Misguided Concerns about “Modernization”

December 10, 2010
David Wright
Former contributor

UCS organized a press briefing last Friday to explain why the current focus on “modernizing” U.S. nuclear weapons is misguided. The briefers were Dick Garwin, Lisbeth Gronlund, and Stephen Young. A summary of the main points are available here.

An op-ed on the same topic ran today in The Hill’s “Congress Blog.”


What really matters is not how modern the technology is but whether the weapons are reliable, safe from accidental detonation and secure from unauthorized nuclear detonation.

[E]ven with adequate funds it is critical that the labs get their priorities right. It is especially important that large capital expenditures do not displace the funding needed to sustain a high-quality staff and to conduct the stockpile surveillance inspections and analysis necessary to evaluate the state of the U.S. nuclear stockpile.