NATO Discusses Putting More Nuclear Weapons on High Alert – Stoltenberg

NATO members are considering making more of their nuclear weapons readily available, citing the need to demonstrate a strong deterrent capability to Russia and China.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, in an interview with the Daily Telegraph, confirmed discussions are underway to take nuclear assets out of storage and prepare them for deployment. He emphasized that NATO must clearly communicate its nuclear deterrent capacity to the world.

“I won’t go into operational details about how many nuclear warheads should be operational and which should be stored, but we need to consult on these issues,” Stoltenberg said, adding that discussions are already ongoing.

While affirming NATO’s ultimate goal of a nuclear-free world, Stoltenberg argued that “as long as nuclear weapons exist, we will remain a nuclear alliance, because a world where Russia, China and North Korea have nuclear weapons, and NATO does not, is a more dangerous world.”

Stoltenberg expressed specific concern about China’s growing nuclear capabilities, stating that NATO may soon face “something that it has never faced before, and that is two nuclear-powered potential adversaries” – Beijing and Moscow.

He noted that the US is modernizing its nuclear gravity bombs deployed in Europe, and its European allies are upgrading the aircraft carrying them. This follows remarks by Pranay Vaddi, Special Assistant to the US President and Senior Director for Arms Control, earlier this month, suggesting that the US may be compelled to increase the number of deployed nuclear weapons “absent a change in the trajectory of adversary arsenals.”

Western media and officials have repeatedly accused Russia of nuclear saber-rattling in the context of the Ukraine conflict. However, Russian officials have consistently maintained that they have no plans to use nuclear weapons against Ukraine, emphasizing that such a scenario would only be considered if Russia’s very existence were at stake.

At the same time, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov warned last week that Moscow could potentially revise its nuclear doctrine in response to what he described as “unacceptable and escalatory actions of the US and its NATO allies.”