“… both Washington and Brussels are considering the scenario of a limited nuclear war in Europe,”
In mid-April, we reported that “just as tensions over North Korea’s nuclear program and potential US airstrikes run wild, the NNSA said that in conjunction with the US Air Force, it had completed the first qualification flight test of B61-12 gravity nuclear bomb on March 14 at the Tonopah Test Range in Nevada.”
Four months later, and just as concerns over North Korea’s provocative launches have send shockwaves across global markets – again – the US National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) announced another successful flight test of B61-12 gravity nuclear bombs in Nevada. The second qualification flight test for the nuclear bomb was carried out by the NNSA and the US Air Force.
— Frank Klotz (@FrankKlotzNNSA) August 28, 2017
According to the NNSA press release, two B61-12 gravity bombs (without a nuclear warhead) were dropped from F-15 fighter jets on August 8 at Tonopah Test Range in Nevada, and were designed to test the “non-nuclear functions and the aircraft’s capability to deliver the weapon.” These tests are part of a series over the next three years to qualify the B61-12 for service. As we noted at the time, the first qualification flight test occurred in March.
“The B61-12 life extension program is progressing on schedule to meet national security requirements,” said Phil Calbos, acting NNSA deputy administrator for Defense Programs. “These realistic flight qualification tests validate the design of the B61-12 when it comes to system performance.”
According to the editor-in-chief of National Defense magazine, Igor Korotchenko, the second test of the nuclear bomb could indicate that Washington is speeding up its rearmament program. “The fact of the test of this modification of the nuclear bomb indicates that the US continues an accelerated rearmament program of its tactical nuclear arsenal in Europe, as well as that both Washington and Brussels are considering the scenario of a limited nuclear war in Europe,” he said.
“Everything calls peace, Schalom! Then it will occur – a new Middle East war suddenly flames up, big naval forces are facing hostiley in the Mediterranean – the situation is strained. But the actual firing spark is set on fire in the Balkan: I see a “large one” falling, a bloody dagger lies beside him – then impact is on impact. …”
H/t reader kevin a.
* * *