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The Nuclear Chain
The nuclear litany goes like this -
Where does Trident fit into this dangerous pattern?
One pretext on which Britain might possibly use Trident is to give legitimacy to a US nuclear attack by participating in it, (just as Tony Blair legitimised George Bush's invasion of Iraq). In a crisis the very existence of our Trident might make it harder for a UK prime minister to refuse to take part.
The truth is that Trident is not an independent deterrent. Essential components are leased from the US. UK Trident submarines have to return their missiles regularly to the US for maintenance.
Britain is no longer forced to be part of the Nuclear Chain. We would be safer without Trident. Its principal role now is to secure our seat at the Top Table.
The alternative would be to scrap Trident, and place Britain at the head of the non-nuclear powers - the majority of the countries in the world.
"British Values" - Freedom, Democracy and the Rule of Law - are not preserved or promoted by Trident. UK nuclear weapons have more fire-power than all the munitions used in World War II. They have the capacity to kill tens of millions of people and trigger catastrophic climate change.
Biological weapons, chemical weapons, anti-personnel land-mines and cluster munitions are all prohibited under international law.
In December 2016 the General Assembly of the United Nations took the first steps towards banning nuclear weapons by voting decisively, with 123 nations in favour, 38 against, and 16 abstaining, to launch negotiations on a nuclear weapons ban treaty. This UN Conference will start in March 2017 and then continue in June and July.