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Benjamin Loehrke
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Benjamin Loehrke is a senior policy analyst at Ploughshares Fund, a global security foundation. He earned his Masters of Public Policy from the University of Maryland with a certificate in intelligence analysis. He is a graduate of Indiana University.

Entries by Benjamin Loehrke

Campaigning for the Button: Nuclear Weapons in the 2016 Debate

(45) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 4:18 PM

It is the gravest responsibility given to the U.S. president: the power to end the world with 5,000 thermonuclear weapons.

It's also the first responsibility. On the morning of inauguration, the president-elect is given a briefing on how to launch a nuclear strike. In the afternoon, after taking the oath...

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Cutting the Solid Gold Nuke

(9) Comments | Posted July 12, 2013 | 6:30 PM

A bipartisan vote in the U.S. House of Representatives may be a sign that Congress is getting ready to cut wasteful nuclear spending -- beginning with an outdated $11.6 billion nuclear bomb program.

Earlier this week, Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) offered a "thoughtful cut to an outsized nuclear...

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The Half-Trillion Dollar Nuclear Budget

(8) Comments | Posted October 10, 2012 | 11:15 AM

The nuclear arsenal might seem like an artifact of Cold War strategy, but the U.S. is spending money on it like the Wall never fell. If nothing changes, in fact, the U.S. is on track to spend approximately $640 billion on nuclear weapons and related programs over the...

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Defense Hawk Says Cut the Nuclear Arsenal

(3) Comments | Posted July 24, 2012 | 1:12 PM

A leading defense hawk took to the floor of the House of Representatives to argue that greater security in the 21st century means spending less on nuclear weapons. This could signal a turning point as leaders in Congress see the strategic and fiscal realities behind why the U.S. should reduce...

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The Avengers' Nuclear Villain

(48) Comments | Posted May 18, 2012 | 4:18 PM

The Avengers puts a new twist on Hollywood's view of nuclear weapons. The nuke in this blockbuster film is both a villain and a hero. This may be very post-modern, but it's an ambivalence the film industry should finally shed.

The Avengers is a hugely entertaining film, and...

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Don't Sanction Iran for Sanctions' Sake

(14) Comments | Posted August 18, 2011 | 11:26 AM

Last week, more than 90 U.S. Senators sent a letter to President Obama urging the president to put sanctions upon Iran's central bank -- essentially creating a financial blockade. While existing sanctions have contributed to constraining the Iranian regime's nuclear program, this latest sanctions proposal could make dealing with Iran...

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Good Times for the Nuclear Weapons Budget

(5) Comments | Posted July 14, 2011 | 5:12 PM

As Congress debates the FY 2012 Defense Authorization Bill, the talk around Washington has been about what will get cut and by how much. However, as the rest of Washington is bracing for cuts, the funding spigot for nuclear weapons and delivery systems is about to get thrown wide open....

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The X-Men Didn't Save Us

(33) Comments | Posted June 16, 2011 | 5:16 PM

It wasn't the mutants. It was humans that caused the Cuban Missile Crisis. Only luck saved us from nuclear war. But other than that, the new film, X-Men: First Class, gets a lot right about the historic crisis that is central to its plot.

So far, the film...

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