Costly U.S. nuclear arms revamp, tight cash call for tough choices

Hagel delivers the keynote address to the Association of U.S. Army annual meeting in WashingtonBy David Alexander KINGS BAY Ga. (Reuters) – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel grabbed a ladder extending through the sleek black hull of the USS Tennessee at a Navy submarine base here and disappeared down the hatch for a close look at one of the Pentagon’s most daunting budget issues. Inside the vessel, 24 tubes for launching nuclear ballistic missiles sliced through the submarine’s decks, with the crew’s bunks and Spartan living quarters packed in around them. The Tennessee and 13 other Ohio-class submarines are critical elements of the U.S. …

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