|Come on! How can a strategic nuke delivery platform be pointless?
If they can't make nukes capable of missile launch, cruise missiles are the next best thing. They should be easy to proliferate and cheap to test (relative to Theater Ballistic Missiles), making the job of improving accuracy and AD-penetration easier.
Even if you only have a half-dozen nukes, your enemy must shoot down ALL OF THEM. Launch 2 dozen cruise missiles at various targets and stretch the enemy air defenses until they break! With programmable way-points, you should be able to saturate a target easily enough from several directions.
Actually, and I'm not really sure, if you simply stagger arrival (say 20 min. apart), one cruise missile detonating short of the ultimate target (5-20km) should screw up the defenses so much that a followup missile (one the same heading) can make it through, assuming it can still find the target.
The article rightly mentioned that UAVs and their guidance systems benefitted from earlier cruise missile work. Cruise missiles are a great place to start development and grow into other guided platforms (HARPOON, TOMAHAWK, UAV/UGVs).