Caught most of an interesting film today, called Chain of Command. The jist of it, is during talks at sea with Taiwan, the U.S. president is kidnapped in order to use his football to attack China. Since President Eisenhower, there's been an attaché case that an aide carries for the C' in C' in case of all heck breaking lose. Basically it's a way for our President to say nuke the bastards and do it yesterday.
So, during a meeting with the president of Taiwan, the secret service detail is wiped out... except for one luckly stiff who walked off to take a leak before the shooting started. To bad he didn't take the nuclear football along lol. One lone secret service agent on football duty, has to outsmart a bunch of AK knock off packing goons, stop the ship, rescue the president, and recover the football. Of course being a day where it doesn't pay to get out of bed, agent Connelly ends up in Hong Kong when things get even worse. To top it all of, the bastards manage to launch an American ICBM against Beijing, causing the Chinese to retaliate with an "Eye for an eye", targeting D.C. Both cities get toasted in short terminator'esque clips.
Finding himself with the lead villain holding the president hostage on his 12, and a traitorous agent on his flank, our hero does exactly what I would've done: remember the first rule of a no win situation—change the rules! So he shoots the president in the leg, and caps the two bad guys while getting himself shot in the process. Since the Commander in Chief is killed during subsequent cross fire, the poor sap has to find his way back to the states with the football.
Mean while the Chinese have decided to drop nukes all over the U.S.A. believing that our arsenal is hopelessly in terrorist hands. I don't know how high tech the nuclear football has become, other than that it isn't nearly so powerful as in this film... even we're not nuts enough to give one person the ability to launch nukes. But seriously, I would hope that if the President had that much power to trigger a launch, that Standard Operating Procedure would mean: if the president is compromised, cut off the footballs ability to order or launch a strike! For corn sake...!!
The movies ending, however is quite American at heart: after regaining control of our launch systems, the Vice President tells the Chinese to blow their missiles and they refuse, thinking it's a bluff. That being an obvious problem, as acting C-in-C she orders a stage one nuclear strike against China and threatens to take it to the next level unless the Chinese self destruct their missiles in flight, ours will be sprouting mushrooms all over their lawn ^_^. Obviously the bastards in charge are forced to back down, when they see a mass of American warheads touch off, and their one minute deadline ticks past fast, hehe.
That's how the United States of America is, you fuck with us and you won't have a pot left to piss in. ;)