Nuclear War: Weapons & Who has command authority?

On July 16, 1945, the United States successfully exploded the first-ever NUCLEAR WEAPONS (a nuclear bomb) in a remote desert location, in New Mexico. Clearly, it was the day when humankind finally invented something of the capability to destroy its self. As a result, there began the contest among the world’s nations to become the “The most powerful nuclear country”.

It’s no more a secrete that Nuclear weapons can give the world nothing but destruction. So, with this great power comes great responsibility, the responsibility of millions of ‘LIVES’.

So, have you ever wondered which countries have achieved this power and more importantly who has the command authority over this power?

Well, the answer to the first half of the question is the United States, Russia, Britain, and China. Yes, these are the foremost nations when speaking about Nuclear weapons. Coming to the second half of the question, then that is what we are going to discuss in detail in this article.

Sections covered

What is the process before the launch of a nuclear attack and who has the comman authority in the nations given below

  1. The United States
  2. Russia
  3. Britain
  4. China

The United States

In The United States, no one except the president has the command authority to launch a nuclear weapon. He is the only one to have the authority to make any decision regarding the nuclear weapon launch. Obviously, it’s not that simple to launch something as destructive as a nuclear weapon, there is an entire process that is followed, and a protocol is taken!

The Nuclear Football

The president always has some very important people as he always carries a black colored briefcase. However, this briefcase looks like an ordinary briefcase but its features are not ordinary. It has got some extraordinary types of equipment. With the help of this equipment, the president can contact the senior advisors and other important people involved in the process of launching a nuclear weapon.

This briefcase has a page similar to cartoon books containing information about the war plan, launching weapon, and the target explained with the help of graphics. To launch any nuclear weapon the Pentagon room has to first receive the command from the president. But the Pentagon room accepts the president’s command only when he shows his special identity through a special biscuit-like card. And within a few minutes of receiving this command, the nuclear weapon launches.


Like the United States, in Russia as well the Nuclear weapons command authority is only with the president. Let’s see what important thing does the president of Russia posses.

The Nuclear Briefcase

This nuclear briefcase is never away from the president, not even while he is sleeping. Yes, it is just a few meters away from him even when he is asleep. If there’s any danger of nuclear war, the alert alarm gives a signal. Two more such briefcases are with the prime minister and the defense minister although, the Nuclear weapons command authority is only with the president as he is the supreme authority.

In case of any danger or emergency of nuclear war, he can communicate with the help of this nuclear briefcase. Once, the president commands a nuclear war no one can stop the war!


In Britain, only the prime minister has the authority to command a nuclear weapons war. Let’s see Britain’s special possession.

The Submarine

There’s always a submarine present deep inside the North Atlantic ocean which is undetectable by anyone. This submarine can launch a nuclear attack just after receiving a signal. After receiving the command from the prime minister the Royal navy can launch a nuclear attack from the Vanguard-class submarine.

Before launching any attack the British prime minister tells a secret code to two of the officers of the navy. Those officers also have their own codes. The process of this code exchange takes place in a bunker outside London. The two officers in the submarine receive the code through wireless and they get ready for the attack.


Well, when it comes to China there is no confirmation about who exactly has the authority to take the final call about the action of the army regarding the nuclear attack because all these decisions are taken in private.

However, people in China believe that the Nuclear weapons command authority is with the Communist party’s Politburo’s Standing Committee. But there’s still a dilemma whether it is the Communist party’s Politburo’s Standing Committee or the President of the nation.

The deep Tunnels

China at least for now, unlike the US, Russia, and Britain does not have the capacity to predict the forthcoming nuclear attack. So, China does not take the risk to initiate a nuclear war. In order to keep the leadership safe during the war, if china in case is attacked they have made great efforts to form a great network of deep tunnels. Some of these tunnels are 100 meters below the land in the hilly regions. Inside these tunnels, the leadership takes decisions regarding the next call of the army.


As I said before nuclear weapons can give us nothing, It can just take away from us. It just a way found to destruct the human race in the best way possible.

The explosion of a single nuclear weapon can take a million lives of innocents, worsen the world economy, and just spread hatred.

So, the question is do the nations really should invest their time, money, and manpower to invent something that is going to give us nothing and something that is going to take us nowhere?


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