From German issue of Le Monde diplomatique from April 2010 (web)
In this issue of Le Monde, Obama’s strategy is described as not to make the planet atomic weapons free, but the strategy of his B-61′s is mentioned (web). The US military wants to abandon it’s longe range bombers such as the B-52 and B-2 and the atomic Tomahawk missles. At the same time the military sympathizes with the use of the B-61 earth penetrating weapons. The US military claims due to the earth penetrating nature of these bombs, there would be less fallout and less collataral damage (paper from Brookings think thank here). The IPPNW (web) says, the B-61′s only digs 7 metres into the ground, then it detonates and causes more fallout than a surface explosion. The ideology seems to be clear: Creating a clean image of the atomic version of the B-61 is a goal of the hardliners in the Pentagon. Obama has failed to replace them with people who support other strategies.
Even Obama’s Stratcom-commander General Chilton said on Dec. 15th 2009, that “We will need atomic weapons as long as the United States exist”.
The atomic B-61 is needed for destroying / damaging Iran’s underground atomic facilities. You cannot compare them with the atomic reactor in Iraq – destroyed by conventional weapons of Israel in 1981, or the Syrian reactor – also destroyed the conventional way in 2007. They were all build on the surface. Obama doesn’t risk another ground invason.
Efficiency is one thing, the other one is Dollars. From 2007 till 2008 the U.S. spent more than 140 million Dollars daily for it’s atomic arsenal.
But we must resist against the downplaying of even an “limited” atomic war. The results would be: In 48 hours -> 2,6 million deaths, fallout on India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, 10,5 million people injured – according ot the IPPNW. This is the worst case scenario. This must never happen.
More about the medical consequences: http://www.ippnw-students.org/iran/iran_attack.pdf