Maxim Shemetov / Reuters
Chris Wattie / Reuters
We have a problem, rather, a preoccupation with power. It is human nature to want and crave it, but the ways we get it and keep it are usually inhumane. The simplest, most base feeling of power is that of physical might. The ability to defeat one's foes in combat.
Not only did Canada vote against starting negotiations for a nuclear weapons ban treaty this fall, but now that the international community is moving ahead with the negotiations beginning March 27, Canada is boycotting them. The Liberals have given three different excuses, but none of them make much sense.
Tick, tock: the Doomsday clock measured by The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has moved 30 seconds closer to midnight (meaning: global catastrophe) -- from three minutes to two minutes, 30 seconds. Not since the 1950s has midnight been so close. Why the move?
While every other category of weapons of mass destruction has been specifically prohibited under international law, nuclear weapons -- by far the most destructive of them all -- remarkably still have not. What is needed is a global legal ban on nuclear weapons, with specific provisions for the elimination of existing arsenals and a timeline for verified implementation.
Shaking his head, with eyes downcast, Mikhail Gorbachev admitted to us he has made mistakes and would have done many things differently if he had the chance. We asked him what his legacy would be. His reply: "Freedom, and the elimination of nuclear weapons in our time."