MainLine Peace Action/DelMont PDA

December 23, 2010

Don’t Build More Nuclear Bombs and Factories

Filed under: New Priorities — Tags: , , — Walter Ebmeyer @ 6:14 am

Tri-Valley CAREs Responds to U.S. Ratification of New START with Praise and

Cautionary Warning

Statement of Executive Director, Marylia Kelley: Today’s Senate vote to

ratify the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) with Russia is

proper and wise.

New START paves the way for modest reductions in the number of deployed,

strategic weapons in the U.S. and Russia.

Our two countries possess 95% of the world’s nuclear weapons. It is

necessary and fitting to take bilateral action, and Tri-Valley CAREs views

U.S. ratification as a small but significant step in the right direction.

It has long been discussed that Russian ratification would follow the U.S.

Now that New START has cleared that last U.S. hurdle and has become the law

of the land, we call on Russia to swiftly follow suit.

Today’s Senate vote, at its best, represents a victory for common sense

over political wrangling, and for that we thank Republicans and Democrats

alike. The vote was 71 to 26, with 11 Republicans voting for ratification.

Among New START’s merits are important verification measures, and we

welcome their prompt resumption. In sum, New START makes the U.S., Russia

and the world all a bit more safe and secure.

However, while we pop the corks on the champagne to celebrate this victory,

we must warn elected officials, the Administration and the public about the

dark and ominous cloud that hangs on the New START horizon, not because it

must, rather, solely because political deal-making sullied the process. In

truth, New START is such a modest step, its ratification should have been a

short, sweet and cloudless pursuit.

Instead, Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) became the ringleader for holding the

ratification vote on New START hostage to demands for future funding for

new U.S. nuclear weapons and the new bomb plants that will build them.

While Kyl’s efforts secured Administration promises to request future year

monies totaling $185 billion for so-called “modernization” of the weapons

complex and arsenal, this political “deal” is not itself part of the

treaty. Today’s ratification vote does not change the U.S. Constitution’s

mandate that the Congress shall appropriate funds on an annual basis.

Importantly, on a scientific and technical basis, there is no linkage

between New START and new bomb plants. Therefore, any action to build a new

plutonium bomb core factory at Los Alamos Lab, a new Uranium Processing

Facility at Y-12 and other new nuclear weapon design, testing and

production capabilities will jeopardize the nonproliferation and

disarmament benefits of New START and threaten the treaty’s global

effectiveness.

Tri-Valley CAREs vows to conduct a public and congressional education

campaign leading to curtailment of funds for “modernization” and

revitalization of the U.S. nuclear weapons complex. Moreover, we note that

Jon Kyl, in the end, voted against the treaty!

Tri-Valley CAREs is a non-profit organization founded in 1983 and located

in Livermore, CA, in the shadow of the Lawrence Livermore National

Laboratory, one of two U.S. nuclear warhead design locations. The group

represents 5,600 members, most of whom live near the Livermore Lab main

site or its nearby high explosives testing range.

###

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