Ralph Cossa and Brad Glosserman’s Nov. 11 article, “A good time to remember the ANZUS alliance’s fate“: It seems that Cossa and Glosserman find it difficult to accept the democratic right of the New Zealand people to say “no” to nuclear weapons. The majority of New Zealanders opposed letting these weapons of mass destruction enter their ports back in 1984, and that hasn’t changed 25 years on. All political parties in New Zealand, both left and right, speak as one on this issue.
If Cossa and Glosserman can’t accept this situation, then they are the ones with the problem. The irony is that the United States, a nation that seems to consider itself the world’s guardian of democracy, continues to display a total lack of respect for the democratic wishes of New Zealanders. The U.S. ambassador to New Zealand told us that our ban on these death ships is “aiding terrorism.” Even the most ardent American rightwingers had trouble with that one.
Even though the U.S. has removed nuclear weapons from surface ships, it reserves the right to put them back in an “emergency.” Submarines still carry nukes. New Zealand wasn’t the first to ban nuclear-armed warships from its ports. That honor goes to the port city of Kobe. Next year will see the 35th anniversary of Kobe’s nuclear-free law. I’ll be there.
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