STOP CASSINI EARTH FLYBY
Action Site Newsletter No. 2
March 3, 1998
Dear friends, members of Congress and UN Delegates,
The Action Site to Stop the Cassini Earth Flyby has joined with many members of the Abolition 2000 Network to support diplomacy as the primary policy to resolve the conflict between the United Nations and Iraq. We believe that bombing Iraq without direct provocation would produce major negative repercussions in our world for a very long time.
The NoFlyby Action Site is rightly concerned with the U.S. policy on Iraq. If arms control goes down the tubes, our chances get slimmer to stop Cassini and the ten other known plutonium launches and the secret military missions involving nuclear power and weapons in space.
We plan to continue collaborating with members of the Abolition 2000 Network on abolition issues, including the NoFlyby Press Conference scheduled at noon on June 24, 1998 at the United Nations. You are probably aware that June 24, 1999 has been scheduled by NASA to swingby Cassini around Venus to begin approaching Earth at 42,000 mph (64,000 km). Karl Grossman and Michio Kaku will be presenting their statements at the United Nations. The NoFlyby Action Site will be distributing Press Releases for this date to expose the Cassini 1999 Earth flyby risks and future launches endangering Earth with plutonium contamination.
Visit the NoFlyby site at http://www.nonviolence.org/noflyby
Working toward peace,
A. A new letter to President Clinton on Iraq
B. A letter to the Editor by Fredrik S. Heffermehl, International Peace Bureau, Vice President, Oslo, on "The US and nuclear threats"
President William Clinton
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
1 March 1998
Dear Mr. President:
Please consider the consensus of hundreds of organizations that have endorsed the referenced letter to you. I am convinced that bombing Iraq without direct provocation would work against the interests of the United States and our world community. The attack would not rid Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, but instead would unbearably harm many innocent people and other forms of life. It could spread dangerous nuclear and chemical agents into the atmosphere spreading through neighborhoods of Iran to cross over borders. Instead of hindering the threat from terrorist organizations, the attack would add to their determination and reasoning to target the United States and its allies.
The most effective method in stopping the threat of weapons of mass destruction is diplomacy, containment and strengthening the resolve of each nation to work together. Our interests are linked. More than 880 Organizations have endorsed the Abolition 2000 Statement, which calls for negotiations in the year 2000 to ban nuclear weapons. Please consider supporting this direction and include the banning of technologies capable of mass destruction. Life is too precious to risk such harm.
Mr. President, the best method to protect the United States is to develop a consensus with the United Nations on disarmament and policy issues that make peace with all nationalities, religions and cultures. The rights of individual nations to wage violence should only be from a direct threat where there is no other choice. Making Iraq submit to our will would cause devastation, animosity, pain and suffering. However, by containing Saddam Hussein and working with the world community, this would show that we care about the people of Iraq and its effect would be a pathway for peace and security. To bring this to life, the U.S. should support the lifting of economic sanctions for both the people of Iraq and Cuba. This would not only end the suffering of many people, but create a better environment for peace and democracy to develop and prosper.
Please consider these reasonable thoughts and do not respond to the military-industrial incentives for making war, the fear that drives profits into the hands of a few upon the tragedy of many. Please, listen to our spiritual connection and use your integrity, wisdom and firmness to help in the safeguarding of our planet.
With best regards,
Jonathan M. Haber
Oslo, March 2, 1998
THE US AND NUCLEAR THREATS
Dear Editor (remarks to AP story March 1, 98)
An Associated Press release (datelined Washington March 1, 1998) says that "the United States - according to an internal military study made public Sunday - should maintain the threat of nuclear retaliation with an "irrational and vindictive" streak to intimidate would-be attackers such as Iraq. The study, "Essentials of Post-Cold War Deterrence," was written in 1995 by the Air Force's Strategic Command, military headquarters responsible for the nation's strategic nuclear arsenal."
A very important aspect is absent in the AP story and the comments invited. As a matter of fact the worldīs highest judicial body, the International Court in the Hague, the Netherlands, on July 8, 1996, went against the positions of the nuclear weapon states and made the SACīs 1995 study obsolete. The Court stated unanimously that nuclear weapons use or threat has to comply with the laws of warfare, in particular the rules of humanitarian law and that "methods and means of warfare which would preclude any distinction between civilians and military targets, or which would result in unnecessary suffering to combatants, are prohibited."
Due to their awesome and uncontrollable effects nuclear weapons are bound to violate such requirements. In the proceedings in the Hague, the nuclear weapons states were unable to show any convincing example of any type of weapon or situation of use that would comply with international law.
According to the AP story "Arms control advocates are concerned that signatories to the Non-Proliferation Treaty who possess no nuclear weapons will abandon the pact if they see the existing nuclear powers preserving their nuclear arsenals and finding missions for their weapons particularly if those missions include scenarios that involve attacks on them.", but Bell, President Clinton's senior adviser on nuclear weapons and arms control matters, disputed that argument in an interview Friday... "I don't think there's a disconnect in principle between some level of general planning at STRATCOM and the negative security assurance and our goals relative to the Non-Proliferation Treaty," Bell said. Of the 1995 Strategic Command document, Bell said, "That sounds like an internal STRATCOM paper which certainly does not rise to the level of national policy."
Ashton Carter, now at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, said that in 1993 at the Pentagon, he was trying to develop nonnuclear options for retaliating against rogue attackers who used weapons of mass destruction, "because any president would surely prefer to have nonnuclear options." It would seem that neither Bell nor Carter are aware that after the 1996 clarification of international law this is not only a matter of what he "prefers", but what a president can do without becoming a war criminal.
The high Court also unanimously stated that there exists a binding legal "obligation to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all aspects under strict and effective international control." For 28 years now the nuclear weapon states have failed to comply with this disarmament provision (Art. VI), which was their part of the Non-proliferation treaty obligations.
"Abolition 2000" a network of 1,016 organizations all over the world are demanding such a treaty by year the end of 2000 and its blueprint for the treaty was recently circulated as a United Nations document to all UN member states. I believe a general feeling in this network is that the US holds the key to free the world of a form of deterrence that means constant terror for us all.
Oslo, March 2, 1998
The Abolition 2000 Statement can be read at http://www.wagingpeace.org/ablstate.html
We invite you to endorse this statement.
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