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Naval Weapons

Pentagon confirms deployment of W76-2 low-yield submarine-launched ballistic missile

04 February 2020
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The US Navy (USN) has fielded the W76-2 low-yield submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) warhead, John Rood, US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy said on 4 February in a statement.

"In the 2018 Nuclear Posture Review, the department identified the requirement to 'modify a small number of submarine-launched ballistic missile warheads' to address the conclusion that potential adversaries, like Russia, believe that employment of low-yield nuclear weapons will give them an advantage over the United States and its allies and partners," Rood said.

"This supplemental capability strengthens deterrence and provides the United States a prompt, more survivable low-yield strategic weapon; supports our commitment to extended deterrence; and demonstrates to potential adversaries that there is no advantage to limited nuclear employment because the United States can credibly and decisively respond to any threat scenario," he said.

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