Air Force Gen. John Hyten, head of the U.S. Strategic Command, has said the federal government should boost spending on efforts to modernize the country’s nuclear arsenal by 2.5 percent to three percent, DoD News reported Friday.
Jim Garamone writes Hyten told audience at the annual Military Reporters and Editors meeting that nuclear modernization will require nearly six percent of the defense budget.
Hyten, an inductee into Executive Mosaic‘s Wash100 for 2017, added nuclear weapons currently account for approximately 3.5 percent of the budget.
“When you think of the survival of our nation — and I think that is the most important reason we have a military… the backstop of all of that is the nuclear enterprise,” he said.
Hyten noted submarines are the “most survivable” element of the nuclear triad while intercontinental ballistic missiles are the “most ready” and bomber aircraft are the “most flexible.”