Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Trump's atomic aversion

Letter sent to The Financial Times:
 
Neither your news report ("Trump welcomes Iran role for Abe,") nor Demetri Sevastopolo's Tokyo Notebook, (both May 28) mentioned the striking statement made by  President Trump in his post meeting joint press conference with Japan's prime minister Abe at the Akasaka Palace in Tokyo on May 27, when he said:
“We have enough problems in this world without nuclear weapons.” (press conference transcript:www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/remarks-president-trump-prime-minister-abe-japan-joint-press-conference-3/)

It is true that President Trump has unilaterally abrogated the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) bilateral treaty with Russia. ("US pulls out of cold war-era nuclear arms treaty, " FT February 1, 2019) www.ft.com/content/7287ec7a-25d9-11e9-b329-c7e6ceb5ffdf); that the Pentagon's Nuclear Posture Review issued in February 2018 called for significant enhancement of the  US nuclear weapons 'triad' (https://dod.defense.gov/News/SpecialReports/2018NuclearPostureReview.aspx).; and that the US Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has begun making a new 'lower-yield' nuclear warhead for its Trident missiles at its Pantex nuclear weapons plant in Texas(www.energy.gov/nnsa/national-nuclear-security-administration)

But even the Posture Review document includes the statement "The United States desires a world in which nations no longer require nuclear weapons to maintain international peace and security."
 
President Trump himself, decades before he became President, when he was still a high profile real estate dealer in New York, showed a detailed interest in the global dangers of nuclear weapons. In an article in Slate on-line investigation journal ("Trump’s Nuclear Experience: In 1987, he set out to solve the world’s biggest problem; www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/the_spectator/2016/03/trump_s_nuclear_experience_advice_for_reagan_in_1987.html) it  revealed how, 32 years ago, Trump wanted to begin a crusade to find a way to halt a national security policy based on nuclear mutually assured destruction (MAD)  “before a wild-card nuke deals death to millions.”
In March 2016, in his presidential campaign, Mr Trump told The Washington Post  "The biggest risk for this world and this country is nuclear weapons, the power of nuclear weapons." (Interview with Washington Post  Editorial board, March 16, 2016; www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2016/03/21/a-transcript-of-donald-trumps-meeting-with-the-washington-post-editorial-board/?postshare=1181458604633612&tid=ss_tw).

When President Trump visits London next week, he is due to face a significant hostile crowd of protesters, including the British Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).Nuclear disarmers should be seeking common cause with President Trump on nuclear weapons, not attacking him.

2 comments:




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