The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists published a study, on 1 March 2017, which opened as follows:
“The US nuclear forces modernization program has been portrayed to the public as an effort to ensure the reliability and safety of warheads in the US nuclear arsenal, rather than to enhance their military capabilities. In reality, however, that program has implemented revolutionary new technologies that will vastly increase the targeting capability of the US ballistic missile arsenal. This increase in capability is astonishing — boosting the overall killing power of existing US ballistic missile forces by a factor of roughly three — and it creates exactly what one would expect to see, if a nuclear-armed state were planning to have the capacity to fight and win a nuclear war by disarming enemies with a surprise first strike.”
Because the innovations in the super-fuze appear, to the non-technical eye, to be minor, policymakers outside of the US government (and probably inside the government as well) have completely missed its revolutionary impact on military capabilities and its important implications for global security.
This study was co-authored by America’s top three scientists specializing in analysis of weaponry and especially of the geostrategic balance between nations: Hans Kristensen, Matthew McKinzie, and Theodore Postol. Their report continues:
This vast increase in US nuclear targeting capability, which has largely been concealed from the general public, has serious implications for strategic stability and perceptions of US nuclear strategy and intentions.
Russian planners will almost surely see the advance in fuzing capability as empowering an increasingly feasible US preemptive nuclear strike capability — a capability that would require Russia to undertake countermeasures that would further increase the already dangerously high readiness of Russian nuclear forces. Tense nuclear postures based on worst-case planning assumptions already pose the possibility of a nuclear response to false warning of attack. The new kill capability created by super-fuzing increases the tension and the risk that US or Russian nuclear forces will be used in response to early warning of an attack — even when an attack has not occurred.
The authors explain why an accidental start of World War III or global annihilation would be more likely from Russia than from the U.S.:
Russia does not have a functioning space-based infrared early warning system but relies primarily on ground-based early warning radars to detect a US missile attack. Since these radars cannot see over the horizon, Russia has less than half as much early-warning time as the United States. (The United States has about 30 minutes, Russia 15 minutes or less.)
In other words: whereas Trump would have about 30 minutes to determine whether Putin had launched a blitz-first-strike attack, Putin would have less than 15 minutes to determine whether Trump had — and if at the end of that period, on either side, there is no certainty that no blitz-first-strike attack had been launched by the other, then that person would be obligated to launch a blitz attack against the other, upon the assumption that not to do so would result not only in a toxic planet with nuclear winter and universal starvation, but also in a humiliating and scandalous absence of retaliation against that perpetrator, which would be a humiliation on top of an annihilation, and thus a sharing of blame along with the actual perpetrator, which sharing, for whatever term might remain during that passive party’s continued existence, would probably be an unbearable shame and result quickly in suicide, if that national leader’s own surviving countrymen don’t execute him before he kills himself.
Inevitably, the strictly personal morality and self-image of a nation’s leader in that type of situation are factors other than the very public global consequences that will determine the person’s decision; but, with only (at most) 15 minutes to decide on the Russian side, and 30 minutes to decide on the American side, there is an inestimably high chance now, that a nuclear war will terminate the lives of everyone who currently exists and who doesn’t soon die from the ordinary causes before then. Even the most dire projections of the dangers from global warming come nowhere close to matching that danger.
The question, now, then, is: How did the world come to this extraordinarily ominous stage? The co-authors repeatedly refer to the secretiveness at the top of the American government as one essential source, such as “… which has largely been concealed from the general public …” and “… policymakers outside of the US government (and probably inside the government as well) have completely missed …,” and these passages refer to an ordinary phenomenon in conspiracies at the top of a large criminal operation such as corporate criminality, where only a very small circle of individuals, commonly a half-dozen or even less, are made aware of the operation’s chief strategic objective and of the main tactical means that are being put into place so as to execute the plan.
In this particular instance, it wouldn’t include the head of every Cabinet department, nor anything nearly so broad as that; but, clearly, since the key decision, to implement the “super-fuze” on “all warheads deployed on US ballistic missile submarines” was made by Obama, he is the principal person reasonably to be blamed for this situation.
However, Trump as the person who has inherited this situation from his predecessor has, as yet, given no indication at all of reversing and eliminating the now-operative top U.S. strategic objective of conquering Russia. The more time that passes without Trump’s announcing to the public that he has inherited this morally repulsive operation from his predecessor and is removing all of the super-fuses, the more that Trump himself is taking ownership of Obama’s plan.
Typically in such a situation, the leader who has inherited such a plan will be assassinated if he gives any clear indication of an intention to reverse or cancel it (the key insiders are typically obsessive about ‘success’, especially at so late a stage in it); and, so, if Trump were to try to do that, he would almost certainly try to hide that fact until the inherited plan has already become effectively deactivated and no longer a threat.
The key turning-point that led up to the present crisis was the gradual and increasing acceptance, on the American side, of the concept of using nuclear weapons for conquest instead of only for deterrence — the prior system, for deterrence, having been called “MAD” for Mutually Assured Destruction, the idea that if the two nuclear superpowers were to go to war against each other, then the entire world would be destroyed so catastrophically as to make any idea of a ‘winner’ and a ‘loser’ in such a conflict a grotesque distortion of the reality: that reality being mutual annihilation and an unlivable planet. A landmark event in the process of reconceptualizing such a war as being ‘winnable’, was the publication in 2006 of two articles in the two most prestigious journals of international relations, Foreign Affairs and International Security, both formally introducing the concept of “Nuclear Primacy” or the (alleged) desirability for the U.S. to plan a nuclear conquest of Russia.
Until those two articles (both of which were co-authored by the same two authors), any such idea was considered wacky, but since then it has instead been mainstream. As the final link above (the article that’s linked-to immediately before) explains, the source even prior to George W. Bush goes all the way back to 24 February 1990 when his father, then also the U.S. President, secretly initiated the operation ultimately to conquer Russia, and within that article are links to the ultimate source-documents about that origin of the path toward world-ending nuclear war; so, getting to the original causes of the steady progression after 24 February 1990 in the direction of a conquest of Russia by the U.S. (assisted by its allies) can now be addressed by historians, even though only now is it finally being revealed to the public as news, though 27 years after it had actually begun in a very fateful decision by George Herbert Walker Bush, which has already cost American taxpayers trillions of dollars for no good purpose and resulting perhaps in the ghastliest ultimate end.
This article is being submitted for publication to all news-media without charge, in the hope that the current U.S. President will comment publicly upon it, even if only to ridicule it so as to avoid being assassinated for referring to it at all. This is an extremely dangerous time in history, and Donald Trump is now on a very hot seat, which any intelligent and accurately informed person recognizes to be the case. If ever the world needed courageous great leadership, now is the time; because, without that, we might all soon be entering hell. To avoid it, starting now 27 years after the U.S. government initiated this path, would be enormously difficult, but not yet totally impossible. This is where we are at the present time; and, ever since the coup in Ukraine in 2014, the purchases of ‘nuclear-proof’ bunkers have been soaring as a result.
This extreme danger is the new global reality. If the elimination of the threat does not come from the U.S. White House, the culmination of the threat will — regardless of which side strikes first. The decision — either to invade Russia, or else to cancel and condemn America’s decade-plus preparation to do so — can be made only by the U.S. President. If he remains silent about the matter, then Putin can reasonably proceed on the assumption that he’ll have to be the one to strike first. He didn’t place himself in that position; the U.S. regime did. Let’s hope that the U.S. will stand down the threat, now.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.