posted on Nov, 12 2006 @ 10:34 PM
Does anyone with military knowledge have a time estimate for a U.S. response to a surprise nuclear attack?
The big question will be chain of command. Stratcomm still has independent key-turn authorized centers in Offut I believe but theoretically, you
could get a >
I'm talking a full-out attack, maybe with subs parked off our shores.
Very unlikely. SOSUS and other systems would detect the sortieing of however many boats the Russians have left as well as their progress across the
Atlantic. There would be _very_ little 'Red October' gamesmanship here, a call would be made and if no turn-around was issued, we would park attack
boats off their baffles and give them a good taste of active ping every two minutes, doors open, from the moment they arrived within a 1,000 miles of
OTOH, Osama has the fatwah 'endorsement' of a Pakistani mullah for up to a 10 million person mass casualty even and thus that kind of a threat is
the most likely, using Norkian or Pak nukes on Iranian TBM rocket technology off a neutral-country hijacked container ship to avoid the 'only five
yards in the whole world that are so capable' identifiable SSBN threat problem.
Would we be able to respond?
Yes. Without Looking Glass always airborne, the chain of command would take awhile to dekink from the deliberately 'codes off boats' level but in
any event a single Sub (20 missiles, 3 warheads each = 60 aimpoints) could not fully interdict even our land based force assets and most assuredly not
all of our political/economic ones.
I guess the more important question is, how would we respond? Surely we wouldn't know who attacked us. The most likely: Russia or China. Would the
U.S. simply commit to total nuclear release?
MAD doesn't allow for much else but the problem for either (still largely totalitarian) state is that they cannot afford to take a lot of
decapitation damage without being ruined completely. There are about 10 key, 'countervalue' target sites in each country, the loss of all of which
would be devastating and permanent in terms of generateable income at a subsistence level.
And while we would also be forever crippled as a superpower; we would survive the resulting turmoil long enough to reestablish connectivity and launch
authorization to make it happen.
I love my country, but I know most of the world doesn't (and I don't lay all the blame at Bush's feet). Does anyone think this is plausible...get
us when we're least expecting it? Or, do we have capabilities that are unknown (i.e. tracking radar, secret counter-weapons)? Any thoughts are
The problem with a graduated response is that it creates a feeling that nuclear wars are meant to be tit-for-tat enterred into on a level of
'possible political deescalation'. Unfortunately, the only people this benefits are those who are willing to generate chaos without certain
victory, particularly as undeclared assassins employing unconventional launch capabilities.
All of our simulations show that once the threshold is crossed, nuclear warfare rapidly degenerates to a _purely military solution_ (execute the
warplan and see 'who's next' on an A-B-C basis of IMMEDIATE retaliation) and for this to most effectively work; we need a declared, NCA redundant,
ability to command a nuclear exchange outside the political loop.
I'm not sure we have it.
Thus changes in our warfighting posture relative to the 'Crimson Tide' scenario, the retirement of Looking Glass and soon, Cheyenne Mountain, can
all be seen as retrograde steps that encourage decapitation strikes on a limited level 'what's next' basis of political gambitry.
Which is not the direction you want to be taking a force which is nation specific and highly centralized through a three tier (NORAD/Football/Flights)
moated code silo activation scheme.