Donald Trump and nuclear weapons


This video from the USA says about itself:

23 December 2016

Donald Trump tweeted out that he’s ready for a new nuclear arms race. Cenk Uygur, Ana Kasparian, Ben Mankiewicz, and Jimmy Dore, hosts of The Young Turks, break it down.

By Kate Hudson in Britain:

The orange finger on the nuclear button

Saturday 14th January 2017

Trump’s ignorance of the life-destroying capabilities of nuclear weapons and his cavalier attitude towards their use should be extremely alarming to everyone, writes KATE HUDSON

IN uncertain times the last thing anyone needs is the most powerful man on earth kicking off a new nuclear arms race.

But that’s exactly what president-elect Donald Trump did just three days before Christmas, tweeting that “the United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.”

There are so many ways in which this tweet is wrong, dangerous and ignorant!.

First of all, let’s take a look at the US’s nuclear capability.

It currently has 7,300 nuclear warheads, deliverable by land, sea and air, with plans to spend over $350 billion over the next decade modernising and maintaining them.

The full-scale production of approximately 1,200 W76-1 warheads for the Trident II (D5) submarine- launched missiles is well under way, with scheduled completion in 2019. Production of the new B61-12 guided nuclear gravity bomb is scheduled to be complete by 2025.

With the yield of some of these weapons many, many times the size of the Hiroshima bomb, the US already has the capacity to destroy all life on earth.

So what conceivable reason could Trump possibly have for wanting to increase the US’s nuclear arsenal?

Indeed Trump’s ignorance about nuclear matters and his seemingly cavalier approach to their use is extremely alarming given that he will have his finger on the nuclear button in a matter of days.

During his election campaign this became increasingly clear as he promised to tear up the nuclear deal with Iran.

This agreement was a huge achievement which replaced the Bush war drive against Iran with a deal to end sanctions and reduce nuclear facilities.

Ripping it up may well push Iran down the road to nuclear weapons, potentially opening the door to Egypt and Saudi Arabia going down the nuclear route.

Trump also said that he might use nuclear weapons and questioned why they would make them if they wouldn’t use them.

Those of us who remember the fear of nuclear war in Europe in the 1980s when the US was bringing cruise and polaris to our shores would do well to be aware that Trump is open to nuking Europe because it’s a “big place” and that he thinks “you want to be unpredictable” with nuclear weapons.

Of course some people write these comments off as throwaway remarks with no substance but the fact is Trump has repeatedly said that more countries should get nuclear weapons, in particular referencing Japan and South Korea, saying he’d be “OK” with an arms race in Asia.

This has raised the question of Trump’s commitment to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which came into force in 1970 and has undoubtedly restrained the growth of nuclear weapons possession and contributed to the safety of all of us.

With his support for more countries getting nukes, Trump has called into question what has been a bipartisan policy in the United States for pretty much seven decades: non-proliferation of nuclear weapons.

If the president of the US sanctions nuclear proliferation then we are heading on a disastrous path.

But this brings us to the second part of Trump’s tweet: “Until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.”

The fact is, most of the world has already come to its senses — in fact, had never lost them! Only nine countries have nuclear weapons and the vast majority of the rest of them want global nuclear abolition.

This has never been clearer than it is today.

Last month the United Nations general assembly voted to start negotiations on a global nuclear weapons ban treaty. They start in New York in March.

When it came to voting, the US voted against negotiating a ban treaty — as did Britain, in spite of its repeated insistence that it wants a multilateral disarmament process.

Of the other nuclear weapons states, Russia, France and Israel also voted against a ban treaty, China, India and Pakistan abstained, and North Korea voted in favour.

So it is the US, Britain and the nuclear weapons states that need to come to their senses, not the rest of the world!.

At this incredibly dangerous time it is essential that we step up our anti-war and anti-nuclear work, and increase our international co-operation.

The forthcoming Nato summit in Brussels will be a key opportunity for us to work with partners across Europe and the US against the war policies of our governments.

And here in Britain, let’s put the maximum pressure on our government to take part in the negotiations for a global nuclear ban, and to support the achievement of such a treaty.

Why not write to Boris Johnson, telling him to get involved, or go to the CND website where you can lobby online?

You can also join our parliamentary lobby on March 1 and make an appointment to speak to your MP in person.

Details of all these activities can be found at www.cnduk.org.

As Trump prepares to enter the White House there is no better time to get down to serious analysis of the issues, strategising together for action.

Kate Hudson is CND general secretary. New Approaches to Foreign Policy, hosted by London Region CND and SOAS CND, will be held on Saturday January 14 from 12 noon to 5pm at SOAS University of London. All are welcome.

See also here.

Donald Trump Expanding Scottish Golf Resort After Vowing Not To Make New Foreign Deals. “No new foreign deals … whatsoever” apparently doesn’t include this one: here.

Lt. Gen. Jack Weinstein, who oversees the US nuclear stockpile, told the New York Times, “You need to have the will to use” nuclear weapons: here.

On Monday, the United States, together with Britain and France, walked out of a session of the United Nations General Assembly set to discuss a global ban on nuclear weapons. After leaving the session, the United States and its imperialist allies lined up in front of reporters to give a statement protesting the UN proposal, beginning with an incoherent diatribe by Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN and right-wing ideologue who formerly served as governor of South Carolina: here.

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13 thoughts on “Donald Trump and nuclear weapons

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  2. Obama’s last chance to reduce the risk of nuclear disaster (Politico)
    http://www.politico.com/agenda/story/2017/01/obama-last-chance-reduce-risk-nuclear-disaster-000267

    ‘Total catastrophe’: Experts say Donald Trump’s position on nuclear proliferation would be a disaster (Business Insider)
    http://www.businessinsider.com/experts-blast-donald-trumps-nuclear-proliferation-statements-2016-3

    Does Donald Trump believe nuclear war is inevitable? (Mother Jones)
    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/12/donald-trump-nuclear-war-weapons-inevitable

    Barack Obama urged to take nuclear weapons off high alert (Independent)
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/donald-trump-nuclear-weapons-barack-obama-urged-high-alert-a7513971.html

    Obama’s last chance to reduce the risk of nuclear disaster (Politico)
    http://www.politico.com/agenda/story/2017/01/obama-last-chance-reduce-risk-nuclear-disaster-000267

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