Political experts speak on the “New Nuclear Arms Race”

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Boulder, Colorado —  On Tuesday, October 11th 2016, the Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center held a talk at CU Boulder. The talk focused on U.S. NATO conflicts with Russian and the threat of a new nuclear war hosted by Carolyn Bninski.

Kevin Martin, President of Peace Action, and Ron Forthofer, a former professor of Biostatistics at the University of Texas and member of the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, were the two experts presenting the current problems facing a U.S. nuclear conflict with Russia. Particularly, the U.S. tensions in Syria and Ukraine are evidence of an expanding war, and the NATO expansion into Russia’s borders are problematic.

Each speaker was given 25 minutes to present their views. Ron Forthofer started the discussion outlining a timeline of U.S. foreign affairs from the CIA backed military coups in Iran in 1950’s to March 2014, when Russia took part in the annexation of Crimea. Forthofer even discussed the current Syrian War and conflict with Bashar Al-Assad has come to create insurmountable tensions between Russia and the U.S.  

Kevin Martin, began his point with the yearly event on Oct. 4th, 2016, Russia’s Ministry of Emergency Situation conducted a massive civil defense drill of 40 million people nationwide. Martin believed that if such a drill were conducted in the U.S.  – it would be catastrophic. However, Martin speculated the rhetoric of U.S.  “Cold War Triumphalism”, has shifted our policies towards isolating China and Russia. Martin found the evidence in the U.S. military budget and policies; what Martin described as the “New Nuclear Arms Race.” Martin detailed how the U.S. has plans to spend over $1 trillion dollars in the next 30 years to modernize our weapon systems. Martin listed the amount of future military purchases: new submarines, missiles, long-range bombers, upgrades to current weapon systems. However, Martin contrasted those numbers with the U.S. problems lack of funding for crucial issues such as social benefits and climate change.

“The threat of nuclear weapons makes everybody less secure,” Martin said. The investment into nuclear weapons creates misplaced priorities. Martin said,  “One person has the ability to end life on Earth; what kind of democracy is that?” Martin predicated it will take a serious change of U.S. military thought, Martin made a contradictory point, if you take away any of our tax dollars and put it towards anything but the Pentagon more jobs are created.

The solutions to the nuclear conflict are not going to fix it immediately, but action is crucial. Martin outlined the importance of humanitarian initiative to draft resolutions, outspoken community views involving our local congressmen on the issue, and prohibit the agenda of businesses that finance nuclear weapons as seen through the efforts of projects such as Dontbankonthebomb.com, a research report about finances on nuclear weapons.

A week that will change a lifetime

“Obama spreading the love”

What a remarkable week in the USA.

“Marriage” is finally legal, the abstract term of “gay marriage” can finally be exhausted including the purity of a social construct with due time. It’s finally time to accept the change that sweeps under us.

On a Friday, June 26, 2015 the U.S Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision, that the idea of love is not restricted to man and women, but a love between man and man, women and women, and a small but graceful step for the trans-gender community. Marriage is considered an ultimate union between two, and so begins the long needed acceptance of a social construct that love happens between same-sex couples.

However that’s not all for the U.S this week – a change even more crucially. No, fundamentally desired was the deteriorating symbol of the confederate flag. Honestly, for a symbol that fosters a historical era of the U.S. that defiantly stands for the unforgettable history of U.S. slavery. Less a flag but more a torch carrying on the long-lived indignation towards African-Americans in U.S. history.

Remember this day, this week, because it will not live in infamy but as a testament of the adversarial nature humankind is entitled to. Not all is bad and a gratifying change can happen.

What is happening in the world?

Living in America these past few days, I’ve witnessed a staggering amount of news, that their really isn’t words for.

In the Ukraine a civilian Malaysian airliner – MH17 was shot down with a surface to air missile killing roughly 300 people. With only evidence and finger pointing, most of them are pointed at Russia. The missile allegedly was the work of Pro-Russian rebels/Russian backed rebels. Thus, President Putin is in the hot seat. It’s a tricky situation as the passengers who were killed were from all over the world – Britain, Australia, and Asia.

 

Gaza Strip under fire

In other news you may have not realized the atrocious war that is raging between Hamas, in the Gaza Strip and Israel. It’s difficult to begin on where it all started without it being an overwhelming history lesson. Therefore, summing it up will be a paltry attempt. Sources would contribute it to Hamas, the extreme military group, in their recent episode of murdering three teenage Jewish boys. It set off the violent counterattack from the Israel prime minister Netanyahu. In response, Israel unleashed hell upon Gaza. Weapons of death  – rocket propelled grenades, tanks, missiles, bombs, airstrikes, ground troops. The death toll of a recent update in Gaza Strip was estimated around 690 with 4.500 people injured. The majority of that death toll is mainly civilian causalities. Hamas actually puts a lot of their civilians at risk, and they actually tell them not to evacuate areas that are going to be airstrike-ed or bombed , even when warning shots are sent out. Hamas even uses civilian areas to house weapons or fire missiles from, but far worst is Hamas choice to use human civilians as a shield. Israel is bringing it’s sense of “justice” to Hamas, with warnings they told civilians to evacuate to Gaza City, and it’s hell there, too. Jon Stewart said it best to sum up the evacuation situations “Israel blocks this border, Egypt blocks this border. What are they supposed to do, swim for it?” Evacuation is a short lived choice for those caught in a war.

In Taiwan, an airplane went down trying to land in bad weather, during a typhoon. 47 are feared to be dead. A bomb went off in  Kaduna, Nigeria killing at least 82 people, it was an assassination attempt at Sheik Dahiru Bauchi – an Islamic cleric.

I’m bewildered this is all happening in other parts of the world. While I simply just observe.

EDIT: New report  by NY Post that Hamas wasn’t behind the kidnapping of the three Israeli teens. Apparently, committed by a rouge group. Israeli refused a truce, they are going to expand ground troops operations in heed of the civilian causalities.