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     Scottish CND     magazine

Two views on the bomb

General Lee Butler USAF was Commander in Chief of Strategic Air Command from 1992 to 1994. This meant he was in charge of all American nuclear weapons. Since retiring General Butler has renounced nuclear arms. He is now actively campaigning for their swift elimination. Speaking in Washington on 4th December 1996 he said:

"... no one could have been more relieved than was I by the dramatic end of the Cold War. I could see for the first time the prospect of restoring a world free of the apocalyptic threat of nuclear weapons.

Over time that shimmering hope gave way to a judgment which has now become a deeply held conviction; that a world free of the threat of nuclear weapons is necessarily a world devoid of nuclear weapons.

... As to those who believe nuclear weapons desirable or inevitable, I would say these devices exact a terrible price even if never used. Accepting nuclear weapons as the ultimate arbiter of conflict condemns the world to live under a dark cloud of perpetual anxiety. Worse, it codifies mankind's most murderous instincts as an acceptable resort when other options for resolving conflict fail."

Meanwhile Tony Blair, when asked on a BBC Radio interview, "would you press the nuclear button" , replied:

"These are enormously difficult decisions but yes, you have to envisage circumstances in which your nuclear deterrent can be used. .... I believe in retaining our nuclear capability."

Scottish CND      magazine