Author Topic: Once known as America's 'ace in the hole,' US nuclear missiles are now a force in distress  (Read 272 times)

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Offline Rapunzel

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Offline Olivia

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Offline EC

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That was accepted orthodoxy during the Cold War, when the fear of nuclear Armageddon was ever-present.

But that day is past

Wonder why that day is past? Look no further than the paragraphs above those two lines.

If it were just the 7, a draw down might be acceptable. They have faced off against each other for long enough to respect that any attack will draw immediate and automatic reprisals.

The third generation nuclear powers don't understand that in their very bones yet.
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Offline Chieftain

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I'm pretty sure that the Air Force still maintains a ready nuclear "ground alert" force as well as the ICBM force.  We also still have the SSBN leg of the nuclear triad...there are still Ohio class boomers prowling about the oceans and they are probably more cost efficient and secure than the other two legs.

At least they finally decommissioned the last Titan I silos...those were indeed ticking timebombs and it took one exploding in the silo at Damascus Arkansas in 1980 and dumping the megaton-range nuclear warhead into a ditch (leaving it dirty but undamaged) before anyone decided they were just too risky to keep on alert much longer. 

The Air Force needs to set their sights much higher....an orbital strike capability would be handy, and it would not hurt to have the Navy develop some sort of sub-orbital hop vessel capable of delivering Marines anywhere on the planet.  The Air Force looked at kinetic energy weapons before, and dismissed them in favor of nuclear weapons and expensive missile and control systems. 

If we had a good KEW delivery system, Iran could not build a uranium enrichment facility deep enough to protect it.  You really don't need an enormous warhead either.  Move a BB fast enough and the energy it delivers when it hits something solid is just amazing.  And unlike a nuke, when a KEW hits it delivers all of its energy straight down, perfect for digging out deep facilities the first time.  And of course you don't want to be within 1000 miles of it when it hits......

 :beer:



Offline EC

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I'm pretty sure that the Air Force still maintains a ready nuclear "ground alert" force as well as the ICBM force.  We also still have the SSBN leg of the nuclear triad...there are still Ohio class boomers prowling about the oceans and they are probably more cost efficient and secure than the other two legs.

At least they finally decommissioned the last Titan I silos...those were indeed ticking timebombs and it took one exploding in the silo at Damascus Arkansas in 1980 and dumping the megaton-range nuclear warhead into a ditch (leaving it dirty but undamaged) before anyone decided they were just too risky to keep on alert much longer. 

The Air Force needs to set their sights much higher....an orbital strike capability would be handy, and it would not hurt to have the Navy develop some sort of sub-orbital hop vessel capable of delivering Marines anywhere on the planet.  The Air Force looked at kinetic energy weapons before, and dismissed them in favor of nuclear weapons and expensive missile and control systems. 

If we had a good KEW delivery system, Iran could not build a uranium enrichment facility deep enough to protect it.  You really don't need an enormous warhead either.  Move a BB fast enough and the energy it delivers when it hits something solid is just amazing.  And unlike a nuke, when a KEW hits it delivers all of its energy straight down, perfect for digging out deep facilities the first time.  And of course you don't want to be within 1000 miles of it when it hits......

 :beer:

It was commented on in another thread on here (SPQR posted it, but can't find it) that the strategic bomber command has one advantage the other two legs don't. They are visible when they take off, and can be recalled at will. Sometimes you want to show your irritation publicly. Like a cat fluffing up and showing claws. Its telling you to stand down - or else.

Rods from God would be the ultimate deterrent, but they suffer the same problem as land and sub based missiles. You can't stop them and they are hard to see coming. So whoever gave the order to drop one would have to be 100% sure it was justified and justifiable.
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