An Open Letter To All The Newspapers In The World
How many readers know that the majority of nations in the world have drafted a treaty outlawing nuclear weapons? I suspect not many, because it’s been underreported. The treaty was opened for signatures last week and there was a line to sign on. The nuclear armed states, save one, declined even to participate in developing the treaty. The State that did participate, but then dropped out because of the boycott by the other nuclear armed states was—ready? North Korea. No one thinks Kim Jong un is rational, and last summer Donald Trump said, “If we have ‘em, why can’t we use ‘em,” and just recently at the UN he called Kim childish names and threatened to utterly destroy North Korea. Now, these two nuclear-armed, emotional infants are hurling insults at each other, escalating the very real danger of a nuclear war.
I don’t exaggerate. The single most destructive act we humans can commit is a nuclear war, “New data suggest that a war involving just 100 nuclear weapons, or less than 1% of the world’s arsenals, would cause abrupt severe climate disruption, worldwide food shortages, hundreds of millions of starvation deaths, and probably a total collapse of civilization.” (“Nations take a step away from the threat of nuclear annihilation,” By Ira Helfand and Matt Bivens, CNN, Updated 7:49 PM ET, Fri July 7, 2017.) And that’s to say nothing of the hundreds of thousands of prompt deaths, followed by many more dying from radiation sickness, and ecological destruction on a colossal scale.
The “old line” nuclear powers, The U.S., Russia, France, and Great Britain, long ago promised under the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, that they would “undertake to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date.” They never did and now the rest of the world is fed up. It is no wonder that Pakistan, Israel, India and now North Korea went on and developed nuclear weapons, and that Iran has only stopped because of a treaty agreement with the U.S. and European States which we are about to abrogate. In other words, with regard to having nuclear weapons, they feel that what’s fair for one is fair for all, and in this case, it’s insane.
The non-proliferation regime failed and now it’s time for abolition. But first, let’s immediately stop this dangerous, bloviating rhetoric by two men who ought to be in therapy. After all, they’re risking our lives here, and the health of global ecosystems on which civilization depends.