Written By: - Date published: 3:30 pm, April 6th, 2009 - 9 comments
Categories: International, us politics - Tags: , ,

I grew up in the long shadow of the Cuban Missile Crisis (you youngsters can go look it up). I have never quite shaken the feeling that, somehow or other, the world was due to end in nuclear fire. This is the reason that I am such a fervent supporter of our Nuclear Free policy, and why, whatever his and their many other faults, I have always had a special admiration for David Lange and his government.

I put it to you that there are developing parallels between Lange and Obama. Both charismatic leaders, both gifted orators, both men of essentially decent instincts. Both I think swept up by economic agendas that they didn’t fully understand and never controlled, Lange with the neoliberal reforms of the 80’s, Obama with the way his response to the economic crisis has been captured and dictated by the very bankers that created it.

And both, it seems, opposed to nuclear weapons:

Barack Obama put flesh on the bones of his utopian vision for ridding the world of nuclear weapons today, speaking hours after North Korea launched a long-range rocket.

In the first big foreign policy speech of his presidency, Obama told a crowd of tens of thousands gathered in morning sunshine in Prague that America, as the sole country ever to fire a nuclear weapon in anger, bore the moral responsibility for launching a new era of nuclear disarmament aimed at eliminating nuclear stockpiles.

His presidency, Obama declared, would see “America’s commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons”.

Imagine that.

9 comments on “Imagine”

  1. Con 1

    At one time they had a monopoly on nukes (not for very long). Then it was just them and the USSR, then a bunch of other “major powers” got in on the act. For a long time the US and the other “major powers” tried to maintain their own stranglehold on nukes, but in recent times the club has been joined by India, Pakistan, North Korea…

    These days, the US’s clear comparative advantage is with conventional, not nuclear, weapons.

    So they may as well now drop their principled stand in favour of nuclear deterrence, since it only plays into the hands of Kim Jong-Il. After all, if nuclear deterrence is a good thing, why shouldn’t everyone have it? Now they can stand to be critical of nukes, since this will help to put pressure on smaller nuclear-armed powers. They will avoid being seen to be vulnerable to that criticism themselves, by very gradually reducing the immense overkill in their existing nuclear arsenal.

  2. It is a great step forwards by the USA. Telling others to not embark on nuclear weapons activities is the biggest act of hypocrisy ever unless you do something yourself – which this appears to be a step towards.

  3. Quoth the Raven 3

    I won’t be holding my breath. This Barack Bush, I mean Barack Obama after all. He renamed the “war on terror” the “overseas contingency operation”. The man is so ridiculous as to be beyond satire. Post irony indeed. He may well just rename the U.S nuclear weapons Obama’s super fun toys and say we’ll be delivering these to the children of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

  4. Nick C 4

    Yup im sure North Korea, Iran and Al Queda will be the first to put their hands up in support…

    • Pascal's bookie 4.1

      If you understood this policy you’d see that effectively calls Iran’s bluff.

      The same bluff that NK played under the GOP’s moronic ‘don’t talk, wave an impotent dick’ policy and probably built up to 6 bombs and proliferated technology throughout the ME.

      AQ’s only real potential route to a nuke is through ‘loose ones’, which again is something that that GOP was made of fail about, and Obama has done work on.

  5. Obama has been great so far. Lets hope he continues his good work.

    • The Baron 5.1

      Oh yes, his rhetoric has been… and I certainly hope he can deliver what he talks about, especially on this issue.

      Don’t let your love of his policies prevent you from taking a critical look at his progress. Suffice to say, not much has happened so far…

  6. Brickley Paiste 6

    Volume 55, Number 10 · June 12, 2008

    Economics: Which Way for Obama?

    By John Cassidy

    [Tane: Deleted, too long. Please post links rather than full articles.]

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