April 12, 2010

Earning His Nobel Prize

Perhaps one of the proudest moments of President Obama’s young presidency is last week’s announcement that he’s signed a historic nuclear disarmament treaty with President Medvedev of Russia, agreeing that both countries will draw down their nuclear weapons by about a third.

It’s true that there’s a long way to go, but this is a remarkable first step, and a massive break from the horribly tense relationship that the US and Russia suffered during the Bush Administration. Finally, we have a President who understands that keeping a massive nuclear arsenal isn’t key to our national security and is actually counterproductive to our national interests. And in fact, while the threat of a nuclear strike is higher than it’s ever been (terrorists or rogue states getting their hands on nuclear material or a small nuclear bomb) a massive stockpile of nuclear weapons doesn’t serve as a deterrent from those who are most likely to use them these days.

The best part of all of this though is that as soon as the announcement was made that President Obama had unveiled and signed the treaty, the first thing I thought was that he’s certainly earned that Nobel Peace Prize:

At last, a believable sighting of that peace president many of us thought we had elected. Give Barack Obama credit, big time, for the startling progress he has made in tempering the threat of nuclear annihilation.

The Obama administration’s Nuclear Posture Review Report for the first time prohibits “first use” of nuclear weapons against nations complying with the nonproliferation treaty. It also pledges a halt to U.S. efforts to modernize such weapons, as had been proposed by then-President George W. Bush in his call for new nuclear “bunker busters.”

Whereas his predecessor succeeded only in eliminating the nonexistent Iraqi nukes, this president has forged a treaty with the Russians that will reduce the world’s supply of the devil’s weapons by one-third. But it was essential to follow that up with a clear departure from the always-insane policy that the U.S. has a right to develop and use such weapons as conventional tools of war.

Robert Scheer, writing for TruthDig, has some much stronger words later in the piece to describe how he feels about global nuclear weapons, but I think that tidbit is the most poignant (which makes sense why he opened with it) and telling about exactly the size of the accomplishment President Obama has made.

Now of course the treaty has to be ratified in the Senate, and Republicans are already frothing at the mouth – not because this is a bad decision (as much as they’d like you to believe that it is) but because they can’t stand to see President Obama do well at anything.

Regardless of the fact, it’s an amazing achievement, and I’m more than proud of our President for making the world a safer place, little by little. I wonder if they’ll move the midnight clock back a little bit now.

[ Earning His Nobel Prize ]
Source: TruthDig

1 Comment »

  1. […] This post was originally published at Not So Humble. Click here to read the post in its original habitat! […]

    Pingback by Earning His Nobel Prize « Not So Humble @ AlterNet — April 12, 2010 @ 3:46 pm

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