Jeffrey LewisSTRATCOM to lead DOD WMD efforts

Secretary Rumsfeld has signed a memorandum designating the Commander, US Strategic Command (STRATCOM) as the “lead combatant commander for integrating and synchronizing DOD in combatting WMD.”

Choosing STRATCOM reflects a certain emphasis on preventive military action to combat the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons—counterproliferation.

STRATCOM’s “first priority is to assess, advocate for the development and implement capabilities to support interdicting and eliminating WMD and related materials,” Rumsfeld wrote.

In case there is any doubt why STRATCOM got the job in the first place, Rumsfeld’s memo directs STRATCOM to initially “focus [DOD] efforts for immediate WMD interdiction- and elimination-capability enhancements.”

Perhaps this is what Rumsfeld meant in his memo to DOE pledging his “support for your efforts to revitalize the nuclear weapons infrastructure and to complete the RNEP study.”

I have this image of General Cartwright (above, right) gyrating awkwardly to Secretary Rumsfeld’s chant of “DANCE THE RNEP DANCE! DANCE THE RNEP DANCE!”

Inside Defense has the full text of the memo and an article.