Maintain the exisiting conventional military forces and capabilities, but do not renew or Trident and take immediate steps towards getting rid of nuclear weapons for the reasons outlined below, as well as the obvious massive cost saving of up to 130 billion pounds. (The Guardian 13/9/09)
As long as we hold nuclear weapons, then we are also a target for the nuclear weapons of other states.
Although the cold war is over, there are many newer states who are now nuclear powers and we cannot assume that friendly relations will always prevail, The new nuclear states include, Iran, Israel, Pakistan, India, Syria, and North Korea. Each new state that has nuclear arms and an unstable political climate brings the world one step closer to mutually assured destruction (MAD).
Nuclear weapons, finally, are illegal in general use, and there is no point having something if you cannot use it.
The International Court of Justice in the Hague, ruled in on July 8th 1996
"The threat or use of nuclear weapons would generally be contrary to the rules of international law applicable in armed conflict, and in particular the principles and rules of humanitarian law … There exists an obligation to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all its aspects under strict and effective international control." –
It is time to stop pretending that this did not happen, and set a good example to the world by getting rid of our weapons of mass destruction inline with our promise made in the year 2000 and our obligations under the Non Proliferation Treaty.
Why is this idea important?
Trident is a nuclear weapon of mass destruction. We have a legal, moral and economic obligation to get rid of it.
Billions of pounds can be freed for other purposes, directly improving the lives of the citizens of this country, and putting more resources into security through intelligence, peacebuilding initiatives and better equipment for our men in the forces.
It would free us from the deep worry about nuclear war, which is hard-wired into the consiousness all of us who were young during the cold war, when the question seemed to be not if, but when the bomb will drop.