- Peace Garden: WTF?


Thursday, May 22, 2008

US Official: Cluster Bomb Ban Could Hurt ‘Cooperation’ and ‘Humanitarian Work’
A senior U.S. official said Wednesday that a proposed treaty banning cluster bombs would hurt world security and endanger U.S. military cooperation on humanitarian work with countries that sign the accord.
Stephen Mull, an assistant secretary of state, briefed reporters at the State Department to explain why the United States was not attending a gathering in Ireland of representatives of more than 100 nations working on a treaty to ban the bombs blamed for killing or maiming civilians as their mini-bombs explode months or years after they are dropped.
Mull, acting assistant secretary for political-military affairs, said a draft of the treaty would criminalize military cooperation with the United States or other countries that have cluster bombs and do not sign the document. That would hinder humanitarian work of the type the United States is involved in now in Myanmar and China, he said. American warships and planes often are used to respond to earthquakes, typhoons, cyclones and other disasters around the world. “This would have very grave implications,” Mull said. “With one stroke, any country that signs the convention as it is now and ratifies it, in effect would make it impossible for the United States or any of our other allies who rely on these weapons to participate in these humanitarian exercises.”
The three biggest producers of cluster bombs - the United States, Russia and China - oppose ban proposals and have veto power on the U.N. Security Council. None of the three is represented at the talks in Dublin.
Stevie, here's the solution. Stop using and producing cluster bombs. Case closed - not problem with helping others.

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