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Join the fight against climate change and nuclear war

Join the fight against climate change and nuclear war Louis Brendan Curran, Baltimore 14, 2021   We face two existential threats: climate change and nuclear war. We must fight both.

I salute President Joe Biden and the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s dedication of $3.8 billion to directly combat the effects — if not the causes — of climate change (”Biden announces record amount of climate resilience funding,” Aug. 6). But we would be complete fools if we guard against an existential threat that will be years in reaching maximum effect and we do not also make an equal effort to end the threat of nuclear annihilation, something that could happen accidentally or intentionally in only a matter of hours.

This month marked the 76th anniversary of two other “dates that live in infamy”: the Aug. 6 and 9th atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. The devastation wreaked there, while truly horrific, claiming well over 250,000 lives, pales in comparison to what any single nuclear weapon could do today. Despite some gradual reduction in the world’s nuclear arsenal over the past couple decades, there are now way more than 1,000 nuclear warheads spread out among 13 countries. This is literally a potential nuclear apocalypse just waiting to happen.

……….. the Baltimore City Council passed a “Back From The Brink” resolution urging our federal government to do everything possible to make progress toward disarming and eliminating all nuclear weapons worldwide. Other cities and towns have done so as well.

More significantly, 86 nations have signed, and 55 (and counting) countries have become, state parties to the U.N. Treaty for the Prevention of Nuclear War, a treaty that now binds all state parties to forswear all nuclear weaponry. One country, South Africa, has disarmed its nuclear arsenal,q but the United States and the other Nuclear Dozen nations have not.

The battle to belatedly address climate change will cost way more than the $3.8 billion that FEMA now plans to spend. The United States alone spends exponentially more than that maintaining our current nuclear arsenal, and even is budgeting a multibillion dollar “updated-replacement” arsenal, to continue this expensive insanity.

What can we do? First, Baltimore can get off its duff and post large “Nuclear Free Zone” signs at all city gateways, as required by law. Second, we can insist that our state’s two U.S. senators and eight representatives prioritize working to end the nuclear threat — and we can elect replacements for those who won’t or don’t. Third, we can insist that our president prioritize nuclear arms reduction treaties with all other nuclear nations at once or elect one who will in 2024. Fourth, we can support the nonprofit organizations that amplify our voices in this effort to dismantle this coequal threat to life on earth.

And lastly, we can divert the billions of taxpayer dollars that we spend on maintaining a weapons system that we will never use to instead fight climate change. Two threats. Two battlefronts. We have no choice. We must fight both until we succeed.

August 16, 2021 - Posted by | USA, weapons and war

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