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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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More nukes?

Swimming against the current of international sentiment, the U.S. Senate rejected ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which would have prohibited tests that establish or refine a nation's nuclear-bomb capability.

"You have to wonder if a devastating blow to nonproliferation hasn't been dealt with this vote, and not only nonproliferation but U.S. security," says Mark Brown of the Lutheran Office for Governmental Affairs in Washington, D.C. "It undermines the dream of many of a future that is free of the possibility of a nuclear war."

Last year more than 200 religious groups — including the ELCA — signed a letter urging senators to ratify the treaty. "The U.S. Senate has within its powers the capacity to take decisive action on some of the most fateful issues affecting the security of our nation and the peace of our planet," the letter said.

Moreover, the 1995 ELCA social statement For Peace in God's World endorses measures that promote nonproliferation.

Coincidentally, the same week of the Senate vote, a military coup toppled the democratic government of Pakistan, which has exchanged nuclear tests with rival neighbor India.

For more information on the test ban treaty, see www.loga.org.


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