Photo Credit: Basel Peace Office
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists today moved the hands of the symbolic Doomsday Clock to 2 Minutes to Midnight, indicating that the world is the closest to possible nuclear armageddon since the height of the Cold War in 1953.
The group of experts who made the adjustment to the clock pointed to rising nuclear tensions between the U.S. and North Korea, specifically “hyperbolic rhetoric and provocative actions on both sides.”
The group, which was founded in 1945 by Manhattan Project scientists, specifically notes “the decline of U.S. leadership and a related demise of diplomacy under the Trump administration” as a global concern and a reason for this year’s leap closer to midnight.
Nuclear risk reduction measures
Today's announcement highlights the need for nuclear risk reduction measures, such as those being advanced by U.S. Senator Ed Markey, Co-President of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament.
Markey has introduced legislation into the Senate (with companion legislation in the House introduced by Ted Lieu) to restrict the authority of the U.S. President to launch a nuclear attack without first consulting congress.
Markey has also organized joint congressional letters to the U.S. Secretaries of State, Defense and Energy calling on the current Nuclear Posture Review to include measures to lower nuclear threat postures, reduce the risk of nuclear weapons use, and advance the goal of the global elimination of nuclear weapons.
See Joint letter to Trump administration on reducing role of nuclear weaponsand Joint letter to the Trump administration opposing the production of new destabilizing nuclear weapons.
UN High-Level Conference
In May 2018, the United Nations General Assembly will hold the first ever High-Level Conference on Nuclear Disarmament.
In light of the increased risks of nuclear war, this conference has become even more important than when it was first proposed to the UN five years ago. World leaders participating in this event should be encouraged - and will be expected - to take action to reduce these risks and advance nuclear disarmament.
Call on your government to attend the UN High-Level Conference on Nuclear Disarmament at the highest level (Prime Minister, President or Foreign Minister) and to do their best at the conference to reduce nuclear risks and advance the abolition of nuclear weapons.
Click here for a sample letter and list of government contacts.
From the Basel Peace Office