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NATO Exercise Joint Warrior

 

The large naval NATO exercise, Joint Warrior, occurring in Scottish waters and ports has commanded public attention because of justified fears for the safety of dolphin nosed whales visiting the Gareloch; whales are known to be highly sensitive to underwater noise.  The Scottish population is not the intended public of the show of force mustered by this exercise but rather Russia or whoever it is in the international community that NATO wishes to impress. Willingness to use nuclear weapons, including in a first strike, is part of NATO military doctrine. It is no accident that the exercise is based on Faslane in the Gareloch, the home of the UK nuclear weapon system. In Scotland, neither nuclear weapons nor NATO’s first strike doctrine have popular support; if asked what they would prefer in our waters, most people would unequivocally choose whales over deliberately provocative displays of mass force.  Yet Scotland regularly hosts such NATO exercises, including events that would never happen anywhere else in Europe. Cape Wrath is the only firing range where multiple countries conduct live bombardment from land, sea and air. As with all military activities, neither the carbon footprint of fuel and resources used up in the process nor the environmental damage in pollution caused by Joint Warrior will be monitored or reported, never mind the direct impact on marine life like whales.  Scottish CND campaigns for a Scotland and a UK that is out of NATO as long as NATO is a nuclear alliance and advocates that the UK join the majority of the world in signing the UN Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. We condemn this exercise as an unnecessary harm to our environment, a squandering of resources in the middle of a global tension, climate emergency and a pandemic; it is an unhelpful statement to the rest of the world that is not in our name.

 

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