A few questions for the still-not-nuclear-weapon-free states
My words fly up
my deeds remain below,
Words without deeds
never to heaven go
(After Shakespeare, Hamlet)
So this NPT PrepCom is over. The words were mostly hopeful, the promises of action feeble. At many NPT Revs and NPT PrepComs words have to a degree been aggressive. So a better atmosphere this time. Mostly because the NPT Rev in 2010 was felt to have been such a positive event, compared to NPT Rev 2005, and this PrepCom did build on 2010.
Most good words were on the need to avoid the terrible humanitarian catastrophe that even a “limited” nuclear war would cause – a limited war with unlimited, global consequences, as was learned from the “side event” on the global climate disasters after a nuclear war between India and Pakistan. These words on the humanitarian consequences seemed to irritate the nuclear weapon states, who as usual wanted to talk about ways to keep their nuclear weapon oligopoly. But the nuclear weapons addicts did not want to attack the Red Cross and could not attack the climate scenario, so they fell back on their usual tactics of pretending to plan for nuclear disarmament, but “not in our lifetime”.
Watch out, the nukes may end your lifetime, maybe even by mistake. That the Still-not-Nuclear-Weapon-Free States—SNNWFS—intend to remain in their state of non-compliance is shown by their refusal to take nukes off High Alert and by their very active nuclear weapons modernization program , “Mutual Assured Destruction for Ever”. They MADE MAD perennial.
The good words seem to be pinned to the upcoming conference in Norway next year. The SNNWFS do not want to use their considerable influence to make real the Helsinki Conference on a Middle East free of Weapons of Mass Destruction, and seem to have given up this very important opportunity.
So we in the Nuclear-Weapons-Free States, and you in the SNNWFS who want to free the world of this yoke, must try hard to make substantial concrete moves towards a Nuclear Weapon Free World—NWFW—at that conference in Oslo. Again, High Alert is Russian roulette for mankind and we must never accept that. And we should repeat again and again: Why High Alert? Maybe the SNNWFS could limit the Hair Trigger Alert to one single nuclear missile targeted on the adversary’s capital?
And why do you go on with your modernization program if you intend to free yourselves of all nuclear weapons? In this era of recurring financial crises, when a generation of young people are bereaved of the hope of employment, it must be possible to make the taxpayer see the light: A billion spent in the social sector gives many times more jobs than in the weapons sector.
Good words must be followed by good acts. Let’s see to that.
NPT: Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, in force since 1970.
NPT Rev: The NPT is reviewed every five years.
NPT PrepCom: NPT Preparatory Committee meeting, preparing for the next NPTRev, in 2015.
MAD: Mutual Assured Destruction, the so called Peace through Deterrence during the Cold War, still official doctrine.
SNNWFS: The Nuclear Weapon states pledged in 1970 in the NPT Art. VI to abolish their all their nuclear weapons, thus they are Still-Non-Nuclear-Weapons-Free States, but keep the world hostage to total destruction.