ICAN’s Nobel Peace Prize Is Humanity’s Rx for Survival

ICAN’s Nobel Peace Prize Is Humanity’s Rx for Survival

Nuclear weapons are the greatest threat to our humanity and the U.N. Treaty, through the work of ICAN, is now our prescription for survival.

By Robert Dodge

Friday’s award of the Nobel Peace Prize for 2017 to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) draws attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and the global movement to abolish these weapons as the only reliable way to guarantee that they will never be used again. The award brings the reality of these consequences front and center to the world stage. The nuclear armed states with their addiction to nuclear weapons due to their misguided false sense of security in having these weapons and their refusal to proceed further with the disarmament process will now be legally bound to abide by the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This award stigmatizes the nuclear armed states with their nuclear stockpiles and empowers the non-nuclear nations who have spoken out in the adoption of this summer’s Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

 

Physicians for Social Responsibility’s international federation, the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War,  itself a recipient of the 1985 Nobel peace prize, founded ICAN in 2007. PSR worked with ICAN presenting scientific data on the humanitarian and medical consequences  of nuclear weapons at a series of three intergovernmental conferences in 2013 and 2014, the 2016 UN multilateral disarmament forum which ultimately led to the 2017 UN treaty negotiations and adoption of the landmark Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons by 122 nations on July 7, 2017. The Treaty prohibits the use, threat of use, development, testing, acquisition, stockpiling and transfer of these weapons and forever stigmatizes these weapons and the nations who maintain their nuclear stockpiles.The small and mighty permanent staffing of ICAN has allowed it to be nimble and strategic in its work, engaging a diverse range of groups and working alongside the Red Cross and like-minded governments. It has built a mighty global coalition of over 400 partners in 101 nations creating a movement that is unstoppable and along the way has reshaped the debate on nuclear weapons generating a momentum towards elimination.

The small and mighty permanent staffing of ICAN has allowed it to be nimble and strategic in its work, engaging a diverse range of groups and working alongside the Red Cross and like-minded governments. It has built a mighty global coalition of over 400 partners in 101 nations creating a movement that is unstoppable and along the way has reshaped the debate on nuclear weapons generating a momentum towards elimination.ICAN typifies the often quoted words of Margaret Mead, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

ICAN typifies the often quoted words of Margaret Mead, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” The prize is a tribute to the survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the hibakusha, and victims of nuclear explosions and development around the world and their vision to prevent future generations from suffering the horror of a nuclear detonation.

Until now, nuclear weapons were the only indiscriminate weapon of war that had not been banned.  Chemical and biological weapons, as well as landmines and cluster munitions, have already been banned. Nuclear weapons are the greatest threat to our humanity and the U.N. Treaty, through the work of ICAN, is now our prescription for survival.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License

https://www.commondreams.org/author/robert-dodgeRobert Dodge is a family physician practicing full time in Ventura, California. He is the president of Physicians for Social Responsibility Los Angeles serving as a Peace and Security Ambassador and at the national level he is co-chairman of Physicians for Social Responsibility National Security Committee. He also serves on the board of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and Citizens for Peaceful Resolutions. He writes for PeaceVoice.

United Nations – and the Monster in the Room

United Nations – and the Monster in the Room

Editor’s Message

To President Trump and World Federalists:

It is tempting for world federalists to overlook President Trump’s recent authoritarian speech to the United Nations. Yet for a leader of a powerful nation like the U.S. to openly threaten war goes against everything world federalists stand for. We don’t need jingoism, Mr. President. World federalists want a “new United Nations” for a reason:  To provide an effective global governing structure where conflicts can be resolved peacefully by means of going to court or going to a democratically elected World Parliament.
And excuse me, Mr. President.  It should be “World first,” not “America first.”
R. Kotila, Ph.D., Democratic World Federalist President

UN — and the Monster in the Room

Article By: Peter Koenig

There are no words, other than Monster, not even human monster, that can describe Trump’s appearance before the UN General Assembly last Tuesday, 19 September.

It’s of no use to go through details of the insults he yelled at the word – many others have explained and analyzed that already – and done it well – remains to say that what Trump demonstrated with threats of total devastation of North Korea, war against Iran, total asphyxiation of Venezuela, regime change in Syria – and more – is sheer criminal, war criminal behavior.

Pledging for respect of nations’ sovereignty, yet threatening the world at large – except for Israel -with total annihilation if it doesn’t follow Washington’s orders, is pure hypocrisy; it has never been expressed as desperately before the entire UN body of nations as did Trump last Monday. While some of his predecessors have not talked kindly to this league of nations, expressing threats, lies, and humiliations, the extent of Trump’s atrocious behavior has no precedent in the history of the UN.

The ongoing US indiscriminate killing around the globe – tens of millions of people in the last 70 years alone – plus these ferocious, insane threats, and economic strangulations through illegal sanctions, are ripe for a new Nuremberg type tribunal

It is a typical and dangerous conduct for a dying beast. Lashing out at its surroundings, at the world, as it were – for intimidation, disgrace and foremost to pull as many as possible with the dying monster into its self-made grave.

But the burning question that we have to ask ourselves, is this: Why did almost nobody, safe for Iran and North Korea and perhaps one or the other country representative walk out?

Why did of the more than 180 nations who wish and desire the final demise of this murderous empire, not dare to exit the room of the Monster, the General Assembly, and let Trump speak and yell atrocities to empty walls and to himself?

The New York Times reports that “world leaders were stoic and quiet, barely reacting to his remarks about their countries.”

Why? Out of fear? What fear? – Could and would this military dictatorship, run by “Mad Dog” et al, a top brass military junta, destroy the world as we know it? – I don’t think so.

Is it for the money, because the US is currently footing almost a quarter of the UN budget and is threatening to withdraw her funding, if the UN is not “restructured”, meaning, to become a total puppet of Washington and its deep state? – I don’t think so. Indeed, by 22 September 2017, the US of A had not paid her dues.

Every halfway sane nation knows that the UN already today is barely more than a stooge to Washington, so are most of the UN specialized agencies and international courts that were once created with good intentions, I hope to believe.

So, then why?

Wouldn’t walking out have been a clear act of world solidarity, of a world that stands for peace and not for eternal war, not for a weapons and military based economy, but one that thrives on peace, on people’s development and wellbeing?

A new UN body, à la League of Nations after WWI that stands for peace, could be forged without the rogue nations, such as the United States and Monsters such as Trump. And this at a cost much lower than the current official UN budget of US$ 5.4 Billion. A lot of deadwood overhead could be cut.

Or, is it that almost the entire world, its leaders, have become psychopaths, succumbing to the Stockholm syndrome? – They seek the protection of their very murderer. How sick has our western civilization become? The result of neoliberalism – a ‘modern’ form of fascism that makes people blindly obeying their butcher, confronting their own demise?

It’s high time that we wake up. Better late than never. And the Never is when we have been swallowed by the deadly abyss. Before that very moment, we still have a chance to resist.

Open your eyes and ears and walk away from and boycott Monsters like Trump, and the handlers that have chosen their multi-billionaire bully to frighten the world into submission.

Wake up! And walk out a way – forging a peace solidarity!

Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, RT, Sputnik, PressTV, The 4th Media (China), TeleSUR, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance.

The original source of this article is Global Research
Copyright © Peter Koenig, Global Research, 2017

What’s Missing in the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize?

What’s Missing in the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize?

While the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to ICAN for banning nuclear weapons is a step forward, it is not a big enough step.  What’s missing is a legal ban on war itself.

The International Coalition for the Abolishment of Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) should now set its sights on banning war and demanding the establishment of a new World Judiciary system given real enforcement powers.

The United Nations lacks this essential feature. Currently, under the present UN Charter the leaders and military generals of the nuclear-armed nations, even when they commit world crimes, do so with impunity.  And they refuse to give up their nukes.

No sheriff in town

Leaders of these powerful nations, particularly the UN Security Council’s Permanent 5 (who hold the veto) are above the law.  No one goes to jail no matter how egregious the world crime.

There is no sheriff in town at the global level.

There is also a psychological obstacle. Each nation insists upon the right to keep secret its military arsenal. Such absolute sovereignty breeds paranoia which can only be eliminated by establishing open inspections everywhere. Such openness will require establishing a world federal union.

In a federal union, there are open inspections everywhere without exception.  That is why we in California never worry that Texas is secretly preparing to attack us.  We are both parts of the Union.  We can form a similar safe relationship between Russia and the USA and the other nations by joining in a world federal union.

Treaty-based agreements can’t be trusted

The new ban on nukes is a treaty-based agreement. Treaties are notoriously unreliable. They cannot be trusted. The history of treaties is the history of broken treaties.

To fix this problem the UN needs a legitimate federal constitution. A constitution-based agreement is the only way to ensure that no nation will cheat to gain an advantage over the others.

That is partly why America’s founders abandoned the Articles of Confederation and switched to the U.S. Constitution thus federating and unifying the 13 colonies — a governmental design that stopped the wars and conflicts that were erupting between the colonies.

We must constitutionalize the UN Charter

Forming a world federal union is the smart move.  It is essential.  The World Constitution & Parliament Association’s Constitution for the Federation of Earth (CFE), also known as the “Earth Constitution,” provides the needed governing structures which are missing in the obsolete UN Charter.

Democratic World Federalists (DWF) based in San Francisco is calling for UN Charter review.  They call it THE SAN FRANCISCO PROMISE.  The Center for UN Constitutional Research (CUNCR) based in Brussels is ready to examine the Charter and the implications of amending or replacing it.

It is time to reach out to the UN General Assembly, the NGO’s working so hard to eliminate nuclear weapons, peace groups wanting to go beyond war, and the general public to inspire support for a “new UN.”

Roger Kotila, PhD

UN MUTE ON WORLD CRIMES BY US AND ITS ALLIES

UN MUTE ON WORLD CRIMES BY US AND ITS ALLIES

Special Report: U.N. investigative reports, like a new one condemning Syria for alleged sarin use, are received as impartial and credible, but are often just more war propaganda from compromised bureaucrats, reports Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

Many people still want to believe that the United Nations engages in impartial investigations and thus is more trustworthy than, say, self-interested governments, whether Russia or the United States. But trust in U.N. agencies is no longer well placed; whatever independence they may have once had has been broken, a reality relevant to recent “investigations” of Syrian chemical weapons use.

There is also the larger issue of the United Nations’ peculiar silence about one of its primary and original responsibilities, shouldered after the horrors of World War II – to stop wars of aggression, which today include “regime change” wars organized, funded and armed by the United States and other Western powers, such as the Iraq invasion in 2003, the overthrow of the Libyan government in 2011, and a series of proxy wars including the ongoing Syrian conflict.

After World War II, the Nuremberg Tribunals declared that a “war of aggression … is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”

That recognition became a guiding principle of the United Nations Charter, which specifically prohibits aggression or even threats of aggression against sovereign states.

The Charter declares in Article One that it is a chief U.N. purpose “to take effective collective measures … for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace.” Article Two, which defines the appropriate behavior of U.N. members, adds that “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state…”

However, instead of enforcing this fundamental rule, the United Nations has, in effect, caved in to the political and financial pressure brought to bear by the United States and its allies. A similar disregard for international law also pervades the U.S. mainstream media and much of the European and Israeli press as well.

There is an assumption that the United States and its allies have the right to intervene militarily anywhere in the world at anytime solely at their own discretion. Though U.S. diplomats and mainstream journalists still voice outrage when adversaries deviate from international law – such as denunciations of Russia over Ukraine’s civil war – there is silence or support when a U.S. president or, say, an Israeli prime minister orders military strikes inside another country. Then, we hear only justifications for these attacks.

Shielding Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the United Nations in 2012, drawing his own “red line” on how far he will let Iran go in refining nuclear fuel.

For instance, on Friday, The New York Times published an article about Israel conducting a bombing raid inside Syria that reportedly killed two Syrians. The article is notable because it contains not a single reference to international law and Israel’s clear-cut violation of it. Instead, the article amounts to a lengthy rationalization for Israel’s aggression, framing the attacks as Israeli self-defense or, as the Times put it, “an escalation of Israel’s efforts to prevent its enemies from gaining access to sophisticated weapons.”

The article also contains no reference to the fact that Israel maintains a sophisticated nuclear arsenal and is known to possess chemical and biological weapons as well. Implicit in the Times article is that the U.S. and Israel live under one set of rules while countries on the U.S.-Israeli enemies list must abide by another. Not to state the obvious but this is a clear violation of the journalistic principle of objectivity.

But the Times is far from alone in applying endless double standards. Hypocrisy now permeates international agencies, including the United Nations, which instead of pressing for accountability in cases of U.S. or Israeli aggression has become an aider and abettor, issuing one-sided reports that justify further aggression while doing little or nothing to stop U.S.-backed acts of aggression.

For instance, there was no serious demand that U.S. and British leaders who organized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, should face any accountability for committing the “supreme international crime” of an aggressive war. As far as the U.N. is concerned, war-crimes tribunals are for the little guys.

This breakdown in the integrity of the U.N. and related agencies has developed over the past few decades as one U.S. administration after another has exploited U.S. clout as the world’s “unipolar power” to ensure that international bureaucrats conform to U.S. interests. Any U.N. official who deviates from this unwritten rule can expect to have his or her reputation besmirched and career truncated.

So, while harshly critical of alleged abuses by the Syrian military, U.N. officials are notoriously silent when it comes to condemning the U.S., Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Turkey, Israel and other countries that have been “covertly” backing anti-government “rebels” who have engaged in grave crimes against humanity in Syria.

The U.S. and its allies have even mounted overt military operations inside Syrian territory, including airstrikes against the Syrian military and its allies, without permission of the internationally recognized government in Damascus. Yet, the U.N. does nothing to curtail or condemn these clear violations of its own Charter.

Breaking the Independence

The reason is that, for much of this century, the U.S. government has worked to bring key agencies, such as the U.N. Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), under U.S. control and domination.

At the start of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, President George W. Bush ordered the U.S. military to conduct a devastating aerial assault on Baghdad, known as “shock and awe”.

This drive to neutralize the U.N.’s independence gained powerful momentum after the 9/11 attacks and President George W. Bush’s launching of his “global war on terror.” But this effort continued under President Obama and now under President Trump.

In 2002, after opening the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and effectively waiving the Geneva Convention’s protections for prisoners of war, Bush bristled at criticism from the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary C. Robinson.

Soon, Robinson was targeted for removal. Her fierce independence, which also included criticism of Israel, was unacceptable. The Bush administration lobbied hard against her reappointment, leading to her retirement in 2002.

Also, in 2002, the Bush administration engineered the firing of OPCW’s Director General Jose Mauricio Bustani who was viewed as an obstacle to the U.S. plans for invading Iraq.

Bustani, who had been reelected unanimously to the post less than a year earlier, described his removal in a 2013 interview with Marlise Simons of The New York Times, citing how Bush’s emissary, Under-Secretary of State John Bolton, marched into Bustani’s office and announced that he (Bustani) would be fired.

“The story behind [Bustani’s] ouster has been the subject of interpretation and speculation for years, and Mr. Bustani, a Brazilian diplomat, has kept a low profile since then,” wrote Simons. “But with the agency [OPCW] thrust into the spotlight with news of the Nobel [Peace] Prize [in October 2013], Mr. Bustani agreed to discuss what he said was the real reason: the Bush administration’s fear that chemical weapons inspections in Iraq would conflict with Washington’s rationale for invading it. Several officials involved in the events, some speaking publicly about them for the first time, confirmed his account.”

The official U.S. explanation for getting rid of Bustani was incompetence, but Bustani and the other diplomats close to the case reported that Bustani’s real offense was drawing Iraq into acceptance of the OPCW’s conventions for eliminating chemical weapons, just as the Bush administration was planning to pin its propaganda campaign for invading Iraq on the country’s alleged secret stockpile of WMD.

Bustani’s ouster gave President Bush a clearer path to the invasion by letting him frighten Americans with the prospect of Iraq sharing its chemical weapons and possibly a nuclear bomb with Al Qaeda terrorists.

Dismissing Iraq’s insistence that it had destroyed its chemical weapons and didn’t have a nuclear weapons project, Bush launched the invasion in March 2003, only for the world to discover later that the Iraqi government was telling the truth.

Compliant Replacements

In comparison to the independent-minded Bustani, the biography of the current OPCW director general, Ahmet Uzumcu, a career Turkish diplomat, suggests that the OPCW could be expected to slant its case against the Syrian government in the current Syrian conflict.

Yukiya Amano, a Japanese diplomat and director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Not only has Turkey, a NATO ally of the United States, been a key player in supporting the proxy war to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, but Uzumcu also served as Turkey’s ambassador to Israel, which has long sought regime change in Syria and has publicly come out in favor of the anti-government rebels.

Another one-time thorn in the side of the U.S. “unipolar power” was the IAEA when it was under the control of Director General Mohamed ElBaradei, an Egyptian. The IAEA challenged the Bush administration’s claims about Iraq having a nuclear program, when one really didn’t exist.

However, being right is no protection when U.S. officials want to bring an agency into line with U.S. policy and propaganda. So, early in the Obama administration – as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was pushing for a hardline on Iran over its nascent nuclear program – the U.S. government engineered the insertion of a pliable Japanese diplomat, Yukiya Amano, into the IAEA’s top job.

Before his appointment, Amano had portrayed himself as an independent-minded fellow who was resisting U.S.-Israeli propaganda about the Iranian nuclear program. Yet behind the scenes, he was meeting with U.S. and Israeli officials to coordinate on how to serve their interests (even though Israel is an actual rogue nuclear state, not a hypothetical or fictional one).

Amano’s professed doubts about an Iranian nuclear-bomb project, which even the U.S. intelligence community agreed no longer existed, was just a theatrical device to intensify the later impact if he were to declare that Iran indeed was building a secret nuke, thus justifying the desire of Israeli leaders and American neoconservatives to “bomb-bomb-bomb” Iran.

But this U.S. ploy was spoiled by Pvt. Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning’s leaking of hundreds of thousands of pages of U.S. diplomatic cables. Among them were reports on Amano’s hidden collaboration with U.S. and Israeli officials; his agreement with U.S. emissaries on who to fire and who to retain among IAEA officials; and even Amano’s request for additional U.S. financial contributions.

The U.S. embassy cables revealing the truth about Amano were published by the U.K. Guardian in 2011 (although ignored by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other mainstream U.S. news outlets). Despite the silence of the major U.S. news media, Internet outlets, such as Consortiumnews.com, highlighted the Amano cables, meaning that enough Americans knew the facts not to be fooled again. [For details, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Did Manning Help Avert War with Iran?”]

A Collective Collapse

A heart-rending propaganda image designed to justify a major U.S. military operation inside Syria against the Syrian military.

So, over the years, there has been a collective collapse of the independence at U.N.-related agencies. An international bureaucrat who gets on the wrong side of the United States or Israel can expect to be fired and humiliated, while those who play ball can be assured of a comfortable life as a “respected” diplomat.

But this reality is little known to most Americans so they are still inclined to be influenced when a “U.N. investigation” reaches some conclusion condemning some country that already is on the receiving end of negative U.S. propaganda.

The New York Times, CNN and other major U.S. news outlets are sure to trumpet these “findings” with great seriousness and respect and to treat any remaining doubters as outside the mainstream. Of course, there’s an entirely different response on the rare occasion when some brave or foolhardy human rights bureaucrat criticizes Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. Then, the U.N. finding is just a sign of anti-Israeli bias and should be discounted.

In the far more frequent cases when a U.N. report is in line with U.S. propaganda, American journalists almost never turn a critical eye toward the quality of the evidence or the leaps of logic. We saw that happen this week with a thinly sourced and highly dubious U.N. report blaming the Syrian government for an alleged sarin incident on April 4. A major contradiction in the evidence – testimony given to OPCW investigators undercutting the conclusion that a Syrian warplane could have dropped a sarin bomb – was brushed aside by the U.N. human rights investigators and was ignored by the Times and other major U.S. news outlets.

But what is perhaps most troubling is that these biased U.N. reports are now used to justify continued wars of aggression by stronger countries against weaker ones. So, instead of acting as a bulwark to protect the powerless from the powerful as the U.N. Charter intended, the U.N. bureaucracy has turned the original noble purpose of the institution on its head by becoming an enabler of the “supreme international crime,” wars of aggression.

*This article was originally published on consortiumnews.com

UNFOLD ZERO: About Organization

UNFOLD ZERO is a platform for United Nations (UN) focused initiatives and actions for the achievement of a nuclear weapons free world.

UNFOLD ZERO aims to unfold the path to zero nuclear weapons through effective steps and measures facilitated by the UN General Assembly, UN Security Council, UN Secretary-General and other UN bodies.

Zero nuclear weapons


The aim of zero nuclear weapons – the prohibition and complete elimination of nuclear weapons under strict and effective international control – was first affirmed by UN General Assembly resolution 1 (I) on January 24, 1946. A reliance on nuclear deterrence by some countries in response to regional and international tensions since then has thwarted the achievement of this goal. However, a number of recent developments bring this goal into sight. These include globalization, the strengthening of international law, a growing public aversion to all weapons of mass destruction and the increasing effectiveness of the United Nations and other cooperative security mechanisms to address core security issues.

Why focus on the United Nations?


The UN provides the principal environment for the international community to implement the collective obligation and the global common good to achieve a nuclear weapons free world.

The UN brings together all the key players relevant to the achievement of a nuclear weapons free world. This includes the nuclear-armed countries, the countries under extended nuclear deterrence relationships, the non-nuclear countries that have demonstrated the possibility to achieve security without relying on nuclear weapons, and civil society actors engaged in nuclear disarmament.

The UN includes key organs through which nuclear disarmament agreements can be negotiated and their implementation monitored and enforced, including the UN General Assembly, UN Security Council, Conference on Disarmament, UN Office of Disarmament Affairs, and the International Court of Justice. In addition, the UN provides a cooperative security framework for addressing security challenges without recourse to the threat or use of nuclear weapons.

Relationship to other nuclear abolition networks and campaigns


Nuclear abolition will require action at all levels (public, city, national, regional and international) and in many forms, not just the United Nations. UNFOLD ZERO aims to complement, enhance and empower existing nuclear abolition networks and initiatives, through action within the UN system. UNFOLD ZEROalso links to platforms for the abolition of other inhumane weapons and weapons of mass destruction, and to platforms for general and complete disarmament.

UNFOLD ZERO is a project of PragueVisionPNNDBasel Peace OfficeMayors for Peace 2020 Vision Campaign, Aotearoa Lawyers for Peace and Global Security Institute.

*This article was originally published on unfoldzero.org.

GLOBAL ZERO

GLOBAL ZERO

NUCLEAR CRISIS GROUP

On the eve of newly-elected South Korean President Moon Jae-In’s first visit to Washington, D.C., Global Zero’s Nuclear Crisis Group (NCG), a newly-formed team of seasoned diplomats, military leaders and national security experts from ten nuclear-armed and allied countries, has released a set of urgent recommendations to avoid the use of nuclear weapons and call on national leaders to act now to reduce the unacceptably high risk of nuclear conflict.

Co-chaired by Ambassador Richard Burt, General (Ret.) James E. Cartwright and Ambassador Thomas Pickering, the NCG met in Vienna, Austria in Spring 2017 to review the security and political situation in four nuclear flashpoints: the Korean Peninsula, US/Russia/NATO, South Asia and US-China. In all four areas, the group unanimously expressed its alarm about the risk of conflict and escalation – intentional or otherwise – to the nuclear level and endorsed immediate steps that can prevent conflicts from escalating to nuclear weapons use.

The NCG urgently calls for the United States and North Korea to establish direct discussions to reduce the risks of a nuclear exchange. All NCG members support the resumption of broader talks to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula but understand that process will take time and cannot be allowed to delay urgent nuclear risk reduction discussions between Washington and Pyongyang.

Other recommendations include urgent resumption of US-Russia strategic stability talks and avoidance of using nuclear threats and assets as part of military exercises; agreement by Indian and Pakistani leaders to non-deployment of battlefield or land-mobile nuclear weapons and commitment to avoid the use of nuclear weapons; and full implementation by the United States and China of existing accident-avoidance agreements to avoid steps that could lead to military incidents, including medium-altitude reconnaissance flights and militarization of newly-formed islands in the South China Sea, and expansion of military-to-military and diplomatic talks to include nuclear doctrine and transparency.

The Nuclear Crisis Group will continue to closely monitor nuclear flashpoints and to update its recommendations as international developments unfold.

https://www.globalzero.org

WHO WE ARE

Global Zero is the international movement for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Powered by a visionary group of 300 international leaders and experts who support our bold, step-by-step plan to eliminate all nuclear weapons by 2030, the relentless creativity, energy and optimism of young people and half a million citizens worldwide, Global Zero is challenging the 20th century idea of basing national security on the threat of mass destruction – and together we are making real progress on the road to global zero.

Global Zero leaders understand that the only way to eliminate the nuclear threat – including proliferation and nuclear terrorism – is to stop the spread of nuclear weapons, secure all nuclear materials and eliminate all nuclear weapons: global zero.

We’ve spent years building a nonpartisan, international community of influential political, military, business, civic and faith leaders – matched by a powerful global grassroots movement. We’re not tilting at windmills. We’ve got a plan. And it’s backed by experts and leading newspapers worldwide. The challenge now is getting world leaders to act on it – and only unified, international public pressure can create the necessary political will to make it happen.

So we’re taking that challenge head on and working hard to build the movement. We’re signing up more and more activists, cranking up our public mobilization and sharing our vision for a world without nuclear weapons with opinion-leaders and decision-makers.

Passionate and dedicated activists are reaching out to new communities to help expand our efforts and intensify the fight. We’re nimble in the face of new challenges and opportunities and refuse to surrender to the minority of fanatic skeptics who insist the world cannot change.

This movement is propelled forward by your commitment to a better, safer tomorrow.

When we eliminate nuclear weapons, it will be because of you.

https://www.globalzero.org