14 Nov '17, 12am

Could anyone stop Trump from launching nukes? The answer: No

WASHINGTON — Here’s a question rarely raised before Donald Trump ran for the White House: If the president ordered a pre-emptive nuclear strike, could anyone stop him? The answer is no. Not the Congress. Not his secretary of defense. And by design, not the military officers who would be duty-bound to execute the order. As Bruce Blair, a former nuclear missile launch officer and expert on nuclear command and control, has put it, “The protocol for ordering the use of nuclear weapons endows every president with civilization-ending power.” Trump, he wrote in a Washington Post column last summer, “has unchecked authority to order a preventive nuclear strike against any nation he wants with a single verbal direction to the Pentagon war room.” Or, as then-Vice President Dick Cheney explained in December 2008, the president “could launch a kind of devastating attack the world’s ne...

Full article: https://www.militarytimes.com/flashpoints/2017/11/14/coul...

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