February 20, 2013

Why America Wants to Nuke You First

John Arquilla, Foreign Policy

AP Photo

In 1945, Harry Truman ordered the first atomic bombing of another country; today, Barack Obama reserves the right to mount the world's next nuclear strike -- as have all American presidents since Truman. It is very odd that senior U.S. foreign policy officials, who have devoted most of the past seven decades to trying to control the spread of nuclear weapons, still want Washington to be able to use them first in a pinch. Even President Obama, a supporter of the abolition of all nuclear weapons, wants to be able to fire the first nuclear shot. No wonder North Korea, Iran, and others view efforts to get them to renounce their proliferation programs with much skepticism.

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TAGGED: Nuclear Weapons, United States

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