‘We’ll Have To Develop Those Weapons’: Trump Says US Will Pull Out Of Nuke Pact

on October 19, 2018 in Mesa, Arizona.
MESA, AZ - OCTOBER 19: President Donald Trump peers out into the crowd of supporters during a rally at the International Air Response facility on October 19, 2018 in Mesa, Arizona. President Trump is holding rallie... MESA, AZ - OCTOBER 19: President Donald Trump peers out into the crowd of supporters during a rally at the International Air Response facility on October 19, 2018 in Mesa, Arizona. President Trump is holding rallies in Arizona, Montana and Nevada, campaigning for Republican candidates running for the U.S. Senate. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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ELKO, Nevada (AP) — President Donald Trump said Saturday he will exit a landmark arms control agreement the United States signed with the former Soviet Union, saying that Russia is violating the pact and it’s preventing the U.S. from developing new weapons.

The 1987 pact, which helps protect the security of the U.S. and its allies in Europe and the Far East, prohibits the United States and Russia from possessing, producing or test-flying a ground-launched cruise missile with a range of 300 to 3,400 miles.

“Russia has violated the agreement. They have been violating it for many years,” Trump said after a rally in Elko, Nevada. “And we’re not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement and go out and do weapons and we’re not allowed to.”

The agreement has constrained the U.S. from developing new weapons, but America will begin developing them unless Russia and China agree not to possess or develop the weapons, Trump said. China is not currently party to the pact.

“We’ll have to develop those weapons, unless Russia comes to us and China comes to us and they all come to us and say let’s really get smart and let’s none of us develop those weapons, but if Russia’s doing it and if China’s doing it, and we’re adhering to the agreement, that’s unacceptable,” he said.

National Security Adviser John Bolton was headed Saturday to Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia. His first stop is Moscow, where he’ll meet with Russian leaders, including Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev. His visit comes at a time when Moscow-Washington relations also remain frosty over the Ukrainian crisis, the war in Syria and allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential race and upcoming U.S. midterm elections.

Britain said it stood “absolutely resolute” with the U.S., while Germany called Trump’s move “regrettable.”

Heiko Maas said in a statement Sunday that the three-decades-old Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty is “an important pillar of our European security architecture” and Trump’s announcement “raises difficult questions for us and Europe.”

“This would be a very dangerous step,” Russia’s deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, was quoted as telling state news agency Tass on Sunday. He said a U.S. withdrawal “will cause the most serious condemnation from all members of the international community who are committed to security and stability.”

Trump didn’t provide details about violations, but in 2017, White House national security officials said Russia had deployed a cruise missile in violation of the treaty. Earlier, the Obama administration accused the Russians of violating the pact by developing and testing a prohibited cruise missile. Russia has repeatedly denied that it has violated the treaty and has accused the United States of not being in compliance.

Defense Secretary James Mattis has previously suggested that a Trump administration proposal to add a sea-launched cruise missile to America’s nuclear arsenal could provide the U.S. with leverage to try to convince Russia to come back in line on the arms treaty.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry said in February that the country would only consider using nuclear weapons in response to an attack involving nuclear or other weapons of mass destruction, or in response to a non-nuclear assault that endangered the survival of the Russian nation.

“We are slowly slipping back to the situation of cold war as it was at the end of the Soviet Union, with quite similar consequences, but now it could be worse because (Russian President Vladimir) Putin belongs to a generation that had no war under its belt,” said Dmitry Oreshkin, an independent Russian political analyst. “These people aren’t as much fearful of a war as people of Brezhnev’s epoch. They think if they threaten the West properly, it gets scared.”

Trump’s decision could be controversial with European allies and others who see value in the treaty, said Steven Pifer, a former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine and now a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who focuses on nuclear arms control.

“Once the United States withdraws from the treaty, there is no reason for Russia to even pretend it is observing the limits,” he wrote in a post on the organization’s website. “Moscow will be free to deploy the 9M729 cruise missile, and an intermediate-range ballistic missile if it wants, without any restraint.”

U.S. officials have previously alleged that Russia violated the treaty by deliberately deploying a land-based cruise missile in order to pose a threat to NATO. Russia has claimed that U.S. missile defenses violate the pact.

In the past, the Obama administration worked to convince Moscow to respect the INF treaty but made little progress.

“If they get smart and if others get smart and they say let’s not develop these horrible nuclear weapons, I would be extremely happy with that, but as long as somebody’s violating the agreement, we’re not going to be the only ones to adhere to it,” Trump said.

___

Balsamo reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Deb Riechmann in Washington and Tanya Titova and James Heintz in Moscow contributed to this report.

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  1. Trump is doing his best to start WW III and the incipient USA civil war. I’d guess they will be more or less contemporaneous, the first triggering the second. For an interesting picture of how the USA will lose all conventional and nuclear wars with either / both Russia and China, and how the civil war becomes simultaneous with the USA’s threats of nukes on China, read: “Twilight’s Last Gleaming”.

  2. Nukes, my ass! SPACE FORCE, BITCHEZ!!!

  3. Then there’s this , with the evangelicals going “Bring it on”
    Latched on to a fast path to the end times. What could be better?
    Note Forward by Mike “I’ll lie about anything” Huckabee

    Overview
    Twilight’s Last Gleaming: How America’s Last Days Can be Your Best Days by Robert Jeffress

    Never in recent history have Christians been more discouraged and fearful about our country’s future. Economic chaos, immorality, terrorism and global turmoil have convinced many that we are living in the twilight days of America. Dr. Robert Jeffress agrees. But this is not the end of the story, he writes in Twilight’s Last Gleaming. Although we cannot prevent America’s eventual demise, we can delay it . . . and make a difference for eternity at the same time.

    For everyone who wonders what can be done right now—within our culture, our churches, in the voting booth and our neighborhoods—Jeffress answers with biblical insight and real-world clarity, showing Christians how to seize this

  4. Avatar for jasan jasan says:

    I say to bring our troops home from the war zones and put the Evangelicals on the front line. Get them up close and personal to the wars they want others to fight. Who needs these weapons anyway, when ya got the Baby Jesus on your flank.

  5. Donnie is KOTPP (King of the Pig People)

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