In a sobering op-ed for Time, Mikhail Gorbachev, the final leader of the Soviet Union, writes that it "looks as if the world is preparing for war."
Gorbachev says no problem is "more urgent today than the militarization of politics and the new arms race," and reversing this "ruinous race must be our top priority." While globally budgets are tight for essentials, military spending is growing, and "money is easily found for sophisticated weapons." Gorbachev says politicians and military leaders sound "increasingly belligerent" and defense doctrines "more dangerous. Commentators and TV personalities are joining the bellicose chorus. It all looks as if the world is preparing for war."
The time to act is now, Gorbachev writes. The U.S. and Russia should once again declare that "nuclear war cannot be won" and "our nations will not seek military superiority." The U.N. Security Council must also adopt a resolution stating that nuclear war is "unacceptable and must never be fought," and because the U.S. and Russia hold more than 90 percent of the world's nuclear arsenals, they need to lead the way. People are afraid and on edge, Gorbachev says, due to militarism, armed conflicts, and the arms race, and "ridding the world of this fear means making people freer. This should become a common goal. Many other problems would then be easier to resolve." Read the entire piece at Time.