Nonstrategic nuclear weapons, 2012

By Hans M. Kristensen, Robert S. Norris | September 1, 2012

"Fragile Planet" by dddaag is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Nuclear Notebook: How many nonstrategic nuclear weapons do Russia, the United States, France, Pakistan, and China have?

After two decades of neglect, nonstrategic nuclear weapons are receiving new attention, with the United States and NATO seeking an agreement with Russia on reducing inventories and increasing transparency. At the same time, newer nuclear weapon states are beginning to develop nuclear weapons that appear to be intended for use in scenarios other than those normally envisioned for strategic weapons.

Today, at least five of the world’s nine nuclear weapons states have, or are developing, what appears to meet the definition of a nonstrategic nuclear weapon. Combined, we estimate that these five countries have approximately 2,800 nuclear warheads for delivery by nonstrategic nuclear-capable delivery vehicles…

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The Nuclear Notebook is researched and written by Hans M. Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project with the Federation of American Scientists and Robert S. Norris, a senior fellow with the FAS. The Nuclear Notebook column has been published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists since 1987. The Nuclear Notebook column has been published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists since 1987.

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