Objection to the U.S. Star
Wars Program Continues To Grow World Wide
Countries around the world are concerned that the Bush
administration's campaign to build a National Missile Defense system or
Star Wars, will lead China, Russia, and the U.S. European allies to build
up their own weapons systems, creating another incredibly dangerous and
expensive arms race.
On January 31st, Moscow tried to get support from Germany to block U.S.
plans for the missile system.
German defense experts believe it is a bad strategy for the U.S. because it
will start an arms race among many nations. While the U.S. says the missile
plan is intended to defend the United States against nuclear attacks,
Germany says it increases the probability of the use of nuclear weapons.
The Russians feel the same. Russia's First Deputy Chief of General Staff,
said that the US system was "liable to destroy the balance of strategic,
defensive and offensive weapons and lead to a new arms race". Russia
proposes instead to involve NATO and the European Union, leaving the
military balance intact. Britain is the only country leaning towards the
United States policy. The U.S. plans to use their military base in Britain
in the missile program. All other leading European powers are expressing
concerns as well as doubts about the technology.
China has said that if the U.S. goes ahead, they will "multiply their
land-based Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile force from 20 to 200
In Australia, where the U.S. wants to put one of the bases, several
environmental groups state that participation in the National Missile
Defense or Star Wars plan is an aggressive act. The groups feel the
National Missile Defense plan is not a defensive system, as the U.S. calls
it, but one that allows the U.S. to consider a first -strike nuclear
About 400 organizations and parliamentarians worldwide have signed a letter
calling for the U.S. missile plan to be stopped. The letter was sent to
former President Clinton and this week to President Bush.
The organizations state that, the problem with the National Missile Defense
or Star Wars plan is that it "derails the progress that should be taking
place under START-II and START-III treaties." If the START treaties are
signed and ratified, it would result in a reduction of warhead numbers.
Ratification by Russia of START-II was dependent on the Anti-Ballistic
Missile treaty being maintained, and the National Missile Defense plan
would destroy that treaty. In START-II nuclear arms negotiations, Russia
said they would cut their nuclear warheads down to 1,500, but not if the
National Missile Defense plan proceeds.
Estimates of the current Star Wars plan are $60 billion. But the more
robust land, sea, and space-based scheme which is backed by many
Republicans would start at around $240 billion.
The U.S. plans to have missile bases in England, Australia and in Alaska.
In England, voicing opposition to Star Wars is, Campaign for the
Accountability of American Bases in England. The group is, "working hard in
the UK to stop this."
Pentagon official was quoted as saying that he did not think
that the UK would be a problem with the use of these bases.
The peace organization responded that, "Well,we are going
to be a huge problem,we are convinced we can certainly hold
it up and the prize in the end is to stop it - together we
can stop it."
In the U.S., the Florida-based organization, Global Network Against Weapons
& Nuclear Power in Space, said the missile plan would be used to knock out
other countries' satellites giving the U.S. Space Command "control and
domination" of space. They are calling for the U.S. to join Russia, China
and the rest of the world in negotiating a global ban on weapons in space.
Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space is organizing
protests in Albuquerque, New Mexico during the "18th Annual Symposium on
Space Nuclear Power & Propulsion." Those attending the conference include
the Air Force, Department of Energy, NASA, the aerospace industry, and
nuclear academia who promote the expanded use of nuclear power in space.
The corporate-industries with major financial interests in the missile
system becoming a reality are Boeing, Lockheed Martin, TRW, and Raytheon.
To learn more about these corporations, read "The Real Rogues" in the
September issue of Z magazine.
The protests during the Symposium will be held in the early afternoons of
February 10th to the 12th at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at 330 Tijeras, NW.
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