OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE FOR NUCLEAR, CHEMICAL, AND BIOLOGICAL DEFENSE PROGRAMS
To ensure the continued credibility, effectiveness, safety, and security of the U.S. deterrent in order to deter nuclear and non-nuclear attack; assure U.S. allies and partners; achieve U.S. objectives if deterrence fails; and hedge against an uncertain future.
"The number one priority of the Department of Defense is that we maintain a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent so we make certain those weapons are never used."
Former Secretary of Defense Mattis, August 2017
Mr. Drew Walter [view bio]
The DASD(NM) fulfills the nuclear weapons roles, responsibilities, and functions for the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical and Biological Defense Programs (ASD(NCB)).
The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical, and Biological Defense Programs/Nuclear Matters (OASD(NCB/NM)) is the focal point of the Department of Defense for the U.S. nuclear deterrent. In this capacity, Nuclear Matters is the primary DoD point of contact for Congress, the interagency, and the public and for allies and foreign partners on issues related to the U.S. nuclear stockpile and the integration and alignment of U.S. nuclear weapons and weapons systems. To perform these functions, Nuclear Matters is comprised of representatives from all areas of the nuclear community, including the U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, Department of Energy (DOE)/National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Sandia National Laboratories (SNL), Kansas City National Security Campus (KCNSC), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Nuclear Matters has a professional staff of subject matter experts in areas related to nuclear weapons stockpile management, security and incident response, nuclear safety and physical security, and working with allies and international organizations on issues related to the nuclear deterrent. The DASD for Nuclear Matters is a career civilian Senior Executive Service official.
Nuclear Matters has responsibilities in each of the following mission areas: nuclear safety, physical security and control; nuclear weapon incident and accident response; nuclear deterrent enterprise review; nuclear assessments; and nuclear threat prevention, protection, and response. As part of these responsibilities, the Nuclear Matters office provides support to management and oversight groups responsible for each of these mission areas including the joint DoD/DOE Nuclear Weapons Council, chaired by the Undersecretary for Acquisition and Sustainment and the Nuclear Deterrent Enterprise Review Group, chaired by the Deputy Secretary of Defense. Nuclear Matters Additionally, the office contributes to other nuclear-related responsibilities within the DoD, to including the development of congressional testimony, providing advice on arms control and treaty issues, and participating in budgeting and planning activities related to the nuclear deterrent.