Despite President Obama's 2009 call for nuclear weapon reductions, and despite the treaty obligations of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty States to negotiate mutual nuclear reductions down to zero, the President’s Budget for FY2015 calls for a tsunami of spending on new nuclear programs. The Congressional Budget Office has projected that these new programs would cost $355 billion over 10 years (up from last year's estimate of $240 billion). And this is in addition to our usual annual nuclear weapons spending. The President’s budget calls for "life extension" for current nuclear weapons, and the design and building of a whole new class of nuclear missiles, bombers, and submarines. This expansion needs to be stopped.
The first wave of this spending tsunami is coming in. These new nuclear expenditures are higher, in inflation-adjusted dollars, than they were at the height of the Cold War. Of particular danger, the B-61 nuclear bomb, currently a ballistic "battlefield" nuclear device, is to undergo a "life extension", which would also give it a guided missile capability, enormously increasing its military threat. These plans are provoking other countries to increase their own nuclear capabilities. Ironically, the truly needed funds for the Global Threat Reduction Initiative, which put nuclear materials worldwide under lock and key, are being cut.
Fortunately, a bill in the Senate, S 2070, and one in the House, HR 4107, call for significant reductions in these unneeded and destabilizing nuclear weapons programs which will start a new arms race and end the hope of finally bringing home some of this money to spend on education, health, energy conversion, and jobs—the true future strength of America.
Urge your Senators to co-sponsor, build support, and vote for S 2070 and your Representative to do the same for HR 4107. Also, ask them to restore full funding for the Global Threat Reduction Initiative.
(202) 224-3121 (Capital switchboard)
Senator or Representative (first & last name)
U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C. 20510
U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. 20515
Photo credit: Florist shop, Buis-les-Baronnies, Provence, Lois Barber 2013