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US Weapons

US Must Be Able To Threaten A Nuclear Holocaust

left In a remarkable speech on nuclear policy delivered at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP), US Defense Secretary Robert Gates painted a dire portrait of international affairs and argued that Washington should expand the doctrine of pre-emptive war formulated by the Bush administration to include possible nuclear strikes.

It is widely rumored that,  President Elect Barack Obama will keep Gates as defense secretary. Gates' speech, given in the waning days of the Bush presidency, has the character of a policy declaration of the next US administration.

Workers overcooked nuclear warhead

leftA US federal spokesman confirmed that Oak Ridge workers overcooked some nuclear warhead components during a drying process to such an extent that the parts could no longer be "used as intended." The incident at the Y-12 National Security Complex was revealed in a report by staff of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board.

The timing was about a month after the Oak Ridge plant received approval to restart production work on W76 warheads, which had been delayed for more than a year because of technical issues. However, Steven Wyatt of the National Nuclear Security Administration said he could not comment on whether the oven-dried weapon parts were associated with the plant's W76 life-extension program, which is refurbishing old warheads deployed on Trident submarine missiles.

The Safety Board's Report said the components - known as canned subassemblies - were mistakenly dried at a "much higher temperature" than intended. Asked if they were damaged by the process, Wyatt responded  "The parts were not prepared in accordance with the original application and could not be used as intended." Wyatt said the parts were deemed acceptable for an "alternate use" but said they had to be rebuilt. He would not disclose the future use or say if it was a weapons mission

John Pilger's Guardian Article On Hiroshima

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When I first went to Hiroshima in 1967, the shadow on the steps was still there. It was an almost perfect impression of a human being at ease: legs splayed, back bent, one hand by her side as she sat waiting for a bank to open. At a quarter past eight on the morning of August 6, 1945, she and her silhouette were burned into the granite. I stared at the shadow for an hour or more, then walked down to the river and met a man called Yukio, whose chest was still etched with the pattern of the shirt he was wearing when the atomic bomb was dropped.

He and his family still lived in a shack thrown up in the dust of an atomic desert. He described a huge flash over the city, "a bluish light, something like an electrical short", after which wind blew like a tornado and black rain fell. "I was thrown on the ground and noticed only the stalks of my flowers were left. Everything was still and quiet, and when I got up, there were people naked, not saying anything. Some of them had no skin or hair. I was certain I was dead." Nine years later, when I returned to look for him, he was dead from leukaemia.

In the immediate aftermath of the bomb, the allied occupation authorities banned all mention of radiation poisoning and insisted that people had been killed or injured only by the bomb's blast. It was the first big lie. "No radioactivity in Hiroshima ruin" said the front page of the New York Times, a classic of disinformation and journalistic abdication, which the Australian reporter Wilfred Burchett put right with his scoop of the century. "I write this as a warning to the world," reported Burchett in the Daily Express, having reached Hiroshima after a perilous journey, the first correspondent to dare. He described hospital wards filled with people with no visible injuries but who were dying from what he called "an atomic plague". For telling this truth, his press accreditation was withdrawn, he was pilloried and smeared - and vindicated.

US Czech Missile Deal

" MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) -- Russia's Foreign Ministry Tuesday threatened a "military-technological" response if the United States deploys a missile defense system in former Soviet-bloc nations near Russia's borders. "

http://edition.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/europe/07/08/missile.defense/

" The Czech Republic is withdrawing from U.S. missile defense plans out of frustration at its diminished role, the Czech defense minister told The Associated Press Wednesday. The Bush administration first proposed stationing 10 interceptor missiles in Poland and an advanced radar in the Czech Republic, saying the system was aimed at blunting future missile threats from Iran. But Russia angrily objected and warned that it would station its own missiles close to Poland if the plan went through. In September 2009, the Obama administration shelved that plan and offered a new, reconfigured phased program with an undefined role for the Czechs. In November 2009, the Czech Republic was offered the possibility of hosting a separate early warning system that would gather and analyze information from satellites to detect missiles aimed at NATO territory. "

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/15/czech-republic-us-missile-shield-plan-withdrawal-_n_877398.html

Obama and McCain on nuclear weapons

leftThe Centre for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation has published a summary of the views of the two candidates in the Presidential election on security issues, including nuclear weapons. McCain has not expressed an opinion on the proposed new warhead, the Reliable Replacement Warhead.  Obama has opposed a "premature decision" on the warhead. McCain has previously opposed ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty but there are signs that his approach may have changed.

US withdraws Nukes from Lakenheath

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Nuclear weapons' expert Hans Kristensen has disclosed that, according to his sources,
the US has withdrawn its B61 nuclear bombs from the airbase at Lakenheath in East Anglia.
In 2000 there were believed to be 480 US nuclear weapons in Europe. The largest number were 
at Lakenheath which is thought to have stored 110 of the bombs.
He earlier reported that in 2004 President Bush authorised the withdrawal of nuclear
weapons from Ramstein in Germany. There have been a series of reports from within the
US military, expressing concern about the security and role of these bombs deployed at
Airbases across Europe.
The news has not yet been confirmed by the Government or the MoD in the UK.



 

Support for Czech Activists

Campaigners  delivered a letter to the Czech Embassy in London in support of two activists currently on hunger strike in Prague as part of protests over plans to base a US missile defence system radar in the country.

 

Jan Tamas and Jan Bednar have now gone without food for a week. They are demanding that their government listens to the overwhelming majority of the Czech population who oppose the system, which will put the Czech Republic on the front line in future US wars.

 

Scientists Call On US To Reduce Nuclear Stockpile

A group of 95 scientists says the United States should significantly reduce the country's collection of nuclear weapons.

The 95 National Academy of Sciences members said  the current U.S. weapons stockpile was going against U.S. security. Most of the experts are from prominent U.S. universities and as a group have received 32 Nobel Prizes.

The group, coordinated by the Union of Concerned Scientists, suggested that the United States cut back its arms stockpile to 1,000 explosives, compared to the 4,500 to 6,000 it has now. It also reportedly requested that the country surrender first use of the nuclear explosives.

Richard Garwin, who made plans for the first hydrogen bomb, was one of the scientists to sign the proposal..

 

USA Need Nuclear Weapons for rest of 21st Century

The commander of US strategic forces claims the United States will need nuclear weapons as a deterrent for the rest of the 21st century and should move now to field more modern weapons.

Air Force General Kevin Chilton said new, more reliable nuclear weapons would enable the United States to reduce the large inventory of non-deployed weapons it keeps as a hedge.

"As we look to the future -- and I believe we are going to need a nuclear deterrent for this country for the remainder of this century, the 21st century -- I think what we need is a modernized nuclear weapon to go with our modernized delivery platforms," he told reporters.

The administration has requested 10 million dollars for the program in its 2009 budget request even though the US Congress turned down a similar request in its previous budget submission.

9 year old calls for end to US nukes

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On Tuesday 26 February over 400 people attended a public meeting in Oak Ridge Tennessee to discuss the future of one of America's biggest nuclear weapons' facilities, the Y12 plant.

Inca Nicholson, a 9 year old girl, addressed Ted Wyka, the presiding federal officer and said:
"You have got to be insane ..... We need trees, sun, and clean air.  Not another nuclear weapon".

Inca is from the Farm School at Summertown, Tennesee. Reported in Knoxnews.