Our nuclear weapons are ok but yours are evil
Is it just me? Does anyone else think it’s weird that the US has a list of countries that can and cannot have nuclear weapons? Oh sure, the list itself seems logical enough. I mean if you are an ally like Pakistan or the UK than you’re ok. However if you are an enemy like North Korea or Iran … well then you’re shit outta luck.
But is it right for the US—who by the way has the largest stockpile of nukes—to be the one telling others whether or not they can have them? The twisted logic we hold on to like a security blanket is that we can have them because we would never actually use them. We tell ourselves that we’re smarter than these crazy whacko dictators who would kill their own people just to make a point.
So, if we would never use them, why do we need them? Here is a little conversation my brain had with itself trying to figure out this conundrum.
Why do we have these things if we’d never use them?
We have them for our protection against our evil enemies.
Yeah but … we’d never use them.
Of course we’d be forced to say we’re gonna use them if someone evil threatened us with them. Our sense of self control keeps us safe.
OK but what if our enemies are truly evil and say they’d only use them if threatened by us, aren’t we afraid that they’d follow thru when we in fact threaten them?
Don’t be silly. They’re evil. They have no sense of logic. Not like we do. You see, there is no way we could be threatening them because we are right and they are wrong. When we tell them to stop making weapons or we will be forced to kill them, it’s not a threat.
How is that not a threat?
Because they would use their weapons but we would not use ours. Even though we said we would. It’s self defense. That makes us better than them and allows us to police them because they are too stupid to know better. We are smart. We are strong. We are better!
How can you be so sure that we’re safe?
Oh that’s easy … we’ll just build more and more weapons.
And there in lies the problem people. We’re under the misguided assumption that this arms race is the same as the one we had with the old Soviet Union. The difference is that, back in the good old days of the Cold War, both countries knew how much they each benefited financially from escalation but were well aware of the consequences of engagement. In fact, most of the spies working during that time did so for both teams as a way to prolong the tensions while assuring there’d be no eruptions.
The people we’re up against now have made it clear that, if backed into a corner, they would use whatever they have. It’s also been made clear that it’s both possible and probable that some of these guys won’t wait and will simply act first. This is what gives Americans the feeling that we’re better. Of course we tend to forget that the one time we did use nuclear weapons was a desperate act of terror on an unsuspecting civilian target in order to force an end to a war. Seeing that devistation is probably why we’d never do it again. Seeing how it actually did end the war though is probably why our current enemies would do it.
America now has the opportunity to avoid repeating such a tragedy. Sadly though our President’s idea of foreign diplomacy is to ignore a problem until it’s too late to act rationally. He’s refused time and time again to even sit in the same room with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or North Korean leader Kim Jong Il. Now I don’t know if it would make things better, but if a man like Ahmadinejad wants to talk to Bush, then that in itself is a reason to meet.
America is perceived by many in the world as an arrogant, power-hungry empire on the move to world domination. By refusing to meet with our enemies and to react with threats of retaliation every time a country tries to strengthen their armies in the very same manner as us does not help with our world image. Can anyone tell me what would really be the harm in these leaders getting together for a chat? It sure as hell beats the path to annihilation we’re currently on.
Like we needed more reasons to vote this year, we now need to get ourselves out of this age of hypocrisy and avoid a self-imposed apocalypse. The world is a very different place than it was during World War II and the Cold War. This is not a cry to vote Democrat or Republican or whatever; it’s a cry to learn more about what’s going on in the world today and work to make a difference. Especially after this week’s North Korean bomb testing.
The world seems to be getting angrier and divides are getting wider but believe it or not, despite all the problems we have, we actually can be one big happy albeit slightly dysfunctional family. I know it sounds like some hippy-dippy idealism but just indulge me and take a moment to think about it. Or, if you would prefer, we can blow it all up and let Nature start again.
It’s your choice … don’t blow it.