At a recent hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water, the head of the National Nuclear Security Administration fiddled with the truth when describing the United States nuclear weapons stockpile.
Proponents of spending more on American nuclear weapons claim that our nuclear weapons are old and deteriorating.
Not so, said the prestigious JASON report, which reported:
“JASON finds no evidence that accumulation of changes incurred from aging and LEPs have increased risk to certification of today’s deployed nuclear warheads.”
And: “Lifetimes of today’s nuclear warheads could be extended for decades, with no anticipated loss in confidence, by using approaches similar to those employed in LEPs to date.”
D’Agostino tried to recast the Jason report at the March 10 hearing:
Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND): “JASON’s conclusion in its 2009 report is that the lifetimes of today’s nuclear warheads could be extended for decades without significant changes to their design or without any significant deterioration. So, can you tell us how you see the JASON’s report, how you relate that to the discussions about changing design?”
D’Agostino: “The JASON’s report, the unclassified executive summary, basically talked about if we don’t want to improve the safety, if we don’t want to improve the security, if we don’t want to improve the reliability, just keep things the way they are and have cold war nuclear weapons, they felt just keep making things the way you used to make them.”
An immediate slap-down from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA): “That’s not what it says.”
Further knock down by Sen. Dorgan: “The JASON’s report, I think, among other things, has indicated, no, that worry about degradation is not a worry. They believe that these nuclear weapons will be reliable well out into the future.”
Apparently D’Agostino is willing to distort anything that does not fit in with his case for more money.
If he can’t stand the truth . . .
See earlier report by Arms Control Wonk: http://bit.ly/a8k1UR