Tough Decisions

Air Force Global Strike Command boss Lt. Gen. James Kowalski said on Sept. 13 he “is comfortable” with 1,550 deployed strategic nuclear warheads—the cap under the New START agreement with Russia. However, if the United States decides to pursue further reductions, there are several issues to consider first, including force-structure parity, said Kowalski during a Capitol Hill address that AFA, NDIA, and ROA sponsored. “There is widespread agreement that there are things . . . that have to be thought about. The world we live in today is not a world that is ready for zero nuclear weapons,” he said. For example, human capital, and intellectual and industrial infrastructure all need to be part of the discussion, as well as the more commonly discussed political implications and proper level of nuclear weapons needed to ensure deterrence and assurance, he said.