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MARCH 20, 2022



"Decoding War on the Road"

with Dr. Peter Vincent Pry


Dr. Peter Vincent Pry is Executive Director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and Director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, both Congressional Advisory Boards, and served on the Congressional EMP Commission, the Congressional Strategic Posture Commission, the House Armed Services Committee, and the CIA. He is author of Apocalypse Unknown: The Struggle To Protect America From An Electromagnetic Pulse Catastrophe and Electric Armageddon, both available from and


Dr. Pry has excellent articles on NewMax!! Click below:

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Dr. Peter Vincent Pry served as Chief of Staff to the Congressional Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Commission. He is the Executive Director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, a Congressional Advisory Board dedicated to achieving protection of the United States from electromagnetic pulse (EMP), Cyber Warfare, mass destruction terrorism and other threats to civilian critical infrastructures, on an accelerated basis.  Dr. Pry also is Director of the United States Nuclear Strategy Forum, an advisory board to Congress on policies to counter Weapons of Mass Destruction.  Foreign governments, including the United Kingdom, Israel, Canada, and Kazakhstan consult with Dr. Pry on EMP, Cyber, and other strategic threats.    

Dr. Pry served on the staffs of the Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States (2008-2009); the Commission on the New Strategic Posture of the United States (2006-2008); and the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack (2001-2008).

Dr. Pry served as Professional Staff on the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) of the U.S. Congress, with portfolios in nuclear strategy, WMD, Russia, China, NATO, the Middle East, Intelligence, and Terrorism (1995-2001).  While serving on the HASC, Dr. Pry was chief advisor to the Vice Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee and the Vice Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, and to the Chairman of the Terrorism Panel. Dr. Pry played a key role: running  hearings in Congress that warned terrorists and rogue states could pose EMP and Cyber threats,  establishing the Congressional EMP Commission, helping the Commission develop plans to protect the United States from EMP and Cyber Warfare, and working closely with senior scientists and the nation's top experts on critical infrastructures, EMP and Cyber Warfare.   

Dr. Pry was an Intelligence Officer with the Central Intelligence Agency responsible for analyzing Soviet and Russian nuclear strategy, operational plans, military doctrine, threat  perceptions, and developing U.S. paradigms for strategic warning (1985-1995).  He also served as a Verification Analyst at the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency responsible for assessing Soviet arms control treaty compliance (1984-1985). 

Dr. Pry has written numerous books on national security issues, including Blackout WarsApocalypse Unknown: The Struggle To Protect America From An Electromagnetic Pulse CatastropheElectric Armageddon: Civil-Military Preparedness For An Electromagnetic Pulse CatastropheWar Scare: Russia and America on the Nuclear Brink Nuclear Wars: Exchanges and Outcomes;  The Strategic Nuclear Balance: And Why It Matters; and Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal.  Dr. Pry often appears on TV and radio as an expert on national security issues.  The BBC made his book War Scare into a two-hour TV documentary Soviet War Scare 1983 and his book Electric Armageddon was the basis for another TV documentary Electronic Armageddon made by the National Geographic.  


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The Nuclear Crisis Nobody Knows by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry
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Erin--A shorter version of this article will be published in Newsmax Platinum (behind a paywall) on Monday  as "Biden Blunders Toward Nuclear War."  Have added some analysis/recommendations and am providing to you in advance under my preferred title.--Peter  




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                         The Nuclear Crisis Nobody Knows
The Nuclear Crisis With Russia

President Biden’s first State of the Union address neglected to mention the little fact that his Ukraine policy has brought the world to the brink of a thermonuclear holocaust.

On Sunday (February 27, 2022), Russian dictator Vladimir Putin ordered his nuclear forces on “high alert” or “special alert” or “highest alert” as variously reported by Russian and Western sources. 

Putin has assumed personal control of the world’s largest nuclear arsenal in one of his underground bunkers, of which there are hundreds in Russia.  Some of these are deep underground, shielded beneath hundreds of meters of granite, so large they can accommodate thousands of Russian elites, and impervious to nuclear attack.

The Biden Administration and their media allies are desperately trying to cover-up the greatly elevated nuclear threat from Russia, dismissing Putin’s threats as “bluster” and “saber rattling.”  Biden’s Defense Department falsely claims there are no signs of “muscle movement” indicating that Russian forces are mobilizing for nuclear war.

After the Afghanistan debacle, the Biden Administration does not want to admit to America that they have blundered into a possible nuclear war over Ukraine—where the U.S. has no vital national interests at stake.

Blundering Toward Nuclear War

In fact, thanks to Biden’s Ukraine policies, the U.S. and NATO now face the gravest nuclear threat since the Cuban missile crisis. 

Biden “drew a line in the sand” over Ukraine, threatening grave consequences, mobilizing NATO to arm Ukraine and project forces to Eastern Europe, staking U.S. superpower credibility on deterring Russia. 

After Russia’s invasion, Biden enacted economic sanctions that he promised the White House Press Corps would be as damaging to Russia as attacks by tanks and missiles, and authorized B-52 nuclear bombers to fly, for the first time ever, to Poland.


--Before invading Ukraine, Russia performed a major nuclear forces “exercise” called Grom (Thunder).  Unusually, Grom simulated nuclear strikes in the Arctic Ocean near Finland, Sweden, and Norway, too close for comfort.  Consistent with Russian military doctrine, these exercises were to warn the West and almost certainly mobilized Russian nuclear forces for war.

--Russia reportedly has flushed to the field at least its Yars mobile ICBMs that can strike both the U.S. and Europe. 

--Russia reportedly has deployed at least some of its missile submarines and attack submarines to sea.

--Dictator Putin’s self-deployment to a nuclear bunker is itself compelling evidence of a real nuclear crisis, since most Russian nuclear weapons can be launched in a few minutes as they are on Constant Combat Readiness.

Russian Nuclear Forces Mobilization

Russia’s mobilization for nuclear war is officially defined by four ascending readiness levels:

CONSTANT COMBAT READINESS: Normal everyday readiness when there is no threat of war.

INCREASED COMBAT READINESS: Increased readiness of command-control-communications-intelligence (C3I) and partial mobilization of nuclear forces when there is elevated risk of nuclear war.

THREAT OF WAR READINESS: All nuclear forces mostly or fully mobilized because there is imminent threat of nuclear war.

FULL COMBAT READINESS: All nuclear forces are fully ready and/or engaged in combat operations waging nuclear war.

Today, Russian nuclear forces are at least at Increased Combat Readiness and possibly Threat of War Readiness.  Most Russian strategic warheads are on ICBMs and SLBMs (even Russian SLBMs are intercontinental missiles that can strike the U.S. launching from port) with secure  C3—so Russia can mobilize most of its strategic nuclear forces secretly.

Russia’s strategic nuclear posture is optimized for surprise attack by relying most heavily on ICBMs that even normally have very high (over 95%) Constant Combat Readiness, secure C3 for secret mobilization, and only four mobilization levels so they can beat the U.S. to the “nuclear draw.”

Most Russian strategic nuclear warheads are on ICBMs that, even at their lowest readiness condition (Constant Combat Readiness) can be launched in minutes—whereas most U.S. strategic nuclear warheads are on non-alert submarines in port and non-alert bombers that need to be generated.  Thus, Russia has a very significant advantage over the U.S. in numbers of strategic warheads that can be launched on short-notice.

 U.S. Nuclear Forces Not Mobilizing

In contrast, the U.S. strategic nuclear posture is more transparent, eschews surprise attack for “strategic stability” by relying least heavily on ICBMs, most heavily on missile submarines that normally are mostly in port and are all armed with SLBMs of intermediate-range (so they have to go to sea in order to reach Russia), and non-alert strategic bombers that can fully mobilize in three days.

Where Russian nuclear forces have four mobilization levels, U.S. nuclear forces have five mobilization levels, called “Defense Readiness Condition” or DEFCON levels:

DEFCON 5: Normal everyday readiness when there is no threat of war.

DEFCON 4: Increased intelligence surveillance of adversaries and increased base security.

DEFCON 3: Mobilization of nuclear forces for combat operations.

DEFCON 2: Nuclear forces ready for war in less than 6 hours.

DEFCON 1: All nuclear forces are fully ready and/or engaged in combat operations waging nuclear war.

Today, Russian nuclear forces are probably at the U.S. equivalent of DEFCON 3 or DEFCON 2, which is very rare in history, occurring only during such major events as the 1956 Suez Crisis, 1958 Berlin Crisis, 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia, 1973 Yom Kippur War, 1983 Able Archer NATO nuclear exercise, and 1991 Soviet coup attempt against Premier Gorbachev, for example.

Today, U.S. nuclear forces are not mobilized, are at their normal everyday state of readiness: DEFCON 5.

Nuclear Crisis Coverup

President Biden and the Pentagon are telling the press that the U.S. has not increased its DEFCON level because there is no nuclear crisis with Russia.  Yet the Pentagon has just canceled a Minuteman III ICBM test launch to “de-escalate” the crisis that supposedly does not exist.

DEFCON 5 may be prudent, to avoid escalating Ukraine into a nuclear war with Russia—but it also makes the U.S. more vulnerable to surprise attack.

Historically, when Moscow mobilizes nuclear forces, the U.S. also mobilizes to deter them.

During the Cuban missile crisis, President Kennedy mobilized U.S. nuclear forces to DEFCON 2, making Moscow retreat from Cuba—and told the truth to America and the world about the imminent nuclear threat.

Maybe Putin and Biden are both crazy.  But Putin is better postured to win a nuclear war.


Although punishing Russia for invading Ukraine seems like a moral imperative justifying Western military intervention, the U.S. and NATO have no vital interests at stake in Ukraine that would justify risking a major conventional or nuclear war with Russia.  U.S. and NATO supreme national and international interests dictate non-intervention to avoid a nuclear war over Ukraine.

Retaliatory measures to punish Russian aggression, that would be far more painful and productive than the feather of economic sanctions and a policy of fighting until the last brave Ukrainian, include the following:

--Crash program to harden the U.S. electric grid and other critical infrastructures from EMP and Cyber Warfare.  Much could be accomplished in one year to protect the American people from these existential threats that are the key to quick victory over the U.S. in the military doctrines of Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran.

--Crash program to deploy space-based missile defenses, like Brilliant Pebbles (deployable in 5 years for $20 billion) that could render obsolete the nuclear missiles of Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran, and greatly diminish their capability to engage in nuclear blackmail.

--Crash program to accelerate the modernization of the U.S. nuclear Triad, now mostly planned for the 2030s, to catch-up with Russia, that has already modernized its Triad.

--Crash program to catch-up with Russia in development of advanced technology nuclear weapons (where the U.S. is 30 years behind), even if abandonment of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and resumption of nuclear testing is necessary, since Russia and China have already violated the CTBT with low-yield nuclear testing.

--Crash program to re-arm U.S. ICBMs with multiple warheads (they originally carried multiple warheads, but were reduced to single warheads for reasons of arms control and “strategic stability”) to close the gap with Russia in numbers of nuclear warheads that can be launched on short-notice.

--Crash program to greatly increase U.S. tactical nuclear weapons from the present 180 gravity bombs to 2,000 or more warheads for U.S. air, sea, and land forces to match at least the lowest estimated number of Russia’s tactical nuclear weapons (2,000-8,000).

--The new U.S. Nuclear Posture Review should not weaken the credibility of the U.S. nuclear deterrent: by advocating a nuclear “No First Use” policy or differently worded variants thereof; should not ban U.S. ICBMs or oppose replacement of the aged Minuteman III with a new ICBM; should not ban nuclear-armed strategic bombers; should not ban new nuclear-armed SLCMs, ALCMs, and other strategic or tactical nuclear missiles; should support development of U.S. nuclear hypersonic warheads for strategic missiles (current U.S. hypersonic weapons under development are non-nuclear for theater or tactical use) like hypersonic warheads for ICBMs now deployed by Russia; and should not pretend that conventional weapons are a credible substitute for nuclear weapons.  Unfortunately, the Biden Administration is seriously considering going in the wrong direction on all of the above in their Nuclear Posture Review, which may be another reason they do not want to admit blundering into a nuclear crisis with Russia.    

Ukraine is an object lesson in what happens when the strategic balance tilts against the West.

Avenge Ukraine by remembering the strategy of “Peace Through Strength” that won the Cold War against the USSR peacefully, and can again deliver victory in the New Cold War against Russia and China—peacefully.

Dr. Peter Vincent Pry is Executive Director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, served as Chief of Staff of the Congressional EMP Commission, Director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, and on the staffs of the Congressional Strategic Posture Commission, the House Armed Services Committee, and the CIA.  He is author of the books Will America Be Protected? (2022), Blackout Warfare (2021), and The Power And The Light (2020).


Books by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry:

Blackout Warfare: Attacking The U.S. Electric Power Grid A Revolution In Military Affairs

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry

"Blackout Warfare" is the term used in this report to describe a revolutionary new way of warfare planned by Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran that is little understood in the United States, but poses an imminent and existential threat to Western Civilization. These potential adversaries plan to use cyber-attacks, sabotage, and electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapons read more


The Power And The Light: The Congressional EMP Commission's War To Save America 2001-2020

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry

Electromagnetic pulse (EMP) manmade or natural, from solar superstorms, can blackout electric grids and other life-sustaining critical infrastructures putting at risk the lives of millions. 9 of 10 Americans could die from starvation, disease, or societal collapse from a nuclear EMP attack that blacks-out the U.S. for a year. A solar superstorm could blackout electric grids worldwide, putting at risk the lives of billions. A small heroic band of scientists and national security experts serving on the Congressional EMP Commission have been striving for 20 years to protect America from the existential threat that is EMP. Their war to save America from ignorant armies that are the government bureaucracy, electric utility lobbies, and an irresponsible press is not yet won, and may soon be lost.

Blackout Wars: State Initiatives to Achieve Preparedness Against an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Catastrophe

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, David Drummond, et al. 2015

Blackout Wars is about the historically unprecedented threat to our electronic civilization from its dependence on the electric power grid. Most Americans have experienced temporary blackouts, and regard them as merely an inconvenience. Some Americans have experienced more protracted local and regional blackouts, as in the aftermaths of Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina, and may be better able to imagine the consequences of a nationwide blackout lasting months or years, that plunges the entire United States into the dark. read more

EMP Manhattan Project

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry 2018 

The electromagnetic pulse (EMP) threat to the United States is existential and growing. EMPs can occur with a nuclear explosion in space, cyberattacks, terrorist attacks, physical threats or a large coronal mass ejection from the sun, all of which are described in this book. Any of these EMPs could wipe out not only our electric grid, but anything with a computer chip in it, sending the U.S. back to the 1850s. Within a year after grid failure, the EMP Commission tells us that 9 out of 10 Americans will succumb to dehydration, starvation, gang and other violence, murder, suicide, breakdown of society and diseases. The government needs to take action now by forming an EMP Manhattan Project that focuses on hardening our electric grid. If it doesn't, those who survive will be existing in a country unrecognizable. read more

Civil-Military Preparedness For An Electromagnetic Pulse Catastrophe 

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry  

In my long experience, no other single issue has been such a scientific and national security conundrum as electromagnetic pulse (EMP). The phenomenon itself is not easy to explain to non-scientists, be they policymakers, generals, or ordinary citizens. The EMP threat seems like the stuff of science fiction. Yet your life depends upon understanding EMP.  

War Scare: Russia and America on the Nuclear Brink

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry

Why do some American intelligence officials maintain fallout shelters and private contingency plans to evacuate their families in the event of a Russian nuclear strike―even in today's post-Cold War era of U.S.-Russian partnership? The frightening answer lies within the pages of War Scare, a terrifying assessment of the prospect for nuclear holocaust in our day. Written by Peter Vincent Pry, a former CIA military analyst, War Scare provides a history of our country's little-known brushes with nuclear war and warns that, contrary to popular opinion and the assurances of our political leaders, the possibility of a Russian attack still exists. Nuclear deterrence has been the foundation of Western security for the last 50 years, but since the end of the Cold War, Russian military doctrine has become more destabilizing, and much more dangerous, than is commonly believed. read more

Poseidon: Russia's New Doomsday Machine

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry | Jun 14, 2018   "POSEIDON: Russia's New Doomsday Machine" describes Moscow's unmanned automated drone submarine designed to deliver a 100-megaton warhead to inundate U.S. coasts with nuclear tsunamis, leaving the most populous parts of America radioactive wastelands. Is this the real purpose of POSEIDON? What are the strategic implications of this new doomsday weapon, the latest in a series of Russian doomsday machines? What are the implications of the marriage in POSEIDON of Artificial Intelligence with the most powerful nuclear weapon ever built? Author Dr. Peter Vincent Pry is one of the nation's foremost experts on nuclear weapons and strategy. Pry is Executive Director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, both Congressional Advisory Boards. He served as Chief of Staff of the Congressional EMP Commission, on the staffs of the Congressional Strategic Posture Commission and the House Armed Services Committee, and in the CIA.

The Long Sunday: Election Day 2016 - Inauguration Day 2017 - Nuclear EMP Attack Scenarios

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry | Oct 13, 2016

Imagine. It’s Sunday. The election is over. You are either anxious to watch the inauguration, dreading it, or escaping by watching Netflix instead.  You raked leaves in the morning, then watched your favorite football team win. You had dinner, and as the long day is winding down, you are watching a coveted DVD with your family. The lights flicker, then everything goes black. You head to the electric junction box in your basement. Your flashlight shines on all of the circuits. They’re all tripped, but trying to switch them back on doesn’t work.  Back upstairs, you check your watch, but the light won’t go on when you press the button and the face is blank. You move to your bay window and look outside. No light anywhere for as far as you can see.  You pick up your cell phone, press 911 and, nothing. You pick up your electronic land line and there’s no dial tone. You check your laptop to try to get the local news station on the web. It won’t boot up. You decide to drive to your friend’s house across town to see if he’s all right. You hop in your car and turn the key and, nothing. It won’t even turn over.

Apocalypse Unknown: The Struggle to Protect America From An Electromagnetic Pulse Catastrophe

by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry | Jul 8, 2013 

Americans are not being told by the news media about the biggest story of their lifetimes. Every night every television news channel is desperately worried about the global economic crisis, looming recession, protracted unemployment, Wall Street and the housing market, government spending and taxation, and "going over the "fiscal cliff." But there is a much bigger untold story about a threat to the global economy--and to the very existence of global civilization--yet so rarely mentioned anywhere that, as described by the title of this book, it is an "Apocalypse Unknown." The biggest story is this. December 2012 commenced the solar maximum, and significantly increased the possibility of a geomagnetic super-storm, something like a space hurricane, that could collapse electric grids and all the critical infrastructures that support modern civilization, and the lives of billions worldwide. The Sun is a gigantic ongoing thermonuclear explosion, equivalent to billions of nuclear warheads detonating every second, contained by gravity. During the solar maximum the Sun hurls into space more solar flares and coronal mass ejections--basically enormous chunks of itself, many times larger than the Earth. If one of these solar torpedoes hits the Earth, it could generate a powerful electromagnetic pulse (EMP) that would collapse electric power grids everywhere, plunging every modern nation into a protracted blackout. Perhaps permanently. Worldwide, billions could die.