The US government has not, and probably never will, abjured the first use of nuclear weapons. From John LaForge at antiwar.com:
Twice in seven days the United States shot nuclear-capable long-range missiles toward the Marshall Islands, but the same government refused in March to join negotiations for a new treaty banning nuclear weapons.
Tests conducted April 26 and May 3 from Vandenberg Air Force Base launched modernized Minuteman-3 ballistic missiles, and the US Air Force said in a statement that such tests ensure “the United States’ ability to maintain a strong, credible nuclear deterrent as a key element of US national security…”
In late March, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley explained why the US would boycott the “treaty ban” negotiations that began March 27 at the UN in New York City. Haley said about nuclear weapons, “[W]e can’t honestly say that we can protect our people by allowing the bad actors to have them, and those of us that are good, trying to keep peace and safety not to have them.” North Korean president Kim Jong-un could have said the same thing about his seven nuclear warheads, especially in view of US bombs and missiles currently falling on seven countries – Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and Libya – and engagement in massive war games off the Korean peninsula.
Ambassador Haley managed to avoid being two-faced on one level. Joining the ban treaty talks would have been openly hypocritical while her colleagues in the war department were preparing both new nuclear weapons production and a series of test launches. Another April test, at the Tonopah bombing range in Nevada, dropped a so-called “B61-12” the newest US H-bomb now in development and scheduled to go into production after 2022.
Jackie Cabasso, of the Western States Legal Foundation, explained April 20, “In 1997… President Bill Clinton signed Presidential Directive-60, reaffirming the threatened first use of nuclear weapons as the ‘cornerstone’ of US national security.… President Obama left office with the US poised to spend $1 trillion over the next 30 years to maintain and modernize its nuclear bombs and warheads…. Over the past couple of years, the US has conducted a series of drop tests of the newly modified B61-12 gravity bomb…. Each new bomb will cost more than twice its weight in solid gold.” Of the 480 B61s slated to become B61-12s, about 180 are scheduled to be placed at six NATO bases in Europe.
US military: “We are prepared to use nuclear weapons”
To continue reading: US Says ‘Yes’ to Nuke Tests, ‘No’ to a Nuke Ban Treaty