March 17, 1999
At the same time that Russia has been building an enormous war machine and making war preparations, the US has been slashing its strategic nuclear arsenal, mothballing ships, and eliminating entire military battle groups.
Equally suicidal, Clinton has cut troop levels in the US Army by 40% and the Air Force, Navy and Marines by over 30%. Clinton has also tied up many of America’s best troops in endless and futile foreign quagmires, including "peace-keeping” in Bosnia and the Middle East, humanitarian projects in Africa, and drug interdiction in Latin America. Few troops are left to defend the United States.
Clinton also been throwing away America’s limited arsenal of cruise missiles. These missiles were primarily built to deliver strategic nuclear warheads deep into Russia. Russia is believed to be vulnerable to such weapons because they evade radar and fly low to the ground.
ABC News reports that before Operation Desert Fox (our recent, undeclared war on Iraq) the US had just 239 cruise missiles left. In the first few days of Desert Fox Clinton ordered that over 90 of these precious cruise missiles be fired on Iraq against what has proven to be mainly empty warehouses and radar installations that were rebuilt in days. As this article is being written, additional cruise missiles have been launched in continuing confrontations with Iraq.
Each missile expended in Iraq is one less that can be used to defend the US -- and at the current rate of expenditure, the US military would have none left in less than 30 days. Why is Bill Clinton squandering these crucial weapons? This question becomes even more serious when one considers that the US is not currently making cruise missiles and has no plans to do so.
And this is just one way that, under Clinton, America is being stripped of its ability to defend itself. Never before has the US been so ill-prepared to defend its own territory and citizens. Here are the chilling facts:
1. The United States has practically no civil defense system to protect its citizens from a biological, chemical or nuclear attack.
2. The United States has no anti-ballistic missile system to protect against incoming missiles.
3. US defense spending has been dramatically reduced, from about 28 percent of the federal budget in 1988 by almost half, to 17 percent today. Former Secretary of Defense, Casper Weinberger, states in his book The Next War:
"...the United States has embarked on a massive disarmament. Since 1985, military budgets have declined 35%. Spending on research and development has been slashed by 57%, and procurement of newly produced weapons by a whopping 71%.”
4. US Naval forces have been slashed. These forces are vital for protecting the US against foreign threats such as Mid-Eastern terrorism and potential attacks on allies like Taiwan and South Korea. Today the Navy only has 336 ships compared to over 600 in 1991. That’s the lowest number of ships since the late 1930’s.
More frightening is the fact that US naval surface ships have been stripped of their tactical nuclear weapons. Even though the US Navy is still much larger than Russia’s or China’s, without nuclear weapons the US fleets are sitting ducks for Russian and Chinese nuclear weapons.
5. The critical balance of nuclear weapons between Russia and the United States has tilted in Russia’s favor. If intelligence estimates are accurate, the US and Russia share an almost equal number of strategic nuclear weapons, but Russia has a huge advantage in tactical nuclear weapons.
The Clinton administration has systematically destroyed the US stockpile of tactical nuclear weapons. Under Clinton, the total number of tactical nukes has dropped from approximately 20,000 weapons in 1988 to a few thousand today. And every day, under Clinton’s orders, the military destroys more tactical nuclear weapons.
Even with these cuts, the Clinton administration is still not happy, and has pushed the Pentagon to seek unilateral cuts well below the current Start I floor of 6,000 strategic weapons.
6. US military preparedness is at the lowest level in 50 years. On March 20, 1998, the General Accounting Office reported to Congress on the preparedness of the five of the Army’s ten divisions that would deploy in the second wave of an overseas war. The results were grim:
# 1st Infantry Division -- the division’s 1st brigade had only 56% of the personnel needed to fill its armored vehicles. Many brigades were only partially filled or had no personnel at all assigned to them.
# 25th Infantry Division -- 52 of 162 infantry squads were "minimally filled or had no personnel assigned.”
# 1st Armored Division -- only 16 of the unit’s 116 tanks had full, battle-qualified four-man crews.
# 4th Infantry Division -- 13 of 54 squads in the divisions engineer brigade either had no personnel assigned or fewer personnel that required.
7. America is paying for Russia’s re-armament. Under programs like Nunn-Lugar, the US has paid Russia billions to dismantle nuclear warheads because Russia said it did not have the money to pay for it (odd, since they have plenty of money to build new missiles, aircraft carriers, and submarines). By funding these expensive warhead dismantling programs for Russia’s obsolete weapons, the US has enabled the Russians to divert millions of dollars to building new weapons.
8. President Clinton has unilaterally changed more than four decades of US defense policy of "launch on warning.” Under a secret Clinton directive -- known as a Presidential Decision Directive or PDD -- issued in November of 1997, the United States would accept a first strike and only retaliate after millions of our citizens had been killed.
Some of the details of the PDD were leaked to the Washington Post (12/7/97). The Post reported that the Clinton administration was unilaterally changing America’s nuclear defense posture. Clinton’s PDD directed the US military to no longer plan to win a nuclear war with Russia.
Just weeks after the Washington Post report, on December 23, Robert Bell gave an interview to Arms Control Today. Bell, senior director for defense policy and arms control at the National Security Council, helped draft the PDD.
Bell revealed more astounding details of the PDD and Clinton’s new policy:
"In this PDD we direct our military forces to continue to posture themselves in such a way as to not rely on launch on warning -- to be able to absorb a nuclear strike and still have enough force surviving to constitute credible deterrence,” Bell said.
Bell continued, "Our policy is to confirm that we are under nuclear attack with actual detonations before retaliating.”
In other words, Clinton is willing to wait until American cities, military installations, and our vulnerable land-based ICBMs are devastated before counterattacking. If, God forbid, such a surprise attack was launched, most of the US’s strategic weapons would be destroyed and there would be little left to retaliate with.
Clinton’s new launch policy is an invitation for Russia to attack. With the US prevented from launching on warning, a Russian first strike could wipe out two of the three legs of America’s strategic defense triad: land-based missiles and strategic bombers.
At any given time, 6 of America’s 18 ballistic missile submarines are in port and would probably be destroyed in a Russian first strike under the Clinton doctrine. All that would be left to defend America would be 12 ballistic submarines with 180 megatons of warheads. That’s over less than 50% of the 400 megatons required under MAD to deter Russia. [MAD refers to the policy of Mutually Assured Destruction, a policy that kept America safe in the nuclear age.]
Given Russia’s missile defense system, modernized weapons, and vast system of underground shelters, it is easy to see why Russia might find launching a first strike against America in 1999 tempting and any loses they would suffer "acceptable.”
Russia could destroy every major American city and military target, and suffer only limited retaliation against its own cities even if America fired every surviving nuclear weapon. After America launched it’s handful of surviving missiles, Russia would still have tens of thousands of weapons in their arsenal, making them the only military superpower on earth and the world’s likely rulers.
Further evidence that Clinton has diabolically sought to undermine America’s nuclear arsenal, are his numerous proposals to "de-alert” US nuclear forces. Clinton claims that the real risk of war is from the US accidentally launching nuclear weapons. To prevent such an "accident,” the Washington Times reports that the Clinton administration plans on "removing the integrated circuit boards from ICBM’s and storing them hundred of miles away, taking the warheads off the MX missile or possibly the Minuteman ICBM’s, welding shut the missile hatches of some submarines, and doubling the number of orders a hard-to-communicate submarine would have to receive before it could launch a missile.”
The purpose of these changes would be increase the time to launch a weapon "from minutes, to hours or even days.” The truth is that in a nuclear war an unlaunched weapon may never be launched.
Since Clinton can make such policy changes by issuing a secret PDD, these dangerous moves can be made without informing the public or Congress. There are some indications that, in fact, Clinton has taken steps to make it more difficult for our submarines to launch their missiles.
9. America’s land-based Missiles are vulnerable. The Defense Department estimates that Russia would need only need to fire about 15 percent of its ICBM’s to destroy two-thirds to 85 percent of US silos. In contrast, Peter Vincent Pry, a former CIA analyst, reports that Russia’s ICBM’s are "in harder silos and on mobile launchers” -- making them less vulnerable to an American counterattack.
10. The United States has not sanctioned Russia for the breaking the ABM treaty and many other arms control treaties we have signed with them -- including bans on biological and chemical weapons, weapons modernization, and construction of vast underground bunkers.
Why hasn’t the Clinton Administration made receipt of aid from the US, IMF and the World Bank (which are controlled by the US), conditional upon Russia demilitarization or at least their abiding by the treaties they have signed? Why does the US and UN continue to pour tens of billions of dollars into Russia while they are building a vast war machine and apparently preparing for war?
11. Foreign deployment of troops leaves the US vulnerable to foreign military occupation. US troops are currently deployed in some 160 countries, with large deployments in Bosnia and the Mid-East.
Nyquist argues that foreign deployment is an ominous sign, since the United States would not have an army to protect the United States proper.
Since Nyquist made those comments, President Clinton has sent tens of thousands of US troops to the Mid-east, along with most of our naval forces and strategic bombers. This is extremely dangerous, since by deploying our strategic bombers overseas, they are cut-off from their nuclear weapons and are sitting ducks for a Russian attack.