This statement was issued by the North Atlantic Council, Brussels, 1st of February 2019 on Russia and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

“Following nearly six years of U.S. and Allied engagement with Russia, on 4 December 2018, NATO Allies declared that Russia has developed and fielded a missile system, the 9M729, which violates the INF Treaty, and poses significant risks to Euro-Atlantic security.  Allies strongly supported the finding of the United States that Russia is in material breach of its obligations under the INF Treaty and called upon Russia to urgently return to full and verifiable compliance.

Since that announcement, the United States and other Allies have remained open to dialogue, and have engaged Russia on its violation, including at a NATO-Russia Council meeting on 25 January 2019. Allies regret that Russia, as part of its broader pattern of behaviour, continues to deny its INF Treaty violation, refuses to provide any credible response, and has taken no demonstrable steps toward returning to full and verifiable compliance.

As a result, the United States is suspending its obligations under the INF Treaty in response to Russia’s material breach, and is providing the requisite six-month written notice to Treaty Parties of its withdrawal under Article XV of the INF Treaty. The United States is taking this action in response to the significant risks to Euro-Atlantic security posed by Russia’s covert testing, production, and fielding of 9M729 ground-launched cruise missile systems. Allies fully support this action.

Unless Russia honours its INF Treaty obligations through the verifiable destruction of all of its 9M729 systems, thereby returning to full and verifiable compliance before the U.S. withdrawal takes effect in six months, Russia will bear sole responsibility for the end of the Treaty.

NATO continues to closely review the security implications of Russian intermediate-range missiles and will continue to take steps necessary to ensure the credibility and effectiveness of the Alliance’s overall deterrence and defence posture. We will continue to consult each other regularly with a view to ensuring our collective security.

Allies are firmly committed to the preservation of effective international arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation. Therefore, we will continue to uphold, support, and further strengthen arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation, as a key element of Euro-Atlantic security, taking into account the prevailing security environment.

We continue to aspire to a constructive relationship with Russia, when Russia’s actions make that possible.

We urge Russia to use the remaining six months to return to full and verifiable compliance to preserve the INF Treaty.”

43 COMMENTS

    • So its that they can nuke us and we not have time to respond? Our nukes are all in CASD. So the Russians cant destroy the weapons, but could destroy the chain of command required to launch the retaliatory strike?

      Do the US have nukes based in Europe?

      • Yes. If the chain of command fails and the sub can’t raise it, and believe the UK has been attacked he and his XO open the ‘letter of last resort’ from the PM and make a decision on the recommendations in that.

          • yep – other normal indicators as well. The USN has similar procedures, though their comms are much more resilient.

          • Didn’t it used to be called the 4 minute warning?

            I’m sure our procedures are quite resilient myself. Especially our comms.

            It’s not all backbone towers now.

          • No airborne “Looking Glass” planes that I’m aware of.

            Anthorn, Skelton and Inskip are all involved in communicating with the submarine fleet, using VLF transmitters.
            Anthorn being a NATO site I believe.

            Rugby and Criggion long gone.

            Comms elsewhere in the country are fibre Optic and run in secure ducts, so harder to intercept and survivable if they are routed away from main population centres. Many MoD sites still have the Boxer towers, but most of the microwave communication dishes on them have gone, as have most of the associated Uniter Bunkers.

            Orders for our subs could come from 2 places, possibly more: the Nuclear Operations and Targeting Centre in the DCMC beneath Main Building, and CTF 345 at Northwood.

            The CCC in Corsham is also in someway involved, and could quite possibly act as a backup C3 site. As could other sites at Basil Hill, as it is a hub for all sorts of MoD comms organisations.

            A UK Liaison Cell exists at Strategic Command in Nebraska for targeting.

            Of course a first strike on any of these would wipe out the means to issue orders.

            But all that above is open source and I’m confident HMG know what they are doing and probably have other nodes, secret, and rightly so.

            Failing all that the letter of last resort, with nothing in it if Corbyn gets his mitts on it.

          • ‘Failing all that the letter of last resort, with nothing in it if Corbyn gets his mitts on it’

            Good point but as there is no PAL system there’s nothing to stop them doing what they think is right – which would probably mean US command or Australia. Jim Callaghan’s letter ordered retaliation but Denis Healey (as Defence Secretary) was appointed a ‘nuclear deputy’ in case the PM was incapacitated and said he wouldn’t have ordered retailiation as there would have been no point, as deterrence had failed – which is understandable as long as you don’t tell anyone that’s your view.

  1. One ominous development that concerns me, is the mindset of contemplating the use of low yelled nuke warheads fitted to such advanced systems. Tactical nuke deployment is nothing new, remember ‘Honest John.’ but that was primarily a battlefield weapon. These new missiles and the like, could be targeted against industrial targets, which broadly means civilians. The use of such a weapon would not qualify for an all-out thermal nuclear exchange, which now appears to be an outdated scenario. If low yelled nukes are used, I believe reluctant acceptance after much protest, would be the most likely outcome as with chemical use in Syria. Now that does rewrite the rule book and possibly not for the better? Just how many red lines will be crossed in the coming years and when will the United Nations have the tools to stop such idiocy?

  2. This new weapons race may work for us as Russia cant really afford it, This could be putins first major mistake strats wise.

  3. If Anyone Is still reading this thread, go to YouTube and search “The Last Broadcast”. It’s pure fiction but kind of Worrying too.

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