THE US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has defended, at an Asia-Pacific conference of regional defence ministers and military chiefs, the US drive to develop nuclear ‘bunker busting’ bombs.
He rejected charges that the US was practicing ‘hypocrisy’, because at the same time as it is going all out to develop its nuclear arsenal, it is heaping abuse on North Korea for seeking to develop its own nuclear arsenal.
Rumsfeld railed that ‘Pyongyang’s nuclear ambitions threaten the security and stability of the region, and indeed the world’, and said of those who were accusing the US of ‘hypocrisy’: ‘I’d find the discussion amusing if it didn’t worry so many people.’
The arch-cynic Rumsfeld continued to present the development of US nuclear bunker busting bombs as a humanitarian measure being carried out by the US to spare civilian populations.
He said: ‘People are now manufacturing, developing, testing, storing, deploying military capabilities underground in ways that are very difficult for anyone to access.’
Rumsfeld said penetrating these underground areas using conventional arms ‘doesn’t work’, which left the United States, under current arrangements, with only the ‘very unattractive option’ of using very large nuclear weapons.
In fact, using the very same methods that Rumsfeld described, US allies such as Israel have built up a stock of over 200 nuclear bombs, plus a stockpile of various weapons of mass destruction, all without even a murmur of disapproval from the United States.
Rumsfeld and the US administration are not hypocrites. As imperialist politicians they are simply working according to their basic law on nuclear matters. This is, that while it is perfectly legitimate for their allies, Israel, Pakistan and India, to acquire nuclear weapons and the missile systems to deliver them, it is a heinous act, endangering human life on the planet Earth, if any of the states that the US is currently threatening, North Korea, Belarus, or Iran, develops a single nuclear device or even aspires to develop nuclear energy programmes.
There is a concrete example of the operation of this rule. The US pursued Iraq, under the leadership of Saddam Hussein, for allegedly having a nuclear weapons programme, which it didn’t.
This was at the same time as Pakistani nuclear scientists were selling nuclear secrets to North Korea and Libya, without US interference.
In fact, Saddam was offered nuclear material by the US’s Pakistani allies, and refused it. Iraq was nevertheless invaded and economically destroyed.
Pakistan was allowed to retain its nuclear arsenal and its nuclear salesmen were put under house arrest.
There is one law for the imperialist powers and their allies and quite another for their enemies.
The same law is now being applied by the US to Syria.
Israel has 200 nuclear bombs, a mass of other hideous weaponry of mass destruction – but, for the US, it can do no wrong. To protect Israel’s nuclear stockpile the US opposes a nuclear free Middle East.
Syria has just been testing some of its ageing Scud missiles as part of its country’s defences.
The US has denounced this from the rooftops as an example of Syria’s complete contempt for peace in the Middle East.
At the same time, powerful US forces are being assembled in western Iraq along the Syrian border specifically to threaten Syria.
Syria is being set up for an attack by US imperialism. The crux of the issue is that if it had just a tiny fraction of Israel’s nuclear armoury, attacking Syria would not be on top of the US-Israeli agenda.
It is for this reason that North Korea is determined to have a nuclear arsenal. We support North Korea’s right to have nuclear weaponry to defend itself against US imperialism.
Rumsfeld, the imperialist politician, rails against that right. In fact, it is the ‘socialists’ who condemn North Korea’s possession of a nuclear device, who are the hypocrites. They echo Rumsfeld’s belief that the strong should be able to attack the weak, and that the ‘weak’ should not be able to stand up to the imperialists.