Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Trident nuclear WMD is an affront to humanity

This letter was published in the Morning Star on 1st October:
While I was really pleased you published my letter ("Labour has to tell the truth on Trident” M.Star, Sept.25), you added above the headline the strapline ‘Nuclear Deterrent.”
This is a misleading shorthand for Trident - favoured by its proponents,  such as Tory ministers and the MOD -  which my letter deliberately avoided, describing more  accurately this deadly  missile system as a ‘nuclear weapon of mass destruction’ (WMD).
The day after my letter was published, the United Nations General Assembly in New York held its long awaited (and once postponed) high-level meeting on the total elimination of nuclear weapons.
UN Secretary General António Guterres told the meeting the “only real way to allay fear of a constant threat from nuclear weapons” is to get rid of them altogether. (


He rightly stressed “progress made in reducing the danger posed by nuclear arsenals has not only come to a halt, it is going in reverse”, and any use of a nuclear weapon in the future would ignite “a humanitarian catastrophe.” 
He added the warning “A qualitative nuclear arms race is underway” stressing rising tensions, mistrust between nuclear-armed States, and muddy rhetoric about the utility of nuclear weapons are some of the factors to blame.  
“The elimination of nuclear weapons has been the United Nations’ highest disarmament priority from day one,” S-G Guterres emphasied, with the conclusion “We strive for a world free of nuclear weapons because we know these weapons pose a unique and potentially existential threat to our planet.”  
The UK disgracefully- but sadly  not unexpectedly - boycotted the entire session.

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