US Mulls Increased Deployment of Nuclear Weapons Amid Rising Threats.

The now-deactivated Titan II nuclear intercontinental ballistic missile.

The US has floated the idea of fielding more strategic nuclear weapons in the future to deter growing threats from Russia, China, and other adversaries.

Speaking at an arms control event last week, National Security Council official Pranay Vaddi said Moscow and Beijing’s rejection of nuclear arsenal limitation highlights the increased need to employ a more competitive approach to prepare for these threats.

He further stated that with the absence of an agreement, more nuclear weapons may be required to effectively deter adversaries and protect the American people and allies.

“We may reach a point in the coming years where an increase from current deployed numbers is required. We need to be fully prepared to execute if the president makes that decision,” Vaddi explained.

At present, the US observes a limit of 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads as stipulated in a 2010 treaty with Russia.

Moscow has already suspended its participation in the agreement because of Washington’s support for Ukraine.

At Breakneck Pace’
In 2023, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said he believed there was no need to increase the size of America’s nuclear arsenal to deter the combined forces of Russia, China, and other rivals.

He also announced that the US will abide by the nuclear weapons limits set by its treaty with Russia until 2026.

But Vaddi pointed out that these adversaries are all expanding and diversifying their nuclear arsenals “at a breakneck pace.”

China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran are reportedly “cooperating and coordinating with each other in ways that run counter to peace and stability, threaten the US, our allies and our partners, and exacerbate region[al] tensions.”

Last month, Moscow fueled nuclear war concerns after President Vladimir Putin ordered his military to hold nuclear weapons drills near Ukraine.

Deactivation of the Titan II began in 1982 at the 390th SMW. The 381st SMW followed, and finally, in 1987, twenty-four years after its initial deployment, the Titan II program came to an end when the 308th SMW was deactivated. From liftoff to target, the flight time was 30 minutes.