Statement by Principal
Deputy Press Secretary Speakes on the Binary Chemical
July 29, 1986
President today certified to Congress that certain conditions required by
Congress for the release of fiscal year 1986 funds for the binary chemical
weapons modernization program have been met.
certification to Congress will allow the United States to proceed with the
modernization of the chemical weapons deterrent stockpile so critical to our
nation's security. U.S. policy on chemical
warfare remains unchanged. The United States renounces the first use
of lethal and incapacitating chemical weapons. A comprehensive, effectively
verifiable global ban on all chemical weapons remains our foremost priority.
However, until such a ban is attained, we will pursue deterrence through a
strong defensive posture and a credible retaliatory capability. The chemical
weapons threat to U.S. forces is a worldwide
threat, not limited to NATO. The small, readily deployable stockpile of binary
munitions which we seek will provide the flexibility to meet and deter this
the legislation requires that the President certify to Congress that:
-- the North Atlantic
Treaty Organization (NATO) has adopted a binary chemical munitions force goal
addressed to the United States;
-- the United States has developed, in
coordination with the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, a plan for the
deployment of binary chemical munitions under appropriate contingencies; and,
-- the United States has consulted with NATO
member nations on that plan.
May 15 NATO's Defense Planning Committee in Permanent Session, composed of the
Permanent Representatives to NATO of the 15 nations participating in the
alliance's military structure, adopted the NATO force goals for 1987 to 1992,
including the binary chemical munitions force goal addressed to the United States. Defense Ministers,
meeting as the Defense Planning Committee in Ministerial Session on May 22,
according to normal NATO procedures ``noted'' the Permanent Representatives'
action. The Defense Ministers' action completes the established NATO procedure
for adopting force goals for alliance.
The United States has developed, in coordination with SACEUR, a plan
for the deployment of binary chemical munitions under appropriate contingency
plans. The United
has conducted extensive consultations with allied governments on chemical
weapons issues, including consultations on the plan for deployment of chemical
weapons under appropriate contingencies. On June 19 consultations with allies
on this military contingency plan were completed in the appropriate NATO forum:
NATO's Military Committee, which is composed of senior military representatives
from nations to NATO. The U.S. Military Representative to the Military Committee
briefed the Military Committee on the U.S. plan for contingency deployment of chemical weapons.
Recognizing the conclusions reached in the Defense Planning Committee, and
within the context of those conclusions and of national statements and
reservations expressed in the Defense Planning Committee, the Military
Committee took note of the briefing of the U.S. plan for the contingency deployment of chemical