Senator Feinstein Calls for a Nuclear Weapons Free World

 In Nuclear Weapons

It’s a new year. With President-elect Obama set to take office this month and a new Congress ready to go, 2009 is fresh with opportunities. And Senator Dianne Feinstein (CA) is ready to seize one such opportunity: working towards a world free of nuclear weapons. In her recent Wall Street Journal OpEd, “Let’s Commit to a Nuclear-Free World,” Sen. Feinstein makes the case for a much needed new direction in nuclear weapons policy:

Here’s how President-elect Obama can change course. By law he must set forth his views on nuclear weapons in U.S. national security strategy, in his Nuclear Posture Review, by 2010. In it, he should commit the U.S. to working with Russia to lower each nation’s arsenal of deployed nuclear warheads below the 1,700-2,200 the Moscow Treaty already calls for by 2013.

It would be a strong step toward reducing our bloated arsenals, and signal the world that we have changed course.

I was 12 when atomic bombs flattened Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing more than 200,000 people. The horrific images that went around the world have stayed with me all my life.

Today, there are enough nuclear weapons to destroy the world hundreds of times. And we now face the chilling prospect of nuclear terrorism.

The bottom line: We must recognize nuclear weapons for what they are — not a deterrent, but a grave and gathering threat to humanity. As president, Barack Obama should dedicate himself to their world-wide elimination.

You can read the whole OpEd here. The Senate will play an important role on nuclear weapons issues since it decides whether or not to ratify treaties reducing nuclear weapons stockpiles and banning nuclear weapons testing. It’s great to see Sen. Feinstein, a leader in Congress, speaking out for global nuclear disarmament. President-elect Obama will need the support of both Congress and the public to begin working towards a nuclear weapons free world.

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