Non-Nuclear ICBM’s Update III

Wiki news and others are reporting on Donald Rumsfeld’s recent urging of using ICBM’s with conventional war-heads. You’ve been reading it here since April, but essentially this sets up the capability to strike Iran’s nuclear enrichment factories fully, it gives us the capability to hit UBL next time he’s sighted in Darkot or Waziristan.

From Wikipedia, please note the links in the article are to Wikipedia.

August 28, 2006

The Pentagon is considering replacing the nuclear warheads on some ballistic missiles with conventional munitions so that they can be used for “pre-emptive” strikes against alleged terrorists, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told reporters after a meeting with Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov.

“If either of our countries or friends and allies were threatened at some number of years into the future with a weapon of mass destruction or a capability that was that lethal, I think any president, whether of Russia or the United States, would like to have available a conventional weapon that could attack that target swiftly and accurately and precisely and not feel that the only thing they had might be a nuclear weapon, which they would not want to use.”, Rumsfeld said. He urged Russia to consider the idea too, but Ivanov said a pre-emptive strike was not the only solution.

The Pentagon has considered such strategies before. In February 2003 a similar plan was suggested, and in May 2006 it was recommended that Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missiles (SLBMs) be used for such a purpose. Critics wondered what the risks would be for setting off accidental nuclear war: it would be impossible for another nation to tell whether a Trident II or Minuteman III launch was conventional — or nuclear-armed until it had actually detonated.

So, let’s suppose that Rummy is really talking to the Russians in Fairbanks, Alaska about the protocol we would use to inform Russia, China, Britain, France, Pakistan, and India of the non-nuclear launch beforehand. Here’s the Reuters story. The part I don’t know, and would like to hear from others about is whether our ICBM’s can tote a MOAB or Daisy Cutter? We know there is speculation that they could tote tungsten as well.

Thanks to Lizardoid Sailordude, here’s a pointer to the outfit that will coordinate the strikes, looks like a great place to work and they have open billets.

One thought on “Non-Nuclear ICBM’s Update III”

  1. They could also be used in the case of special high value (usually mobile) targets being spotted by satelite or unarmed UAV or other source.

    It many cases it would be alot quicker (less chance for the target to move on) to launch a non-nuke ICBM then to scamble jets.

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