Rebeccah L. Heinrichs, a contributing editor at Providence, is a fellow at Hudson Institute where she provides research and commentary on a variety of international security issues and specializes in deterrence and counter-proliferation. She is also the vice-chairman of the John Hay Initiative’s Counter-proliferation Working Group and the original manager of the House of Representatives Bi-partisan Missile Defense Caucus.
If Russia wanted a U.S. president who would follow the Obama administration’s patterns of concessions and refusal to respond to Russian aggression, it would have been hoping for and preparing for a Hillary Clinton presidency.
In the second part of our conversation with Rebeccah Heinrichs, we cover why the United States should have nuclear weapons, the need for missile defense, how just war theory would critique the mutual assured destruction (MAD) strategy, and more.
The United States must pursue policies that ensure the U.S. nuclear deterrent is safe, reliable, and credible. Reserving the right to resume nuclear testing is one such means to maintain such a credible deterrent.
Not only is the United States morally justified to possess nuclear weapons and to credibly threaten their employment, it would be immoral and inimical to the principles of Christian just war theory for the U.S. government to adopt the disarmament agenda.
It’s a good exercise for world leaders to remember those horrific bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and to learn critical lessons from them. But the President and I disagree on the lessons to be learned.
The United States and NATO have zero tolerance for the use of nuclear weapons and would exact a punishing response against Russian leadership and/or military facilities ensuring there would be no second strike, to put it lightly. At least, this is what the U.S. government should make Waterford-crystal-clear.
If one actually looks at the risks of nuclear war as well as the likelihood of proliferation at the start of the President’s term compared to now, the Obama’s nonproliferation record earns a failing grade. This becomes clear when one reflects on the Russian nuclear posture, the much ballyhooed Iran deal, and the situation in nuclear North Korea.