Can America Afford a New Nuclear Weapons Buildup?

Even as the Pentagon budget soars toward $1 trillion per year and President Joe Biden is seeking a $100 billion-plus emergency spending package that includes more military aid to Ukraine and Israel, a new congressional commission has suggested spending even more. This time the money would go toward a dangerous and unnecessary nuclear weapons buildup that could devour huge quantities of tax dollars for years to come.

Paying for nuclear overkill

The panel goes by the rather intimidating name of the Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States. It wants a future president to increase or replace virtually every element of America’s nuclear arsenal, from nuclear-armed missiles and submarines to new nuclear warheads.

Our current stockpile of over 5,000 nuclear weapons is enough to end life as we know it several times over. The commission’s proposals would represent a textbook case of nuclear overkill.

At a recent Senate hearing on the commission’s report, only a handful of members raised questions about what its recommendations would cost, including Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). Amazingly, the commission co-chairs not only couldn’t say, but acknowledged that they hadn’t even tried to make an estimate — at a time when the national debt is over $33 trillion.

Read the full piece in Tribune News Service.