UK CND has called a massive demo for London on 27th February to register the huge opposition across the country to the renewal of the Trident nuclear weapon system. A vote in Westminster may happen or it may be delayed. No matter, it is hugely important that the message of the demo is clear and that lots of people go from Scotland.
The Scottish position on the UK’s nukes is unambiguous. Never mind the many unofficial polls that show that – the surest poll was the vote in May which sent 98% of Scottish MPs to Westminster on an anti-Trident platform. Our anti- Trident MPs are taking every chance to get the issue aired in the UK metropolis and it is up to us to make sure that our bodies and voices are there too, backing them up
While our views on the state’s weapons of mass destruction are publicly dismissed with contempt by the UK government, there is no doubt that they are beginning to be rattled by the way Trident is now being discussed. The conventional nonsense about defending the nation and so-called “deterrence” has been shaken by a renewed awareness of the foul and vicious nature of the weapons themselves. More recently the publicity about the convoys which take the warheads to and from Aldermaston/Burghfield and Coulport has brought further embarrassment. Hence the attempt at a slick PR response with the recent visit of the defence secretary to Faslane.
What few people yet know is that the UK, along with the other major western nuke states, is becoming rattled at the progress, via the humanitarian initiative, towards a global ban on nukes, like those on landmines and chemical weapons. For decades these states have been able to stymie the disarmament process through their dominance of the Non-Proliferation Treaty negotiations. The global ban movement is a way of getting around this blockage, and they don’t like it.
Here’s a UK Foreign Office mandarin writing about how to head off the global ban movement:
At the heart of the “humanitarian disarmament movement” is the thread that any weapons which are indiscriminate in their effect should be outlawed. This is how the Cluster Munitions Convention campaign began. The Oslo meeting will seek to establish as gospel that nuclear weapons have such an indiscriminate effect, and must therefore be banned. So we need to establish a strong counter-narrative which reflects our broader disarmament and deterrence strategy. This narrative could have multiple uses: with Parliament; for the Oslo meeting, perhaps deployed in writing if not orally during the event.
So their aim is to disguise the obvious: that nuclear weapons kill millions of civilians. The temporarily embedded journalists from the Mail and the Guardian who took part in the recent PR event at Faslane and did not ask the obvious sharp questions were playing their game. We don’t have to.
So let’s rattle them some more. See you in Trafalgar Square.