The Criminality of Nuclear Deterrence

By Francis A. Boyle | Go to book overview

POSTSCRIPT

Writing in the March 10, 2002 edition of the Los Angeles Times, defense analyst William Arkin revealed the leaked contents of the Bush Jr. administration's Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) that it had just transmitted to Congress on January 8. The Bush Jr. administration has ordered the Pentagon to draw up war plans for the first-use of nuclear weapons against seven states: the so-called “axis of evil” - Iran, Iraq, and North Korea; Libya and Syria; Russia and China, which are nuclear armed. This component of the Bush Jr. NPR incorporates the Clinton administration's 1997 nuclear war-fighting plans against so-called “rogue states” set forth in Presidential Decision Directive 60. These warmed-over nuclear war plans targeting these five non-nuclear states expressly violate the so-called “negative security assurances” given by the United States as an express condition for the renewal and indefinite extension of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) by all of its non-nuclear weapons states parties in 1995. 3 This new NPR has delivered yet another serious blow to the integrity of the entire NPT Regime.

Equally reprehensible from a legal perspective were the NPR's call for the Pentagon to draft nuclear war-fighting plans for first nuclear strikes (1) against alleged nuclear/chemical/biological “materials” or “facilities”; (2) “against targets able to withstand non-nuclear attack”; and (3) “in the event of surprising military developments,” whatever that means. According to the NPR, the Pentagon must also draw up nuclear war-fighting plans to intervene with nuclear weapons in wars (1) between China and Taiwan; (2) between Israel and the Arab states; (3) between Israel and Iraq; and (4) between North Korea and South Korea. It is obvious upon whose side the United States will actually plan to intervene with the first-use nuclear weapons. Quite ominously, today the Bush Jr. administration accelerates its plans for launching an apocalyptic military aggression against Iraq, deliberately raising the specter of a U.S. first-strike nuclear attack.

The Bush Jr. administration is making it crystal clear to all its chosen adversaries around the world that it is fully prepared to cross the threshold barring actual use of nuclear weapons that has prevailed since the U.S. criminal bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 yet more proof of the fact that the United States government has abandoned “deterrence” for “compellance” in order to rule the future world of the Third Millennium. The Bush Jr. administra- tion has obviously become a “threat to the peace” within the meaning of UN Charter article 39. It must be countermanded by the UN Security Council acting under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. In the event of a U.S veto of such “enforcement action” by the Security Council, the UN General Assembly must deal with the Bush Jr. administration by invoking its Uniting for Peace Resolution of 1950.

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