Nuclear weapons appear to help deter nuclear aggression and prevent large-scale conventional conflict in a small number of high-consequence contingencies. Ensuring the efficacy of nuclear deterrence, therefore, is in the national security interests of the United States and its allies—so too are cooperative efforts to reduce the risks of escalation and arms racing and to create the political and security conditions under which nuclear weapons could be safely eliminated. For appropriators, the most salient nuclear policy questions are those with financial implications—in particular, how should the United States maintain and modernize its nuclear forces and their supporting infrastructure?

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This testimony was given before the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Defense.