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Monday, December 3, 2012

The Sunflower - eNewsletter of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation - Issue 185 - December 2012

I recommend this monthly newsletter for people who care about this matter of national and global importance. I wish more people did! The Sunflower provides educational information on nuclear weapons abolition and other issues relating to global security. Articles include pieces produced by the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and pieces that appear in other journals, newspapers and websites.

Among the articles in the December 2012 issue:

Perspectives:

Outlawing Nuclear Weapons: Time for a New International Treaty? 

Is it time for a new international treaty that would outlaw nuclear weapons? The short answer to this question is, Yes, it is time. Actually, it is past time. The critical question, however, is not whether we need a new international treaty. We do. The critical question is: How do we achieve the political will among the nuclear weapon states to begin negotiations for a new international treaty to outlaw and eliminate all nuclear weapons? ...

U.S. Nuclear Weapons Policy:

U.S. Bomb Refurbishment Project Will Cost Billions More 

According to an independent cost assessment, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has severely underestimated the cost needed to refurbish the U.S. stockpile of B61 nuclear bombs by billions of dollars. Already facing problems with its current budget, the NNSA will need to come up with an additional $1 billion every year for the next few years to meet the goals of its refurbishment project. ...

Nuclear Insanity:

U.S. Cites Cost as Barrier to Participation in Disarmament Meeting

In November, the 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly First Committee concluded its month-long annual meeting addressing disarmament and international security concerns. Fifty-three resolutions were passed, including a call for a special meeting of senior officials on the issue of nuclear disarmament. The resolution was introduced by Indonesia on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement and passed with 165 votes in favor and none in opposition. France, Israel, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the United States abstained. ...

Missile Defense:

U.S. Missile Defenses in Europe Evokes Sharp Reaction from Russia

In response to U.S. plans to place elements of a missile defense system in Eastern Europe, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin stated that Russia will retaliate "in the sharpest manner" should any U.S. Aegis-equipped warships approach Russian waters.

The U.S. views the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense technology as a crucial component of its sea-based missile defense system in Europe, ostensibly aimed at protecting the continent from potential ballistic missile strikes from Iran or North Korea. ...

Resources:

A New U.S. Defense Strategy for a New Era

A new report published by the Defense Advisory Committee convened by the Stimson Center concludes that the U.S. should "reduce the size of its nuclear forces as rapidly as possible, preferably through a new treaty with Russia, and make commensurate reductions in planned nuclear modernization programs."

The report focuses on U.S. defense planning and spending in light of the possible cuts to the Pentagon budget through automatic sequestration. ...

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