Cold Warriors for a Nuclear Weapons Free World
This week, former Clinton Defense Secretary William Perry and former Reagan Secretary of State George Shultz came to the Bay Area to talk about their effort to push for U.S. leadership towards global nuclear disarmament. Perry and Shultz, along with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and former chair of the Senate Arms Services Committee San Nunn, have added the weight of their credentials to the vision of a nuclear weapons free world through Wall Street Journal op-eds in 2007 and 2008.
In a speech before the Commonwealth Club they highlighted the
political momentum building behind their vision (namely our long-held
vision). They acknowledged that the goal of elimination is a long-term
one, and referenced Nunn’s image of “a mountain top we can’t see yet”.
But as they said, the goal and the path there are inexorably linked.
They laid out concrete steps we can take NOW including: multilateral
agreements to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles, de-alerting weapons on
“hair-trigger” alert status, and locking up stockpiles of nuclear
materials. A podcast should be available at the Commonwealth Club website soon. The video above is a full length recording of one of their nuclear weapons free world presentations from earlier this year.
We in the peace movement can take advantage of this heightened
debate, bolstered by these unconventional allies. Peace Action West is
a co-founder of the Campaign for a Nuclear Weapons Free World, which is
a broad-based coalition to build political will for nuclear
disarmament. For more information, visit the campaign website.
It will be interesting to see what the next President does on these issues. Don’t forget to check out nuclearweaponsfree.org. Also another effort to eliminate nuclear wepaons is mentioned at http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/03/18/BA3TVLDHK.DTL