White House Overhauls Nuclear Strategy

New focus on arms control, nonproliferation
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 1, 2010 9:34 AM CST
NATANZ, IRAN - APRIL 9: A general view of the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility, is seen on April 9, 2007, 180 miles south of Tehran, Iran. Iran is a major consideration in Obama's nuclear strategy.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – As the White House hammers out details of Obama's nuclear strategy, it's clear the president is making an about-face on many Bush policies, but not it's clear whether his approach will be dovish enough to please his base. The new strategy will commit the US to not developing any new nuclear weapons, but will beef up new non-nuclear defenses and update America's weapons labs.

Obama is scrapping plans for a deep-burrowing nuclear warhead, saying that he can't deter other countries from seeking new weapons if the US is seeking them itself. But the White House is still weighing whether to declare deterrence of nuclear attack the sole purpose of the US nuclear program, as the left wing of the Democratic party wants, or to leave open the option of nuclear retaliation against threats from biological or chemical weapons.

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