Category: struggle against nuclear war
China’s Xi urges restraint during Trump call as ‘USS Carl Vinson’ heads for Korean waters

China’s Xi urges restraint during Trump call as ‘USS Carl Vinson’ heads for Korean waters
The Chinese president called for all sides to exercise restraint during a phone call with US leader Donald Trump on the issue of Pyongyang. It came as North Korean state media warned the US of “catastrophic consequences” of its deployment of the ‘USS Carl Vinson.’

President Xi Jinping told Trump during the call that China strongly opposes North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, according to CCTV.

He also said that Beijing opposes any actions that run counter to UN Security Council resolutions, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement, as cited by Reuters.

Xi added that Beijing “hopes that all relevant sides exercise restraint, and avoid doing anything to worsen the tense situation on the peninsula,” the ministry said, paraphrasing the president.

The Chinese leader said the nuclear issue can only be resolved quickly if all relevant countries are pulling in the same direction, adding that Beijing is willing to work with all parties – including the US – to ensure peace.

Commenting on the call between the two leaders, the White House said Monday that Trump criticized North Korea’s “belligerence” and “destabilizing” actions during the conversation.

It went on to state that Trump and Xi reaffirmed the urgency of the perceived threats posed by Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programs during the call, and committed to stronger coordination between Washington and Beijing.

The phone call between the two leaders comes as Trump continues to press Xi to exert greater pressure on North Korea over its nuclear program. China is North Korea’s main economic lifeline and sole major ally.

Trump has long criticized China when it comes to Pyongyang, stating earlier this month that the US will “solve the problem” of North Korea with or without Beijing’s help. The president has warned that all options are on the table when it comes to dealing with Pyongyang, including a military strike.

The US president has, however, recently praised China’s efforts to rein in the “menace of North Korea.”

Despite being an ally to the North, China has been recently angered by its nuclear and missile programs, and is frustrated by Pyongyang’s belligerence on the world stage.

The Monday call took place amid speculation that Pyongyang could be planning to hold a sixth nuclear test this week.

‘Catastrophic consequences’

As the ‘USS Carl Vinson’ moves closer towards Pyongyang, a commentary in Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of North Korea’s ruling Workers’ party, called the aircraft carrier’s deployment “an extremely dangerous act by those who plan a nuclear war to invade.”

“The United States should not run amok and should consider carefully any catastrophic consequence from its foolish military provocative act,” the commentary said.

“What’s only laid for aggressors is dead bodies,” it continued.

It comes just one day after a commentary in the same paper said that North Korea is ready to illustrate its “military force” by sinking the “nuclear-powered aircraft carrier with a single strike.”

The ‘Carl Vinson’ was deployed to the waters off the Korean Peninsula in response to mounting concern over the North’s nuclear and missile tests, and its threats to attack the US and its Asian allies.

Although Washington has not specified where the vessel is as it approaches the area, US Vice President Mike Pence said on Saturday that it would “arrive in days.”

Two Japanese destroyers have joined the carrier group for exercises in the western Pacific, according to Reuters. South Korea has also said it is in talks about holding joint naval exercises.

Trump also spoke to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Monday, as the two countries participate in the joint exercises. Abe told reporters that the two sides “agreed to strongly demand that North Korea, which is repeating its provocation, show restraint.”

As Battle of Words Rages, Threat of Nuclear ‘Accident’ on the Rise
Nuclear explosion

As Battle of Words Rages, Threat of Nuclear ‘Accident’ on the Rise

© Photo: Pixabay

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As the Pentagon is set to begin a review that will determine the future of the US’ nuclear weapons program, the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNDR) warns that mixed signals sent on a technologically crowded modern battlefield increase the likelihood of a nuclear accident.

“A greater reliance on automated systems can lead to misplaced confidence while introducing new points of vulnerability,” the report reads, explaining that “hidden interactions” between the drones, satellites, networks and sensors that now make up the military landscape could lead to catastrophic misunderstandings.

Such an incident nearly unfolded in 1983 when a Soviet nuclear early warning system detected five missiles headed toward Moscow, ostensibly launched from the US. The man in charge of informing Soviet authorities of an attack, Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov, reasoned that the system must have malfunctioned, as it wouldn’t make sense for the US to conduct an attack that would all but guarantee retaliation. Luckily, Petrov was correct, Defense One reported.

Today, the UN report’s authors write, “The complex interactions and tightly coupled systems linked to nuclear arsenals (like those for early warning, and launch command and control) have made ‘accidental war more likely.'”

More nuclear nations, and more nukes in those nations, exacerbates the risk. Washington, for instance, is planning to develop a nuclear cruise missile — a long-range standoff weapon (LRSO) that can be fired from a fighter jet — and is considering developing remote-controlled nuclear-armed drones.

In the report, Russian arms expert Pavel Podvig wrote, “The spread of other systems, such as cruise missiles and drones, and their increasingly frequent use in military conflicts can also add to the complexity of the situation, as can the development of capabilities to detect missiles.”

Podvig also noted that “The intensity of interactions between the United States and Russian militaries, although lower than during the height of the Cold War, does not show signs of decreasing.”

US President Donald Trump, who mandated the arsenal review in a late January memo, recently told reporters, “We’re not getting along with Russia at all … we may be at an all-time low.”

In the memo Trump called for a review to assess “readiness, conditions, including training, equipment maintenance, munitions, modernization, and infrastructure,” adding that, “The Secretary shall initiate a new Ballistic Missile Defense Review to identify ways of strengthening missile-defense capabilities, rebalancing homeland and theater defense priorities, and highlighting priority funding areas.”

Let’s condemn another U.S. trick against Syria

By Houston Communist Party

President Donald Trump has cooked up a big slimy lie to serve as a pretext for a U.S. aggression against Syria.

This lie is as big and as slimy as the lie cooked up by George W. Bush and company to serve as a pretext for U.S. aggression against Iraq in 2003. The Iraq lie alleged falsely that weapons of mass destruction were in Iraq. Trump’s lie falsely alleges that the Syrian air force dropped bombs containing deadly chemicals on the civilian population in Syria.

This is an old and traditional lie that frequently appears in the aggressor’s propaganda of U.S. imperialists. The U.S. armed forces and their allies in Syria planted chemical weapons in civilian neighborhoods and the devices were detonated by remote control at any time that the U.S. imperialists decided was appropriate for a massacre. The U.S. imperialists and their allies waited until the Syrian aircraft flew over the neighborhood designated for this sneaky, dirty attack. When the Syrian aircraft flew over, the U.S. and its allies detonated the chemical weapons killing civilians.

Trump has come out vociferously blaming the Syrian government for the atrocity that Trump and his allies perpetrated on the people of Syria. The people of the USA have witnessed these dirty tricks in the wars against Iraq, the occupation of the Dominican Republic, the Bay of Pigs attack against Cuba, the war against the Philippines, and the wars against Vietnam and Cambodia. In every instance, the U.S. imperialists start the aggression with a big slimy lie.

The liberal progressives and left forces in the USA must denounce this old trick that the US imperialists are about to perpetrate on the Syrian and the US people.

Amid new arms race, Putin & Trump must spearhead int’l law banning nuclear war – Gorbachev

Amid new arms race, Putin & Trump must spearhead int’l law banning nuclear war – Gorbachev
Former Soviet leader Michael Gorbachev called on Russia and the US to join forces in ruling out a disastrous global conflict, urging Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump to draw up a UN Security Council resolution banning nuclear war.

In an Op-Ed for Time magazine published on Thursday, the first and the last President of the Soviet Union painted a grim picture of the state of the world, calling it “too dangerous.” Specifically, Gorbachev drew attention to the burgeoning defense spending which, he believes, has prompted a new round in the arms race with potentially disastrous consequences.

“No problem is more urgent today than the militarization of politics and the new arms race,” he wrote.

Gorbachev believes that defense doctrines have become “more dangerous” and that increasingly hostile rhetoric from politicians and military leaders fueled by the media indicate that the full-blown military conflict could be around the corner.

“It all looks as if the world is preparing for war,” he said.

READ MORE: If we are in arms race, US started it by pulling out of ABM treaty – Putin

Gorbachev believes that the responsibility to spare the world from the menace of a potential nuclear conflict should be jointly shouldered by Moscow and Washington, given that they control over 90 percent of world’s nuclear stockpiles. Russian President Putin and US President Trump must therefore push for a resolution to be passed by the UN Security Council that would clearly stipulate the inadmissibility of such a conflict, Gorbachev proposes.

“Specifically, I propose that a Security Council meeting at the level of heads of state adopt a resolution stating that nuclear war is unacceptable and must never be fought,” he wrote.

US-Russia cooperation should not merely boil down to combatting terrorism or slashing nuclear stocks, but aim to reconcile positions on wider range of military issues, Gorbachev said.

READ MORE: Just imagine… if Russian troops were amassed on America’s borders

“The goal should be to agree, not just on nuclear weapons levels and ceilings, but also on missile defense and strategic stability,” Gorbachev said, adding that nuclear war should be “outlawed” as a deeply ineffective and flawed means that has long proven to be futile.

In order to avert the conflict, “we need to resume political dialogue aiming at joint decisions and joint action,” he wrote.

Citing an unprecedented military build-up in Europe, Gorbachev said it led to Russian and NATO forces that “used to be deployed at a distance” to be stationed so close so they able to “shoot point-blank” at each other. The stationing of more missile defense systems “undermine strategic stability,” he said.

Gorbachev asserted that soaring military expenses have given rise to weapons the power of which is “comparable to that of the weapons of mass destruction,” criticizing the politicians’ tendency to care more about deadly weapons than actual peoples’ needs.

“While state budgets are struggling to fund people’s essential social needs, military spending is growing,” he wrote.

Similar concerns have repeatedly been voiced by Vladimir Putin’s government, which blamed the US-led NATO alliance for exacerbating tensions with Moscow by deploying anti-missile systems close to the Russian border and starting a new arms race.

“The prerequisites for a new arms race were created after the US withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty. This is obvious,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said in December, referring to the decision by President George W. Bush’s administration to pull out from the treaty in 2002 that paved the way for its multiple anti-ballistic system deployments across the world. Moscow believes the move has challenged its nuclear capabilities.

Reflecting on his own and US President Ronald Reagan’s efforts to avoid nuclear war, Gorbachev said that the “nuclear threat once again seems real” as “relations between the great powers have been going from bad to worse for several years now.”

“Ridding the world of this fear means making people freer. This should become a common goal. Many other problems would then be easier to resolve,” Gorbachev wrote.