Renew Nonproliferation Accord to Control Spread of Nuclear Weapons

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Renew Nonproliferation Accord to Control Spread Of Nuclear Weapons

The opinion-page article "Nonproliferation: Now a Workable Idea," April 27, failed to underscore an important point: The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty is supposed to help nations acquire and use nuclear technology for medical and commercial purposes. In exchange for this privilege, the nonnuclear states must forswear the development of or trade in nuclear weapons. And for the 25-year life of the original agreement this has worked very well.

The treaty is significant for the US since we enjoy a growing trade in peaceful nuclear technology with Japan, China, and other countries. It is therefore important for preserving billions of dollars in income for this country and the thousands of jobs that come with it. The nonproliferation accord must be renewed indefinitely because of its critical importance in controlling the spread of nuclear weapons and its role in fostering the use of peaceful nuclear technology. Without the treaty, there will be that much less security in the world and less economic growth.

Theodore M. Besmann, Oak Ridge, Tenn.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Recalling time spent in Okinawa

I agree with the opinion-page article "Remembering Okinawa," April 3, regarding the motivation of the Japanese military during World War II and the flawed revisionist argument against the dropping of the atomic bombs. To examine some other aspects of the Japanese/Okinawan relationship, this is how I remember Okinawa:

I worked in Okinawa 18 years after the war. In my experiences with the Okinawans, I found they were friendly, outgoing, and not rigid in their thoughts and actions -- even in relation to their religious practices. I saw how the Japanese treated the Okinawans as second-class citizens in both Japan and Okinawa. …