Nuclear Strategy Project (1992 – 2003)

nsplogo-frontThe Nuclear Strategy Project is a public education project that examines the status and development of nuclear policy and doctrine in the United States and other nuclear-armed and nuclear-aspiring countries.

Through publication of hard-to-get information about nuclear weapons and nuclear strategy, the project aspires to increase government accountability and empower those who argue for true reform of nuclear strategy and much deeper cuts in nuclear weapons.

Project director Hans M. Kristensen, who analyzes and publishes declassified documents obtained through the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, co-authors the World Nuclear Forces appendix to the SIPRI Yearbook and the Nuclear Notebook column in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

The items listed in the bar below provide links to groups of documents about specific aspects of nuclear weapons and nuclear policy.

(September 2002)
“Preemptive posturing
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

(May 27, 2002)
12 Million Could Die at Once in an India-Pakistan Nuclear War
The New York Times

Nuclear Strategy

1979 CINCPAC China Assessment

China attacked Vietnam on February 17, 1979, but quickly announced on March 5 that it would withdraw and completed the withdrawal on March 16. The aggression and the abrupt pull-back reflected serious conflicts with the Chinese leadership. Chinese Vice Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping had previously spoken of Vietnamese “small hegemonism” as merely “making trouble,” but […]

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1980 CINCPAC China Assessment

China did not feature prominently in the U.S. threat assessment for 1980. Focus was on the Soviet build-up, the crisis in Iran, and efforts to bring political stability to the Korean peninsula following the assassination of South Korea’s president in 1979. Instead, the normalization of U.S.-China relations in January 1979, “greatly influenced the strategic situation […]

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1981 CINCPAC China Assessment

One of the most important new developments was the launching of China’s first nuclear-powered ballistic missiles submarine. Designated the “Xia” class by the West, the new submarine had been under development for about 20 years and was equipped with 12 launch tubes for ballistic missiles (the designated JULANG-1 missile did not become operational until a […]

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1982 CINCPAC China Assessment

After a pause in 1981, China resumed nuclear testing in 1982 with an underground explosion in October. Overall, nuclear forces continued to evolve with 10 ICBM sites reported including 9-20 launchers, and 64 shorter-range surface-to-surface missile (IRBM/MRBM) sites like the previous year. The number of ICBM launchers represented an increase over the previous year, although […]

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1983 CINCPAC China Assessment

China conducted two underground nuclear test explosions during the year, and four new ICBM sites were reported, bringing the total to 14. The number of ICBM launchers, however, remained at 9-20. The number of shorter-range ballistic missile (IRBM/MRBM) launch sites and launchers remained unchanged compared with 1982. On the Korean situation, CINCPAC continued to stress […]

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The Strategic Advisory Group (SAG)

The Strategic Advisory Group (SAG) is one of the most important advisory groups to the Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Strategic Command (CINCSTRAT). In developing the nation’s strategic war plans, CINCSTRAT leans on the Strategic Advisory Group (SAG) to provide background and advice on scientific, technical, and policy issues. Although studies performed by the SAG do not formally […]

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Matrix of Deterrence Report on CD

New Report and FOIA Documents on CD-ROM Get the Matrix of Deterrence report and six U.S. Strategic Command force structure studies on CD-ROM. How to order: Mail $15 check with clear return address to: The Nautilus Institute 125 University Avenue Berkeley, CA 94710-1616 U.S.A. Orders from overseas locations (fx. Europe and Asia) must add $10 […]

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Defense Nuclear Agency: US Nuclear Weapons Policy Toward China 1985-1995

In February 1981, the Defense Nuclear Agency (DNA) completed a study of US nuclear weapons policy toward China in the period 1985 through 1995. The study, which was completed about eight months before President Reagan signed National Security Defense Document (NSDD)-13 which led to China being removed from SIOP planning, found that the concepts used […]

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China in US Nuclear War Planning

China is a secondary adversary in U.S. nuclear planning. The relatively limited size of Chinese nuclear forces means that far fewer U.S. nuclear forces are assigned to strike options against facilities in China compared with Russia. The methodology and principles that guide U.S. nuclear targeting against the two countries, however, are largely the same. China […]

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Japan and Strategic Nuclear Submarines

The Japanese government may have planted false rumors in 1969 about U.S. intensions to send strategic nuclear submarines to Okinawa, according to this telegram from the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo. In the telegram, the Embassy speculates that, “it is conceivable GOJ [Government of Japan] is deliberately playing around on this subject for purpose [of] loosening […]

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