Satellite images appearing to show Russia beefing up its military presence in the Arctic have emerged just days after three of Moscow’s nuclear ballistic missile submarines smashed through the polar region in a show of strength. The images show the Russian military has been rebuilding and expanding numerous facilities across the Arctic in recent years. From revamping runways to deploying additional surveillance and air defence assets, the satellite images reveal a continuous effort to expand Moscow’s capabilities in the polar region.
Daily Mail 5th April 2021 read more »
On March 16, the United Kingdom announced it was significantly raising a self-imposed cap on its overall nuclear stockpile, from a previous target of 180 warheads by the mid-2020s to a new cap of 260. The decision was outlined in the United Kingdom’s Integrated Review, a landmark strategic update, which also said the country will no longer declare the size of its operational warhead stockpile (previously 120), or the numbers of warheads and operational missiles deployed on submarines (previously 40 and no more than 8, respectively). A previous review in 2015 had left open the possibility of a future change in nuclear posture, although the vaguely phrased caveat was not much noticed at the time. In essence, the United Kingdom is now reserving the right to deploy configurations of warheads on its ballistic-missile submarines that add up to significantly more nuclear explosive power than the previous limits allowed. An initial blanching of faces—and dismay about the reversal of two decades of progress towards a smaller and more transparent UK arsenal—has given way to the obvious question: Why?
Bulletin of Atomic Scientists 2nd April 2021 read more »