World Free of Nuclear Weapons
"Although we averted a nuclear nightmare during the Cold War, we now face proliferation of a scope and complexity that demands new strategies and new approaches. Just one nuclear weapon exploded in a city -- be it New York or Moscow; Tokyo or Beijing; London or Paris -- could kill hundreds of thousands of people. And it would badly destabilize our security, our economies, and our very way of life.
...All nations have the right to peaceful nuclear energy; that nations with nuclear weapons have the responsibility to move toward disarmament; and those without them have the responsibility to forsake them.
The world must stand together. And we must demonstrate that international law is not an empty promise, and that treaties will be enforced.
We harbor no illusions about the difficulty of bringing about a world without nuclear weapons. We know there are plenty of cynics, and that there will be setbacks to prove their point. But there will also be days like today that push us forward -- days that tell a different story. It is the story of a world that understands that no difference or division is worth destroying all that we have built and all that we love. It is a recognition that can bring people of different nationalities and ethnicities and ideologies together. In my own country, it has brought Democrats and Republican leaders together -- leaders like George Shultz, Bill Perry, Henry Kissinger, and Sam Nunn, who are with us here today. And it was a Republican President, Ronald Reagan, who once articulated the goal we now seek in the starkest of terms. I quote:
"A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. And no matter how great the obstacles may seem, we must never stop our efforts to reduce the weapons of war. We must never stop until all -- we must never stop at all until we see the day when nuclear arms have been banished from the face of the Earth."
"The existence of thousands of nuclear weapons is the most dangerous legacy of the Cold War... I state clearly and with conviction America's commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.
To reduce our warheads and stockpiles, we will negotiate a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty with the Russians this year. To achieve a global ban on nuclear testing, my administration will immediately and aggressively pursue U.S. ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Together we will strengthen the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty as a basis for cooperation."