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Arms control experts slam Trump’s new nuclear policy

13 January 2018 14:17

A plan by the administration of US President Donald Trump to pursue development of new nuclear weaponry and loosen constraints on their use has prompted sharp criticism from arms control experts, who voiced concerns it could raise the risks of nuclear war.

The Trump administration could explicitly leave open the possibility of nuclear retaliation for major non-nuclear attacks, according to a leaked draft policy document published by the Huffington Post website.

The US Defense Department did not comment on the document, saying it did not discuss “pre-decision, draft copies of strategies and reviews.”

“The Nuclear Posture Review has not been completed and will ultimately be reviewed and approved by the President and the Secretary of Defense,” the Pentagon said in a statement.

According to the document, the White House will more readily embrace the role of nuclear weapons and back a costly modernization of the aging US nuclear arsenal.

The new nuclear policy is significantly more hawkish than the posture adopted by the administration of former President Barack Obama, which sought to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in the US military.

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