Caught On Tape: U.S. Test Fires Nuclear ICBM, Warns "We Are Prepared To Use Nuclear Weapons"

Tyler Durden's picture

Less than two years ago, news of Russia test-firing an ICBM just as the east Ukraine civil war was heating up, was sufficient to send the stock market into a brief tailspin. Since then, the launches of nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missiles has become an almost daily occurrence, with the market hardly batting an eyelid.

In fact, it happened just last night at 11:01pm PST at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, where - for the second time this week - the US test-fired its second intercontinental ballistic missile in the past seven days, seeking to demonstrate its nuclear arms capacity at a time of rising strategic tensions with Russia, North Korea, China and the middle east.

The unarmed Minuteman III missile roared out of a silo at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California late at night, raced across the sky at speeds of up to 15,000 mph (24,000 kph) and landed a half hour later in a target area 4,200 miles (6,500 km) away near Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands of the South Pacific.

The entire launch was caught on the following video, which was released by Vandenberg just 4 days after the previous ICBM launch.


What was more disturbing than the actual launch, however, was the rhetoric behind it: instead of passing it off as another routine test, and letting US "adversaries" make up their own mind about what is going on, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work, who witnessed the launch, said the U.S. tests, conducted at least 15 times since January 2011, send a message to strategic rivals like Russia, China and North Korea that Washington has an effective nuclear arsenal. "That’s exactly why we do this," Work told reporters before the launch.

Of course, the #1 unspoken rule when launching ICBMs is to never explicitly say why you are doing it. By breaking said rule, it marks a much greater escalation in international diplomacy than merely test firing the nuclear-capable ballistic missile.

That, however, was not an issue and Work piled on, with the following stunner

"We and the Russians and the Chinese routinely do test shots to prove that the operational missiles that we have are reliable. And that is a signal ... that we are prepared to use nuclear weapons in defense of our country if necessary."

Well that's good to know.

As Reuters adds, demonstrating the reliability of the nuclear force has taken on additional importance recently because the U.S. arsenal is near the end of its useful life and a spate of scandals in the nuclear force two years ago raised readiness questions.

The Defense Department has poured millions of dollars into improving conditions for troops responsible for staffing and maintaining the nuclear systems. The administration also is putting more focus on upgrading the weapons.


President Barack Obama’s final defense budget unveiled this month calls for a $1.8 billion hike in nuclear arms spending to overhaul the country's aging nuclear bombers, missiles, submarines and other systems.

That said, the irony of the Nobel Peace Prize winner re-escalating the arms race was not lost on Reuters: the nuclear spending boost is an ironic turn for a president who made reducing U.S. dependence on atomic weapons a centerpiece of his agenda during his first years in office.

Obama called for a world eventually free of nuclear arms in a speech in Prague and later reached a new strategic weapons treaty with Russia. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in part based on his stance on reducing atomic arms.  "He was going to de-emphasize the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. national security policy ... but in fact in the last few years he has emphasized new spending," said John Isaacs of the Council for a Livable World, an arms control advocacy group.

Perhaps the Nobel committee should watch the video above and decide if it is not too late to ask for their prize back.

And just like that the nuclear arms race is back.

Critics say the Pentagon's plans are unaffordable and unnecessary because it intends to build a force capable of deploying the 1,550 warheads permitted under the New START treaty... Hans Kristensen, an analyst at the Federation of American Scientists, said the Pentagon's costly "all-of-the-above" effort to rebuild all its nuclear systems was a "train wreck that everybody can see is coming." Kingston Reif of the Arms Control Association, said the plans were "divorced from reality."


The Pentagon could save billions by building a more modest force that would delay the new long-range bomber, cancel the new air launched cruise missile and construct fewer ballistic submarines, arms control advocates said.


Work said the Pentagon understood the financial problem. The department would need $18 billion a year between 2021 and 2035 for its portion of the nuclear modernization, which is coming at the same time as a huge "bow wave" of spending on conventional ships and aircraft, he said.


"If it becomes clear that it’s too expensive, then it’s going to be up to our national leaders to debate" the issue, Work said, something that could take place during the next administration when spending pressures can no longer be ignored.

As a reminder, the last time the U.S. engaged in a nuclear arms race with the USSR, it led to the collapse of the "evil empire." It would be even more ironic that Obama launching nuclear rockets if this time around the tables on the ultimate loser are turned.

In the meantime, just think of all the GDP-boosting "broken windows" that would result from a nuclear war.

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vq1's picture

things seem to happen a bit quicker now


escallation, computer systems, cybersecurity/or lack thereof

Took Red Pill's picture

Now is different from the 50's. They plan to use tactical nukes. They're smaller so it's okay.

adanata's picture

What? You think China's gonna let Russia blow up its newest colony? I think not. Although beware of false flags flying...

khnum's picture

the nucear force has been purged its probably now run by transgendered muslims,google nuclear generals fired its pretty scary 

Bay of Pigs's picture

These crazy fuckers are going to kill all of us.

chunga's picture

This is so mental.

Everybody already knows USSA will use nukes, having already dropped atomic bombs on civilian populations ~5000 miles away from it's border.

flaminratzazz's picture

Hell no, they have it figured that 500,000 will be left.. Georgia Guidestones

Bioscale's picture

They forgot to add that these 500k folks will live in Siberia.

adanata's picture

That's the plan man... but not with nukes.

agent default's picture

Evil empires.  One down one to go.

khnum's picture

I see our resident Langley downvoter is on deck

ebear's picture

You see a lot of singular down votes here that bear no relation to the content. Since there's no verification needed to log in, I'm convinced it's just a script written by someone with too much time on their hands.

In the end, who really cares? Is public opinion really that important, and how does that square with the general consensus that the public is, by and large, a donkey's ass?

ZeroPoint's picture

Why can't there be a vaccine to prevent psychopathy?


THE SOLUTION IS DEBT FREE MONEY CREATION (not verified) ZeroPoint Feb 26, 2016 1:32 PM

Unfortunately there is evolutionary pressure that selects for psychopathy. If your group has a bunch of no empathy killing machine human predators, as long as their predation on your own group is kept to a minimum in times of group threat you can unleash your psychos on another group that threatens yours. Then you hope that your psychos are more psycho than theirs :)

Unfortunately, sometimes the cost to the host group can get too high and the psychos need to be purged...we have reached that stage on a global scale...

Jack Burton's picture

Interesting. In small hunter gatherer groups, the greedy or psycho were likely shunned, kicked out of the group. The majority of the group held the power to do this. But once agriculture allowed surplus and settled living, the Psycho found a vital place in social organization. At first they could be used against rival farmers or nomad raiders. Soon the psycho began to use his status as defender, into ruler. Since then, the more complex a social system, the more the psycho seems to be favored. In todays politics, banks, corporations, wall-street, military. Psychos rise quickly to the top. Lord knows I have met plenty, from a High School Gym Coach, to a few Petty Officers and Commissioned Officers. Some boses. And finally my Ex. She indeed was an extraordinary Psycho, which she could hide from outsiders with great effect.

Clearly todays world suffers extreme over population of psychos!


















adanata's picture

Unfortunatly psychopaths are born as they are; it isn't a 'disease'.  They can be perceived as sub-human since they are missing basic emotional components most humans possess. If it makes you feel any better, there is a black hole in the psychopathic brain where healthy emotional resposes can be observed under brain scans. If the Sheeple ever understand this they could require brain scans for all future "leaders" who ascend to positions of power.

Psychopaths generally believe their lack of emotion and moral contraint makes them genetically superior... I believe that point of view may be open for debate.

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

They know they are different.  One of the first things they learn.  The 2nd thing they learn is to not show it, at least 99% of the time.  Mimic others.  Mimic displays of empathy and emotion.  Say the right things.

There is NO FUCKING CURE.  So much for sending them to a 'correctional institute'...

skinwalker's picture

Psychopathy and sociopathy are a spectrum, not a defined state. I myself fall on that spectrum, at a low level. My empathy is much smaller than a normal man, but not completely gone. However, through training and by making a conscious effort to not screw people over, I'm a decent human being. There are many people like me out there; while they lack the emotional depth of normal people, they also have the desire to not run roughshod over everybody. It's a handicap, much like being nearsighted, that you can learn to overcome through training and willpower. 


Where it gets dangerous is when you have someone who views thier makeup not as a handicap but as a gift, and uses it to further their own interests. 

emersonreturn's picture

pyschopaths are sentimental, this conceals their lack of compassion...when a sports broadcaster spins a tale about the hardship of the football hero the pyschopath may shed tears but it never goes deeper.  the shallow snivelling cartoon is all there is, yet many are taken in assuming this individual must be an old softee.  

Middle Pillar's picture

...or, preferably, a virulent plague that targets it.

Infield_Fly's picture
Infield_Fly (not verified) Feb 26, 2016 12:57 PM

It's party time folks.  Ammo up everyone!!

GoldenDonuts's picture

The neocons at the top of the food chain are INSANE!

Arnold's picture

Thanks, more high paying jobs going to Asia.


Actually for a billion and a half, that would cover new paint and the D checks.

It ain't all kick the tires and light the fires, y'all.

ZeroPoint's picture

I keep asking myself, what the neocons think they are protecting anyway?


The government gave away the right to print money.

The government gave away all the industry.

The goverment tore up the Constitution.

The government took over the media and keeps everyone ignorant.

They gave away the environment the corporations.


So what the fuck are you protecting anyway?

elephant's picture

US citizens, i.e., tax-slaves

RopeADope's picture

For them, it is all about using the Empire's power before it collapses to remove any possible competition in the dystopian future.

adanata's picture

Neocons are minions; the relatively upper crust beasts of Basel... and globalists. They're not giving anything away; just moving the pieces. It's a game. They're bored.

Skiprrrdog's picture

Why don't we just nuke everyone else (and throw in New York for good measure)and be done with it?

Bay Area Guy's picture

Given that the US, Europe and most of Asia had a proverbial cow and demanded sanctions against North Korea for doing this very thing (test firing a missile), I'll wait with baited breath while the same cast of characters demands sanctions against the United States.

Quebecguy's picture

He meant a collective "We".

replaceme's picture

There's too many of us, there's too many of us, there's too many of us, there's too many of us - LET'S HAVE A WAR!

Moustache Rides's picture

What the mother fuck?  These insane douchebags are going to be the end of us all.

Bastiat's picture

Well if they don't, someday there will be price discovery. 

khnum's picture

you mean they'll discover its all created out of thin air and backed by fuck all

bbq on whitehouse lawn's picture

No one is scared of a nuclear war, nor of radiation, fallout or anything else thats toxic as long at the cable works. No one is frighted because its never going to happen.

Chuckster's picture

Who is suppose to be scared?  North Korea?  Syria?

Middle Pillar's picture

Exactly the intended effect.
This is fear theatre for the masses. The governments of the world already know damn well how nuclear-capable is USA.

Lost in translation's picture

We should start a ZH pool on which nation-state will be the first to use nukes.  Not counting 1945, I mean...

NotApplicable's picture

My money is on a false-flag, with either ISIS style terrorists, or a rougue state like Pakistan being the fall-guys.

Lost in translation's picture

I was think Pakistan, too, but you beat me to it.  FF also very possible, I agree.

MrSteve's picture

The 1954 Bikini Atoll lithium fusion explosion against Godzilla for a $Trillion, Alex.

me or you's picture

Of course they are,  so Russian citizens who have nuclear shelters in every corner while American citizens have nothing but a hole in a graveyard.