FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
On Inauguration Day, Barack Obama gets the "football." It's not what you think. This football is the small leather-bound metal briefcase that contains the U.S. nuclear launch codes. It will be handed off to Obama at his swearing in, and from that moment on will go everywhere with him. Think of it as Armageddon in a box.
The world is awash in potential nuclear weapons problems right now. North Korea already has them. Iran is racing toward acquiring them. The main nuclear arms reduction treaty with Russia expires next year. And tensions between India and Pakistan are on the rise in the wake of the terror attacks in Mumbai last week. Pakistan is a nuclear power. It's a daunting array of problems for any president to face.
So what's inside the football? A secure phone that can connect President Obama to the nuclear command centers at the Pentagon, Colorado Springs and "Site R," a bunkered emergency command center just over the Maryland border in Pennsylvania. Through these centers, the president can reach the 1,300 U.S. strategic nuclear weapons which are always on alert. There is also a list of various attack options, everything from a single shot to an all-out war.
Here’s my question to you: When it comes to nuclear weapons, what should Barack Obama's first priority be as president?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Meagan from Baltimore, Maryland writes:
I think his priority should be to make other countries aware that we no longer subscribe to the policy of "appease us or we'll attack". He needs to follow through on his promise to be as diplomatic as he wants the rest of the world to be.
Mike from New Orleans, Louisiana writes:
Obama should take the lead and make a goodwill gesture of destroying some of our nukes in the U.S. The less nukes in the world, the less likely an accident could occur.
Debra from Washington, D.C. writes:
Of all the issues facing Obama, this one he started the ground game in his first years in Congress with his bill on nuclear proliferation. Now he will use his present popularity along with the charm of Hillary Clinton to re-establish relationships with the NATO allies, to create a strong coalition behind nuclear accountability and control. I think he has in mind a world in which countries don't fight countries, but if there is fighting it is countries verses extremists.
Mark from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma writes:
How about dropping a nuke on the "lawless" area of Pakistan where Osama Bin Laden is hiding out. You know, just to send a message on Inauguration Day.
Dave from Brooklyn, New York writes:
He should begin talks with Russia, China and the rest of the club to begin a serious attempt to reduce the arsenals. No one needs enough fire power to destroy the Earth ten times over.
First, move all the Israelis to Texas; that way they'd be safe and add some civilization to a blighted area. Next, destroy as many nukes as possible by setting them to go off around 3000 feet above Syria, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan thereby assisting that part of the world in its efforts to re-decorate and make things warm and inviting. Bright lighting can add so much.