It’s been awhile. This week, Sec. of State Clinton lead the US delegation as we attended our first conference in 10 years on the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. And the international community took notice:
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon mentioned Clinton while praising the United States, stating, “The participation of the United States led by Secretary of State Clinton for the first time demonstrates the commitment of the United States to work toward its ratification of the treaty.”
President Obama has repeatedly emphasized his commitment to seeking US ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treay to ban nuclear test explosions. However, it will be a tough climb in the Senate, where the support of 67 Senators will be needed for ratification of the treaty. Why is the administration willing to work for this treaty? Clinton said it well:
To put it plainly, we support this treaty because it strengthens the prospects of a peaceful, stable and secure world, and would enhance the security of the American people.
After all, nuclear weapons testing spurs arms races where newer and deadlier weapons are developed. Internationally, testing enables new nuclear weapons states to emerge. As if the security reasons alone weren’t enough, nuclear weapons testing in the 1950s and 60s spewed radioactive fallout from Utah to New York, endangering Americans’ health and the environment. US ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty would make us all safer.