | 2 min read
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Russian Reactions to Minimal Deterrence Study

If you have followed Russian news media recently, you might have gotten the impression that FAS and NRDC are in charge of U.S. nuclear strike planning and are recommending increasing nuclear targeting of Russia. Of course, neither is true. Yet major Russian news media – and apparently also the chairman of the Russia’s parliament’s international […]

04.16.09 | 4 min read
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Study Calls for New U.S. Nuclear Weapons Targeting Policy

Click on image for PDF-version of full report. By Hans M. Kristensen The Federation of American Scientists and Natural Resources Defense Council today published a study that calls for fundamental changes in the way the United States military plans for using nuclear weapons. The study From Counterforce to Minimal Deterrence: A New Nuclear Policy on […]

04.08.09 | 1 min read
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Russian Tactical Nuclear Weapons

New low-yield nuclear warheads for cruise missiles on Russia’s submarines?. . By Hans M. Kristensen Two recent news reports have drawn the attention to Russia’s tactical nuclear weapons. Earlier this week, RIA Novosti quoted Vice Admiral Oleg Burtsev, deputy head of the Russian Navy General Staff, saying that the role of tactical nuclear weapons on […]

03.25.09 | 4 min read
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U.S. Strategic Submarine Patrols Continue at Near Cold War Tempo

U.S. ballistic missile submarines conducted 31 nuclear deterrent patrols in 2008 at an operational tempo comparable to that of the Cold War. . By Hans M. Kristensen [updated] The U.S. fleet of 14 nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines conducted 31 nuclear deterrent patrols in 2008 at an operational tempo comparable to during the Cold War. The […]

03.16.09 | 10 min read
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Russian Strategic Submarine Patrols Rebound

Russian SSBN patrols tripled from 2007 to 2008. . By Hans M. Kristensen Russia sent more nuclear-armed ballistic missile submarines on patrol in 2008 than in any other year since 1998, according to information obtained by Federation of American Scientists from U.S. naval intelligence. The information shows that Russian missile submarine conducted ten patrols in […]

02.17.09 | 3 min read
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Chinese Submarine Patrols Doubled in 2008

Chinese submarines conducted 12 patrols in 2008, the highest ever. . By Hans M. Kristensen Chinese attack submarines sailed on more patrols in 2008 than ever before, according to information obtained by Federation of American Scientists from U.S. naval intelligence. The information, which was declassified by U.S. naval intelligence in response to a Freedom of […]

02.03.09 | 3 min read
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Nuclear Déjà Vu At Carnegie

By Ivan Oelrich and Hans M. Kristensen Only one week before Barack Obama is expected to win the presidential election, Defense Secretary Robert Gates made one last pitch for the Bush administration’s nuclear policy during a speech Tuesday at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. What is the opposite of visionary?  Whatever, that’s the word […]

10.30.08 | 9 min read
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Nuclear Policy Paper Embraces Clinton Era “Lead and Hedge” Strategy

By Hans M. Kristensen The new nuclear policy paper National Security and Nuclear Weapons in the 21st Century published quietly Tuesday by the Defense and Energy Departments embraces the “lead and hedge” strategy of the first Clinton administration for how US nuclear forces and policy should evolve in the future. Yet the “leading” is hard […]

09.25.08 | 8 min read
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