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Start Programs Defined

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Donovin Emerson

Instructor Rima H. Duncan

Public Speaking

04 March 2005

The Impact That the START Treaties Have On Public Safety.

Have you ever thought about a nuclear bomb hitting Wichita? What could we do to prevent this from happening? There have been several attempts to rid the world of nuclear threat. None of these attempts has actually prevailed to the lofty goal of unilaterally removing the threat of nuclear war. Seemingly, the unilateral limitation of nuclear arsenals would be a good idea.

To begin, I need to define terms in layman's to reveal the total meaning of this topic. Each delivery system has a different range. Inter-continental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) have the farthest range of 13,000 kilometers, whereas, submarine launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) can only reach as far as 12,000 kilometers (Friedman). Unilateral action means that each separate side will act identically. If Russia disassembles 100 ICBMs then the United States has to disassemble 100 ICBMs to create equality. The bloc of treaties designed to assure the unilateral reduction of nuclear arms is the strategic arms reduction treaty (START). The START treaties have three sections; each designed to reduce the number of specific nuclear weapons. I will discuss each version of START in order to show what influence it will have on global safety.

START I set the groundwork to begin the gradual decline of nuclear weapons for the United States and the Soviet Union. Each party had approximately 10,000 nuclear weapons of various ranges (Friedman). Under START I the number of total nuclear weapons deployed will unilaterally be reduced to a total not to exceed 6,000 warheads (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace). Which is a step in the right direction.

Both the United States and Russia signed the START I treaty on July 31, 1991 (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace). Although the Soviet Union dissolved around this time, the four countries that remained ratified the treaty. START I entered into force on December 5, 1994, when the five treaty parties exchanged instruments of ratification in Budapest (Kimball).

START II continued to reduce the number of deployed nuclear warheads to a total to 4,250 per party (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace).

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