Nuclear-armed submarines were one of the worst “nightmares” of the Cold War. After all, unlike stationary launchers for intercontinental ballistic missiles located in mines on special bases, or even in other places that could still be somehow localized, the location of submarines was virtually impossible to detect.
For this reason submarines that could stay underwater for weeks and travel thousands of kilometers and launch powerful intercontinental ballistic missiles equipped with nuclear warheads more than 10,000 kilometers in range became perhaps the most dangerous weapons of war in history. At the same time, each of the many missiles on a submarine was equipped with ten nuclear warheads during the Cold War.
Here is a graph showing the number of military submarines with nuclear missiles on board by the United States and the Soviet Union, as well as the other powers, in 1991 (the year the Soviet Union collapsed). The Soviet Union was then slated to have 62 such submarines.
Sixteen years later, in 2016, after signing and implementing three nuclear disarmament treaties, Russia had only 13 such submarines left.
The first of these was the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), followed by the Strategic Offensive Arms Reduction Treaty (SORT) signed by Bush and Putin and then by the Treaty between the Russian Federation and the United States of America on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START), extended to 2026 by Putin and Biden.
In fact, according to experts who specialize in the study of the Russian Navy, there are now only 10 nuclear submarines in the fleet (with another inactive one, which is in the process of comprehensive reconstruction, as well as a submarine used for experiments).
Thus, whereas previously the USSR-Russia possessed 62 nuclear submarines, their number has now been reduced to 10. This is certainly an impressive and surprising reduction of the nuclear threat to the entire world, no matter which way you look at it.
Further examination of this graph allows us to notice that in the list of countries with nuclear-armed submarines on board, there is a country whose presence may seem like a surprise to some. It is Israel.
According to the data given in the Chart, Israel has 5 submarines with nuclear missiles, France and Great Britain have 4 of them, China has 7 and India and North Korea have 1 nuclear submarine each.