The President and the bomb

‘I keep getting asked one thing repeatedly both in person, over e-mail, and online: “Are there any checks in place to keep the US President from starting a nuclear war?”  What’s amazing about this question, really, is how seriously it misunderstands the logic of the US command and control system. It gets it exactly backwards.

The entire point of the US command and control system is to guarantee that the President and only the President is capable of authorizing nuclear war whenever he needs to. It is about enabling the President’s power, not checking or restricting him…

He could launch the kind of devastating attack the world has never seen. He doesn’t have to check with anybody, he doesn’t have to call Congress, he doesn’t have to check with the courts… To be sure, the official doctrine that I have seen on the Nuclear Command Authority implies that the President should be given as much advice as possible from the military, the Department of Defense, and so on. But nothing I have seen suggests that this is any more than advisory — and the entire system is set up so that once the President’s order is verified and authenticated, there are meant to be only minutes until launch.

It isn’t entirely intuitive — why the President, and not someone else, or some combination of people? Why not have some kind of “two-man rule,” whereby two top political figures were required to sign off on the use before it happened? The two-man rule is required for commanders to authorize nuclear launches, so why not the Commander in Chief?’

Source: Restricted Data

imagesThe only tragedy of this election greater than that the narcissistic child Trump will have the authority to launch nuclear annihilation is that the ignorant American voting public would hand it over to him.