Should the US, Russia, China, Britain, France, and all other nations of the world ever manage to act on these agreed principles, the world would be a much better place.
JOINT STATEMENT OF AGREED PRINCIPLES
FOR DISARMAMENT NEGOTIATIONS
20th September 1961
The United States and the USSR have agreed to recommend the following principles as the basis for future multilateral negotiations on disarmament and to call upon other states to cooperate in reaching early agreement on general and complete disarmament in a peaceful world in accordance with these principles:
- SECURE DISARMAMENT AND PEACEFUL SETTLEMENT OF DISPUTES… WAR NO LONGER.
The goal of negotiations is to achieve agreement on a programme which will ensure:
- That disarmament is general and complete and war is no longer an instrument for settling international problems, and
- That such disarmament is accompanied by the establishment of reliable procedures for the peaceful settlement of disputes and effective arrangements for the maintenance of peace in accordance with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
- RETENTION OF NON-NUCLEAR FORCES FOR DOMESTIC ORDER AND A UN PEACE FORCE
The programme for general and complete disarmament shall ensure that States have at their disposal only such non-nuclear armaments, forces, facilities, and establishments as are agreed to be necessary to maintain internal order and protect the personal security of citizens; and that States shall support and provide manpower for a United Nations peace force.
- ALL MILITARY FORCES, BASES, STOCKPILES, WEAPONS, AND EXPENSES TO BE ENDED
To this end, the programme for general and complete disarmament shall contain the necessary provisions, with respect to the military establishment of every nation for:
- The disbanding of armed forces, the dismantling of military establishments, including bases, the cessation of the production of armaments as well as their liquidation or conversion to peaceful uses;
- The elimination of all stockpiles of nuclear, chemical, bacteriological, and other weapons of mass destruction, and the cessation of the production of such weapons;
- The elimination of all means of delivery of weapons of mass destruction;
- The abolition of organizations and institutions designed to organize the military efforts of States, the cessation of military training, and the closing of all military training institutions; and
- The discontinuance of military expenditures.
- IMPLEMENTATION BY TIMED STAGES WITH COMPLIANCE AND VERIFICATION AGREED TO AT EVERY STAGE
The disarmament programme should be implemented in an agreed sequence, by stages, until it is completed, with each measure and stage carried out within specified time-limits. Transition to a subsequent stage in the process of disarmament should take place upon a review of the implementation measures included in the preceding stage and upon a decision that all such measures have been implemented and verified and that any additional verification arrangements required for measures in the next stage are, when appropriate, ready to operate.
- EQUITABLE BALANCE AT EVERY STAGE SO NO ADVANTAGE TO ANYONE AND SECURITY FOR ALL
All measures of general and complete disarmament should be balanced so that at no stage of the implementation of the treaty could any State or group of States gain military advantage and that security is ensured equally for all
- STRICT CONTROL TO MAKE SURE OF COMPLIANCE BY ALL PARTIES AND CREATION OF AN INTERNATIONAL DISARMAMENT ORGANIZATION WITH INSPECTORS HAVING UNRESTRICTED ACCESS EVERYWHERE WITHOUT VETO FOR FULL VERIFICATION
All disarmament measures should be implemented from beginning to end under such strict and effective international control as would provide firm assurance that all parties are honoring their obligations. During and after the implementation of general and complete disarmament, the most thorough control should be exercised, the nature and extent of each control depending on the requirements for verification of the disarmament measures being carried out in each stage. To implement control over and inspection of disarmament, an international disarmament organization including all parties to the agreement should be created within the framework of the United Nations. This international disarmament organization and its inspectors should be assured unrestricted access without veto to all places, as necessary for the purpose of effective verification.
- DISARMAMENT PROCESS MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY MEASURES TO MAINTAIN PEACE AND SECURITY AND A UNITED NATIONS PEACE FORCE STRONG ENOUGH TO DETER OR SUPPRESS ANY THREAT OR USE OF ARMS IN VIOLATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS CHARTER
Progress in disarmament should be accompanied by measures to strengthen institutions for maintaining peace and the settlement of international disputes by peaceful means. During and after the implementation of the programme of general and complete disarmament, there should be taken, in accordance with the principles of the United Nations Charter, the necessary measures to maintain international peace and security, including obligations of States to place at the disposal of the United Nations agreed manpower necessary for an international peace force to be equipped with agreed types of armaments. Arrangements for the use of this force should ensure that the United Nations can effectively deter or suppress and threat or use of arms in violation of the purposes and principles of the United Nations.
- STATES SHOULD SEEK WIDEST AGREEMENT AT EARLIEST DATE WHILE CONTINUING TO SEEK MORE LIMITED AGREEMENTS WHICH WILL FACILITATE AND FORM PART OF THE OVERALL PROGRAM FOR SECURED GENERAL AND COMPLETE DISARMAMENT IN A PEACEFUL WORLD
States participating in the negotiations should seek to achieve and implement the widest possible agreement at the earliest possible date. Efforts should continue without interruption until agreement upon the total programme has been achieved, and efforts to ensure early agreement on and implementation of measures of disarmament should be undertaken without prejudicing progress on agreement on the total programme and in such a way that these measures would facilitate and form part of that programme.
Russell-Einstein Manifesto, issued July 9. 1955.
Copied below is a remarkable document, the Russell-Einstein Manifesto written by British Nobel Laureate Bertrand Russell and Albert Einstein. It was one of the last things that Einstein wrote before he died in the following months. The Manifesto was signed by many of the very most famous men of science of the 20th century.
It was written three years after the detonation of the first Hydrogen bomb by the US, and two years after the USSR had detonated its first H-bomb. The arsenals of thousands and tens of thousands of nuclear weapons had not yet been built. Yet the scientists understood that the survival of humanity was at risk, that a nuclear war fought with such weapons would likely doom the human race. Consider that the warnings of these men, who were acknowledged as the smartest of their day and age, were not acted upon in any meaningful sense, and that the arsenals were then built.
Some people dislike this statement because it clearly implies that the elimination of war is a prerequisite to the elimination of nuclear weapons. I disagree with that proposition (although in the long run humans may find better ways to spend their lives and treasures than on war). But it is quite possible to abolish nuclear weapons and put in place monitoring systems that would quickly detect any attempts to build a nuclear arsenal.
Human conflict will continue but our species must come to a consensus that a war fought with nuclear weapons, which would end human history, is the ultimate mistake and ultimate crime against humanity. It is the massive nuclear arsenals which can destroy human civilization and endanger the continued survival of most humans and land animals; the thousands of nuclear weapons that are stockpiled and remain ready for almost instant use must be dismantled before some miscalculation or act of madness leads to their use in conflict.
Keep in mind that a world with *no* nuclear weapons lacks the capacity to almost instantly destroy itself through nuclear war fought with large, launch-ready nuclear arsenals. Which is the greater danger, a world without nuclear weapons or the one we have today?
The Russell-Einstein Manifesto, issued July 9. 1955.
IN the tragic situation which confronts humanity, we feel that scientists should assemble in conference to appraise the perils that have arisen as a result of the development of weapons of mass destruction, and to discuss a resolution in the spirit of the appended draft.
We are speaking on this occasion, not as members of this or that nation, continent, or creed, but as human beings, members of the species Man, whose continued existence is in doubt. The world is full of conflicts; and, overshadowing all minor conflicts, the titanic struggle between Communism and anti-Communism.
Almost everybody who is politically conscious has strong feelings about one or more of these issues; but we want you, if you can, to set aside such feelings and consider yourselves only as members of a biological species which has had a remarkable history, and whose disappearance none of us can desire.
We shall try to say no single word which should appeal to one group rather than to another. All, equally, are in peril, and, if the peril is understood, there is hope that they may collectively avert it.
We have to learn to think in a new way. We have to learn to ask ourselves, not what steps can be taken to give military victory to whatever group we prefer, for there no longer are such steps; the question we have to ask ourselves is: what steps can be taken to prevent a military contest of which the issue must be disastrous to all parties?
The general public, and even many men in positions of authority, have not realized what would be involved in a war with nuclear bombs. The general public still thinks in terms of the obliteration of cities. It is understood that the new bombs are more powerful than the old, and that, while one A-bomb could obliterate Hiroshima, one H-bomb could obliterate the largest cities, such as London, New York, and Moscow.
No doubt in an H-bomb war great cities would be obliterated. But this is one of the minor disasters that would have to be faced. If everybody in London, New York, and Moscow were exterminated, the world might, in the course of a few centuries, recover from the blow. But we now know, especially since the Bikini test, that nuclear bombs can gradually spread destruction over a very much wider area than had been supposed.
It is stated on very good authority that a bomb can now be manufactured which will be 2,500 times as powerful as that which destroyed Hiroshima. Such a bomb, if exploded near the ground or under water, sends radio-active particles into the upper air. They sink gradually and reach the surface of the earth in the form of a deadly dust or rain. It was this dust which infected the Japanese fishermen and their catch of fish. No one knows how widely such lethal radio-active particles might be diffused, but the best authorities are unanimous in saying that a war with H-bombs might possibly put an end to the human race. It is feared that if many H-bombs are used there will be universal death, sudden only for a minority, but for the majority a slow torture of disease and disintegration.
Many warnings have been uttered by eminent men of science and by authorities in military strategy. None of them will say that the worst results are certain. What they do say is that these results are possible, and no one can be sure that they will not be realized. We have not yet found that the views of experts on this question depend in any degree upon their politics or prejudices. They depend only, so far as our researches have revealed, upon the extent of the particular expert’s knowledge. We have found that the men who know most are the most gloomy.
Here, then, is the problem which we present to you, stark and dreadful and inescapable: Shall we put an end to the human race; or shall mankind renounce war? People will not face this alternative because it is so difficult to abolish war.
The abolition of war will demand distasteful limitations of national sovereignty. But what perhaps impedes understanding of the situation more than anything else is that the term “mankind” feels vague and abstract. People scarcely realize in imagination that the danger is to themselves and their children and their grandchildren, and not only to a dimly apprehended humanity. They can scarcely bring themselves to grasp that they, individually, and those whom they love are in imminent danger of perishing agonizingly. And so they hope that perhaps war may be allowed to continue provided modern weapons are prohibited.
This hope is illusory. Whatever agreements not to use H-bombs had been reached in time of peace, they would no longer be considered binding in time of war, and both sides would set to work to manufacture H-bombs as soon as war broke out, for, if one side manufactured the bombs and the other did not, the side that manufactured them would inevitably be victorious.
Although an agreement to renounce nuclear weapons as part of a general reduction of armaments would not afford an ultimate solution, it would serve certain important purposes. First, any agreement between East and West is to the good in so far as it tends to diminish tension. Second, the abolition of thermo-nuclear weapons, if each side believed that the other had carried it out sincerely, would lessen the fear of a sudden attack in the style of Pearl Harbour, which at present keeps both sides in a state of nervous apprehension. We should, therefore, welcome such an agreement though only as a first step.
Most of us are not neutral in feeling, but, as human beings, we have to remember that, if the issues between East and West are to be decided in any manner that can give any possible satisfaction to anybody, whether Communist or anti-Communist, whether Asian or European or American, whether White or Black, then these issues must not be decided by war. We should wish this to be understood, both in the East and in the West.
There lies before us, if we choose, continual progress in happiness, knowledge, and wisdom. Shall we, instead, choose death, because we cannot forget our quarrels? We appeal as human beings to human beings: Remember your humanity, and forget the rest. If you can do so, the way lies open to a new Paradise; if you cannot, there lies before you the risk of universal death.
WE invite this Congress, and through it the scientists of the world and the general public, to subscribe to the following resolution:
“In view of the fact that in any future world war nuclear weapons will certainly be employed, and that such weapons threaten the continued existence of mankind, we urge the governments of the world to realize, and to acknowledge publicly, that their purpose cannot be furthered by a world war, and we urge them, consequently, to find peaceful means for the settlement of all matters of dispute between them.”