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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

 

Plutonium ships spotted

Feature story | 10 September, 2002 at 0:00

A year on from the September 11th attacks and it seems some governments have learnt nothing about true global security. Two ships carrying weapons-useable plutonium are nearing the end of a journey half way around the world, through waters of...

Nuclear Meltdown

Feature story | 9 September, 2002 at 0:00

The lid has finally been blown off the nuclear industry’s chamber of secrets. Coverups, bankruptcies and insolvencies, safety lapses and failures in plant security have been on the roll call in the last week alone. And all this as the most...

Stopping PVC

Feature story | 6 September, 2002 at 0:00

PVC doesn't look dangerous in the shop -- but look closely.

The Future, Powered by?

Feature story | 6 September, 2002 at 0:00

While government delegates returned home from the failed Earth Summit, some of the dirty industry lobbyists that ensured that no action was taken by the Summit hot footed it to the World Petroleum Congress taking place in Rio de Janeiro. Yes, the...

Greenpeace activists hung a banner across

Image | 5 September, 2002 at 1:00

Greenpeace activists hung a banner across the arms of the Christ statue on Corcovado in Rio de Janeiro to protest against the world leaders' failure to secure the future of the planet.

Greenpeace activists climbed a bridge spanning

Image | 4 September, 2002 at 1:00

Greenpeace activists climbed a bridge spanning oil pipes from the Sapref oil facility operated by Shell and BP.

5 Greenpeace activists climbed a bridge spanning

Image | 4 September, 2002 at 1:00

Five Greenpeace activists climbed a bridge spanning oil pipes from the Sapref oil facility operated by Shell and BP. The activists deployed small banners demanding clean energy on the last day of the WSSD meeting in Johannesburg.

Greenpeace take action against the climate

Image | 4 September, 2002 at 1:00

Greenpeace take action against the climate-damaging policies of the international oil companies.

Joint Declaration by EU, others: The Way Forward on Renewable Energy

Publication | 4 September, 2002 at 0:00

In response to inaction by the Earth Summit, a "coalition of the willing" is being formed to carve a path forward toward a renewable energy future.

Eco Equity: September 4, 2002

Publication | 4 September, 2002 at 0:00

That's all, folks

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