Tuesday, April 19


Among other Bush administration policies, our steps toward increasing our nuclear arsenal are endangering the whole of mankind.

A high-level U.N. panel recently warned: "We are approaching a point at which the erosion of the Non-Proliferation regime could become irreversible and result in a cascade of proliferation." It is truly shocking that the public seems oblivious to the 34,000 nuclear weapons still in existence, most of them with an explosive power several times greater than the bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The NPT was obtained through a bargain, with the nuclear-weapons states agreeing to negotiate the elimination of their nuclear weapons and share nuclear technology for peaceful purposes in return for the non-nuclear states shunning the acquisition of nuclear weapons.

Adherence to that bargain enabled the indefinite extension of the treaty in 1995 and the achievement of an "unequivocal undertaking" in 2000 toward elimination through a program of 13 Practical Steps.

Now the United States is rejecting the commitments of 2000 and premising its aggressive diplomacy on the assertion that the problem of the NPT lies not in the nuclear-weapons states' own actions, but in the lack of compliance by states such as North Korea and Iran.

Brazil has put the issue in a nutshell: "One cannot worship at the altar of nuclear weapons and raise heresy charges against those who want to join the sect.

As the Union of Concerned Scientists says, "Despite the end of the Cold War more than a decade ago, US nuclear weapons policy remains mired in Cold War thinking. The Clinton administration ignored its historic opportunity to reverse decades of dangerous and provocative nuclear weapons planning, and in its 2001 Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), the Bush administration has taken steps backwards by increasing the roles for nuclear weapons in US policy... The Bush NPR calls for the development of new, more “usable” nuclear weapons; for the preemptive use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon states; and for reducing the time required for the United States to resume nuclear weapons testing."

In this last-year article in Slate, Fred Kaplan wrote, "There is no nuclear arms race going on now. The world no longer offers many suitable nuclear targets. President Bush is trying to persuade other nations—especially "rogue regimes"—to forgo their nuclear ambitions. Yet he is shoveling money to U.S. nuclear weapons laboratories as if the Soviet Union still existed and the Cold War still raged."

And don't forget, that Cold War Soviet expert, Condo-LIES-a Rice, is now our Secretary of State. Gee, we've been setting such a GOOD example for the nations of the world under Bush, haven't we? Chant along with me now the old mantra, "No more nukes! No more nukes!"


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