One of the more hilarious charges leveled against
Bonkers Bolton recently was that he was too preoccupied with winning confirmation
as ambassador to the United Nations to prepare the U.S. delegation for the Seventh
Review Conference of the Treaty on Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
Levelers of this charge assume that Bush and Bolton want to strengthen the
NPT. Wrong. There was entirely too much "strengthening" of the NPT
at the Sixth RevCon, five years ago, to suit Bush-Bolton.
The final report
of the Sixth RevCon began by reaffirming the recommendations contained in
the final report of the Fifth Revcon. But it took delegates to the Seventh RevCon
two weeks to even agree on an agenda because the U.S. delegation – led by a
Bolton underling named Rademaker – didn’t want the final report of the Sixth
RevCon to even be discussed, much less be reaffirmed.
Sergio Duarte of Brazil, president of the Seventh RevCon, claims the resulting
agenda, wherein "the review will be conducted in the light of the
decisions and the resolution of previous conferences," "met the concerns
of delegations who had stressed that the decisions of past review conferences
– particularly those of 1995 and 2000 on a nuclear weapons-free Middle East
and '13 practical steps' toward disarmament – not be diminished in any way."
Among other things, the Sixth RevCon Report affirmed:
"An unequivocal undertaking by the nuclear-weapon states to accomplish
the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals leading to nuclear disarmament
to which all states parties are committed under Article VI."
"The importance and urgency of signatures and ratifications, without
delay and without conditions and in accordance with constitutional processes,
to achieve the early entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban
Ratify the CTBT?
"The [Sixth] Conference reaffirms that IAEA is the competent authority
responsible for verifying and assuring … compliance with its safeguards agreements
… with a view to preventing diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to
nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices.… It is the conviction of
the Conference that nothing should be done to undermine the authority of IAEA
in this regard."
Don’t challenge the authority of the IAEA?
"The [Sixth] Conference notes the reaffirmation by the nuclear-weapon
states of their commitment to the United Nations Security Council resolution
984 (1995) on security assurances for non-nuclear-weapon states parties to the
Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons."
Give assurances to Iran that we won’t attack them with nuclear weapons?
Anyone who thinks Bush-Bolton want to strengthen a treaty that already makes
such demands on us is as crazy as the Likudniks.
So Bolton underling Rademaker told
the Seventh RevCon,
"The NPT is fundamentally a treaty for mutual security. It is clear
that the security of all member states depends on unstinting adherence to the
treaty’s nonproliferation norms by all other parties. The treaty’s principal
beneficiaries are those member states that do not possess nuclear weapons because
they can be assured that their neighbors also do not possess nuclear weapons.
"Strict compliance with nonproliferation obligations is essential to
regional stability, to forestalling nuclear arms races, and to preventing resources
needed for economic development from being squandered in a destabilizing and
economically unproductive pursuit of weapons."
Wait a minute. What was that about "preventing resources from being squandered"?
You heard right. It is the Bush-Bolton-Likudnik position that Iran is in noncompliance
with the NPT because they have contracted with Russia to construct nuclear power
plants at Bushehr.
Iran is oil-rich. Therefore, Iran doesn’t need nuclear power plants. Therefore
Iran must have a nuclear weapons program.
So if the NPT doesn’t already prevent the Iranians from "squandering"
resources in "economically unproductive" activities, then it must
be modified so that it does.
What if the Seventh RevCon refuses to make this and other Bush-Bolton modifications
to the NPT?
Well, Rademaker suggested the Seventh RevCon endorse the Bush-Bolton Proliferation
Security Initiative as an alternative.
The Proliferation Security
Initiative (PSI) is a global effort that aims to stop shipments of weapons
of mass destruction (WMD), their delivery systems, and related materials worldwide.
Announced by President Bush on May 31, 2003, it stems from the National
Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction issued in December 2002.
"That strategy recognizes the need for more robust tools to defeat
the proliferation of WMD around the world, and specifically identifies interdiction
as an area where greater focus will be placed."
More robust tools? Like preemptive strikes against "economically unproductive"
activities in Iran?
Stay tuned, especially during June and July.