Former Defense Secretary Jim Schlesinger and John Birch Society Agree:
New START Follows a Long Line of Arms Treaties from Reagan to Obama
Schlesinger Endorses Ratification; Birch Society Opposes
On Which Side of the Conservative Divide Does Gov. Romney Stand?
The ultra-right wing John Birch Society recently opposed the New START nuclear reductions treaty signed by the United States and Russia.
That group at least has been consistent; it has opposed all nuclear arms treaties between the United States and the Soviet Union and its successor state, Russia. These treaties, according to that group, date back to 1961 when John F. Kennedy was President and continued through the Nixon, Reagan and Bush I and II administrations.
In its June 30 statement, the Birch Society stated:
The New START Treaty is the latest installment in a long series of disarmament treaties between the United States and Russia (formerly the Soviet Union) that began in 1961.
That period would, of course, cover President Reagan’s Intermediate Nuclear Forces Agreement and President George W. Bush’s Treaty of Moscow.
The statement went on:
Furthermore, the New START Treaty continues the half-century, sovereignty-destroying tradition of disarming the United States while implicitly acknowledging the United Nations and its NATO subsidiary as the world’s premier military power.
Former Defense Schlesinger James Schlesinger, a hawk of hawks, agrees with the Birch Society on one major point: the latest nuclear reduction agreement follows in a long line with other nuclear arms treaties.
However, Schlesinger endorses New START, pointing out that the agreement is consistent with past nuclear arms reductions agreement.
I think that it is obligatory for the United States to ratify. And any treaty is going to have limitations, questionable areas. There are some in this treaty. We need to watch them for the future, but that does not mean that the treaty should be rejected.
Schlesinger is joined in this endorsement by such GOP national security luminaries as Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, James Baker, Brent Scowcroft and Stephen Hadley.
Now Governor Mitt Romney has joined the Birch Society in opposition to the New START agreement.
In a July 6 Washington Post OpEd, the once and future presidential candidate called the latest arms agreement President Obama’s worst foreign policy mistake.
So a question to pose to Governor Romney: does he agree with the John Birch Society in opposition to all nuclear arms agreements signed by Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton and Bush II?
Is he that far out of the Republican mainstream that he sees no difference in the national security policies of Reagan, Bush II and Obama?