Nuclear Policy News

Nuclear Policy News – February 9, 2017

Nuclear Policy News – February 9, 2017

TOP NEWS

Iran Fires Another Missile from Launch Pad
Military News

Russia deploys air defense missiles for massive drills
Military Times

N. Korea’s chief of missile operations absent from public eye, triggers speculations
Yonhap

 

EAST ASIA

S. Korea revises long-term defense reform plan
Yonhap
South Korea's military has revised its long-term defense reform plan to better cope with North Korean threats, including the creation of special units tasked to neutralize key figures and infrastructure should there be clear signs of the imminent use of nuclear weapons.

N. Korea’s chief of missile operations absent from public eye, triggers speculations
Yonhap
North Korea's missile operations commander did not show up for a key military event this week, an unusual absence which some observers linked to the country's alleged preparations for an intercontinental missile (ICBM) launch.

Cables reveal Chinese connection to Iran’s missiles
The Washington Times
China’s backing of Iran’s missile program was detailed in leaked State Department cables made public on the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks. The cables reveal that Chinese firms have provided a range of missile-related goods including specialty steel, accelerometers, ball bearings and gyroscopes.

 

MIDDLE EAST

Iran Fires Another Missile from Launch Pad
Military News
The missile used in Wednesday's launch was a short-range Mersad surface-to-air missile, which impacted 35 miles away, according to a U.S. official. This latest test comes less than a week after the U.S. placed new sanctions on Iran. 

New terms offered for a Turkish MEADS missile-defense system
Defense News
After giving up on an earlier decision to acquire their country’s first long-range anti-missile system from a Chinese contractor, Turkey’s procurement authorities are now mulling over the potential purchase of the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS).

Turkey reveals ‘Bora’ ballistic missile
IHS Jane’s 360
Turkey has made public it has been developing a long-range surface-to-surface missile system called 'Bora' (Storm). The Undersecretariat for Defense Industries stated that the Project 'B' missile system had been developed by Roketsan in order to "meet the long range surface-to-surface missile requirement of the Turkish Land Forces Command through local design and production."

Israeli Military Shoots Down Rockets Fired From Egypt
Associated Press
The military said that its Iron Dome missile defense system shot down several rockets and that no injuries were reported. Rocket attacks on Eilat are relatively rare. Islamic militants in Egypt's lawless Sinai region have been behind a number of such attacks on the city in recent years. It was not immediately clear who fired the rockets Wednesday.

RUSSIA/FSU/EUROPE

Russia deploys air defense missiles for massive drills
Military Times
The maneuvers are the latest in a steady series of war games intended to strengthen the Russian military's readiness. The Defense Ministry said S-300 and S-400 air defense missile systems were involved in the drills Wednesday. 

Russia sends Syria its largest missile delivery to date
Fox News
The shipment of 50 SS-21 short-range ballistic missiles arrived at the Syrian port of Tartus along the Mediterranean Sea in the past two days.

 

SOUTH ASIA

India Denies Pakistan Claim of Building Secret Nuclear City
New York Times
Pakistan on Thursday claimed that its arch rival India is building a "secret nuclear city" to produce thermonuclear weapons as well as develop intercontinental missiles and stockpile nuclear material — allegations that India promptly dismissed as "completely baseless."

 

U.S. NUCLEAR POLICY

US Air Force Glides Toward B-52 Engine Replacement Plan
Defense News
For the past two years, Air Force Global Strike Command has worked with engine manufacturers and financial institutions to put together a business case assessment for replacing the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress’s eight Pratt & Whitney TF33 engines. That assessment shows that an initial investment in new propulsion systems can save maintenance and fuel costs in the long run, but the Air Force’s acquisition wing is still working on the best way to finance the effort.

 

OPINIONS

Trump’s nuclear options: upcoming review casts a wide net
Aaron Mehta, Defense News
Trump directed Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis to “initiate a new Nuclear Posture Review [NPR] to ensure that the United States nuclear deterrent is modern, robust, flexible, resilient, ready, and appropriately tailored to deter 21st-century threats and reassure our allies.” Its wide open language, leaving Mattis with significant leeway over how the study will be run, who will be involved, and even the timetable, all factors that are certain to affect the study's conclusions.

Trump should undo disastrous nuclear policies
Bob Monroe, The Hill
President Trump must immediately issue an executive order making it clear that henceforth, nuclear weapons will be the preeminent foundation of America’s national security. Unsurpassed nuclear weapons strength – not weakness – must be our goal.  The twelve presidents before Obama, six from each party, all established a similar, or stronger, policy.

Iran’s Missile Tests Reveal Weaknesses of UN Security Council Resolution
Olli Heinonen, Real Clear Defense
Officials in Iran have vowed to continue testing ballistic missiles and dismissed claims that its program is a cover to develop long-range projectiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads. The United States and its allies should demand that Tehran uphold its obligation not to conduct tests of nuclear-capable ballistic or cruise missiles.

Trump tweets a red line for North Korea
George Will, Washington Post
On Jan. 1 Kim Jong Un, said that his regime was at “the final stage in preparations to test-launch” an ICBM. On Jan. 2, Donald Trump tweeted: “It won’t happen!” He thereby drew a red line comparable to his predecessor’s concerning Syrian chemical weapons. So Trump should be prepared to threaten actions that would prevent North Korea from learning from its test, actions such as shooting down the missile.

 

SPECIAL INTEREST

The Future of Nuclear Weapons Will Be Networked
Flight Global
When the US Air Force’s Northrop Grumman B-21 bomber talks to the long-range standoff (LRSO) weapon, it will mark the first time a nuclear cruise missile communicates digitally with its delivery aircraft.

 

 

 

Monday's Top Nuclear Policy News

PACOM chief Harris arrives in South Korea as North likens joint war game to ‘pouring gasoline on fire’
Japan Times

Iran: Top priority to protect nuclear deal from US
Al Jazeera

Talk of ‘Preventative War’ rises in White House over North Korea
New York Times

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