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Home > News > PTI

Indo-US N-deal should be opposed: US activist

October 04, 2006 16:02 IST

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Anti-nuclear groups should oppose the Indo-US nuclear deal as it has set a 'dangerous trend', Bruce K Gagnon, coordinator of the US-based Global Network Against Nuclear Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space said on Wednesday.

"It is dangerous. If the US is telling Iran or North Korea against developing nuclear weapons. Even George Bush has described as evil the weapons of mass destruction. So it is wrong for the US to help any other country", Gagnon told reporters.

Gagnon who is on tour of India with another social activist Mary Beth, said he would be visiting at least half-a-dozen cities across India and meeting NGOs, activists and others and collect from them statements on the Indo-US nuclear deal.

He would then send these to all the different anti-nuclear groups in his state of Maine in the US so that they could write to their two Senators to vote against the deal when it came up for discussion and approval before the Congress soon.

When suggested that globalisation has diminished the effectiveness of the peace movement or anti-nuclear movements, he said faith in people's judgement must be kept.

Even in the US, people were initially attracted to nuclear weapons, Gagnon, a follower of Gandhian philosophy to an extent, said.

"But after some time people are coming back to their tradition and culture. People are now going away from materialism. This in the end will save the people from corporate globalisation", he said.

The US peace movement activist, said a recent survey had clearly indicated that 61 percent Americans were opposed to his country's 'occupation' of Iraq.

The US was now spending $8.5 billion per month in Iraq, leading to cut backs in his country's spending on health, development, education and environment.

"Peace movements in the country feel that the US war in Iraq is 'illegal and immoral' because the UN charter clearly says that invasion of a country is illegal. Iraq did not invade any country. It did not have weapons of mass destruction", he said.

Furthering his arguments, he said US itself had 7,500 nuclear weapons, 'but it does not want Iraq to have nuclear weapons. US Star Wars programmes is destabilising the world by  putting weapons in space using terrorism as an excuse to do so. Its real goal is to capture oil and natural gas in the Middle East'.

Gagnon said the arms industry had become the most important one in his country, 'which is number one in exporting weapons'.

"The US global strategy was to have endless war and instability," he said "But this is not acceptable to us."

Asked about the peace movement in his country, Gagnon said it was quite large and had been so since the 1980s, when
Ronald Reagan was the President.

"Peace movements in the US have become institutionalised," he said. However, despite this, it was difficult to reach the people because the media was controlled by the corporate sector.

"Even the US Congress was under corporate control," he claimed.

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