Strategic Weapons: Russia Keeps Warhead Count High


23, 2006:
Several years of higher oil prices have caused Russia to spend some
of their windfall on keeping more nuclear warheads in service. A 2002 treaty
with the United States obliged Russia to reduce the number of ICBMs it had in
service, by about two-thirds, over the next ten years. At the time, Russia was
going to retire a lot of missiles with multiple warheads, and replace them with
new, Topol-M, missiles carrying one warhead. But now Russia has announced that
it will install three warheads on each Topol-M missile. This will enable Russia
to keep at least 2,000 warheads in service after 2012.


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