By Mary Beth Sheridan and Walter Pincus
Washington Post, May 1, 2010
The Obama administration is likely to reveal a closely guarded secret — the size of the U.S. nuclear stockpile — during a critical meeting starting Monday at which Washington will try to strengthen the global treaty that curbs the spread of nuclear weapons, several officials said.
Various factions in the administration have debated for months whether to declassify the numbers, and they were left out of President Obama‘s recent Nuclear Posture Review because of objections from intelligence officials. Now, the administration is seeking a dramatic announcement that will further enhance its nuclear credentials as it tries to shore up the fraying nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
The numbers could be released as soon as Monday, when Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is to address the NPT Review Conference in New York, officials said. She will speak after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is likely to repeat his demands for more global controls over the stockpiles of the nuclear nations.