This evening, Cambridge City Councillor Dennis Carlone will introduce a policy order resolution to endorse the national and international efforts of Mayors for Peace to reduce the risk of nuclear catastrophe.
Nearly 25 years after the end of the Cold War, the United States still maintains thousands of active nuclear warheads, with hundreds of missiles on hair-trigger alert. Nuclear warheads are also thought to be on alert in Russia, India, Pakistan, Israel, France, Britain, and China. The intentional (or accidental) launching of any of these weapons could lead to unprecedented carnage and massive casualties to innocent civilians around the world.
The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty was intended to promote full nuclear disarmament, but according to experts and advocates, the United States is currently embarking on a program to upgrade existing warheads and build new submarines, bombers and delivery systems, at an estimated cost of $1 trillion over the next 30 years (that's roughly $10,000 per American household).
This April, delegations from around the world will converge on the United Nations in New York City for the quinquennial review of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Officials will also be joined by delegates from cities and towns across the United States.
Members of the public wishing to speak in support of the non-proliferation order are welcome to attend tonight's city council meeting, to be held at the CRLS Attles Meeting Room, 459 Broadway. To speak on this topic, plan to arrive between 5:30 and 6 pm and add your name to the public comment list. Alternatively, people may share their thoughts by emailing the full city council (email@example.com) and copying the city clerk (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Councillor Carlone wishes to thank Councillors E. Denise Simmons and Nadeem Mazen for joining him as co-sponsors of this resolution. Thanks as well to Cambridge resident Jonathan King for providing background material for this blog post. The full text of the policy order appears below...
MAYORS FOR PEACE POLICY ORDER RESOLUTION
WHEREAS 69 years after the U.S. destroyed the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the threat of nuclear devastation continues to threaten all of humanity; and
WHEREAS the U.S. Conference of Mayors has repeatedly and unanimously called on U.S. Presidents to convene negotiations whose purpose is the elimination of all nuclear weapons, to which in the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the U.S., Russia, China, France, and the U.K. solemnly committed themselves; and
WHEREAS far from convening negotiations to achieve the elimination of nuclear weapons, the U.S. has embarked on an enormous program to enhance existing nuclear warheads, and to build new nuclear submarines, bombers, and missiles, at an estimated cost of $1 trillion to US taxpayers by the year 2030; and
WHEREAS the U.S. Conference of Mayors has supported the anti-nuclear-weapons program of Mayors for Peace since 2003, and whereas the City of Cambridge has been a leading member city of the Mayors for Peace since 2003; and
WHEREAS the Mayors for Peace have called for taking all nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert, adopting an airtight No-First-Use policy, never targeting cities, and ending all new nuclear weapons construction programs;
Now, therefore be it RESOLVED that the City of Cambridge calls on President Obama to live up to the NPT binding commitment to engage in international negotiations for the elimination of all nuclear weapons, a commitment affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court, and
Be it further RESOLVED that the City of Cambridge calls on Congress to stop the new Nuclear Complex program, and to devote the resulting $1 trillion in savings over 30 years to pressing human needs, including affordable housing, public transit, healthcare and education; and
Be it further RESOLVED that the City of Cambridge urges President Obama to take U.S. nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert, and to adopt an unconditional No-First-Use policy, both of which he is empowered to do without congressional action; and to adopt a formal policy never to target any city for nuclear devastation, and
Be it further RESOLVED that the Cambridge City Council encourage and support a representative group from Cambridge to attend the upcoming Conference on Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to be held at the UN in New York City on April 26, 2015 (which will be attended by 189 countries, including the 5 signatories to the NPT, Britain, France China Russia and US) and that it also send copies of this Proclamation to the elected representatives of this municipality, including the U.S. Congressman, the U.S. Senators, and the President, and further to the Boston Globe, the Boston Herald and the Cambridge Chronicle.