NET BENEFIT: ARMS CONTROL APPROACH PREVENTS NUCLEAR ABOLITION
ARMS AGREEMENTS ARE LIKE ASPIRIN -- THEY MAKE IT EASIER TO IGNORE THE WMD HEADACHE THE WORLD HAS BUT IS NO CURE
HOWARD BREMBECK, Fourth Freedom Foundation, 2000; IN SEARCH OF THE FOURTH FREEDOM // VT2002 acs p. 20-1
The cancer of nuclear, biological and chemical arms has been spreading for more than five decades and the supposed remedy of arms agreements has been an aspirin, not a cure. Past limitations agreements have created a sense of well-being by reducing the patient's temperature a degree or two but they have not eliminated the fundamental problem that produced the fever in the first place. To a large degree, they have been based on national expediency, not the rule of law. Arms reduction negotiations may have given the world a false sense of security. They may have lulled people into believing that the life or death problem of nuclear weapons can be solved through unenforceable treaties that nations may violate whenever it appears to be in their best interest.
THE ARMS CONTROL PROCESS MAKE IT EASIER FOR LEADERS NOT TO MAKE A COMMITMENT TO NUCLEAR ABOLITION
HOWARD BREMBECK, Fourth Freedom Foundation, 2000; IN SEARCH OF THE FOURTH FREEDOM // VT2002 acs p. 20
When you carefully examine arms control agreements of the past, you realize that they are seriously limited by their lack of a mechanism that will assure compliance. They are subject to changing interpretations that may be proclaimed by a new generation of leaders. They are not part of a comprehensive system designed to provide lasting, global protection from weapons of mass destruction.
In many ways, arms control talks are an easy way out for national leaders. By sitting down to negotiate, they can project an image of rationality. They can appear to be striving to eliminate the threat of nuclear war. Yet, at the same time, they can avoid the hard decisions-and the risk-involved in seeking a sound and lasting solution to the problem. The situation has much in common with that of a patient who has been told of a I life- threatening cancer. If the cancer is surgically removed, the patient has a very good chance of making a complete recovery and living a normal life. But the operation is difficult and involves an element of risk. The patient is concerned about the operation and begins a frantic search for a risk-free alternative. With luck, the patient will abandon the search and consent to surgery before it is too late. But if the search is prolonged, if the cancer is allowed to spread, death is a certainty.