Onderco, M. (2019) Getting Out of the NATO Nuclear Task Would Not Increase Dutch Security. War on the Rocks. Available online at
The argument to remove American nukes from the Netherlands is seductive, but it’s wrong. The Netherlands is a target of Russia because of its strategic location and its position as NATO’s logistics hub. Thanks to its geography, the Netherlands has key relevance for NATO in case of future conflict. As long as the Netherlands remains a member of NATO (which even PAX supports), the country will be in Moscow’s crosshairs. As a recent report by the Dutch government’s independent Advisory Council on International Affairs spelled out, the Netherlands continues to host U.S. nuclear weapons because “successive governments have considered nuclear weapons to be a crucial part of NATO deterrence and defence.” Furthermore, unilaterally giving up this task might lead to their transfer farther east within the alliance, which could be interpreted as provocative by Russia. Withdrawing U.S. nuclear weapons would not make the Netherlands safer, and would add instability to NATO at a time when that is the last thing it needs.