by Waseem Shehzad (News & Analysis, Crescent International Vol. 47, No. 7, Dhu al-Hijjah, 1439)
In its 2017 review of the world’s total nuclear stockpile, the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) estimated that Russia possessed a total of 6,800 nuclear warheads followed closely by the US with 6,600. Between them, the two leading nuclear powers not only possess the overwhelming majority of nuclear weapons but each one individually possesses more nuclear weapons than the other seven nuclear countries combined. France, China, Britain, Pakistan, India, Israel and North Korea are estimated to have about 1,150 nuclear weapons based on FAS estimates. Russia and the US each possess about six times as many nuclear warheads as the combined total of the other seven countries.
Why is the world awash in nuclear weapons and the delivery systems that threaten to annihilate the entire world in a matter of minutes? Aware that nuclear weapons pose an existential threat to the human race, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) came into force in 1970 and is considered to be the “cornerstone” of the nonproliferation regime. There are 189 countries that have signed the NPT. Exceptions include Israel, India, Pakistan, and North Korea and also, more recently South Sudan. North Korea withdrew from the treaty in 2003 and has since carried out nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009, becoming a member of the nuclear club. The NPT is predicated on three pillars:
1. nuclear nonproliferation,
2. nuclear disarmament, and
3. peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
Those familiar with the workings of Western regimes would immediately notice that nonproliferation is enforced rigidly, especially against countries considered either not subservient to the US (Islamic Iran, for instance) or not sufficiently deferential. When it comes to its allies — such as Zionist Israel — nuclear know-how was smuggled to the apartheid regime in contravention of NPT regulations. Both France and the US are guilty of this and have deliberately turned a blind eye to Zionist acquisition of nuclear weapons.
The leading nuclear states — Russia and the US — have also tiptoed around the issue of nuclear disarmament and the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. This has not gone down well with non-nuclear states that constitute the overwhelming majority of countries in the world. At the NPT review conferences that are held every five years (the next one will be in 2020), article VI of the NPT is always one of the most hotly debated items. It calls on parties to “pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and international control.”
The two leading nuclear powers, America and Russia, have over the years reduced their stockpile of weapons but they have developed more lethal ones to replace it. Thus both the purpose and spirit of nuclear disarmament is defeated.
While the US bullies and prevents smaller states from acquiring nuclear energy even for peaceful purposes, its own stockpiles and those of Zionist Israel continue to grow. Washington blocks all attempts to force Israel to open its nuclear facilities for international inspection. Similarly calls by Middle Eastern countries to make the region a nuclear-free zone are sabotaged by US action because it would force its Zionist protégé to divest itself of nuclear weapons.
Nothing exposes US hypocrisy more than President Donald Trump’s allocation of $1.1 trillion to upgrade America’s nuclear arsenal. Can Russia be far behind? Further, on August 9, US Vice President Mike Pence announced that America would create a Space Force. What this means is America’s colonization of space.
Pence is head of the newly reconstituted National Space Council. He alleged during his Pentagon announcement that “Our adversaries have transformed space into a warfighting domain already and the United States will not shrink from the challenge...” Karl Grossman, Professor of Journalism at the State University of New York/College at Old Westbury, dismissed Pence’s claim as “false.”
Grossman, author of The Wrong Stuff: The Space Program’s Nuclear Threat to Our Planet, went on to say,
“Beyond the intent of the Outer Space Treaty and its setting space aside as a global commons, neither Russia nor China have been interested in bringing war into space for economic reasons. I’ve been researching — writing books and articles and doing television programs — on the space warfare issue for more than 30 years and have made numerous trips to Russia and gone to China, too.”
(see also 2008 piece from Reuters, “China, Russia to offer treaty to ban arms in space”).
Washington’s warlords are determined to use any means and peddle any lie to get more money from US taxpayers for their expensive and often useless weapons. That, however, does not stop them from indulging in vicious propaganda and offensive behavior.
In the nearly three decades from the early-1970s, Pakistan was accused of making an “Islamic” bomb. On May 18, 1974, when India conducted a nuclear explosion, it was not called a Hindu bomb; instead it was dubbed “peaceful.” Pakistan meanwhile was subjected to punishing sanctions even though it was merely reacting to Indian belligerence and to defend itself against Indian bullying.
Since America acts as a global bully terrorizing states whose policies it does not like, the only defence left to them is to acquire nuclear weapons. We can see how the US treated Iraq and Libya — one divested of all chemical weapons and the other from rudimentary knowledge of nuclear weapons. In contrast, Donald Trump went to meet King Jong-un of North Korea because it had mastered the nuclear cycle and acquired nuclear weapons.
There should be one rule for all: either no nuclear weapons for any state or every state should have nuclear weapons. America’s atrocious conduct over the years shows that it is truly a rogue state. After all, the US is the only country in the world to have used nuclear weapons against Japan in the Second World War, twice. Further, it used depleted uranium shells in the war against Iraq in 1991.
Depleted uranium has a half-life of four million years. What this means is that in order to reduce its toxicity by half, it would take four million years. In Iraq, millions of horribly deformed babies have been born since the US used depleted uranium in 1991. Washington and its rulers should be held accountable for crimes against humanity.
The US is not only the Great Satan, in the words of the late Imam Khomeini, it is also the leading nuclear leper in the world. Let there be no doubt about that.