March 28, 2022

Biden administration kills Trump-era nuclear cruise missile program

Featuring Stacie Pettyjohn

Source: Breaking Defense

Journalist Valerie Insinna

In a rare political win for non-proliferation advocates, the Biden administration has cancelled the Sea-Launched Cruise Missile-Nuclear program, one of the two new nuclear weapons greenlit by the Trump administration.

The Pentagon’s fiscal year 2023 budget request, released today, zeroes out funding planned for the so-called SLCM-N program, according to a senior defense official who spoke to reporters about the spending proposal.

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Stacie Pettyjohn, director of defense programs at the Center for a New American Security, noted that killing either effort would give President Joe Biden a political win — showing progressives that he is willing to reduce nuclear arms without having to make cuts to major efforts like the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent, Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine or B-21 bomber.

“It’s not a tremendous loss, but it is a tangible thing that we are taking away without really cutting into the major acquisition programs,” she said during the February event. “It’s making a sort of gesture in that direction without having to cut off an entire limb.”

Read the full story and more from Breaking Defense.

Authors

  • Stacie Pettyjohn

    Senior Fellow and Director, Defense Program

    Stacie Pettyjohn is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Defense Program at CNAS. Her areas of expertise include defense strategy, posture, force planning, the defense budget, ...