|German built, Israeli Nuclear Missile Sub|
The American government that pleads poverty when it comes to its social security obligations, is planning to spend more than three-quarters of a trillion dollars over the next ten years on its nuclear weapons industry. And the US is far from alone. In fact, it seems that most of today's nuclear players, including all the insidious ones, are also going for their thermonuclear guns.
"...Russia will spend at least $70bn on delivery systems alone. Other countries including China, India, Israel, France and Pakistan are expected to devote formidable sums on tactical and strategic missile systems.
"For several countries, including Russia, Pakistan, Israel and France, nuclear weapons are being assigned roles that go well beyond deterrence, says the report. In Russia and Pakistan, it warns, nuclear weapons are assigned "war-fighting roles in military planning".
"...Pakistan and India, it warns, appear to be seeking smaller, lighter nuclear warheads so they have a greater range or can be deployed over shorter distances for tactical or "non-strategic" roles. "In the case of Israel, the size of its nuclear-tipped cruise missile enabled submarine fleet is being increased and the country seems to be on course, on the back of its satellite launch rocket programme, for future development of an inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM)," the report notes.
This is a truly terrible time for a rebirth of nuclear weapons technology. The world is in a power transition, something that inevitably gives rise to power vacuums, suspicion and hostility. Many parts of the world are already destabilized, a situation that climate change impacts are forecast to worsen through the 21st century. Three worrisome nuclear powers - Pakistan, India and China - face water stresses dependent on their disputed access to Himalayan headwaters. Pakistan and India going for "quick draw" tactical nukes suitable for border conflicts. Israel with a larger fleet of nuclear missile subs and ICBMs? Even India is developing and deploying its own fleet of nuclear missile subs. Think that's going to help settle their neighbourhoods?
This sounds like a formula for global nuclear paranoia. How many new players will this nuclear rearmament force into the club? Around the world, the people in charge who are steering this course are of a time gone past. They have no vision, they have no solutions. They must be replaced.