Nuclear Policy News – July 10, 2019

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Top News

Russia to Conclude Testing Phase of RS-28 Sarmat ICBM in 2020
The Diplomat

Blast from the past: The Pentagon’s updated war plan for tactical nukes
Military Times

Thinking About Space Deterrence and China
National Institute for Public Policy

U.S. Nuclear Policy

Air Force anti-jamming efforts get a boost
The Air Force will see two major satellites launched from Florida in late July following the delay of an advanced anti-jamming communications satellite launch in June.

Air Force Says New Nuclear-Armed Cruise Missile for 2030 – Will Stop War
Warrior MavenKris Osborn
The weapon will provide commanders with a wider range of attack options.

US Air Force’s acquisition chief talks new B-52 engines and the future of battle management
Will Roper, the U.S. Air Force’s acquisition executive, wants the service to shift to a faster, more modern approach for buying software and hardware. But that’s easier said than done.

Vice President Pence to visit Vandenberg Air Force Base
Pence will meet with senior officials to discuss space launch activities, space traffic management and ongoing efforts to establish a U.S. Space Force.

East Asia

North Korean nuclear freeze not “end goal,” State Department says
NK News7/9/2019
U.S. Department of State denies Trump administration mulling freeze deal.

Professor faces 219-year prison sentence for sending missile chip tech to China
The Verge7/6/2019
A University of California, Los Angeles professor faces a maximum sentence of 219 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of smuggling chips with military applications to China.

Japan used chemical weapons during war against China and for the first time there’s a military report to prove it
South China Morning Post7/7/2019
The existence of a detailed report documenting the use of chemical weapons by the Imperial Japanese Army in China has been confirmed for the first time, a Japanese historian said Sunday.

Russia/Former Soviet Union/Europe

Russia to Conclude Testing Phase of RS-28 Sarmat ICBM in 2020
The Diplomat7/8/2019
Russia’s newest intercontinental ballistic missile will conclude its testing phase in late 2020, according to a senior Russian government official.

Russia nuclear sub fire could have caused catastrophe: report cites navy official
A fire aboard a top-secret Russian nuclear submarine could have led to a “catastrophe of global proportions” if not for the selfless actions of the crew, a senior navy official was cited by a Russian media outlet as saying.

Russian Orthodox Church considers a ban on blessing weapons of mass destruction
The Salt Lake TribuneMark Bennetts
Last month, a Russian Orthodox Church committee on ecclesiastical law recommended that clergy concentrate on blessing soldiers, rather than weapons.


Blast from the past: The Pentagon’s updated war plan for tactical nukes
Military TimesTodd South
The new plans reflect the modern battlefield where the number of countries with nuclear capabilities is growing rapidly, where asymmetric warfare is increasingly common and where the U.S. military is losing its technological edge over other near-peer military rivals.

Nuclear weapons? Australia has no way to build them, even if we wanted to
The ConversationHeiko Timmers
In his latest book, strategist and defence analyst Hugh White has gone nuclear, triggering a debate about whether Australia should develop and maintain its own nuclear arsenal. But developing and sustaining modern nuclear weapons requires a certain combination of technologies and industries that Australia simply does not have.

ICBM replacement is necessary and affordable
The HillAdmiral James A. “Sandy” Winnefeld, Jr USN (retired)
As the House of Representatives debates the National Defense Authorization Act, few issues will be more important to our nation’s security than providing long-overdue, stable funding to modernize our nuclear deterrent.

Scientific blinders: Learning from the moral failings of Nazi physicists
Bulletin of the Atomic ScientistsTalia Weiss
What drove these atomic scientists to work on nuclear power for an evil regime?

Special Interest

Thinking About Space Deterrence and China
National Institute for Public PolicySteve Lambakis
U.S. space systems are the backbone of the U.S. economy and national security. Chinese counter-space weapon developments promise to make the satellite protection mission ever more challenging. There are significant challenges to deterring China from aggressive behavior in space, and for this reason U.S. policy makers and defense strategists must start planning now for a possible future military confrontation involving China that also may involve military space operations.

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