Center for Security Policy Publishes Crucial Book on the Dire State of America’s Nuclear Weapons

Center for Security Policy Publishes Crucial Book on the Dire State of America’s Nuclear Weapons

April 13, 2020

WASHINGTON—America’s nuclear arsenal continues to decline in strength and capability. The Center for Security Policy has released a roadmap for understanding the problem and finding solutions: “Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence.”

The Heritage Foundation will host a webinar on this book on May 5, 2020. Click HERE for details.

Edited by Center President Fred Fleitz, “Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence” features analysis from 10 national security experts. Fleitz served as National Security Council Executive Director for President Trump and is a former analyst with the CIA Weapons Intelligence and Nonproliferation Center. The nine leading nuclear experts who contributed chapters to the book are:

  • Michaela Dodge, Visiting Fellow, the Heritage Foundation, and Research Scholar, National Institute for Public Policy
  • Ambassador Eric Edelman, Roger Hertog Practitioner in Residence, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS)
  • Frank Gaffney, founder and former president, Center for Security Policy, and former Reagan administration Defense Department official
  • John Hopkins, Los Alamos National Laboratory associate director, Nuclear Weapons Program
  • Peter Huessy, defense analyst and president, GeoStrategic Analysis
  • Ambassador Robert Joseph, former ambassador to the U.S.-Russian Commission on Nuclear Testing and senior NSC and State Department arms control official
  • Matthew Kroenig, deputy director, Atlantic Council Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and associate professor of government and foreign service, Georgetown University
  • Peter Vincent Pry, executive director, EMP Task Force on National and Homeland Security and former CIA analyst
  • Mark Schneider, senior analyst, National Institute for Public Policy and former State Department and Department of Defense official

“Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence” covers the full range of challenges facing the U.S. nuclear program, including the Life Extension Program (LEP), a program to extend the useful life of U.S. nuclear warheads, popular myths about U.S. nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons policy, and the growth and development of foreign nuclear weapons programs.

This book also explains why the United States needs to urgently resume nuclear testing to ensure the readiness and reliability of U.S. nuclear weapons, why the U.S. should adapt its nuclear arsenal by developing low-yield nuclear weapons in response to changes to Russian and Chinese nuclear strategies, and the growing threat from electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapons.

Trump administration policies to address growing problems with the U.S. nuclear arsenal in the 2018 Nuclear Posture Review and the 2019 and 2020 NDAAs also are discussed.

“Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence” is timely in light of recent warnings about the state of America’s nuclear forces.

“If we do not invest smartly in our nuclear enterprise now, we may begin to reach points of no return,” Admiral Charles Richard, Commander of U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM), told the House Armed Services Committee on March 4, 2020.

Senator Deb Fischer, Chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee Strategic Forces subcommittee, gave a similar warning when she said in a tweet that “Modernizing our nuclear deterrent is necessary to keep this country safe from rising threats.”

Praise for “Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence:”

  • “This fine book thoroughly and persuasively sets out the flaws in our decrepit nuclear force posture and the infrastructure that underpins it,” said former CIA director R. James Woolsey, Jr.
  • “It also sets out steps, such as resuming nuclear testing, which are essential in order for us again to have an effective deterrent,” Woolsey said. “Failure to heed Fleitz’s and his colleagues’ advice can endanger millions of Americans—note particularly Peter Pry’s superb analysis of how electromagnetic pulse can put at risk our electrical grid. We are relying on a nuclear system and doctrine that definitely have some Maginot Line-type vulnerabilities. It should be noted, with France relying on the Maginot Line, Paris fell in under two weeks.”
  • “Our aging nuclear force needs to be recapitalized and updated, just as the doctrine and policies that underpin it. This smartly-authored monograph explains why and helps point the way forward to maintain a strong and flexible deterrent,” said retired Ambassador Gregory L. Schulte, former White House, Pentagon, and NATO official and U.S. representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency.
  • Former NSC senior director for counterproliferation and biodefense Timothy Morrison said, “This monograph is a critical reminder that nuclear weapons are the foundation to American and allied security in an increasingly dangerous world. Because it shows all the angles to the complicated question of maintaining deterrence in a multipolar nuclear world, every serious national security practitioner should read this book and keep it close by as they try to interpret current events.”

“Growing Challenges for America’s Nuclear Deterrence” is available for purchase on or on the Center for Security Policy website as a free PDF download.

For more information on this publication, contact Adam Savit at or (202) 835–9077.

Visit the media page for the Center here or visit the Center for Security Policy website or @SecureFreedom on Twitter.


To interview a Center for Security Policy representative, contact, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.