US Bishop calls for world free of nuclear threat


Archbishop Edwin O’Brien of Baltimore said humanity must “build a future free of the nuclear threat” in remarks on 3 February at the Global Zero Summit in Paris. The two-day conference brings together 200 international political, military, business and faith leaders for strategy talks on the phased elimination of all nuclear weapons.
          
Archbishop O’Brien cited the Second Vatican Council’s condemnation of “total war” and the Council Father’s skepticism of “deterrence” as a way to lasting peace. He anchored his reflections in just war principles and the teachings of modern popes. He quoted Pope Benedict XVI’s 2006 World Day of Peace message, in which the pope said, “In a nuclear war there would be no victors, only victims.”   The Archbishop acknowledged, “It will not be easy. ... A world with zero nuclear weapons will need robust measures to monitor, enforce and verify compliance. The path to zero will be long and treacherous. But humanity must walk this path with both care and courage in order to build a future free of the nuclear threat.”
          
Other speakers at the Global Zero Summit included former US Secretary of State George Schultz, Queen Noor of Jordan, and a message from UN General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon. The summit was timed to lead up to the Global Nuclear Security Summit in April, convened at the call of President Obama, and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference in May.
          
The full text of Archbishop O’Brien’s remarks can be found online at: www.usccb.org/sdwp/international/global-zero-summit-2010-obrien.pdf


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