The United States administration maintains the option to use nuclear weapons in an armed conflict even if nuclear weapons have not been threatened or used against the USA or its allies. USA nuclear forces are on alert, ready to be used within minutes should the President order a nuclear attack.
US Senator Ed Markey, Co-President of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, and Representative Ted W. Lieu, have sponsored draft legislation in the US Congress to restrict the President’s authority to initiate a nuclear attack.
‘Nuclear war poses the gravest risk to human survival,’ said Senator Markey on introducing S. 200, the Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act of 2017. ‘Yet, President Trump has suggested that he would consider launching nuclear attacks against terrorists. Unfortunately, by maintaining the option of using nuclear weapons first in a conflict, U.S. policy provides him with that power. In a crisis with another nuclear-armed country, this policy drastically increases the risk of unintended nuclear escalation. Neither President Trump, nor any other president, should be allowed to use nuclear weapons except in response to a nuclear attack. By restricting the first use of nuclear weapons, this legislation enshrines that simple principle into law.‘
The January 13 Teach-In will discuss the current risks of nuclear war, the efforts led in Congress by Markey and Lieu, and what civil society campaigners can do to build congressional support.
Speakers will include: Congressman John Garamendi, original co-sponsor (invited); Prof. John Sims, McGeorge School of Law; Sarah Bidgood, Center for Nonproliferation Studies, Monterey.
The event will be live-streamed at www.facebook.com/stephen.souza.