Warship visit presents challenge to ‘nuclear free’Posted: June 23, 2016
The Editor, The Dominion Post, Wellington
20 June, 2016
That the USA is now willing to bring a warship to New Zealand on the terms of the current NZ nuclear free legislation presents a new challenge. The USA with its years of ‘neither confirm nor deny’ policy on nuclear weapons has protected NZ from the imperative to advance ‘nuclear free’ but now is the time to confront that.
The nuclear free legislation of 1987 was never complete. The wider reality is that the military of any nation with nuclear weapon arsenals will use them to intimidate. Think of Viet Nam, Afghanistan and Iraq as examples where New Zealand has been dragged into aggressive and ill-advised military commitments, and it could have been worse. The only way to be truly ‘nuclear free’ is to avoid alliances and cooperation with nuclear armed militaries.