Tag Archives: cnd

The Independent View: time to support the UN nuclear ban treaty

Less than a year ago, the United Nations’ nuclear weapons ban treaty opened for signature. States from across the world are stepping forward to sign up to prohibit nuclear weapons – over 60 on current count. This is a giant step forward on the road towards global abolition. The treaty follows decades of grassroots campaigning across the world – CND has been calling for a global ban on nuclear weapons since its founding in 1958 and we are delighted at the development.

Over one hundred countries are likely to sign the treaty, but will Britain make the most of this crucial …

Posted in Conference and The Independent View | Also tagged | 20 Comments

The Independent View: Trident: It’s time to make the right decision

At a time when the future of Britain’s nuclear weapons system is under intense scrutiny – not least due to the anti-Trident position of Labour’s new leader – it is good to see Lib Dem Conference once again at the cutting edge of debate on this crucial issue. In government, the Lib Dems did much to challenge the pro-Trident consensus of the main parties. It may not have been the full anti-Trident position that many of us would like, but the ‘no-like-for like’ position certainly helped open up the debate. Now it’s time to move onto the next stage. It’s a crucial time to get this policy right as parliament is expected to vote on Trident replacement in early 2016.

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The Independent View: An opportunity to direct the debate on Trident replacement

In September 2010, Lib Dem Voice ran a revealing poll of its members to gauge opinion on Trident. With results strikingly similar to YouGov polls of Lib Dem members nationally, it found that 57% were opposed to replacing Trident and nuclear weapons altogether, while 90% were opposed to replacing Trident with a ‘like-for-like’ system.

It was commendable that the Liberal Democrats carried this sentiment into their 2010 election manifesto: standing apart from the Conservative and Labour consensus of ploughing £100bn into nuclear weapons amidst the worst economic crisis of recent times.

Opponents of Trident outside the party were also inspired by …

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The Independent View: Dropping the bomb

A report launched this week caught the headlines by describing the replacement of Trident as “nonsensical”.

“Replacing Trident makes no sense” said the BBC, while the Guardian led with “Trident nuclear deterrent upgrade ‘nonsensical’”.

But they were not quoting the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament or any other campaigning organisation. Rather, they were quoting the liberal thinktank CentreForum, which David Cameron has previously commended “for their excellent work”.

Nick Clegg has also indicated the policy significance of CentreForum: “Many of the policy areas my party is implementing in government were developed, tested and refined through dialogue with the CentreForum team.”

The …

Posted in Op-eds and The Independent View | Also tagged and | 5 Comments

The Independent View: MoD suppresses Lib Dem review and spending information on Trident ahead of Parliamentary decision

Liberal Democrats can be rightly proud of their record on challenging like-for-like Trident replacement and keeping Britain’s nuclear weapons near the top of the political agenda – certainly during the last general election campaign. But now it looks as though their coalition partners are moving to stifle the gains they have made. Not only has the Defence Secretary announced the suppression of the Lib Dem-led Trident Alternatives Review. He is also making a mockery of the delayed Trident replacement decision – scheduled for 2016 – by committing to spend £6 billion before that decision date. This is hardly fair play …

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The Independent View: Alternatives to Trident replacement must include the possibility of no nuclear weapons

Since Liam Fox made his announcement last week that while Trident replacement design is going ahead, the Lib Dems will also be looking at alternatives, there has been a flurry of derision about the latter initiative. Most obviously this comes from Liam Fox and the hard–line pro-nuclear lobby who just want to rubbish it. But criticism of Lib Dem efforts also comes from some anti-nuclear quarters and I am not convinced that this is totally reasonable.

From my point of view, it would be very easy to have a pop at the Lib Dem leadership for not backing CND’s maximum programme …

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The Independent View: We cannot have back-door Trident replacement

Delaying the decision, on whether or not to replace Trident, until 2016, has been the best bit of news to come out of the coalition government. This was announced, to the delight and relief of many, in the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) last October.Of crucial importance, it makes Trident a general election issue – a fact, as Nick Harvey has stated, ‘of huge political significance’. Indeed, it holds out the possibility of defeat for a new generation of nuclear weapons. Given that the majority of the population has for some time backed scrapping Trident, this …

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , , and | 21 Comments
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  • User AvatarDavid Raw 23rd Oct - 10:04pm
    @ Richard Underhill I gather Mr Bellotti was none too popular with the supporters of Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club.
  • User AvatarDavid Evans 23rd Oct - 9:46pm
    Alex (Macfie), David (Raw), John (Boss) - Martin Baxter at Electoral Calculus, produced an excellent infographic showing what happened in the run up to 2015....
  • User AvatarRoger Lake 23rd Oct - 9:19pm
    First, thanks to all above for an uncommon feast of good sense. @David Raw "If the party is to have a future it must fashion...
  • User AvatarMartin Land 23rd Oct - 9:07pm
    My proposal for the GE is that every time we mention Boris or the Tories policies, we should have an asterisk and a corresponding message...
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 23rd Oct - 8:43pm
    David Raw 23rd Oct '19 - 2:27pm I was one of the campaigners who lived within one hours drive of Eastbourne for the bye-election won...
  • User AvatarMark Blackburn 23rd Oct - 8:14pm
    Bollocks to Boris. Same DNA, same simplicity, same clarity. Bollocks to Boris - all his lies, all his bluster, all his hypocrisy.