Obama, Nuclear Weapons and the Future of the Planet

Isn't it strange?

In the 1980's an overwhelming 80% of Americans wanted to see an end
to the nuclear arms race. The U.S. establishment treated this grassroots
movement almost as an aberration, virtually ignoring it.

This massive, global, grassroots movement helped bring an end to the
Cold War. But, throughout the duration of the Bush, Clinton, and G.W.
Bush presidencies there was no respect for, no move to act on, the
wishes of the American people and the worldwide supporters of nuclear

Isn't it strange, that it was only last year, when the former
champions of nuclear weaponry, Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, Bill
Perry and Sam Nunn, wrote an article in the Wall Street Journal calling
for the abolition of nuclear weapons that the establishment "woke up"
and started to take this notion seriously?

No doubt Barak Obama was influenced by this philosophy when he
attended Columbia University. He almost certainly witnessed the
million-strong peace march in Central Park, June 1982. And, during that
time he wrote two articles calling for nuclear disarmament between
Russia and the U.S.

This early period in the life of President Obama is clearly one of
the motivating influences of his presidency. He is the only U.S.
President ever to call for the abolition of nuclear weapons. Now,
however, he is facing two of the most powerful forces in the world: the
Military Industrial Complex, and the nuclear weapons labs.

He is a brilliant politician who exhibits patience and wisdom when
dealing with his adversaries. But, the Nuclear Policy review recently
published by the Pentagon exhibits no evidence that the U.S. Military
establishment intends to decrease its essential reliance upon nuclear
weapons, which remain the cornerstone of its military arsenal.

$5.5 billion dollars have been allocated to Los Alamos Labs to
continue the development of new plutonium pits for new nuclear weapons
scheduled for production in the future. The U.S. missile defense program
stands unabated, and is forging ahead using Iran and North Korea as its
raison d'etre.

In this scenario we are only, ever, minutes away from Armageddon and
the truth is the world is sick and tired of being held hostage by
nuclear warriors whose 20th century mindset cannot seem to comprehend
this. They insist on maintaining thousands of hydrogen bombs in ground,
and sea, based missiles, on high alert, ready to be launched within
minutes leaving us vulnerable to human or computer error, to hackers
(domestic and foreign), and to the sheer adrenalin and anxiety of
political crisis.

During the tragic events of 9/11 the nuclear command moved the
country to the highest state of nuclear alert, ready to launch, simply
because that is U.S. policy when faced with an unexplained state of
emergency. The utter devastation of a nuclear response, had it occurred,
would have dwarfed not only the horror of 9/11, but of anything

Ninety-five percent of the approximately 23,000 nuclear weapons in
the world are owned by the United States and Russia. Despite the extreme
secrecy surrounding military information we must assume from available
information that at any given minute 15-40 hydrogen bombs target New
York, and Washington D.C, Moscow, Leningrad, and more of the worlds
major cities. The effect of one 550 kt weapon on a city like Washington
D.C. would be devastating. Imagine 40 and start doing the math. In fact,
there is at least one hydrogen bomb targeting most towns with
populations of over 100,000. This is true in Russia, China, Europe,
Canada, and the U.S.

The stark truth is that one single failure of nuclear deterrence
could end human history. The operational and deployed nuclear arsenals
of Russia and the U.S. hold the human race and all other species captive
and at nuclear ransom. I am sickened that we still play this deadly
game of nuclear risk with our fragile planet. There are no national or
political goals that justify a war that could terminate human existence.
What terrifying accident or act of aggression must happen to wake
people and our leaders to this reality? This cannot be how we learn if
we wish to avoid nuclear Armageddon, and nuclear winter.

Once initiated, it would take one hour to trigger a swift, sudden end
to life on this planet. The clock on global warming is ticking louder
and louder. Nuclear war and nuclear winter would be a strange way to
stop it.

President Obama needs our support in doing the right thing, in taking
this first step all the way to the end of a journey where nuclear
disarmament is more than a campaign promise. He needs to hear our
voices, strong, around him. Once again 80% of Americans must rise up and
demand the abolition of nuclear weapons.

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