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America Should Ask, 'How Many Civilians Must Die?'

America’s new policy for the use of nuclear weapons ‘grants maximum value to the lives of its own people [Americans], but an Olympian scorn for the lives of all others.’ According to this op-ed article from Ecuador’s La Hoy, Washington’s policy is might be labeled ‘inhuman utilitarianism.’

Hoy Online of Ecuador - Original Article (Spanish)    

By Jaime Acosta Espinosa

October 1, 2005

Coat of Arms of the Holy See.

The incredible disappointment at the conclusion of the recent U.N. summit! The permanent observer of the Holy See, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, lamented the lack of a consensus surrounding arms control and nuclear non-proliferation. Once again, the statement that was signed was "loaded with hope, not to say with dynamite. ... Nuclear armaments are simply devastating for peoples and the environment. It destroys people’s lives and the substratum of every economy … and imperils the future of humanity." Migliore also lamented the astronomical growth in military budgets: "More money and intelligence are used to bring death than preserve life. This is a scandal that deserves the greatest attention of all nations."

Vatican's Man at the U.N., Archbishop Celestino Migliore
—UN VIDEO: Archbishop Migliore’s U.N. World Summit,
9/23/05, 00:12:50

— Read the position of the Holy See (Roman Catholic Church) on Nuclear Non-Proliferation

Under the so-called Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, the nuclear powers promised years ago to unequivocally undertake the complete elimination of their nuclear arsenals. And yet nowhere have the mighty set out give up these stockpiles. The revision of America’s position on nuclear weapons by the Bush Administration, for example, reveals the clear intention to maintain a colossal arsenal, without time limit, to secure for itself such an overwhelming superiority of forces that no one could threaten or even challenge it. Detailed plans have been outlined to design and develop a new generation of nuclear weapons that can be fired from land, sea and air, in 2020, 2030 and 2040. No "unequivocal deadline" for when they will be eliminated.

This is a some way to direct the world, to once again make national interest the prime measure of international relations! A professor at the University of California has called this "nuclear hypocrisy," because the great powers only worry when someone from outside their circle enters the world of uranium-filled weapons.

—READ: ‘Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations,’ September, 2005, Describes How and When The U.S. Can Use Nuclear Weapons

We have ventured far from the traditional nuclear theory which dominated recent decades, and that sought to contain and dissuade. We have also broken the Clinton Doctrine, under which America’s "hyperpower" status imposed certain obligations on the United States, including a responsibility to prevent and stop conflicts of worldwide consequence. Whereas in the eyes of Bush, America’s status confers rights - not obligations.

In this policy, there is the impression of an "inhuman utilitarianism," which rejects the distinction between belligerent and non-belligerent and which, in addition, grants maximum value to the lives of one’s own people [Americans], but an Olympian scorn for the lives of all others.

Perhaps, one might ask, haven’t we failed to address the issue of wars directed against regimes in the name of freedom and democracy? Unfortunately, the bombs of the "liberators" also send to the grave many of the "liberated" because bombing always entails the same ethical dilemma: how many civilians must die so that other civilians can supposedly survive?

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