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Disarmament in the French presidential campaign|
Promoted in France by CDP - Coordination for Disarmament and Peace
Published 11 March 2007
PARIS, 12 March 2007 - In the context of the presidential and legislative elections, the Coordination pour le Désarmement et la Paix (Coordination for Disarmament and Peace) helds a press conference at the Center for International Press for presenting the Peace Pact.
SEVEN UNDERTAKINGS FOR PEACE AND DISARMAMENT
1. To create a grand Ministry of Defence, Disarmament and Cooperation, with appropriate institutional and financial resources, to advance a policy of progressive demilitarisation for France, Europe and the world - working in liaison with the Parliament, the President of France, the PM, the Minister for Sustainable Development and all other relevant ministers.
2. To reduce France’s military budget, and particularly her nuclear budget, progressively, redirecting the savings to meeting real needs - social, health, cultural, educational, environmental and humanitarian - and to work in the European and global arenas to make other states do the same.
3. To organise cooperation with countries in difficulty so as to give them what help is necessary for restoring peace, setting up sustainable development, preventing civil or international war, famine, under-nourishment, pandemics, massive emigration, terrorism and dictatorship, and meeting themselves their requirements in food, education, health and other needs. For this purpose, to create a voluntary international civilian service, to redefine the mission of the armed forces, to promote non-military interventions for peace, and to develop technical aid, cultural exchanges and «micro-implementations » prompted by locally expressed needs.
4. To consult the French People regularly on the principles and methods of France’s policies for defense and for international cooperation, associating the people with their implementation, and organising a referendum on every important decision involving the country.
5. To suspend the export of all categories of weapons of war, to prepare to stop producing them, and to act at the international level to ban all arms sales and to implement disarmament as soon as possible - progressive, general and controlled disarmament, giving priority to the radioactive arms called « depleted uranium weapons », to cluster-bombs and other submunitions, and to the new electromagnetic weapons. These must all be banned and eliminated just like biological and chemical weapons.
6. To call on all the nuclear states, whether or not they signed the Non-Proliferation treaty (NPT) to negotiate and adopt before 2010 a plan for abolishing nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction under strict and effective international control, and to announce that France wishes to renounce hers and is suspending her new arms programmes without awaiting the result of those negotiations, that she is redirecting the budgets in question to non-military purposes, and that the French people will soon be consulted by referendum about all of these policies.
7. To promote a more democratic United Nations, with real effectiveness and new resources, in particular the creation of an Agency for Renewable Energy, Energy Economies and Sustainable Wellbeing, so that the UN can fully meet the objectives of its Charter.
SEVEN UNDERTAKINGS FOR PEACE AND DISARMAMENT
The ECOLOGICAL PACT promoted by Nicolas Hulot enabled hundreds of thousands of citizens to express themselves and to call on France’s future government to take specific steps that are well-justified and urgent. But nuclear war would also trigger unprecedented radioactive pollution of the entire world.
This PEACE PACT complements and completes it, aiming to prevent the folly of a few powerful people from reducing the planet to a world of nightmare and despair.
The world’s military powers possess about 27000 active nuclear warheads, and the total stock of nuclear and conventional weapons exceeds half a tonne of TNT for each man, woman and child on the globe.
Things are bad. Instead of devoting energy to solving the vital problems caused by population growth and the effects on the planet of production and consumption patterns that care more about particular and immediate interests than about general and long-term interests, humankind wages war and prepares for war - marching behind leaders who are sensitive not so much to the well-being of their citizens and future generations as to powerful ambitions flattered and exploited by military-industrial lobby-groups.
War is ravaging not only the lands that are talked about : Chechnya, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, PalestineŠ but also others not honoured by the media. Three and half million people were killed between 1998 and 2002 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo - that almost makes a 9/11 every day for four years. More than 300000 child soldiers are currently involved in conflicts. Between 1997 and 2000, « state » torture was practised in nearly 70 countries.
One nation in three spends more on the military than on health. World military spending grew 34% in the decade 1996-2005, rising in the year 2005 to 1118 billion dollars, which is 2.5% of world GNP and 173 dollars per head. In this total, the USA spends the lion’s share (48%), but France contributes 5% (in 2007 her military budget will rise to 47.7 billion euros) despite having only 1% of the world’s populaton. The five permanent members of the Security Council - USA, UK, Russia, China, and France - which are also the five main nuclear nations, are responsible for 2/3 of world exports of conventional weapons. 639 million light arms circulate in the world, which makes 1 for every 10 people ; 6 billion munitions are produced every year : one bullet or shell for every human being.
The estimated 27000 nuclear weapons now available, half of them on permanent alert, have a destructive power equivalent to nearly 500kg of dynamite for every man, woman and child. They could destroy the whole of humankind several times over. A few dozen of them could at any moment - for human or accidental reasons - cause a catastrophe, killing millions and making the earth a hell for the survivors. Right now, because of the repeated use since the Gulf War of 1991 of « depleted uranium » weapons, a silent « humanocide » is in progress. It is seen in the appearance of the pathologies grouped together as the « Gulf War Syndrome » or « Balkans Syndrome» and by the galloping increase in the number of cancers, and of non-viable babies born with monstrous anomalies (these increases are due also to fallout from nuclear tests and the degradation of our environment by the misuse of incontrolled chemicals).
The powerful states and the financially interested lobbies, indifferent to human misfortune, are pursuing their research on new secret weapons, based for example on electromagnetic waves or on MHD (magnetohydrodynamics). At Le Barp near Bordeaux, France is building the MegaJoule Laser for the purpose of developing new nuclear warheads. The USA is doing the same at the National Ignition Facility. Similarly, they are continuing their tests of anti-missile missiles and have launched a programme of space weapons to control the earth from outer space. To counter this threat, China has just successfully tested its anti-missile missile, which destroyed a Chinese satellite that had become useless. Thus « Star Wars » is set to become reality. North Korea, France, Russia, Pakistan and India all tested missiles (« nuclear vectors ») in late 2006. Nuclear arms are proliferating : only one state had them in 1945, nine do now. How many tomorrow?
Yes, things are bad, and there’s no hope for « sustainable development » if humans fail to master their destiny by saying « No more war », « No more preparation for war », and « Yes to disarmament! ». War has never made possible any sustainable development whatsoever, except that of suffering and death. Humankind stands at the crossroads. Our nation can contribute to the correct choice.
Such is the meaning of the 7 undertakings in this Peace Pact, which we invite [French citizens] to sign immediately.
I the undersigned endorse the "Peace Pact" and undertake to do all I can as French citizen, voter, candidate or elected representative, to set in motion and to bring it to fruition
I the undersigned, of......................nationality, support the French Peace Pact, and agree as citizen, voter, candidate or elected representative that my country take similar undertakings as far as it is concerned by disarmament, peace, cooperation and human wellbeing.
Name in full:
Post code: Town:
Please return to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or to: ACDN
31 Rue du Cormier
17100 - Saintes (FRANCE)
A world without nukes, without arms, without war is absolutely necessary.
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