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US Nuclear Program Has Lacked Investment ‘For Years’: Pentagon Chief

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel stated that the US Department of Defense's (DOD) review of its nuclear arsenal demonstrate that there has been a lack of investment for years.

WASHINGTON, November 14 (Sputnik) – The US Department of Defense's (DOD) review of its nuclear arsenal show that there has been a lack of investment and support for the program for years, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said during a press briefing on Friday.

"The reviews found evidence of systematic problems that if not addressed could undermine the safety, security and effectiveness of the elements of the force in the future," Hagel said.

Hagel added that he would help to fix the nuclear enterprise by making changes to the DOD's organization, policies and culture to address the root causes of the problem that include the department's lack of sustained focus, infrastructure and resources.

Earlier in October, US Congressman Adam Kizinger told Sputnik that US nuclear companies, such as Pennsylvania’s Westinghouse, were falling behind other countries in exporting nuclear technology and that this could harm the US over time.

According to the Arms Control Association, as of September 2013, the United States possessed 4,804 nuclear warheads, including tactical, strategic and nondeployed weapons. The New START declaration stated that there are 1,585 US strategic nuclear warheads deployed on 778 intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, and strategic bombers.

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