Safe. Secure. Effective. It’s our job to make sure the U.S. nuclear arsenal meets this standard and remains so.

“To put an end to Cold War thinking, we will reduce the role of nuclear weapons in our national security strategy, and urge others to do the same. Make no mistake: As long as these weapons exist, the United States will maintain a safe, secure and effective arsenal to deter any adversary, and guarantee that defense to our allies.” President Barack Obama, speaking in Prague, Czech Republic, April 4, 2009.

World War II ended 70 years ago, and a global Cold War ended a quarter century ago, but nuclear weapons still pose a very real threat to the United States and our allies. Rogue nations and stateless terrorists dream of using nuclear weapons against us. Just one crude nuclear weapon could still kill millions of people and inflict devastating physical, social and economic damage – which is why the U.S. maintains a nuclear stockpile as the ultimate deterrent against such an attack.

We educate and train our nuclear forces to ensure they are ready to perform their duties if the United States or our allies need them. We oversee and track the nation’s nuclear weapons and related systems to ensure total control and awareness over our nuclear deterrent. And we conduct intense, invasive and rigorous exercises and inspections with the U.S. military to make sure every system, nuclear unit and their service members – from top to bottom – are keeping the U.S. nuclear deterrent safe, secure and effective.