Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Make Cuts, But Don't Cut MY Stuff!

It never fails...
Wait a Minute, Man: Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) called on Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to ensure that the Minuteman III ICBM force is not eliminated as one of the moves that Pentagon officials might feel compelled to make to deal with potential budget cuts up to $100 billion annually over the next 10 years. Conrad wrote Panetta after Panetta told lawmakers earlier this month that such steep budget reductions might force DOD to "eliminate [the] ICBM leg of triad," among the many drastic actions that might be unavoidable. Getting rid of the ICBMs would provide an estimated $8 billion in savings, said Panetta. But such thinking is alarming, asserted Conrad. "It's a shock to hear the Pentagon say that the ICBM is a good place to find short-term savings," he wrote in his Nov. 18 letter to Panetta. "This total reversal of our long-held and successful nuclear deterrent strategy would create unnecessary strategic danger; moreover, it does not make fiscal sense," stated Conrad. Accordingly, "I ask that you protect the 420-missile and 450-silo ICBM force from cuts outside the arms control process, and refrain from considering our nation's most cost-effective and stabilizing nuclear deterrent," he underscored.
That's from the Usual USAF Source, of course.  I agree with Senator Conrad in principle but his credibility is somewhat diminished by the fact the majority of the nation's ICBMs are based in NoDak.  When I was stationed up that way we used to joke that if NoDak seceded from the union they'd be the world's third largest nuclear power.  That wasn't a joke, actually... it's entirely true if one considers the nuclear-armed B-52s at Minot along with the 150 Minuteman silos scattered all over North Dakota.


  1. A Triad is a 60's idea29 November, 2011 23:18

    This really pisses me off! I mean come on - these rockets will NEVER be used, and the warhead costs as much as an F-22 to maintain. Nukes are expensive shit Maynard!

    I am not an anti nuclear flower child, but these rockets are not even targeted any longer. They sit in a third state alert. That is, if a maintenance problem develops, it might be weeks before it is ready for tertiary alert again.

    Nuclear sub launched missiles are the way to go.

    The Minuteman is a ballistic missile. A ballistic missile is about the lowest tech thing next to a sling-shot.

    Take the money here, and invest a billion of it in hypervelocity missiles that are non-ballistic.

    Conrad is anti-American!

  2. Maybe we could have a huge yard sale and sell them to Iran. Or Pakistan. Or Venezuela!

  3. Triad: Let's HOPE those things will never be used. But they could be used for hardened targets, like some nuclear enrichment facilities I've heard about. Not with their current warheads, of course... but with bunker-busters.

    Moogie: Hush yore mouth! You'll give The One ideers.

  4. There may be a time in the future when the M3 force will have to be reduced, but not now. Threats still exist.

    The B-52, SSBNs, and M3 continue to be a strong and visible deterent.


Just be polite... that's all I ask.