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George Bush leads the US toward a policy of unilateral, pre-emptive counterproliferation warfighting strategy.

Abolish nuclear weapons

The Cold War may be over, but this does not mean nuclear weapons have disappeared. Far from it: There are over 30,000 nuclear weapons in the world, with more than a thousand of them ready to launch at a moment's notice, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Over 400 reactors in warships and nuclear submarines are still circlingthe globe. Some are rotting away on the bottom of the ocean or in adistant port somewhere in Russia. Accidents such as the Russiansubmarine, the Kursk, tragically sinking in the Barents Sea can happenevery day, anywhere.

Over 2,000 nuclear weapons tests have left a legacy of global andregional contamination. People living near the test sites have sufferedfrom cancers, stillbirths, miscarriages and other health effects -- and are still suffering today. Manyhad to leave their hometown or island as it became too contaminated tolive there.

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The nuclear threat has quite literally scaled down in the last twodecades. While the prospect of an all out exchange of arsenals betweenRussia and the US has receded, the 15 kilotons of destructionthat obliterated Hiroshima could today be accomplished with a lunch-boxsized bomb. George Bush talks openly of developing new "more useable"nuclear weapons. Even more alarmingly, the administration continues toseek approval for a programme geared toward designing more robust, more'usable' nuclear weapons.

The prospects of a nuclear weapon actuallybeing used are perhaps greater today than during the cold war.

Today, the number of countries involved in active weapons programsis increasing. A growing number of countries are lining up to join thenuclear club, increasing the chance that a nuclear catastrophe willhappen somewhere on the planet. 

George Bush's war on Weapons of Mass Descruction had its firstconcrete result when the number of countries in the world with declarednuclear weapons increased to 8 from 7, when North Korea announced thatit had built "enough nuclear weapons to deter a US attack."

Nuclear brinkmanship is inevitable in a climate of nuclearhypocrisy. Only when all countries pursue nuclear disarmament in goodfaith can we begin putting the nuclear genie back in the bottle bybanning the use and manufacture of the nuclear materials at the heart of the bomb.

The only thing that will stop the threat is the voice of the second superpower: world opinion.

The latest updates

 

Greenpeace banner outside hotel where American

Image | 30 October, 2002 at 0:00

Greenpeace banner outside hotel where American delegates are staying during COP8 in New Delhi, India.

Don't move that blubber!

Feature story | 30 October, 2002 at 0:00

Overexploit, cheat, deplete. The cycle of greed behind the global whaling industry drove one whale population after another toward oblivion. It wasn't until 1986 that a moratorium on all commercial whaling slowed this onslaught. Now, will a...

Climate criminals lurking at India talks

Feature story | 30 October, 2002 at 0:00

They're back! Last year the Bush-led US government walked away from the Kyoto Protocol. As a result, it took heroic efforts by other countries to salvage this world-wide effort to address climate change. But after their dramatic exit from the...

Greenpeace activists deliver a wake up call

Image | 28 October, 2002 at 0:00

Greenpeace activists deliver a wake up call to the Commission for the Conservation of Antartic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR), demanding an end to pirate fishing of toothfish.

Toothy, tasty and under threat

Feature story | 28 October, 2002 at 0:00

A tasty fish with a toothy grin is prized loot for modern pirates. With a market value of US$10 a kilogram, toothfish are on the losing end of a massive international and illegal treasure hunt. Even member countries of the regional conservation...

Illegal export of mahogany continues

Feature story | 28 October, 2002 at 0:00

One year ago we uncovered a stash of illegal mahogany in the Brazilian Amazon worth over US$7 million. The seizure of these logs and continued investigations by the government led to a ban on the logging, transport and export of mahogany. But...

Technical guidelines for cleanup at the Union Carbide India Ltd (UCIL) site in Bhopal...

Publication | 26 October, 2002 at 0:00

Guidelines for the full clean up of this global toxic hotspot.

Update from the Esperanza

Feature story | 26 October, 2002 at 0:00

Mariek, a Dutch activist on board the Esperanza, sends a first hand account of the Toxics Free Mediterranean tour to date, including a first hand account of their two actions in Spain.

Greenpeace activists struggle with a banner

Image | 25 October, 2002 at 1:00

Greenpeace activists struggle with a banner in strong winds after they shut down the Esso station in Wasserbillig, Luxembourg.

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