The Trump administration is waging a daily assault on our democratic institutions, our values, even our sense of reality. It is being felt across the board, through repeated attacks on science, civil rights, women's rights and environmental protections. Your right to a safe and secure future, free from the threat of nuclear weapons, is also under attack.
In the most disastrous decision of his presidency, Trump violated the terms of the Iran anti-nuclear deal. In a few weeks, he will formally re-impose sanctions on nations, including key allies, who do any business with Iran. Despite our best efforts, under this sort of pressure the deal could rapidly collapse. Iran may restart its nuclear program and the risk of war in the Middle East could rise. Violating the Iran agreement went against the advice of many of our own defense and intelligence officials. Our European allies pleaded publicly with Trump to preserve a deal vital to their core security interests. There is no plan for a replacement or for new talks. Instead, only growing tensions in the Middle East and a widening split in the Western Alliance.
There is some good news. The summit in Singapore between President Trump and Kim Jong-un, while overly-hyped and vague, does provide a potential opening to resolve the North Korean crisis. Tensions in the region have receded, the threat of war has waned, the right-wing has been brought into a diplomatic process it long disdained, and we have at least the outline of a possible path to roll back North Korea's nuclear program. As our grantee and Stanford scholar Bob Carlin told David Ignatius of The Washington Post, our goal "should be to nurture this rather than crush it through constant carping." Ploughshares Fund grantees are working around the clock to coordinate analysis, strategies, and education of policy makers and the public to ensure this opening is given the best chance of success.
But we fear that John Bolton is waiting in the wings to destroy this fragile opening. His long-held solution is war and regime change, not negotiations. It's easy to get discouraged — to see the stream of bad news and partisan bickering, to know that we are on the defensive nearly everywhere. But we cannot give up. We must stand together and support those individuals and organizations who are working tirelessly to resist these dangerous new policies and to keep us safe from nuclear threats.
Ploughshares Fund is doing just that. Thanks to our supporters, we are stronger, more respected, and more connected than ever in our history. Our networks of experts and organizations are growing and seeking new ideas, new voices and new leadership to help fight this decades-old problem.
One example is Yasmeen Silva, the US field organizer for Beyond the Bomb. She represents a new wave of resistance to the nuclear threats we face under the current administration. Just recently, Yasmeen and her team of savvy, young activists helped shepherd an anti-nuclear resolution through the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in support of the Markey-Lieu sponsored congressional act, "Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons." We firmly believe that determined public pressure can make a difference and correct or reverse even the most outrageous policies — as just dramatically demonstrated by Trump's reversal on his policy of taking children from their parents' arms.
Please consider a small monthly gift to support leaders like Yasmeen who work day in and day out to preserve your right to a safe and secure future.