US military command removes nuke joke amid criticism
Referring to New York ball drop, Strategic Command says 'if ever needed, we are #ready to drop something much, much bigger'
The combatant command responsible for the U.S.'s nuclear arsenal sparked outrage Monday when it tweeted out a joke appearing to make light of possible nuclear warfare, later removing the post amid an outcry.
"#TimesSquare tradition rings in the #NewYear by dropping the big ball...if ever needed, we are #ready to drop something much, much bigger," Strategic Command said in a post on its Twitter account accompanied by a slickly produced video of a B-2 Spirit stealth bomber dropping a penetrator bomb.
The post encouraged viewers to watch the video to the end, which included footage of bombs and missiles being dropped from the B-2 and the penetrator bomb smashing through a target before exploding.
The tweet unleashed a maelstrom of criticism and confusion on the micro blogging site before it was taken down.
"I don’t get WHY you would tweet this," wrote @SpicyFiles. "It’s beyond peculiar, as an American I find this horrifically irresponsible. The world knows our Military is always ready. Strength comes in silence vs using twitter to pound our chest."
Added @tumpover: "I'm certainly glad we have you, value your service, & I saw the stealth fly over Mt. Rushmore once, but threatening to drop bombs as peaceful as your New Year's felicitation is inappropriate & not amusing. The goal is NOT to drop bombs!"
Later, the command apologized for the New Year's Eve tweet.
"Our previous NYE tweet was in poor taste & does not reflect our values," it said. "We apologize. We are dedicated to the security of America & allies."
*Servet Gunerigok in Washington contributed to this storyAnadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.