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We must quit fueling global war machine

We must quit fueling global war machine

Lew Patrie, GUEST COLUMNIST 9:56 a.m. EDT October 16, 2015

WNC Physicians for Social Responsibility commemorated the Oct. 3-10 “Keep Space for Peace Week,” so designated by the nonprofit organization, “Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space,” while citing unfortunate U.S. military actions.
Following the 1991 collapse of USSR, instead of waging peace, much of our U.S. military action has promoted increased conflict and chaos.

Early this century, the United Nations attempted to herald a “new international order” by adopting the “Millennium Declaration” in which most UN members accepted peaceful coexistence ushering disarmament and development, except for the U.S. and several Eurasian partners.

Misinformation issued from U.S. and Britain about nonexistent nuclear weapons in Iraq led to the 2003 war against Iraq. Later our attacks on Libya, and drone attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and other nations, have led to massive chaos, thousands of our soldiers killed and wounded, and likewise hundreds of thousands of civilian casualties.

NATO has been extended to the borders of Russia, violating post-Cold War promises to the former USSR that the western military alliance would not move “one inch” eastward.

With that, we have included missile defense systems perceived by Russia as offensive. The U.S. and NATO have sent troops and heavy military hardware to NATO members Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Georgia near Russian borders. Such provocative developments promote more armed conflict.
America’s refusal to negotiate a ban on weapons in space has left the door open for continued development of offensive and destabilizing space technologies like the military space plane and Prompt Global Strike system, a precision guided conventional weapon that can target anywhere in the world within one hour. U.S. military satellites perpetuate global surveillance as potential weapons of war and promote the above.

Obama’s ‘‘pivot’’ of U.S. forces into the Asia-Pacific is intended to give the Pentagon the capability to contain and control China.

Our military-industrial complex calls for additional and expanded military operations in the region, so we anticipate expansion of existing bases, or construction of new bases, in South Korea, Okinawa, Guam, Philippines, Australia and more.

Global Network’s recent Kyoto Conference declared opposition to the dangerous spread of global militarization, which cannot be allowed to continue as we see the coming ravages of climate change and growing global poverty.

We are all urged to strive for the UN ideal to “save the succeeding generations from the scourge of wars,” which in itself secretly creates massive environmental devastation.

Success can only happen with a powerful and unified global movement for peace, justice and environmental sanity.

We call for the conversion of the global war machine so that we accept responsibility for an ancient Native American philosophy that the decisions we make today should result in a sustainable world seven generations into the future, ensuring that decisions being made about energy, water and natural resources are sustainable, which is central to this belief and to our mission.

We recognize the need for determined action by masses of people to ensure that a peaceful world capable of sustaining future generations may in fact be possible.

Lew Patrie, M.D. is with WNC Physicians for Social Responsibility. He lives in Arden.

Mission Statement

PREVENTING WHAT WE CANNOT CURE: Physicians for Social Responsibility is the medical and public health voice working to prevent the use or spread of nuclear weapons and to slow, stop and reverse global warming and the toxic degradation of the environment.