The Common Good
May 2010

Resources on Christian and Nuclear Weapons

by The Editors | May 2010

David Cortright writes in his article ...

David Cortright writes in his article in the May 2010 issue of Sojourners magazine, "As the nations of the world review the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in May at the United Nations, they gather at a time of unprecedented hope for genuine progress toward disarmament. The new receptivity to nuclear abolition is reflected in the 'New START' treaty between the United States and Russia, and was sparked by private initiatives led by former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz and other senior security experts and officials in many countries." See this list of various Sojourners resources on a Christian response to nuclear weapons to learn more:

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Hawks Against the Bomb Why George Shultz wants to ban nuclear weapons
by Tyler Wigg-Stevenson: "What on earth happened to George Shultz? So wondered Republicans and Democrats alike when, in 2007, President Reagan’s former secretary of state emerged as one of the leading champions of the complete elimination of nuclear weapons ..." (continue reading here)

No Nukes is Good Nukes
Compiled by Rose Marie Berger and Brian Bolton: "House and Senate conferees amended fiscal 2004 energy and defense authorization bills to reduce funding for research on nuclear weapons such as the 'bunker buster,' to create funding for studying the environmental impact of nuclear weapons, and to restrict the Energy Department from producing any low-yield nuclear weapons without another resolution from Congress ..." (continue reading here)

The Dangerous Trade-off: The U.S.-India nuclear deal fans the flames of the global arms race.
by Larry Pullen and Tyler Wigg Stevenson: "Last fall, large majorities in Congress approved a U.S.- India nuclear trade agreement that allows full civil nuclear cooperation—the sale of fuel, technology, and reactors—to India. This agreement may provide opportunity for the U.S. nuclear industry, but it is a myopic tradeoff: It benefits corporations but threatens to escalate the global proliferation of nuclear weapons ..." (continue reading here)

'Toward a Nuclear-Free World' Reaganites against the bomb.
by Tyler Wigg Stevenson and Jessica Wilbanks: "In January 4, 2007, former Reagan administration officials George Shultz and Henry Kissinger joined Democrats William Perry and Sam Nunn in publishing 'A World Free of Nuclear Weapons' in The Wall Street Journal. A year later, this past January 15, the co-authors expanded on their original proposal in a second op-ed, “Toward a Nuclear-Free World.” The two titles describe a bold vision that must be worked toward with concrete actions ..." (continue reading here)

'A Crime Against God and Humanity': Religious leaders condemn nuclear weapons.
by Douglas Roche: "Spiritual and religious leaders have long condemned the inhumanness of nuclear weapons. In 1983, the World Council of Churches, a fellowship of 347 denominations from virtually all Christian traditions in more than 120 countries, rejected the doctrine of nuclear deterrence and unequivocally declared: 'That the production and deployment as well as the use of nuclear weapons are a crime against humanity and that such activities must be condemned on ethical and theological grounds' ...” (continue reading here)

Sleepwalking in a Nuclear Minefield: The United States still worships at the altar of nuclear weapons - yet cries 'heresy' when others want to join the sect.
by Douglas Roche: "As the 21st century unfolds, a new truth is gradually being recognized: Nuclear wea­pons and human security cannot co-exist. Almost two decades after the end of the Cold War, there are still 25,000 nuclear weapons in existence, about 95 percent held by the United States and Russia with smaller numbers also possessed by the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, and Israel. All told, half of humanity still lives in a nuclear-weapons state. The total amount of money spent by these countries on their nuclear arsenals exceeds $12 trillion, a stupendous sum only a fraction of which could have resolved the issues of mass poverty, health deficiencies, and education neglect ..." (continue reading here)

Is Nuclear Power the Answer?: Proponents claim that nuclear energy is the power source of the future - clean, green, and safe. Are they right?
by Jim Rice: "At the dawn of the nuclear age a half century ago, the fledgling nuclear industry promised 'energy too cheap to meter' from 'our friend the atom.' The 21st-century version of that promise offers not only freedom from dependence on foreign oil but also the antidote to global warming. Is nuclear power the "alternative" energy of the future, the way out of our destructive reliance on fossil fuels?" (continue reading here)

Danger: Nuke Crossing: Every year, 1 million radioactive shipments crisscross the U.S.
by Bonnie Urfer: "On May 31, a train left Wisconsin headed for the Department of Energy site near Barnwell, South Carolina, carrying a 310-ton decommissioned nuclear reactor core. Its route was a highly guarded secret. The reactor core came from the La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor, which was shut down in April 1987. The owner of the nuclear power plant, the Dairyland Power Cooperative, is in the process of dismantling the facility and in May removed and readied the obsolete reactor core for shipment ..." (continue reading here)

In Defense of Peace Pushing back efforts to remilitarize Japan.
by Marie Dennis: "Since the end of World War II, Article 9 of Japan's Constitution has shaped Japan's foreign policy, guided its active engagement in efforts to reduce the global trade in weapons, and prohibited the possession, production, and introduction of nuclear weapons on Japanese territory. Though conceived by the victors, it has been embraced by most Japanese people. Few more powerful examples exist of national policy committed to pacifism and nonviolence ..." (continue reading here)

*Resources in the SojoStore

Christians and Nonviolence Discussion Guide: "Nonviolent love for one’s enemies is not an optional accessory in Christian living, but rather a key part of following Jesus. During the past 50 years, most large-scale overthrows of repressive regimes—in East Germany, South Africa, the Philippines, and Chile, to name a few—have happened through nonviolent resistance rather than military action. "

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