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Daisy Newsletter
October, November, December 2011
Give the Gift of Peace
Help support the global peace movement this holiday season by making a tax-deductible donation to Daisy Alliance, purchasing a Daisy Alliance lapel pin or pendant, or a copy of No Time To Kill, a holistic analysis of issues that threaten the extinction of life on a mass scale - WMDs, genocide, and terrorism, written by Daisy Alliance founder and Executive Director Bruce Roth.
Daisy Alliance is also registered with GoodSearch, a company that helps non-profits like ours raise funds through the everyday actions of our supporters.
Here is how you can help:
*Use GoodSearch when you search the internet--they will donate a penny to us for every search;
*Use GoodShop for your online holiday shopping--a percentage of every purchase is donated;
*Enroll in the GoodDining and they will donate up to 6% of every dollar you spend when you eat at one of 10,000 participating restaurants.
Get started by clicking the "Become a Supporter" button on our profile page here!
"Is a Nuclear War with China Possible?"
Dr. Lawrence Wittner, author of Confronting the Bomb and frequent Daisy Alliance blog contributor, writes this month in the History News Network about the possibility of nuclear war with China. He warns that deteriorating relations between the U.S. and China could potentially lead to nuclear. Dr. Wittner responds to arguments that nuclear weapons are a deterrent with chilling evidence: the preparations that were made for nuclear attacks during the Kargil War of 1999, NATO threats of a nuclear response to Soviet conventional attacks during the Cold War, and the U.S. obsession with missile defense systems, which would be unnecessary if possessing nuclear weapons actually prevented the threat of nuclear attacks. In response to those who feel confident that the U.S. would "win" any nuclear war with China, because of its much larger arsenal, Dr. Wittner argues that any nuclear attack on the U.S. by China would devastate our country. His solution is twofold-improve U.S.-Sino relations while simultaneously reducing the threat of nuclear war by eliminating nuclear weapons.
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Ask Congress to Assess the Nuclear Threat!
How risky is our current nuclear strategy? Surprisingly, no one knows! If you agree that the gaping hole in our national security needs to be plugged, join a former Director of the National Security Agency and other prominent individuals in asking Congress to authorize an objective study of the risk.
This petition is necessary because society has repeatedly rejected even minor changes in our nuclear weapons strategy as too risky, even though the baseline risk of our current policy is unknown. The proposed study is a first step toward a more reasoned national security strategy. A preliminary analysis indicates that our current nuclear posture is as risky as living in a town surrounded by thousands of nuclear power plants.
Today's nuclear arsenals total approximately 20,000 nuclear weapons, many with explosive yields ten times greater than those used on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Our nuclear war-fighting plans depend on obsolete, Cold War era thinking, with hundreds of our weapons still on risky, hair-trigger alert. Nuclear terrorism and nuclear proliferation have added dangerous new dimensions to the risk, and the risk of a nuclear terrorist attack is increased because of the difficulty of keeping track of thousands of nuclear weapons. In 2007, the US Air Force lost six nuclear weapons for 36 hours!
Society's complacency about our nuclear weapons strategy will not change until the risk is brought into clear focus. Please join me in signing this petition, and forward this link to your friends, family, and co-workers as well. Change will not occur until we speak with a collective voice, and this petition makes a great icebreaker for bringing nuclear weapons into your conversations!
Good News on the Peace Front!
Every day, we turn on the news, and the world seems to be getting more and more violent. In his new book, Winning the War on War: The Decline of Armed Conflict Worldwide, Joshua S. Goldstein argues that, contrary to popular belief, armed conflict is actually decreasing around the world. The central theme of Winning the War on War is the role that the UN and its peacekeeping missions plays in this decline.
Goldstein first reviews the trends in war since 1945. In spite of an upswing in civil war in the early 1990s, there has been actually been a significant decline in both the number of wars and war-related deaths in the post-Cold War era. There were 1.5 million deaths in the Vietnam war, compared with 55,000 deaths during the Salvadoran civil war. Also missing are the large-scale, violent interstate wars, which have virtually disappeared from the world stage.
Although Goldstein acknowledges there are a variety of possible explanations for the decline in violent conflict, he attributes a large part of it to the development of the international community, specifically the UN and peacekeeping. While he admits that there are still many inadequacies in the UN's structure and ability to make policy, he places strong emphasis on its abilities to change war-making into peace-building. The second section of the books analyzes several stages of peacekeeping-from the early years when the invention of peacekeeping was still new to more recent missions and the improvements that have been made. Goldstein pays careful attention to the failures and successes in peacekeeping in the early 1990s, and argues that the UN has learned from its mistakes, allowing it to function more effectively in the realm of peacekeeping.
In the third section, Goldstein returns to his assertion that war is actually on the decline. He challenges common held beliefs, such as the argument that there are more civilian deaths in war than there were 100 years ago-a belief he argues came to be held by most people due to an error in the preparation of the UN's Human Development Report 1994. Goldstein also discusses what types of war we are facing now, namely civil war, and devotes some time to explaining the causes of both the onset and the termination of civil war. Goldstein ends with a chapter on how to continue with this decline in war by investing in the UN, and focusing our future efforts on war prevention, diplomacy, and peacekeeping.
This book provides an excellent overview of the most relevant studies and prominent theories in the field of peace politics. It is a must-read for anyone interested in war and peace studies, who may also want to check out his related article in the most recent issue of Foreign Policy, "Think Again: War."
Daisy Alliance is a nonpartisan peace organization that educates the public about the devastation nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons are capable of inflicting and the threat they pose to civilization. We work to improve global peace and security by reducing the threat or use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) through the rule of international law. 

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