Australian news, and some related international items

A positive view of the Nuclear Disarmament Commission

A real chance for a world free of nuclear weapons Sydney Morning Herald MARK DAVIS December 17, 2009 “…………………The original “grand bargain” of the NPT was that the nuclear-armed states signing up agreed to negotiate disarmament while the states without nukes agreed not to develop or obtain weapons. The NPT declares that all states have “an inalienable right” to peaceful nuclear energy. It commits signatories to facilitate the exchange of nuclear materials for civilian purposes as long as the countries involved have accepted International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards to ensure materials are not diverted for military use.
But lots of players in the NPT reckon the grand bargain has not been honoured. Three countries – India, Pakistan and Israel – refused to sign the treaty and went on to develop their own nuclear arsenals.

Then the Bush administration negotiated a sub-standard safeguards deal with India and pressured countries with uranium, including Australia, to wave this deal through at the Nuclear Suppliers Group last year…………..

Gareth Evans and his colleagues on the commission – who include several former senior political, diplomatic and military figures from 15 countries – have devised a deft set of recommendations that amount to a practical and realistic agenda rather than an idealistic wishlist.

Kevin Rudd is often ridiculed by political opponents for his globe-trotting and his foreign policy predelictions.

Yet his initiative in establishing the commission 18 months ago, before Obama’s election changed the atmospherics around nuclear disarmament and with little domestic political fanfare or payoff, could prove to be one of the best decisions of his first term in office.

Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty | H-Bomb

December 17, 2009 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, uranium, weapons and war | , , , , ,

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