Nuclear weapons and Trump
To the editor:
During the Cold War, the U.S. and the USSR deeply mistrusted each other. By the early 1960s, both had developed bombs over 1,000 times as powerful as the Hiroshima bomb. Eventually they each stockpiled over 30,000 nuclear warheads.
Every administration since Eisenhower recognized the danger posed by these weapons: At a minimum, as Eisenhower warned, their use “could utterly destroy that civilization which has been so slowly and painfully built up over thousands of years.” Every administration since Nixon has negotiated reductions in the number and types of these weapons. The number is now a fraction of what it was in the 1970s, but there are still enough to destroy civilization on this planet.
Every administration acted responsibly, until the Trump administration. Trump pulled out of the INF treaty, which was negotiated by Ronald Reagan and eliminated a whole class of nuclear weapons that are particularly dangerous and unnecessary for deterrence. Trump has refused to include China in negotiations, ensuring they will increase their nuclear capability.
Regardless of our differences in political philosophy, until we can develop a level of trust that allows us to negotiate further limits on these horrible weapons, in a world that is ever smaller and more connected, we will not be able to solve any of the other problems that threaten the future of our children and grandchildren.