tv Doc Film Deutsche Welle April 2, 2019 7:15am-8:01am CEST
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this soviet era submarine was once a military threat today it's a tourist attraction. in the one nine hundred eighty s. millions of people protested against new nuclear weapons and entire generation lived in fear. at the end of the cold war thousands of nuclear weapons were withdrawn from europe and today top secret bases and storage facilities lie abandoned. these bunkers in a former american missile base in germany once housed cruise missiles this site now hosts a popular open air electronic music festival. where. the danger of nuclear conflict appears to have passed. but now new nuclear weapons destined for europe are being tested in the u.s. nuclear war is more likely now. and it was at the height of the current.
nuclear problem has not gone away it's it's changed it's become something new and different some analysts call this the second nuclear age. we need to use fuel use was on we're facing the most dangerous military and especially nuclear security situation in europe today since the collapse of the soviet union given that is what we are doing. as well in tartly there's talk of both the german and of a european nuclear weapon if you ask me a german bomb would be dangerous nonsense but we may find ourselves discussing a european one in the next few years usually in about.
this is the village of michel in western germany nearby is a german air force base where some twenty b. sixty one american nuclear bombs are said to be stored as part of a nato weapon sharing arrangement. nuclear weapons expert tons christensen works for the federation of american scientists and the stockholm international peace research institute c three. christensen is convinced the devices are stored here devices that could be deployed against enemy forces. there are still tactical nuclear weapons yes. only gravity bombs delivered by fighter jet aircraft they are the last remnant of a what used to be an enormous inventory of about seven thousand tactical nuclear weapons but they're still here in about one hundred fifty of them but only that one time. if
a conflict arose these weapons could also be delivered by german air force planes. americans have bases in europe but there are also four countries in europe that have host base arrangement as they call they call it a nuclear sharing arrangements germany the netherlands belgium italy and possibly turkey so those countries are the ones who sort of serve a soto nuclear strike role where their aircraft would be equipped and handed over nuclear weapons in times of war. until just a few years ago all political parties in the german bunds talk had been calling for the nuclear weapons to be removed. these nato fighter jets are on patrol over the baltic states their mission is to intercept any russian military aircraft that approach nato airspace without warning. a number of participants at the annual munich security conference are concerned about
growing tensions between east and west. the conference chairman is professor of of . india and fia yon's i'd him since the ukraine crisis that is since twenty four teams that we've seen a massive increase in let's say incidents. four and fortunately these of not lead to a real confrontation so far. for these incidents have taken place over the north sea the baltic sea and the blacks if they've involved western and russian warships and really terry aircraft basically he knew and was issued and military grade and. these russian aircraft over the north sea were filmed by the british royal air force. more and more nato aircraft are taking part in interception missions including. well despair claims. germany is making
a substantial contribution to nader's program to help protect the baltic states. but such busy skies are not without risk. that. we're still uses my fool by the nose imagine what would happen if for example a russian military aircraft crossed the border there by accident or deliberately and was shot down by a western or american forces like. that there's a big danger such an incident could lead to an escalation that quickly spirals out of control. so the tensions present here in europe today are a major cause for concern. good to. see a bidding cliff. these u.s. b. fifty two bombers are preparing to take part in
a training exercise in the baltic states. many see this deployment as a message to russia. and it isn't the only message. we've seen and types of exercises that we haven't seen since the cold war were american be fifty two bombers to fly up over the north pole to their launch point for nuclear cruise missiles and then return to their bases in the united states those kind of strike exercises were not done since that i mean one thousand eight. it seems as though we've returned to the old game of cat and mouse that was common during the cold war . this situation reminds us trillion antinuclear activist and author helen caldicott of a time when the u.s. and the soviet union stood on the brink of nuclear confrontation. with well i got robert mcnamara will who's sixty of fence and was in the oval office with jack kennedy during the cuban missile crisis he said to me helen you don't know how
close we came to within three minutes quote unquote. i think the situations i could well be compatible with that. decisions to launch a nuclear strike need to be made quickly and then there are the crews who would actually launch the missiles caldicott has heard some alarming reports. the man in the missile silos in america. is to have minutes to decide they're aged eighteen to twenty six have live in dogs just so nurse or press the button. there with the pistol one shoot if one shows signs of deviant behavior but the deviant one much should the other one recently it's been determined that many of those men taking l.s.d. not in their missile silos but beforehand and having wild sock illogical
experiences allowing it that taking marijuana cocaine and the like. caldicott things a nuclear strike could be launched by mistake. here evolved on each ng i meets dimitri training a former senior soviet army officer who took part in disarmament negotiations with the us. both experts are concerned a new cold war may be in the works. conflict may arise out of a military collision and places like syria and all the way to the nuclear level that in some scenarios and could. as the election of donald trump further complicated the situation the president has sharply criticized nato and even threatened to pull the u.s. out of the alliance. shortly after trump was elected security policy experts
in germany began reviewing the possible consequences of the us defense becoming less reliable. some have said that if washington is no longer willing to defend europe then perhaps germany should develop its own nuclear weapons. it's happening i was surprised when that debate came up in germany because here nuclear options have been strictly taboo and taboos it. back in the one nine hundred eighty s. millions of germans took to the streets to protest nato preparations for deploying new nuclear missiles in europe to counter a soviet threat. is a prominent german political scientist. has written an essay arguing that the country should lift the nuclear temporal.
clara it needs to be made clear that germany as a nuclear power would help strengthen the free western world it would support makes one liberal democracies and we need to explain that this would not be directed against any other states it would be purely defensive a deterrent that would enhance our security which is essential. it's not just about war and peace it's also about protecting our country from blackmail in crisis situations like these. nuclear weapons really provide more security for germany so far the government is not debating this question. but has ideas on how a german nuclear deterrent might function. could. we could develop mobile medium range missiles that have nuclear warheads that would provide low level to terence at a relatively low cost. another option would be to use nuclear capable aircraft.
the third option would be to use conventional submarines equipped with nuclear weapons. could convince you know who boarded with nuclear. and as well if germany were to build such weapons it would create huge security problems in europe. the russians would feel seriously threatened not least because of their experience in world war two he must leave it all to does big gun safety and really like to emphasize that a german nuclear option would not be directed against russia it would be part of an all round defensive strategy the minds of enough and additional. a german nuclear weapons program would cost taxpayers several billion euros per year. and it would create legal problems. germany renounced the development of nuclear weapons as part of the one thousand
nine hundred four power treaty that led to unification. as they have for schools it would be a violation of our obligations and if germany were to have its finger on a nuclear trigger trigger. that would be completely gone except about us he'd no one would trust germany with the bomb anyway with germany's history. but what about the future of the u.s. nuclear program this is the facility in the nevada desert at which the pentagon develops and test weapons. right now experts are working on the b. sixty one mod twelve the latest version of a tactical and strategic nuclear weapon. it's an expensive project but the budget for twenty nine hundred eleven is estimated to be about two hundred fifty four million dollars. to be sixty one can be deployed with a number of military aircraft including german tornado fighter bombers adaptation
of those aircraft was scheduled for twenty nineteen p a two hundred integration refers to the tranny though a two hundred. and about five eight years there will be a new type of weapon more advanced that's going to be coming back to germany and be deployed here at google. but aircraft have to be configured for that type of aircraft for the for that. weapon it's called a b. sixty one twelve. the tornado is right now undergoing flight test in the united states to be able to deliver this with. german tornadoes on a u.s. facility but you're a military aircraft being outfitted with new u.s. nuclear weapons could have far reaching consequences. maxwell downman works for the london based think tank basic which supports nuclear disarmament he warns of possible dangers the fust place russian missiles would go would be the b.
sixty one sites are there are also many hurdles for these things getting off the ground you would need to let the planes with the bombs because the bombs the planes in the bombs on together these would need to take off then this is all presuming that russian missiles are coming and then once they're flying you would need to refuel them in air and then you would need to fly them into russian aspace pla passed russian ballistic missile defense before dropping freefall bombs compared the house to firing a missile there is huge risks with these things and they really simply would never get off the ground. and some experts say that the aircraft could be easily targeted while they are refueling. so why would germany's air force one to use nuclear weapons at all. because highest. on the one hand we have to make an appropriate conventional contribution so that we can continue to have an influence on policy. but we must also be prepared to bear the burden and it is
a burden of having nuclear weapons stationed on our territory or if necessary delivered by our aircraft. i think is. but it's extremely important to understand the situation as part of our overall nuclear strategy. and our ability to help shape policy within the nato alliance this is. in short germany can continue to have a say in nato as nuclear strategy only if it's prepared to use these weapons. this also applies to nuclear weapons modernization programs there are several nato member states that say existing stocks of weapons are outdated need to be replaced . christensen points out this process is already underway.
as far as we can figure out the increased accuracy is about three times better than than it is with the existing weapons now what that means is that not only can you strike targets facilities much more effectively but you can also choose lower explosive yield settings for an attack that today requires a much higher yield sitting so that's more useable it's less radioactive fallout so it's a concern that we're making nuclear weapons more useable dhamma is on of off this weapon can be employed in ways its predecessor could not be. and russia will see that and say fine if the west is doing this then we also want to modernize and improve our weapons that's a steal or one that could create a new arms race which in turn could lead to a new cold war. several experts think this is now
a distinct possibility. u.s. president donald trump announced his plans regarding nuclear policy at his twenty eighteen state of the union address as part of our defense we must modernize and rebuild our nuclear arsenal hopefully never having two years it but making it so strong and so powerful that it. will deter any acts of aggression by any other nation or anyone else. has made clear that the us reserves the right to launch a deterrent nuclear first strike. while the united states is in the early phase of a complete overhaul of its nuclear arsenal and we're talking about everything we're talking about all delivery systems all warheads nuclear infrastructure of the factories nuclear command and control system so it's the shoot on the taking.
in fact it's one of the largest projects of its kind. compiled by the congressional budget office puts the total cost at one point two trillion dollars as a twenty seventeen. but it seems likely that the pentagon's weapons modernization program will be even more expensive than that. by comparison in twenty eighteen germany spent just over thirty eight billion euros on defense. the u.s. plans to modernize nuclear attack submarines command and control centers for nuclear missiles and nuclear capable aircraft and cruise missiles why is the us spending all this money. this is the lawrence livermore national laboratory in california. dr brad roberts is director of the laboratory center for global security research roberts was also
a deputy assistant secretary of defense in the obama administration. he explains why the pentagon wants to upgrade its weapons so the alternative to modernization is. disarmament. we have postponed. any decision because there are costly and politically very divisive we've postponed any decision about the modernization of our nuclear forces for decades the newest u.s. nuclear weapon in the arsenal in one nine hundred ninety one. there is no weapon that was designed intended to have a shelf life of more than twenty or twenty five years. the us is not only developing new kinds of nuclear weapons it's also devising new strategies in which those weapons might be used. to some that is a frightening proposition. so is war again think of all it
was not thinkable in the one nine hundred sixty seventy's and eighty's when the one nuclear war became the problem of armageddon the problem of the end of human history. and it's possible the today we have one or two or three actors who believe that a nuclear war can be won. because it can be kept limited because we will back down when they employ nuclear weapons on a women of bases and if they believe it can be kept when needed and can be won then it can be fought. but high yield nuclear weapons are not appropriate for those limited sorts of conflicts. so the us is designing a range of less powerful short range weapons. these are also part of the modernization program. in part the answer is yes we do need some new weapons
some of the targets we might want to hit in this kind of environment can be destroyed with small nuclear weapons that would minimize damage to other things what we call collateral damage we could significantly reduce. nato has deployed these kinds of weapons before until nine hundred ninety two nuclear artillery shells were stored at this facility indoors time in central germany. these former bundeswehr officers were stationed at the storage site. there expect man was commander of a guard unit and in kind no germans were allowed inside that was strictly forbidden and we really didn't know what was going on in there it truly was top secret your job i guess was to be ready if the soviet army would come across the hill right
it was about nuclear battle in europe just how do. we explain to our troops again and again that germany was the enemy's target if a war were to break out germany would be annihilated. so the better prepared we were to defend ourselves the greater the chance that we never have to use those weapons on the saddam and the pool that's called deterrence and it worked. any soldier can understand that concept. and that's how we explained it to the you know if. that's the biggest memory is in. until the one nine hundred ninety s. there were one hundred twenty similar storage sites throughout germany the artillery shells were intended to stop soviet tanks foursomes. the shells had a range of twenty to thirty kilometers so they would have been fired only on german soil this footage shows one such small nuclear explosion.
there were nuclear anti-aircraft missiles and even nuclear mines. there were all sorts of crazy weapons during the cold war period if you look back at that today you'd think the world a gone insane because those weapons represented absolute self destruction. that there were nuclear landmines on the border between east and west germany and the nike hercules air defense missile system equipped with nuclear warheads nuclear . and. if nato nuclear artillery had been used against soviet tank units it would almost certainly have caused serious damage to the surrounding german countryside. but times changed and nato commanders eventually decided to revise their strategy.
they have largely moved away from tactical nuclear weapons and the reason they move the way is because the military didn't need them to solve their military. objectives they could use at vance conventional weapons for this instead so now we're hearing recommendations that the us needs to enter reintroduce tactical or tactical like nuclear weapons with low yield. this museum in the town of damon in the state of mecklenburg for pullman is dedicated to troops of the east german rocket forces. christensen stops by to inspect some of the equipment. and he's given details about how the missiles were deployed and even he didn't know. the museum was set up by former members of the fifth rocket brigade. they've
restored some of the old cold war era transport vehicles which looked like trucks and he had the short range ballistic missiles perfectly. christensen points out that today tactical that is short range weapons are still a key component of russia's nuclear arsenal. it's very much a difference in tactics the point is that the russian military relies more on tactical nuclear weapons because they are a conventional force was considered far less capable so russia has a conventional inferiority if you will and so they use new tactical nuclear weapons to compensate for that so we see in the russian navy a large use of tactical nuclear weapons for and size ship cruise missiles torpedoes depth charges you name it. the u.s. military has completely faced out those types of weapons it doesn't need them anymore because it has better conventional forces. some experts say that the fact
that russia is economically weaker than the us is part of why moscow continues to rely on tactical nuclear weapons so has the risk of a limited nuclear conflict in europe increased. we have. many many statements from russian military and political leaders that they are prepared to employ nuclear weapons on a limited basis in a war against nato is war between russia and nato why clee i don't think so is it completely out of the question i wish that it were but it's not. so how likely the risk of a limited nuclear war is today is very difficult to calibrate relative to the peaceful period we lived in on the one nine hundred ninety s. i'm a decade afterwards it's hard. nato is actively preparing to deal with the threat of a low yield nuclear attack we asked professor issuing what he thinks of tactical nuclear
weapons. and so i decided not much because they're nothing more than a rehash of proposals put forward during the cold war. at that time there was also talk about miniaturized nuclear weapons. and portable nuclear weapons which a soldier could carry half a kilometer across the border could set up and then detonated by remote control. good. fences exploded they've got all these things could do more to promote them to escalate conflicts than to prevent them. for he. has repeatedly expressed its concern about moscow's recent deployment of mobile short range nuclear capable missiles in the kaliningrad region. a strip of russian territory between poland and lithuania. the missiles range extends almost to berlin
. in june twenty eight hundred nato held a training exercise in the baltic states and poland nineteen nato states and partners including friends took part. from a military standpoint it would be extremely difficult if not impossible to defend the baltic states against a russian attack involving armored divisions and tens of thousands of troops. on some. german soldiers also took part. they need to exercise. here read units defend themselves against an attack by blue units. the. it's strategically better to wait than to fire blindly and give away your position.
but that's functional name finds we engage the enemy infantry and took out quite a few of us can. i redeployed my men in a stream bed which is a good defensive position. right now we're waiting for the next enemy attack. which they are probably preparing right now to find as good of an all star says the doctor in north korean yet. germany is leading a nato force in lithuania that involves one thousand two hundred troops from ten member states. the units were sent to strengthen the alliances defenses along europe's border with russia. mines we trained together with the nato battle group and of course with our lithuanian allies minds on here just how much territory can you actually defend here. because. right now a strip of land about ten kilometers wide. ten kilometers is not much in the grand
scheme of things find public enemy probably a platoon strength attackers driven back. but what is the true purpose of these nato exercises. there are they have more to reassure the balts not to threaten the russians and if if the current status is maintained i don't think a lot of people in russia will be losing sleep over a few battalions of nato forces in the baltic states your desire fuel and i think that many of the predictions about what could happen in the baltics are exaggerated i don't believe lattimer putin is waiting for the opportunity to bring the region back to russia in some sort of glorious battle. because if he were then honestly the uncertainty donald trump introduced into the western alliance would have been the moment for russia to strike. but they didn't. so i don't think there's any
serious danger of war in the baltic states at the present time. because in by. in the one nine hundred seventy s. the soviet union deployed s.s. twenty intermediate range nuclear missiles in european russia these weapons were capable of hitting targets in most of western europe. european politicians demanded a response. and nato proposed stationing nuclear capable pershing two and ground launched cruise missiles in western europe. the soviet union feared that this deployment could lead to a nato first strike. millions of people across europe demonstrated against what appeared to be a new round in the arms race. the protests in germany were the largest since the end of world war two. in the end instead of a strike there was
a handshake in october one thousand nine hundred six u.s. president ronald reagan and soviet leader mikhail gorbachev met in reykjavik to sign a treaty that would eliminate all u.s. and soviet land based short range in intermediate range missiles. this was the so-called i.n.f. treaty. by nine hundred ninety one the two sides had eliminated a total of nearly two thousand seven hundred missiles. some of the cruise missiles that were eliminated under the terms of the agreement had been stored at facilities like this in germany. christensen says the treaty was unprecedented in its scope. it was the first class agreement that simply eradicated an entire class of missiles what was also important was that it had a very strong verification regime with on site inspections both at the sites but all the launch sites but all sort of you know factories and what have you so so it
was a really. new way of doing on control many saw about sort of later as a first step toward elimination of nuclear weapons globally. this is nature one and open air electronic music festival held every august at the site of a decommissioned u.s. cruise missile base near the town of cost a lot on in western germany. but the missiles removed from this base are once again causing tensions you know twenty eight thousand president trump said russia had been cheating on the i.n.f. treaty. russia has violated the agreement they've been violating it for many years and i don't know why president obama didn't negotiate for full out that we're not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement they go out and do weapons and we're not allowed to we're the ones that have stayed in the agreement and we wanted the agreement but russia is not one fortunately on to the agreement so we're going to terminate the agreement
we're going to pull out that. yeah yeah you know. president term statement shocked the world in for every twenty nineteen russia announced it would also suspend the i.m.f. pact. but even before that washington was concerned that russia had been testing a new ground launch cruise missile and a new ballistic missile similar to these. two . bidens. was i'm concerned that on both the american on the russian side the hardliners could prevail. these are people who believe the best course of action is to out arm the other side. there are military experts in russia who believe that given the overall strategic balance of power russia has no choice but to increase its reliance on nuclear weapons. because of the bargain that of nuclear.
states. when does the movie hear was it the man that if a conflict develops. using nuclear weapons early on forced the west to desist and such a conflict. which is a very high risk strategy in my opinion that's in my nose it's a good feel if you were legal. some experts say that the u.s. decided to suspend its participation in the i.n.f. treaty so that it could deal with an increasingly aggressive china. i think it has less to do with nato. frankly speaking i think it has more to do with china because china has a lot of. intermediate range forces. and russia has a lot of other forces in this part of. europe that they can use to target anything they want in europe anyway so it doesn't really make militarily
sense here. at the same time russia says nato is cheating on the i n f agreement by deploying missile defense systems in romania and poland. u.s. navy ships outfitted with anti missile interceptors are on duty in the mediterranean sea. washington says all of these systems are intended to protect against missile attacks from iran. human head of was issue as the russians say that the u.s. missile defense systems in eastern europe robbed by relation of the i.n.f. treaty experts disagree on whether that's true but in any case the treaty is in a pretty sorry state right now in kind them wouldn't that well their mutual accusations from the united states and russia about the other side violating the treaty the best way of course would be for both sides to sit down. and discuss here that exploits would need no more than
a couple of weeks. to fix the whole thing but in the current political crisis in the current political situation between the united states and russia it looks like all virtually impossible which is which is very sad because we may be losing the treaty within a year. in two thousand and eighteen the trumpet ministration released the latest version of the nuclear posture review which outlines the pentagon's plans for modernizing america's nuclear arsenal as a deterrent to both nuclear and non-nuclear aggression. the plan in part calls for the deployment of new or updated versions of cruise missiles to be based on submarines. the u.s. could deploy the missiles without having to ask its nato allies. and some experts say that this could cause political friction. this past feeded is that what's tricky about the plan is that if the u.s.
were to deploy its own cruise missiles on its own submarines it would circumvent getting nato approval. that is precisely because the u.s. knows full well that such a one sided move would have set the other nato partners but uses tiamat the. as is true for me and it causes or i'm quite concerned. that u.s. policy may end up in the hands of those who believe that russian violations of the i have treaty suite mean washington they must now also be probably new intermediate range nuclear weapons these that would be the depth of the agreement and if. they hadn't thought so if the i.n.f. treaty collapses you will have no treaty or system governing medium range ballistic missiles and nuclear missiles and cruise missiles in europe these weapons are specifically
a danger and risk to european to your to europeans because the. range holds european cities and capitals so while this treaty is between the u.s. and russia it really affects europeans. president frequent verbal attacks on nato have raised grave concerns some experts are no longer certain that the us nuclear umbrella is still committed to protecting europe or if america would come first in a crisis. here a nato delegation is inspecting a french nuclear submarine. could alliance members strengthen nuclear policy cooperation so as to reduce their reliance on the us. would it be possible for europe to develop its own nuclear weapons. and. there is a loophole that might allow for that. hot. in one thousand nine hundred
the new west german chancellor simon nonproliferation treaty talks the it all. but he did so with the caveat that a future european political alliance might be allowed to consider the development of nuclear weapons because. if friends were in that alliance it might be possible at least in theory for germany to become a nuclear power. at least with as. i don't want to completely rule out the possibility that i do for european defense union were to be developed along the lines where you proposed. that organization mart also have nuclear power and thanks largely to french nuclear capability. of the francis roof. but recent polls indicate that more than seventy percent of germans are opposed to
the development position deployment and use of nuclear weapons. and some experts agree with those sentiments. that would be a massive mistake to try to reintroduce such a weapon in europe because they were truly back in sort of the dynamic of the cold war. i think the cold war made it clear that an increase in nuclear weapons does not enhance security but ultimately increases insecurity on both sides and it. might go it seems least in the sides don't trust each other. and that's a tremendously dangerous situation to be and considering the destructive power of these thousands and thousands of weapons systems those inform us and since the. nuclear weapons are once again making headlines in europe whether it's low yield devices or cruise missiles on submarines if the hardliners on all sides gain the
upper hand it could mean the end of a relatively peaceful period in modern european history. wasted opportunity cost from the top spot. by me coming manages a draw against five books and drops to seconds from time to take. on victory cut storm and maybe all spoke with two goals against average time. to minutes on the double. earth a home or c.
. googling genius tell stories of creative people and innovative projects around the world ideas to protect the climate and boost green energy solutions by global ideas being a series of global three thousand on t.w. and online. an african. economy president of rwanda. head of the rwandan patriotic front in. the rebel army and in the one nine hundred ninety four genocide wasn't when little or no roots there was and when i was given to i don't need to reinforce them. i need news but does that mean he was not for a minute to. a controversial leader whose success is beyond question. the time. and the london tragedy starts people fit
t w. this is deja vu news live from berlin and britain moves one step closer to crashing out of the european union parliament has again rejected all the alternatives to the government's brecht's of the deal they use says britain must break the deadlock this week or quote face the abyss also coming up. the islamic state drives through our western citizens who are residents the role they played in the terrorist organization is often unclear and now they want to return to the places they call all.