Commission Canberra

Eliminating Nuclear Arms Preface by Michel Rocard. Publication date : February 1, 1997

"For half a century, nuclear arms served to stave off conflict between the two superpowers, but they didn't keep them from having other wars and they didn't save them from defeat : the United States was militarily beaten in Vietnam as wes the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. In 1990, nuclear arms didn't prevent Irak from defying those five countries possessing nuclear arms, nor from bombarding Israel, other possessor of the nuclear weapon. In this post-cold war period, we need to re-examine the whole of the conceptions upon which we have based our past decisions and adapt them to a completely new ensemble of strategic data. Legally, politically and strategically nuclear arms have been reduced to a tiny number of marginal hypotheses and will soon be mere anachronisms. They have lost their justification, their reason for being. But they continue to represent a danger for humanity : they could be used by accident or by mistake due to the mistaken interpretation of another country's attitude. We must therefore do everything in opur power to eliminate them once and for all. This is the train of thought of the Canberra Commission which united the adversaries of nuclear arms with those who had formerly accepted them as a means of dissuasion. It suggests a certain number of concrete, realistic and prudent measures aiming to eliminate them."
Michel Rocard