Why the United States should negotiate a ban on naval tactical nuclear weapons
Malloy, Todd Webster
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The naval tactical nuclear weapons that the US Navy has in storage neither provide adequate deterrence nor increased warfighting capability. If the US and the USSR eliminated these weapons the US Navy would be in a more dominant position compared to the Soviets. With both the US and USSR announcing unilateral removal of their tactical nuclear weapons from naval units, while at the same time maintaining them in storage, the US has tacitly agreed to a ban on those weapons without making any provisions for verifying Soviet compliance. This is not a good situation, all the drawbacks associated with these weapons remain, and none of the benefits of removing them from the inventory have been realized. As long as tactical nuclear weapons still exist, the costs for maintaining, storing, securing and training on these weapons will continue to be incurred. Moreover, in the present situation of unverified agreement, the Soviets still have access to non-strategic naval nuclear weapons. There is no assurance that some of those weapons will not find their way aboard a Soviet warship during unsettled times in the USSR. Those issues can be resolved if the US seeks a mutually verifiable treaty with the USSR completely banning naval tactical nuclear weapons.
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