Trump And Nuclear Weapons: Here’s What’s At Stake

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November 14, 2016

This article originally appeared on BuzzFeed.com.

There are about 15,000 nuclear weapons in the world, easily enough to wipe out humanity. As president, Donald Trump will control nearly half of them.

Donald Trump August 19, 2015 (Credit: Michael Vadon, Wikimedia Commons)

Donald Trump August 19, 2015 (Credit: Michael Vadon, Wikimedia Commons)

What he’ll do with that responsibility is not at all clear. Sometimes he’s seemed like a hawk, other times a downright hippie.

“Basically the president has a hell of a lot of control over nuclear weapons,” nuclear analyst Miles Pomper of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies told BuzzFeed News. “And there are a lot of contradictions in what Trump said about them during the campaign that haven’t been resolved yet.”

[…]

“It is very hard to forecast anything with respect to Mr. Trump, as his views appear to be very shallow and often contradictory,” William Potter of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, California, told BuzzFeed News by email. “Much will depend on the national security team he assembles.”

When assembling that team, Potter said, Trump’s options may be limited. In August, 50 Republican military advisers — including many veterans of the George W. Bush administration — released a letter denouncing Trump’s candidacy.

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