With the 2015 Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference approaching, the question of which nuclear-armed states are acting in accordance with their Article VI obligations is increasingly salient. The United States, despite President Barack Obama’s stated commitment for moving us towards a nuclear weapons free world, is currently at the helm of the largest expansion of funding on nuclear weapons since the fall of the Soviet Union. Absent meaningful reductions by the United States and Russia, who combined possess ~ 95% of the world’s nuclear weapons, the international commitment to nonproliferation & disarmament will be severely weakened.
Find out what $1 trillion is buying the United States and how you can help stop this dangerous march towards a 21st century arms race.
What makes this rapid escalation of spending on nuclear weapons even more irresponsible are the trade-offs that are created through the expansion of our nuclear weapons complex. Recently, National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Administrator Frank Klotz, commenting on the spending planned on nuclear weapons, said “The bill is coming due, and it’s a huge bill.” With spending curtailed on economic and infrastructure development, Cold War era spending on nuclear weapons is out of step with our national priorities.
Recently, the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA) completed a comprehensive overview of the U.S. nuclear weapons complex (Read ANA’s Report: Billion Dollar Boondoggles) that describes the poor stewardship of taxpayer dollars used in “investing” in nuclear weapons. The Government Accountability Office has repeatedly placed NNSA on it’s high risk list for its vulnerability to fraud, waste, and mismanagement. We found that NNSA’s cost estimates are endemically underestimating the financial burden of new nuclear weapons programs to Congress – to a tune of billions and an average miscalculation of 875%.
President Obama’s Administration must stop this ill-advised and dangerous escalation of spending on nuclear weapons. In the most recent budget request from the White House, nuclear weapons program spending greatly increased while essential investments in nonproliferation & disarmament were cut. This irresponsible course of action diminishes our security and strengthens the hands of those seeking to dismantle the international nonproliferation regime.