Not really an unfair question at all. To be honest, if the US wants to set a good example in its dealings (and threats) to Iran, North Korea and any other country that wants to be part of the “nuclear club”, then a pretty good first step would be to take the lead and show that the “do as I say, not as I do” doesn’t apply yet again.
In Iraq and Afghanistan, we have already proven that we can blow up enough shit to level entire cities with conventional weapons. It is also, in my estimation, extremely unlikely that a country would be willing to use a nuclear weapon in pretty much any situation. Why do I say that? Well, there is obviously the immediate repercussions of the death and destruction and ostracizing of the “offending” country by the international community.
I also don’t think that there is any “regime”, even Ahmadinejad (since the real power in Iran isn’t too keen on his rhetoric) or North Korea is crazy enough to preemptively use a nuclear weapon. Of course, that does exclude the current US administration, because I wouldn’t put anything past them. Besides, why else would Bush be modernize its nuclear arsenal instead of taking steps to destroy it? Sure, I can be wrong here, but if India and Pakistan didn’t use them on each other, then I would think that is a good indication of the ability to exercise the most basic judgment in the most heated of battles.
There has been much made of John Edwards’ recent comments in a “nuclear” Iran. And while everyone is rattling cages on Iran, and while obviously it is not a good thing to have a nuclear Iran, isn’t it also not a good thing for any country to have nuclear weapons? Aren’t conventional bombs good enough to level houses and neighborhoods? Can’t “bunker busters” get deep into the ground? Aren’t rocket-propelled grenades doing just a find and dandy job at shooting down helicopters?
The debate needs to shift back towards the “no nukes is good nukes” campaign of the last generation. Wouldn’t the most appropriate response to “would you tolerate a nuclear Iran?” (or North Korea, or any other country for that matter) be that it is unacceptable for any country to have a nuclear weapon? Shouldn’t we want, nay, DEMAND that our leaders and Presidential candidates stand up and address the matter in an overall comprehensive manner? Don’t we deserve to have our leaders make bold statements like:
Yes, it is unacceptable for Iran to have a nuclear weapon. Yes, I would not tolerate North Korea building nuclear weapons. But on that same note, every country should be held to those standards, regardless of whether the United States deems them to be “rogue” regimes or not.
And I believe that if the United States is to be a leader in the world, and if the United States is demanding that other countries end their nuclear programs, then we should take the lead on this initiative. By taking the lead, I mean that we should NOT look to “modernize” our nuclear arsenal – we should be actively reducing it.
Pretty simple. Pretty logical as well. And for all of those who just want to blow shit up, there are still plenty of ways that our military can do that. But why should these incidents even be occurring?
Nastya, from Belarus was only three years old when she was diagnosed with cancer of the uterus and lungs. According to local doctors the region has seen a huge increase in childhood cancer cases since the Chernobyl disaster.
Why does the US need close to 10,000 nuclear warheads? Do we really need to live under the threat of “mutually assured destruction”?
Our Presidential candidates should be speaking out in this area. The debate should shift to include talks about taking the lead to reduce OUR weapons cache. The debate should shift to include the absolute lunacy of any country, including ours of having and ever threatening the use of such weapons.
Senator Clinton should be saying this. Senator Obama should be saying this. Senator Christopher Dodd should be saying this. John Edwards should be saying this. As should Governor Richardson, Congressman Kucinich and former Governor Vilsack. Of course, if there are others that I have forgotten (noting that Clark and Gore haven’t announced yet) then they should be saying this too.
The links above will let you remind them of their responsibility to show just how the United States can set an example for the rest of the world. It really isn’t even a reach. It’s common sense. And it won’t put this country at a greater risk – it will make us safer.
We can’t afford NOT to take these steps.