Peace with Iran: updates from Code Pink USA's campaign

Code Pink USA have won another victory in their campaign for the US to rejoin the Iran nuclear deal, with Representative and presidential hopeful Tulsi Gabbard committing her support.


In May 2018, President Trump pulled the US out of the deal, which provided that Iran's nuclear activities would be limited in exchange for reduced sanctions. The international community reacted to Trump’s announcement with serious concern.

CND General Secretary Kate Hudson said of the decision: “Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the US from the Iran nuclear deal is a dangerous and irresponsible move, rightly condemned by the international community. The groundbreaking 2015 deal achieved its central aim: Iran doesn’t have a nuclear weapons programme. Only a president hellbent on making the world a more dangerous place would consider such a belligerent and counterproductive move. It will be seen as a step towards war and sends a threatening message to the world.”

For the past couple of weeks, Code Pink have been calling on the 2020 Presidential hopefuls to publicly support rejoining the deal as part of their campaign to reinstate it.

So far, Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Representative Julian Castro and candidates Wayne Messam, Marianne Williamson, and now Representative Tulsi Gabbard have all committed to re-entering the Iran Nuclear deal.

Code Pink also had another victory last month when the Democratic National Committee passed a resolution calling on the U.S. to re-enter the Iran Nuclear deal. This means that rejoining the agreement is the official policy of the Democratic Party.

Code Pink USA is a grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S.-funded wars and occupations. In January this year, we held a video interview with its co-founder Medea Benjamin, which was screened at our conference. You can watch the interview in full here.

"This is a first strike weapon": report from our March public meeting

On Tuesday evening 60 London CND members crowded into a meeting room at SOAS for a talk on the explosive theme ‘are we heading for nuclear war?’

Ted Seay addressing the meeting on Tuesday

Ted Seay addressing the meeting on Tuesday

We had two excellent speakers. The first was Ted Seay, tactical nuclear weapons expert and former arms control advisor with the US Mission to NATO.

Ted talked us through the recent US Nuclear Posture Review, which you can read about on our website here. The key problem with the review, he explained, is the move away from reducing nuclear stockpiles towards developing smaller nuclear weapons - or even fitting non-nuclear warheads onto Trident missiles. As he pointed out, this is not the greatest idea in a world of heightened global tensions, where the slightest provocation - let alone the firing of a Trident missile! - risks provoking nuclear war.

Ted also spoke about NATO, giving us the benefit of his many years’ experience working with the organisation. All NATO states are signed up to eradicate nuclear weapons - “but don’t hold your breath!” Under the Obama administration, there was an opportunity for the US to withdraw its nuclear weapons from European soil - a key first step towards denuclearisation. But that chance was missed and it’s unlikely to happen under Trump. Not only this but the development of new nuclear weapons like the B61-12 (more on that later!) explicitly violates the commitment not to develop new nuclear capabilities.

As Ted pointed out, NATO’s raison d’etre - the USSR - was dissolved in 1991. The US has a responsibility to lead the way in de-nuclearising the alliance. So far it’s failing miserably.

Our second speaker was Professor Dave Webb, CND chair. He took us in more detail through the new nuclear weapons currently being developed - including the B61-12. The B61-12 is designed to be more ‘precise’ than the current generation of nuclear missiles, increasing accuracy to within 10 metres - which, as our speakers pointed out, is patently absurd when you’re talking about a weapon with such far-reaching and devastating effects as a nuclear bomb. These developments are already being seen as dangerous and provocative both inside and outside the US.

Professor Dave Webb talking us through the new "super-fuze" 

Professor Dave Webb talking us through the new "super-fuze" 

Professor Webb left us with a chilling final question. “If these weapons are for deterrence, why do they need to be precise? This is a first strike weapon.”

You can read our live Twitter updates from the meeting here.