Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty is a moral imperative

Dennis Sadowski at Catholic News Service reports on this issue:
Bishops ramp up efforts to mobilize church to support new arms pact

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Senate ratification of the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty is a moral imperative and a necessary step toward the eventual goal of total nuclear disarmament, Archbishop Edwin F. O'Brien of Baltimore said.

Speaking during an April 26 panel discussion on the ethics of President Barack Obama's nuclear weapons policy hosted by The Catholic University of America, Archbishop O'Brien urged senators to cast aside partisan differences and approve the START agreement, which calls for what he described as "modest reductions" in American and Russian nuclear arsenals.

Signed April 8 in Prague, Czech Republic, by Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, the START "follow-on" treaty calls for both countries to reduce their strategic arsenals -- weapons deployed on long-range missiles, bombers and submarines -- to 1,550 each. Under the previous START pact, which expired in December, both countries reduced their strategic arsenals to 2,200 weapons each.

The Russian Duma also must approve the treaty, and from that point, both countries will have seven years to reach the agreement's targets.

The archbishop's call is the most recent public step by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and church leaders to build support for the new round of nuclear disarmament among Catholics in church pews as well as across the wide gap separating Senate Democrats and Republicans.

You can read the rest of the article here.