Viewpoint by Izumi Nakamitsu
Following are extensive excerpts from a video briefing by Izumi Nakamitsu, the United Nations High Representative for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA), to the 65-nation Conference on Disarmament in Geneva on 7 February 2019.
NEW YORK | GENEVA (IDN-INPS) – 2019 will be a weighty year for the Conference on Disarmament. As a global community we are beset by challenges. In the field of disarmament our progress has slowed to a crawl and is in imminent danger of suffering reversals. Instead of seeking to enhance what binds us, we tend to focus on what divides us. [2019-02-23]
By Somar Wijayadasa*
NEW YORK | MUNICH (IDN) – "The whole liberal world order appears to be falling apart – nothing is as it once was," said Wolfgang Ischinger, a senior German diplomat in an opinion article in the run-up to the 2019 Munich Security Conference (MSC) that he chairs.
He added: "When Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea and started the bloody conflict in Eastern Ukraine in 2014, many considered him to be the major cause of global destabilization." [2019-02-22]
Despite everything, it is still in our power to avoid nuclear confrontation.
Viewpoint by Mikhail Gorbachev*
MOSCOW (IDN-INPS) – The fate of the INF treaty has politicians and ordinary people worried on every continent. I am also concerned, and not only because I signed that treaty with former U.S. President Ronald Reagan in Dec. 1987. These events are yet another manifestation of the dangerous and destructive trends in world politics facing us today. [2019-02-21]
By Katsuhiro Asagiri
TOKYO (IDN) – Nearly 66 years have passed since the Armistice Agreement formally brought about "a complete cessation of hostilities" of the Korean War. One year later, Chinese Premier and Foreign Minister Zhou Enlai proposed a peace treaty. But U.S. Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, refused – leaving a final peace settlement on the Korean Peninsula hanging in the air. [2019-02-20 | P21] CHINESE | JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | KOREAN | SPANISH
Viewpoint by Sergio Duarte
The writer is President of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs, and a former UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs. He was president of the 2005 Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference.
NEW YORK (IDN) – Although humankind has known since the dawn of ages the sorrow, misery and devastation caused by war, the most catastrophic military conflicts in history are quite recent.
World War I lasted from July 1914 to November 1918 and claimed some 40 million lives, among civilians and combatants. In all, between 70-85 million people perished during World War II that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The estimated war casualties include those who are believed to have died from war-related causes, including captivity, disease and famine. [2019-02-06 | P20] JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | SPANISH
Viewpoint by Rick Wayman
SANTA BARBARA, CA (IDN) – There is no shortage of critics who have pointed out President Donald Trump’s monumental strategic mistake in unilaterally withdrawing the United States from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. It is indeed a blunder of the highest degree that not only makes the Trump administration look incompetent and foolish, but also puts the United States’ European allies and all of us at greater risk of nuclear catastrophe. [2019-02-04]
Viewpoint by Daryl G. Kimball
WASHINGTON, DC (IDN-INPS) – The Trump administration announced on February 1 that effective February 2, the United States will suspend implementation of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, and formally notify other parties to the treaty that it will withdraw in six months if Russia does not return to compliance by eliminating its ground-launched 9M729 missile, which the United States alleges can fly beyond the 500-kilometer range limit set by the treaty. [2019-02-02]
By Jamshed Baruah
BASEL (IDN) – Preserve the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty! Prevent a new nuclear arms race in Europe! Undertake measures to reduce the risk of a nuclear conflict! Support global nuclear disarmament!
This is the crux of an impassioned appeal by mayors, parliamentarians, policy experts and civil society representatives from forty countries – mostly Europe and North America – in an open letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, U.S. President Donald Trump and to the leaders of the Russian and U.S. legislatures. [2019-01-31]
Viewpoint by Kingston A. Reif
The writer is director for disarmament and threat reduction policy at Arms Control Association (ACA). He casts a close look at the '2019 Missile Defense Review'. This article appeared as an Issue Brief on ACA website on January 17, 2019.
WASHINGTON, DC (IDN-INPS) – The Trump administration’s long-awaited 'Missile Defense Review', which was released on January 17, proposes a significant and costly expansion of the role and scope of U.S. missile defences that is likely to exacerbate Russian and Chinese concerns about the threat to their strategic nuclear deterrents, undermine strategic stability, and further complicate the prospects for additional nuclear arms reductions. [2019-01-30]
Viewpoint by Jonathan Power
LUND, Sweden (IDN-INPS) – The number of nuclear weapons possessed by the U.S. and Russia is a fraction of what it was during the height of the Cold War. Successive presidents on both sides, since the time of John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev, have feared their destructive power. The supposed value of nuclear arsenal, so called Mutually Assured Destruction, known by its capitals, MAD, is in fact valueless. They cannot be used, and nearly everyone accepts that. [2019-01-29]
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