This year’s Hiroshima atomic bombing anniversary saw more demands for the abolition of nuclear weapons. It is a worthy goal. But does it make sense? People genuinely keen to rid the world of nuclear weapons need first do something about the hawks and hardliners whose actions often make nuclear weapons inevitable. Japan would be a good place to start.

The coming 50th anniversary of the notorious U-2 incident should be reminder. The incident involved a U.S. spy plane that crashed deep in the Soviet Union on the eve of the May 1960 four-power talks that could well have seen an end to the Cold War. The Soviets claimed to have shot the plane down, though it flew well above the range of the best Soviet rockets. Others have a more sinister view — that the crash was triggered by a bomb planted in the plane’s rear by CIA hawks determined to disrupt these four-power talks.

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