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The Corner

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Disarmer-in-Chief



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According to today’s New York Times, it took over a year and 150 meetings to translate Pres. Barack Obama’s vision of a nuclear-weapons-free world into a policy prescription known as the Nuclear Posture Review. Evidently, it took that much time and that much bureaucratic thrashing to wear down opposition from within the Obama administration to the only practical effect such a vision can have: disarming the United States.

Most Americans will be horrified that President Obama is compromising our deterrent to chemical and biological attacks on this country. Our allies will also be troubled by his aspiration to eliminate U.S. tactical nuclear weapons in Europe. Foes and friends alike will be bemused by his assertion that such steps will, as the Times paraphrased it, “create incentives for countries to give up any nuclear ambitions.” In fact, none — not one — of the other nuclear states or the obvious wannabes has evinced any interest in abandoning such “ambitions.”

I believe that the most alarming aspect of the Obama denuclearization program, however, is its explicit renunciation of new U.S. nuclear weapons — an outcome that required the president to overrule his own defense secretary. Even if there were no new START treaty, no further movement on the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, and no new wooly-headed declaratory policies, the mere fact that the United States will fail to reverse the steady obsolescence of its deterrent — and the atrophying of the skilled workforce needed to sustain it — will ineluctably achieve what is transparently President Obama’s ultimate goal: a world without American nuclear weapons.

Frank J. Gaffney Jr. was responsible for U.S. nuclear weapons policy in the Reagan Defense Department. He is currently president of the Center for Security Policy and host of the nationally syndicated program, Secure Freedom Radio.



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