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Major Films Reinforce PSR's Core Message
Peter Wilk, MD
May 13, 2010
On Tuesday evening, I had the opportunity to join a distinguished group of current and former administration officials, members of Congress, senior reporters and colleagues from throughout the arms control community, in a private showing of Nuclear Tipping Point. The premise is simple: “...if we want other nations of the world to join us in a tough approach to preventing nuclear terrorism and the continued spread of nuclear weapons, we must be willing to recommit to the vision of a world without nuclear weapons, and to lead the world in concrete actions to reduce nuclear dangers. The actions – a series of urgent and achievable steps – are an agenda for change, for a more secure and safer world.”
The most immediate next step is Senate ratification of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). Hearings by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee begin in earnest next week, with testimony by current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen, and then former Secretary of State James Baker.
In attendance at the film’s showing was Senate Foreign Relations Committee ranking member Indiana Senator Richard Lugar (R), with whom I had the chance to speak with at some length. He is clearly fully committed to helping to shepherd this treaty through to successful ratification. He asked me directly for help with public education regarding the merits of New START. The public needs to be fully informed so that senators in key states will feel comfortable voting for it. Getting a free copy of Nuclear Tipping Point from www.nucleartippingpoint.org and hosting a viewing at your home or a community venue is one great way to do just that.
Introduced by former Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Collin Powell, Nuclear Tipping Point has a straightforward format that is surprisingly engaging. Through a well edited series of interviews with former Secretaries of State George Schultz and Henry Kissinger, former Secretary of Defense Bill Perry and former Senator Sam Nunn, the seriousness of the danger and the imperative for action is well conveyed. They acknowledge their past roles in building up the nuclear arsenals they are now committed to dismantling. Their thoughtful consideration of the profound nuclear threats that we now face leads to the same inevitable conclusion arrived at by the other major film on the issue being released in theaters this summer, Countdown to Zero. Both films make clear what PSR has been saying for years - our national security will be greatly enhanced by reducing and eventually eliminating all nuclear weapons.
Check out trailers to both films:
And see this quick clip from a recent showing of Nuclear Tipping Point at the White House. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AG8ottXd_M