Let Them Eat Weapons: Trump’s Bizarre Arms Race

In late May of this year, President Donald Trump’s special envoy for arms control bragged before a Washington think tank that the U.S. government was prepared to outspend Russia and China to win a new nuclear arms race. “The president has made clear that we have a tried and true practice here,” he remarked. “We … Continue reading “Let Them Eat Weapons: Trump’s Bizarre Arms Race”

Will the Coronavirus Pandemic Help Curb War and Militarism?

Decades ago, when I began teaching international history, I used to ask students if they thought it was possible for nations to end their fighting of wars against one another. Their responses varied. But the more pessimistic conclusions were sometimes tempered by the contention that, if the world’s nations faced a common foe, such as … Continue reading “Will the Coronavirus Pandemic Help Curb War and Militarism?”

Americans Are Ready for a Different Approach to Nuclear Weapons

Although today’s public protests against nuclear weapons can’t compare to the major antinuclear upheavals of past decades, there are clear indications that most Americans reject the Trump administration’s nuclear weapons policies. Since entering office in 2017, the Trump administration has withdrawn the United States from the nuclear agreement with Iran, scrapped the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces … Continue reading “Americans Are Ready for a Different Approach to Nuclear Weapons”

In Debates, Let’s Raise the Issue of How To Avert Nuclear War

You mass media folks lead busy lives, I’m sure. But you must have heard something about nuclear weapons – those supremely destructive devices that, along with climate change, threaten the continued existence of the human race. Yes, thanks to popular protest and carefully-crafted arms control and disarmament agreements, there has been some progress in limiting … Continue reading “In Debates, Let’s Raise the Issue of How To Avert Nuclear War”

Breaking the Grip of Militarism: The Story of Vieques

Vieques is a small Puerto Rican island with some 9,000 inhabitants. Fringed by palm trees and lovely beaches, with the world’s brightest bioluminescent bay and wild horses roaming everywhere, it attracts substantial numbers of tourists. But, for about six decades, Vieques served as a bombing range, military training site, and storage depot for the U.S. … Continue reading “Breaking the Grip of Militarism: The Story of Vieques”

Don’t Expect Rulers of Nuclear-Armed Nations to Accept Nuclear Disarmament – Unless They’re Pushed to Do So

At the beginning of February 2019, the two leading nuclear powers took an official step toward resumption of the nuclear arms race. On February 1, the U.S. government, charging Russian violations of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, announced that it would pull out of the agreement and develop new intermediate-range missiles banned by it. … Continue reading “Don’t Expect Rulers of Nuclear-Armed Nations to Accept Nuclear Disarmament – Unless They’re Pushed to Do So”

Lurching Toward Catastrophe: The Trump Administration and Nuclear Weapons

In July 2017, by a vote of 122 to 1, with one abstention, nations from around the world attending a United Nations-sponsored conference in New York City voted to approve a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. Although this Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons received little coverage in the mass media, its passage was … Continue reading “Lurching Toward Catastrophe: The Trump Administration and Nuclear Weapons”

Getting Ready for Nuclear War

Although many people have criticized the bizarre nature of Donald Trump’s diplomacy with North Korea, his recent lovefest with Kim Jong Un does have the potential to reduce the dangers posed by nuclear weapons on the Korean peninsula. Even so, buried far below the mass media coverage of the summit spectacle, the reality is that … Continue reading “Getting Ready for Nuclear War”

The ‘Merchants of Death’ Survive and Prosper

During the mid-1930s, a best-selling exposé of the international arms trade, combined with a U.S. Congressional investigation of munitions-makers led by Senator Gerald Nye, had a major impact on American public opinion. Convinced that military contractors were stirring up weapons sales and war for their own profit, many people grew critical of these "merchants of … Continue reading “The ‘Merchants of Death’ Survive and Prosper”

A Negotiated Curbing of North Korea’s Nukes Is Good, But Not Good Enough

The North Korean government’s progress toward developing a long-range nuclear weapons capability, accompanied by bellicose pronouncements, has been alarming enough to spark worldwide public dismay and new sanctions by a unanimous UN Security Council. But even if, at the very best, sanctions (which, so far, have not worked) or diplomatic negotiations (which have yet to … Continue reading “A Negotiated Curbing of North Korea’s Nukes Is Good, But Not Good Enough”