US to Spend at Least $350 Billion on Nuke Upgrades

Figure Could Go Far Higher in Most Expensive Overhaul Ever

They may be cash poor as the recession continues, but that doesn’t stop the Obama Administration from continuing to spend, with a new scheme to spend hundreds of billions of dollars they don’t have on thousands of nuclear weapons they don’t need.

The “modernization” plan seeks to upgrade some 5,113 nuclear warheads as well as refurbishing nuclear weapons facilities and replace delivery systems for the weapons, each capable of wiping out a major city, and combined capable of destroying virtually the sum total of human civilization.

How do they get away with spending on something like this? In short they don’t even try to estimate the cost, and just start working. One think-tank, the Stimson Center, has estimated that the decade-long program will cost just over $350 billion.

Which is a lot, but probably too low, according to others familiar with the situation, saying that the plan to keep America’s planet-killing capability up and ready could go far higher and face myriad delays. The GAO also says the scheme in on “the high-risk list” for fraud, waste and abuse, pointing to exactly why officials are so eager to get the gravy train rolling and the money disappearing into this particular black hole.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.