Home > Uncategorized > NATO Burden Sharing: U.S. Nuclear Bombs To Stay In Germany

NATO Burden Sharing: U.S. Nuclear Bombs To Stay In Germany

RT
September 7, 2012

US nukes to stay in Germany – media

Berlin has decided to drop plans to remove remaining American nuclear weapons from German soil, local media say. The bombs and the German aircraft that can deploy them will be instead upgraded.

The plans would go against the promises Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle made in 2009, when the coalition government was being formed, the report in the Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper says. At the time he pledged to seek the removal of the nuclear stockpile from Germany.

Germany is one of the European NATO members hosting US nuclear weapons as part of the nuclear sharing agreement. It is thought to have between 10 and 20 B61 nuclear bombs stored at the Büchel Air Base. They are a fraction of some 200 American nuclear weapons that were deployed in the country in the Cold War era.

The bombs are meant to be dropped by German Panavia Tornado IDS fighter-bomber jets in case of war. The Bundeswehr is expected to spend around 250 million euro to keep the fleet in service until 2024, the report says.

The bombs themselves are currently undergoing a multibillion refurbishment program. Initially priced at $2 billion, the upgrade is expected to be closer to $6 billion, Spiegel reported online in May. The Pentagon wants to replace the four existing modifications of B61 with a single new one.

One of the key features of the new version is a new tail kit with controllable flaps, which would dramatically increase the bomb’s precision and options for use. Currently the bombs are meant to be parachuted from a speeding aircraft. The change would make the bomb a strategic weapon instead of a tactical one, some military experts say.

The German government gave up plans to get rid of the stockpile at the NATO summit in Chicago in May, the Berliner Zeitung newspaper reported.

Chancellor Angela Merkel and Westerwelle both assented to a joint declaration, which among other things stated that tactical nuclear weapons were a crucial component of the alliance’s capabilities and that the current deployment of the arsenal corresponds to NATO’s deterrence goals.

The move reportedly was taken under pressure from other NATO members concerned with Russia’s stockpile of tactical nuclear weapons and unwilling to give up their arsenals unilaterally.

Russian generals see the nuclear tactical weapons as part of deterrence against possible conventional attack. NATO currently has overwhelming conventional capabilities, while Russia has downsized its non-nuclear armed forces and sees them as a tool to address possible regional conflict rather than a defense against a full-scale war.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Hoarsewhisperer
    September 7, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Russian generals see the nuclear tactical weapons as part of deterrence against possible conventional attack. NATO currently has overwhelming conventional capabilities, while Russia has downsized its non-nuclear armed forces and sees them as a tool to address possible regional conflict rather than a defense against a full-scale war.

    (Can you spell d-e-t-e-r-r-e-n-c-e-?)

    The par above reveals the underlying foolishness in the US arming itself to the teeth with expensive, redundant, WWII technology in the hope that there will be another WWII.
    But there won’t be another WWII because Russia can’t afford one and will be obliged to resort to nuking threats to its security sooner than the Yankees would prefer.
    Apart from anything else, this statement of Russian strategic policy illustrates how the US policy of ‘encirclement’ works in Russia’s favour – by putting a proportion of America’s military assets within easy striking distance of Russia’s short-range defenses – thus freeing up its long-range strike capability to concentrate on targets within the continental USA.
    I’d like to hear some US spin persuasive enough to make this sound like a good idea.

  2. rosemerry
    September 7, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    This warmongering is a terrible danger to us all, a huge waste of resources when all of Europe needs help for normal living, jobs and environmental protection, and a pretence that we have enemies about to attack us and that nukes will help.

  3. Michael
    September 7, 2012 at 10:00 pm

    I think the article should read: “The bombs (nuclear) are meant to be dropped on (Instead of
    “by”-my most sincere hope!) Germany by Panavia Tornado IDS fighter bomber jets in case of war”….
    Justice even delayed is better than never!

  4. Hoarsewhisperer
    September 9, 2012 at 7:54 pm

    If one superimposes the map of US nuclear power plants on the map of population density, one could be forgiven for imagining that the “plumes” created by nuking 25 to 30 US power plants would render the habitat of 60 to 100 million Americans uninhabitable overnight.
    The warmongers should take a deep breath and/or sober up…

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