On the morning of Friday, July 7, 2017, the United Nations adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which bans and makes it illegal to possess, use, produce, transfer, acquire, stockpile or deploy nuclear weapons.
This was the culmination of 10 years of preparation by many national and international organizations. It was signed and approved by 122 of the 123 participant nations, representing two-thirds of the nations in the UN.
None of the nuclear-weapons nations participated.
The argument of deterrence is still clung to, but the failure of this policy is never discussed. If a nuclear-armed nation was attacked, either by intention or error, the expected response would be retaliation with a bevy of nuclear weapons.
These weapons are indiscriminate and would invariably kill and wound millions of civilians, with no possibility of medical response.
You end up with two destroyed, or partially destroyed, countries. What happens next?
There is unimaginable suffering among the survivors. Operational infrastructure is gone. Would other nations respond, and how? What steps would need to be taken for protection against a drifting radioactive cloud? The impact on global stability, both environmental and political, would be profound and prolonged.
Read the rest of this important Op-Ed, by Raymond Graap and Schuyler Hilts, retired physicians involved with Physicians for Social Responsibility.