Bush Refuses To Join Cluster Bomb Ban

Moe than 100 countries in the world led by the European Union agreed on Wednesday to ban the use of cluster mbomb ammunition, but the United States and a few other nations like Turkey refused to sign on to the agreement. Cluster munitions are canisters packed with many bomblets that spread over a large area when dropped from a plane or fired from the ground. A major problem is many do not explode on hitting the ground and when civilians, including children, pick up thes lethal weapons it can result in loss of limbs or life. The draft treaty would not compel existing cluster bomb stocks to be destroyed.

The Bush administration insists the treaty is “flawed” because although the United States shares its humanitarian goals, “cluster munitions have demonstrated military utility and their ellimination fom U.S. stockpile would put the lives of our sodliers andthose of our coaltion partners at risk” claimed a Pentagon spokesperson. The State Department insists cluster bombs are part of the arsenal of the future and why single out one weapon.

If one pursues the logic of the US State Department and Pentagon, why not use atomic weapons against terrorists? Why single out a single weapon like that? Over a hundred nations have agreed to end the use of cluster bombs, surely the United States can go along with other nations of the world on ending use of a terrible weapon.

  • http://www.lebanesefromabroad.comc Hala

    I am not surprised Bush is backing cluster bombs use. They were used by Israel and are still causing todays countless death and mutilation, mostly of children (http://la-cd.org/Newsletters/Spring2008/ClusterBombsSpringNewletter2008.htm). United Nation crews have been working on de-mining the south of Lebanon for 2 years since the war Israel launched on Lebanon in 2006 but have not made enough progress yet. I do not, by any means, support regressive reactions to Israel’s abuse, or the US’s blind support for Israel, but the world should know that these are exactly that, reactions, to a horrible injustice. Some middle eastern were pushed against the wall when Israel commits ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in Palestine and flattens Lebanon with bombs each time its economy starts picking up, or whenever it refuses the economically debilitating naturalization of a palestinian refugee population 25% the size of the lebanese population. Apparently tourism decreases in Israel whenever it picks up in Lebanon, it must be because a religiously diverse and metropolitan society is more appealing than one that behaves, at least in part, like a racist cult. This is not to say that we don’t have our “israeli equivalents” in lebanon: they’re the racist sunnite extremists, who according the Seymour Hersh of the New Yorker (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/03/05/070305fa_fact_hersh), are backed with american money and weapons. I suppose it’s a profitable investment for the US administration to use sectarian mafias to keep Lebanon weak and unstable. That goes well with the strategy of not banning cluster bombs which Israel uses against Lebanon, Lebanese children to be exact.