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Nuclear Weapons in the French presidential campaign
Segolene Royal disapproves of horizontal proliferation and approves of vertical proliferation

Published 5 March 2007

MEDIA RELEASE - 5 March 2007

On Saturday 3 march 2007 in Paris, Segolene Royal explained her stance on defense policy, in other words she essentially expounded the last part for her "presidential pact", which was based on the military section of the "socialist programme"

- to maintain military budgets at their current level, which is 2% of GNP (nearly 48 million euros for 2007),

- to keep the nuclear strike force, which is supposed to deter enemies and to be "indispensible to our independence", and to "modernise its means".

This means that research (notably with the MegaJoule Laser) and the development of new nuclear weapons systems (a 4th SNLE-NG sub, M51s, ASMP-As, TNO...) will be continued. It is obvious already: France, far from respecting article VI of the Non-Proliferation Treaty which has obliged her, since she ratified it in 1992, to negotiate with the other nuclear-weapons for the abolition of their nuclear arsenals (and France’s own), will continue with "vertical proliferation" - with the making new generations of nuclear weapons.

At the same time Mme Royal said that "Iran’s access to nuclear weapons and delivery systems would be a terrrible signal" and added "We are at a turning-point, the principle of non-proliferation is being put to the test... France must be absolutely firm so that Iran, which signed the NPT, will adopt the behaviour of a responsible member of the international community and accept monitoring by the International Atomic Energy Agency...". Otherwise, "If that boundary is crossed, the avalanche of consequences and nuclearisation will no longer be stoppable".

Mme Royal is right to be anxious and to demand that Iran submit to the NPT. But in that case, she must require France also to accept her obligations under the NPT and to accept inspections by the IAEA. As long as the nuclear-armed states refuse to honour the part of the deal that concerns them (to eliminate their nuclear weapons), the states that don’t have them will be justified in not respecting their obligation (to not obtain them).

This is just one of the many contradictions which Mme Royal shares, in defense matters, with her main rivals to the presidency. But there are more, there are even worse contradictions.

ACDN will revisit these contradictions in the next few days, in particular at the

Press Conference

organised by the CDP (Coordination for Disarmament and Peace)

which will present the


Monday 12 March 2007 at 5 p.m.

at the Centre d’Accueil de la Presse Etrangère

(the C.A.P.E, the Centre for welcoming the foreign press)

Maison de Radio-France (Radio-France House)

116 Avenue du Président Kennedy, Paris XVI