Cut all U.S. chemical arms

President Bush announced Monday that because the world “has lived too long in the shadow of chemical warfare,” the U.S. is prepared to eliminate 80 percent of its chemical weapons if the Soviet Union would do the same.

The plan would call for the eventual elimination of all chemical weapons once the 20 nations capable of building them would sign a total ban treaty.

This seems to be a great plan, but something is missing. Since the U.S. is a major Superpower and has destruction capabilities that far exceed the need for chemical weapons, why doesn’t the U.S. just propose to get rid of ALL chemical weapons now—not 10 years from now?

There is no reason to hesitate and wait for the Soviet Union to agree to eliminate 80 percent of their chemical weapons. The U.S. has estimated that the Soviets have about 300,000 tons of chemical weapons, where as the U.S. has less than 50,000 tons—not much of a comparison. If weapons are needed to combat a terrorist nation, the U.S. has a large enough supply of alternative weapons to defend against antagonistic attacks.

The eventual elimination of chemical weapons is a good move, but lets get it right from the start and get rid of them now.