Saturday, March 27, 2010

Another Major Accomplishment

President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton announced a new U.S.-Russia treaty to reduce each country's nuclear weapons by nearly a third.

According to the President: "Broadly speaking, the new START treaty makes progress in several areas. It cuts -- by about a third -- the nuclear weapons that the United States and Russia will deploy. It significantly reduces missiles and launchers. It puts in place a strong and effective verification regime. And it maintains the flexibility that we need to protect and advance our national security, and to guarantee our unwavering commitment to the security of our allies."

With this agreement, the United States and Russia -- the two largest nuclear powers in the world -- also send a clear signal that we intend to lead. By upholding our own commitments under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, we strengthen our global efforts to stop the spread of these weapons, and to ensure that other nations meet their own responsibilities."

I can't help recalling that President Kennedy made two of his most important speeches--on the nuclear test ban treaty, the very first effort to stop the nuclear arms race--and on Civil Rights, that proposed what eventually became the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts--one day after the other. This immense and important accomplishment days after the health insurance reform law makes for a similarly momentous week for President Obama.

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