IALANA Germany: An End to the Atomic Age

The German IALANA published a broschure titled “Atomzeitalter beenden – Gegen nukleare Abschreckung, für nukleare Abrüstung und Atomausstieg” in April 2017. Please find here the English version of the brochure An end to the atomic age and contiune reading the foreword by Chair Person Otto Jäckel:

Public debate on the issue of nuclear weapons is largely dominated by myths. One of the most widespread myths of the Atomic Age is the idea that nuclear deterrence secures peace throughout the world. Another popular myth considers nuclear weapons to be legal since it tells us there are no international treaties prohibiting them. At the time of writing this paper another idea being expounded is that the conference decided upon by a large majority of the General Assembly of the United Nations in December 2016 to pursue negotiations on a treaty banning nuclear weapons is itself a violation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. This is the justification given by the German government for its refusal to participate. Meanwhile the nuclear arsenals are being steadily modernised. Here, the largest known project is the development of a new generation of atomic bombs in the USA: the B61-12. This affects Germany, too, since it will be the bomb of choice to replace the B61 atomic bombs stored in Büchel, in the Eifel region, for deployment by the Tactical Wing 33 of the German Air Force as part of the “nuclear sharing” agreements. The new bombs will be fitted with electronic laser guidance systems and have a variable yield. The reader may be reminiscent of images of precisely targeted Hellfire missiles hitting their targets after being fired from drones – with the addition of the nuclear flash. In light of growing tensions between the largest centres of power in the world, the risk of the use of nuclear weapons in the consequence of an escalation of a regional armed conflict, or even as the result of a false alarm, is becoming ever more real. With this study “An End to the Atomic Age”, the lawyers and legal experts in IALANA Germany are making a clear statement to counter the aforementioned myths. At the same time, they list the practical steps needed to develop foreign and security policy based on nuclear disarmament and the peaceful solution of international conflicts, following the dictates of the United Nations Charter, international humanitarian law and the German constitution. IALANA Germany is addressing the politicians responsible for foreign and security policy with this publication. At the same time, it is also designed to be read by members of political parties, churches, unions, organisations and initiatives of the peace movement in the hope that our expertise and the documents cited in the Appendix will provide a source of facts and arguments for the public discussions that are needed on this issue.

 

Otto Jäckel, Chairperson, IALANA Germany

Brochure An End to the Atomic Age