Chief of Naval Operations
Ballistic Missile Submarines
Strategic deterrence has been the sole mission of the
Strategic deterrence remains a fundamental element of the U.S. defense strategy, just as conventional deterrence has become increasingly important since the fall of the Berlin wall. Nuclear powered submarines will be the principal component of the future U.S. strategic posture. Land based bombers and intercontinental missiles are being reduced; by the late 1990s the land based strategic forces will consist of some 20 B-2 long-range bombers carrying stand-off attack missiles, each with only one warhead. The SSBN force will be the only Triad element still deploying missiles armed with Multiple Independently targeted Re-entry Vehicles.
At present, there are 18 Ballistic Missile submarines. The
|Each Ohio class SSBN is capable of carrying up to 24 long range Trident missiles with up to 8 warheads per missile. A review of SSBN warheads is being made by the United States as part of the reduction of strategic weapons directed by the President. Still, the overwhelming majority of U.S. Strategic weapons - the burden of future strategic nuclear deterrence will be squarely on the submarine force. |
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