Yesterday, the New York billionaire wrote that 'The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.'
For Joe Cirincione, president of the nuclear non-proliferation group Ploughshares Fund, this message from Trump is a warning that 'this is the beginning of a new arms race.'
The United States currently has about 7,000 nuclear warheads, and is in the midst of a nuclear modernization process to replace aging technology, which is estimated to cost 1 trillion dollars over the next 30 years.
Shortly after Trump's controversial comment, its spokesman, Jason Miller, issued a statement trying to explain that the next president 'was referring to the threat of nuclear proliferation and the critical need to prevent it, particularly among terrorist organizations and unstable and dishonest regimes'.
For groups defending nuclear weapons control it was unclear what Trump meant by 'expanding and strengthening nuclear capability', but listed a number of possible scenarios, including building systems with more nuclear-capability than currently planned under the modernization efforts, with nuclear systems able of carrying as much warheads as possible.
According to experts, it was noticeable that Trump's statement comes a day after meeting with senior executives at Boeing and Lockheed Martin, two of the country's largest nuclear weapons contractors, currently competing with Northrop Grumman to build the next generation of intercontinental ballistic missiles for the United States Air Force, a project expected to cost at least 85 billion dollars.
At the same time, the message was spread on Twitter hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin refered to the strengthening of the his country's nuclear arsenal. / PL.