Despite years of denials, a secret planning document issued by the U.S. military’s nuclear-weapons command in 2003 ordered preparations for nuclear strikes on countries seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction, including Iran, Saddam Hussein-era Iraq, Libya and Syria.
A briefing (pdf) on the document obtained by the Federation of American Scientists, showed that the document itself was created to flesh out a 2001 Bush administration revision of long-standing nuclear-weapons policy, known as the Nuclear Posture Review. That review was a Defense Department-led attempt to wean nuclear policy off a Cold-War focus on Russia and China, but the shift raised questions about what purpose nuclear forces would serve apart from deterring an attack. In March 2002, leaks indicated that the review would recommend preparations for nuclear attacks against WMD-aspirant states. Arms Control Today pointed out at the time that planning to attack non-nuclear states that were signatories to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty reversed decades of U.S. nuclear policy. [complete article]
See also, Nuke planning against DPRK, Libya & friends (Arms Control Wonk).