Titanic battle over nuclear weapons

ICEBERGS ahead! chattered the Morse printer. Too late. All too soon it was SOS.

But the catastrophe had been long in the making. The unsinkable tag was a creation of overweening pride. Now, men boasted, we have conquered chance and nature.

Eastbourne peace campaigners can feel like the Titanic’s radio operator. For years we have been hanging around Eastbourne, warning about nuclear weapons. Put simply, people are not machines. The brightest of us can do very silly things under pressure. Irrationality is always on the cards.

We are not fit to play games with monstrous engines of destruction which can blast, fry and irradiate millions of our own kind.

Many people have grasped the point. Ever-growing numbers want Britain to dump its nuclear weapons.

True, our count is quite small compared to the tens of thousands still deployed by the USA and Russia, many on hair-trigger alert. If a fraction of these were launched it might well be curtains for most of us.

Even Britain’s share could still wipe out a fair portion of the worlds capital cities. Global nuclear disarmament has to start somewhere. Why not with us?

But our leaders are deaf to this. At all costs, they must hang on to our nuclear-armed status.

Somehow, they argue, we need this to count in the world. So we have to update the subs that carry the missiles.

How many readers feel safer because of this? Do their chests swell with pride at the thought of our country’s willingness to wield such a monstrous bludgeon?

We should use every opportunity to let our politicians know that we have no confidence in Britain’s nuclear posturing.

Whatever the safeguards on such a titanic stratagem, nothing is 100 per cent certain.

We must not gamble, at enormous expense, with all our futures.

GEORGE FAREBROTHER, Secretary for Eastbourne for Peace and Liberty,

Summerheath Road.