What You Need to Know
About the Most Important Issue
In the World Today

Bruce A. Roth

Chapter 29

What Can I Do Today?

“A voice is not heard until it speaks. Have you spoken?”
—Bernard Shaw

Shaw continued, “Your interests are not being served if you do not act and educate the regulators, lawmakers, role-makers and everyone else about what you are doing. Others are getting what they want, why not you? You have the same power and influence to protect your industry and your interests.” [1] Lawmakers cannot represent their constituents if they do not know what the voters want.

Former Vice President Al Gore gave the commencement address at Johns Hopkins University in 2005. His comments were made in the context of global warming, but they are just as poignant in the context of WMD disarmament:

“The good news is this: By taking decisive and urgent action, we can still escape the worst consequences of this crisis. The even-better news is that, even though the solutions will be difficult in the extreme, we already have everything we need to be successful in this struggle, save perhaps the requisite political will. But in our democracy, political will is a renewable resource.” [2]

Nobody plans to fail, but many people fail to plan.

My book contains over 50 action items that you can do to help bring about the elimination of weapons of mass destruction. Here is one that you can do today: (simply copy and paste the letter below into a new word processing document, then it can be personalized and easily mailed).

The following letter can be used for the President, VP, Senators and Representatives.

In letters to the President of the U.S., use "President" for the Title and address as "Mr. President". For former presidents, use "The Honorable" as title and address as "President ". For Vice President, use "Vice President" for Title and address as "Mr. ". The address for the White House can be found at www.whitehouse.gov/contact/.

In letters to U.S. Representatives, use "The Honorable" as Title, and address as "Mr." or "Ms. ". Your state's Representatives can be found at www.house.gov. You will need to input your zip code and possibly your four digit zip code extension, which you can find at zip4.usps.com/zip4/welcome.jsp.

For Senators, use "The Honorable" as Title, and address as "Senator ". The contact information for your state's Senators is located at www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm.

[1] Bernard Shaw, CNN, speech to attendees at FSC Securities Corp..s NEBC, September 30, 2005.

[2] "Remarks by Al Gore," Headlines @ Hopkins, Undergraduate Diploma Ceremony, The Johns Hopkins University, May 26, 2005.


[Title][First Name] [Last Name]
[City], [State] [Zip]

Dear [Prefix] [Last Name],

The following facts about weapons of mass destruction are quoted from the book No Time To Kill by Bruce A. Roth:

  • A typical strategic nuclear bomb has a yield of 2 megatons, about the same explosive force as all the bombs dropped during World War II. About 26,000 nuclear bombs exist worldwide, having a total yield of 5,000 megatons - the explosive equivalent of 2,500 World War IIs and the power to kill 30 billion people.
  • The global stockpile of biological and chemical agents is 50,000 metric tons - a lethal dose for 50 billion people.
  • There are only 6.5 billion people on the entire planet![i]

The bi-partisan Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, which is presently underfunded by Congress, has been responsible for dismantling, securing, and destroying some WMDs. However, its pace is too slow for us to be confident that the terrorists' efforts to obtain WMDs and the materials to make them are thwarted. In addition to the present threat of a possible terrorist use of WMDs, the threat of a nuclear war from an accident or a miscalculation remains very real.

Weapons of mass destruction are constantly the subject of public policy debates and news reports, including these recent headlines about frightening mishaps:

  • "Trailers, Secrets, and Los Alamos" The Los Alamos National Laboratory experienced "potentially the greatest breach of national security" in decades. Secret information on nuclear weapons design was removed from the facility by a low-level employee.[ii]
  • "New Jersey Lab Loses Plague Infected Mice" Three mice infected with bubonic plague at a bioterrorism lab went missing and cannot be found.[iii]
  • "Leaking Munitions Found at Blue Grass" Mustard gas was leaking from two munitions and continues to leak in a storage igloo at the Pueblo Chemical Depot in Colorado.[iv]
  • "Nuclear Fuel Missing" Southern Company's Hatch Nuclear Plant disclosed that deadly fuel rods have been missing for 6 months, and cannot be found. This is the 4th such incident in U.S. history, and the 2nd largest.[v]
  • "CDC Lab with Bioagents Loses Power" A CDC lab in Colorado containing plague and tularemia went 13 hours with a disabled security system.[vi]

If the U.S. cannot prevent security breaches and accidents, imagine what security problems exist in other countries.

According to former Senator Sam Nunn, "... a commission reported five years ago that it would cost $30 billion to lock up nuclear material all over the world."[vii] That is roughly three weeks worth of U.S. military spending - only $100 per American. The cost to lock up biological and chemical agents might be similarly inexpensive. However, in contrast to that, the cost of a WMD attack cannot be measured.

WMDs are the most important issue in the world today. They pose a very real threat to our civilization, yet they have virtually no military utility as battlefield weapons, and they are not a deterrent against terrorists. Reducing and controlling these weapons are steps in the right direction, but the pace is unquestionably too slow, without a clear goal in sight.

I would like to know what you are doing to control and reduce the threat from WMDs, both here and abroad - before they eliminate us.

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[Your City, State Zip]

[i] Bruce A. Roth, No Time To Kill, (Atlanta, Georgia, 2006).
[ii] Newsweek, November 13, 2006: 44.
[iii] Global Security Newswire, September 16, 2005.
[iv] Global Security Newswire, August 25, 2005.
[v] Atlanta Business Chronicle, "Nuclear Fuel Missing," (December 16-22, 2005): 1.
[vi] Global Security Newswire, October 14, 2005.
[vii] "NUNN VS. NUKES," Creative Loafing, August 25-August 31, 2005, Vol. 34, No. 16: 28.


Visit the Daisy Alliance to purchase No Time To Kill.

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