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The Nuclear Posture Review and the Future of the INF Treaty

Published by RealClearDefense

By Mark B. Schneider

In 2014, the Obama administration determined that Russia was violating the INF Treaty by producing and testing a prohibited INF-range ground-launched cruise missile and its launcher, but it never revealed which Russian cruise missile was the culprit.[1] (The INF Treaty bans all ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with a range of 500-5,500-km.) Soon after the Obama administration left office, Michael Gordon, writing in the New York Times, reported that Russia had actually deployed the prohibited cruise missile.[2] The Trump administration soon confirmed this story, but the precise missile involved was still not revealed.[3] In June 2017, an unclassified intelligence report by the National Air and Space Intelligence Center, U.S. Air Force (NASIC), indicated that Russia had deployed the 3M14, a ground, sea, and submarine-launched cruise missile with a range of 2,500-km.[4] The 3M-14 is the Russian Kalibr cruise missile.[5] The military implications of the deployment of the Kalibr should be a significant issue in the Nuclear Posture Review (NPR).

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