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Trump CAN order a nuclear strike! Vipin Narang

The Kennedy questions in ‘62 about whether, and how, he could order a nuclear launch without consulting the Pentagon is particularly important. No official answers given but…POTUS can.

Screenshot from 2018-07-10 03:49:14

Document 03. Tazewell Shepard to the President, “JCS Emergency Actions File,” 16 January 1962, with attached “Alert Procedures and JCS Emergency Actions File,” Top Secret
With the Berlin situation on his mind as a possible source for a nuclear conflict, President Kennedy even considered the possibility of a preemptive strike against the Soviet Union in the event that country was preparing an attack. Although the “black bag” included information on how to the Joint Chiefs would get in touch with the president, Kennedy wanted more than that: he sought a reliable set of procedures in place for the control of nuclear use decisions. According to questions prepared for JCS Chairman Lyman Lemnitzer by White House naval aide Captain Tazewell Shepard, the president wanted to know whether in an emergency he could order a nuclear strike without consulting the Joint Chiefs or the secretary of defense, what he would say to the War Room when he called, how could it be proven that the caller was in fact the president, and whether it was necessary to authenticate to the secretary of defense presidential approvals for nuclear weapons use. For Shepard the key problem was whether the procedures described in the “JCS Emergency Actions File” were flexible enough to enable the president to take such actions. Plainly, Kennedy did not want to be in a position where he would only say “yes” or “no” to the Joint Chief’s request for strike authorization in a crisis.[10]

Contributed by: National Security Archive, National Security Archive

https://nsarchive2.gwu.edu//dc.html?doc=4564668-Document-03-Tazewell-Shepard-to-the-President

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July 10, 2018 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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