Sending Office: Honorable Lois Frankel
I ask for your support for my amendment #34, which would prohibit funding for missile systems that are noncompliant with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty unless the Defense Department demonstrates that an ally has agreed to host INF missiles
and that we’ve exhausted all other diplomatic and strategic options.
The INF Treaty led to the elimination of thousands of U.S. and Russian nuclear missiles. Yet in February, the Administration announced its withdrawal. Diplomatic efforts were not fully exercised with Russia to attempt to bring them into compliance with the
Treaty prior to the withdrawal announcement
This is a mistake. Even though Russia is in violation of the treaty, we need to work to bring the country back into compliance, not ignore our NATO allies and give Russia freedom to produce more nuclear weapons. Furthermore, the U.S. has in its arsenal multiple weapons
that fill the perceived “gap” introduced by the INF restrictions. In 2017, General Selva, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress that “There are no military requirements we cannot currently satisfy due to our compliance with the INF Treaty.”
There also seems to be some misleading information surrounding this amendment that I want to take this opportunity to address. Let me set the record straight: This amendment in no way restricts U.S. or Israeli missile defense testing, as confirmed in writing
today by the Department of Defense.
The longstanding definition of ballistic and cruise missile systems under treaty law are
offensive systems, not defensive systems.There’s no reason why these conditions would apply to a U.S. or allied missile defense system. This amendment also mirrors language from the INF Treaty, which has never prevented the U.S. or Israel
from testing missile defense systems.
The administration cannot have free reign to escalate an arms race. If it wants to build mid-range nuclear weapons, it must justify its decision. My amendment would lay out the conditions the administration would have to satisfy before pursuing these weapons.
Member of Congress
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