The Triad Is Not the Trinity: Ending My Thermonuclear Odyssey

Source: TomDispatch
by William Astore

“As a late-stage baby boomer, a child of the 1960s, I grew up dreaming about America’s nuclear triad. You may remember that it consisted of strategic bombers like the B-52 Stratofortress, land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) like the Minuteman, and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) like the Poseidon, all delivery systems for what we then called ‘the Bomb’. I took it for granted that we needed all three ‘legs’ — yes, that was also the term of the time — of that triad to ward off the Soviet Union (aka the ‘evil empire’). It took me some time to realize that the triad was anything but the trinity, that it was instead a product of historical contingency.” (06/06/24)