Thursday, July 16, 2009 - Why We Don't Want a Nuclear-Free World - Opinion: Why We Don't Want a Nuclear-Free World


We use nuclear weapons every day, Mr. Schlesinger goes on to explain, "to deter our potential foes and provide reassurance to the allies to whom we offer protection."

"We will need a strong deterrent," he finally says, "and that is measured at least in decades -- in my judgment, in fact, more or less in perpetuity. The notion that we can abolish nuclear weapons reflects on a combination of American utopianism and American parochialism. . . . It's like the [1929] Kellogg-Briand Pact renouncing war as an instrument of national policy . . . . It's not based upon an understanding of reality."

In other words: Go ahead and wish for a nuclear-free world, but pray that you don't get what you wish for. A world without nukes would be even more dangerous than a world with them, Mr. Schlesinger argues.

Mr. Schlesinger expresses concerns, too, about the safety and reliability of U.S. nuclear weapons, all of which are more than 20 years old…  The U.S. is the only major nuclear power that is not modernizing its weapons.



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