In a letter to The Times today, 20 September, seven Christian leaders stated that it is unacceptable that British citizens should be persuaded that their security depends on the credible threat to kill millions of innocent people. They went on to say that the Government should take a lead in current global initiatives to create a nuclear-weapons free world and that cancelling Trident would be a step in this direction.
Those signing this letter are: Most Revd Malcolm McMahon, Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool, Rt Revd Stephen Cottrell, Anglican Bishop of Chelmsford, The Rev Sally Foster-Fulton Convener of the Church of Scotland's Church and Society Council, Revd Kenneth Howcroft, President of the Methodist Conference, Most Revd Barry Morgan, Archbishop of Wales and Bishop of Llandaff, Juliet Prager, Deputy Recording Clerk, Quakers in Britain, Revd John Proctor, General Secretary,The United Reformed Church.
At the same time the Rethink Trident project has been launched in The Guardian. This also has support from the Churches. Organisations such as Pax Christi, the Methodist Church, the URC Church and Quakers are taking part. From the Catholic Church, Archbishop Malcolm McMahon, Bishop Terrance Brain, Bishop Peter Doyle, Bishop Thomas McMahon, Bishop Philip Egan and Bishop William Kenney have given their support to the statement - together with Anglican Bishops Alan Clayton Smith and Stephen Cottrell.
Among other things, Rethink Trident states that “Instead of wasting over one hundred billion pounds on new nuclear weapons, there are many forms of socially useful spending to which the funds could be put: combating child poverty and youth unemployment; providing affordable homes; investing in education and the NHS, as well as putting serious resources into renewable energy, to name just a few. It is clear that it is Trident replacement which should be cut – not these vital areas.”
Read the full text and PETITION here: http://act.rethinktrident.org.uk/petition/1
Pat Gaffney, General Secretary of Pax Christi said that Christians should now to take firm action on the cancellation of Trident and make the issue of the abolition of nuclear weapons key to discussion on security in the run-up to the General Election.