The Acts of the Democracies




USA and Cluster Bombs and Other Weapons

An international conference to ban cluster bombs opens in Dublin, capital of Ireland. The USA along with China and Russia refuses to attend. Over 100 other nations attend and agree a ban. The UK agrees the ban but houses USA cluster bombs on its territory and pushed for a clause in the agreement to allow the UK to fight alongside countries that still used cluster bombs. The USA lobbied diplomats at the conference to dilute the terms of the agreement, the USA President, George W Bush was personally involved with contacting delegates.

98% of all deaths from cluster bombs are civilian (over 30% are children). Worldwide there have been 13,000 deaths from cluster bombs since 1945.

The USA is the main user of this weapon. Human Rights Watch reports that the USA possess 638.3 million cluster bombs.

As an example, in Laos, from the 1970s there are 80 million cluster and unexploded bombs which were dropped by the USA which continue to injure people decades later.

Since the inital invasion of Iraq ended in April 2003, the USA dropped nearly 60,000 pounds (27,000 kg) of cluster bombs from air strikes. Marc Garlasco, a senior military analyst from Human Rights Watch calls cluster bombs "the single greatest risk civilians face with regard to a current weapon that is in use."

Israel, along with India and Pakistan, dispproved of the cluster bomb ban.

In the final 72 hours of the Israel attack on Lebanon in 2006, 1.2 million cluster bombs were dropped. For two months after the end of the conflict, three or four people were killed or badly injured from these weapons. Many of these bombs were supplied or paid for by the USA.

The USA vetos a United Nations resolution on setting up an arms trade treaty and votes against (the only country to do so, 175 - 1 with Israel abstaining) another banning the development of new weapons of mass destruction.

The USA votes against a United Nations resolution calling for assurances to non-nuclear states that they will not be attacked or threatened with attack with nuclear weapons.

The USA votes against a United Nations resolution against an arms race in space. Along with the UK and France the USA votes against decreasing the operational readiness of nuclear weapons systems. These three countries and Israel voted against the use of depleted Uranium in weapons.

The USA, UK and France voted against resolution calling for a nuclear-free Central Asia and a nuclear free Southern Hemisphere.

The USA, alone voted aginst a resolution on illicit trade in small arms.

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