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The INF Treaty is dead – only nuclear abolition will do

By Jan Oberg

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons has published a fine short and informative video on the tragedy that August 2, 2019, marks for Europe.

Comment by Jan Oberg, August 2nd, 2019

Today is a tragic day for Europe, indeed for the world – but do the media highlight that fact on their front pages? Of course, they don’t.

The INF Treaty has made Europe less insecure since 1987. But Russia and the US have accused each other of violating it. The bigger reasons for this tragedy are that a) there is a new Cold War in Europe and b) since other countries are now able to develop similar INF weapons – Inter-mediate Nuclear Forces (INF) with the particular range mentioned in this movie – they want to have their hands free.

And, one might almost say, as usual – the policies of the US have spearheaded today’s tragedy, particularly with the totally counterproductive and de factor offensive Ballistic Missile Defence, BMD, that Russia – legitimately – sees as a threat.

Just listen to a man who knows – a man of peace – namely the last president of the Soviet Union, Mikhael Gorbachev who signed the INF Treaty with his American counterpart at the time, Ronald Reagan.

Two presidents who were aware of the dangers of nuclear weapons and were happy to
sign off one whole category. Today’s leaders are, in comparison, irresponsible.
And there is no peace movement and no peace discourse as back then

Europe thus has been, is and will remain the chosen place for a nuclear exchange. Neither Russia nor the US wants nuclear weapons used on their territory.

The mere possession of nuclear weapons rests on the essential terrorist philosophy that it is OK to harm and kill innocent civilians who have nothing to do with a conflict (in contrast to soldiers). That’s what distinguished terrorism from is supposed to spare civilians.

Countries that have nuclear weapons are, therefore by definition, terrorist states who practice state terror. The doctrine on which they rest used to be called “the balance of terror” – exactly because mass-killing of innocent people would be an act of terror. Since 9/11, however, the word terror has been reserved for only private/civilian groups such as al-Qaeda because states, or governments, do not want their citizens to see them as terrorists.

It would be impossible to use nuclear weapons and not harm and kill thousands, or millions, of people – as so many studies over the years have concluded.

Europeans – including the Russians themselves – are victims of the terrorism that nuclear states practice.

The video by ICAN below explains – in short and general terms – what it is all about and draws the only reasonable and morally defensible conclusion: Piecemeal disarmament and arms control treaties will never be enough. The goal must be to rid humanity of all these doomsday weapons one and for all. And here is ICAN’s statement about the INF Treaty.

It concludes that we must achieve nuclear abolition and support the United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

And that is a fundamental truth. Many of us have argued over the last 40 years or so that disarmament and arms control was mere a way to get rid of weapons no one were interested in anymore; they would never be enough – or able to match the ever-ongoing armament processes around the world.

However, writing in Sweden, I regret to inform those who may not know it that Sweden has recently – through a manipulative pseudo-democratic procedure – decided to give in to US pressure and say NO to that T.

If our democracy were genuine, it would be an easy match to achieve total and complete nuclear abolition: Just ask the people

No sane human being want to be a victim of somebody else’s nuclear war. Nuclear weapons are by definition offensive – can never be used for defence on and of one’s own territory against an aggressor.

But not even the so-called democratic countries have ever held a referendum about these weapons. They’ve just been introduced as a fait accompli on their citizens.

Now please see and share this video:

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