quonset writes: Everywhere the president goes, nuclear football goes, a 45-pound suitcase that allows the president to confirm his identity and authorize a nuclear strike. Football too provides the commander-in-chief with a simplified menu of nuclear strike options – allowing him to decide, for example, whether to destroy all the enemies of America at once or to limit himself to annihilating only Moscow, Pyongyang or Beijing.
During the January 6 insurgency attempt, video from inside the capital showed the crowds coming within 100 feet then Vice President Mike Pence and his military aide who carried a second nuclear soccer ball. If they had lost control of the case, no nuclear weapons could have been launched, but the highly classified information in the case could have been leaked or sold to nation states.
Accordingly, members of Congress asked the Pentagon to review nuclear football management and security procedures. Defense Ministry inspector general to assess policies and procedures around the presidential emergency satchel, also known as “nuclear football”, in case it is “lost, stolen or compromised”, according to an announcement of the DoD IG. Office. It would not be the first time that the proceedings in the case would be reviewed. Jimmy Carter, who qualified as a nuclear sub-commander, was aware that he would only have a few minutes to decide how to react to a nuclear strike against the United States. Carter ordered that war plans be dramatically simplified. A former military aide to President Bill Clinton, Col. Buzz Patterson, would later describe the resulting reduced choice set as akin to a “Denny’s breakfast menu.” “It’s like picking one in column A and two in column B,” he told the History Channel.
In Carter’s wake, an incident during the Reagan administration led to another review. In the chaos that followed the assassination attempt, the assistant in charge of the case was separated from Reagan and did not accompany him to the hospital. When Reagan was stripped of his clothes before going into surgery, the cookie, a card each president receives that, if necessary, can personally identify the president, was found abandoned in a hospital plastic bag. Bill Clinton had his critical moment when he was discovered he had lost his cookie for months, and never told anyone.
“Nuclear football” security procedures to be reassessed
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