The Student Center for the Study of Force and Diplomacy hosted a presentation by Dr. Craig Eisendrath, senior fellow at the Center for International Policy and Chairman of the Project for Nuclear Awareness on Monday, Feb. 4.
The United States has pulled back from international agreements concerning nuclear weapons. The PNA is currently attempting to educate Congress and the public.
“We don’t need nuclear weapons,” Eisendrath said. “Nobody does.”
Eisendrath presented his film, Khan Game, which focuses on nuclear war scenarios. The film consisted of a few short but informative skits portraying the possibilities of catastrophes involving nuclear weapons in the future. The viewpoints of both the United States, and other countries that possess nuclear weapons, such as Iran, were portrayed. The film humorously depicted how easily a nuclear war could come into play as well as the danger of any country, including the U.S., maintaining nuclear weapons.
“You don’t see this kind of stuff discussed on CNN,” said Shawn McCreary, junior social studies education major. “But it’s very real.”
Eisendrath said he wrote the script to depict what could happen in the near future, with President George W. Bush leading the country, as well as years down the line, when the United States may have a president with a different international strategy. He emphasized that even with hopeful intentions, the possession of nuclear weapons nullifies all true attempts at peace throughout the world.
“The world is a messy place,” he said. “You wonder how human beings can do this to each other over and over again, but they do.”
There are currently 5,000 nuclear weapons between Russia and the United States, Eisendrath said.
“If someone has one vodka too many, we’re in a war,” Eisendrath said jokingly. “Nuclear weapons are no good.”
Eisendrath proposed that we get rid of all nuclear weapons over the next few years. He also said he supports enforcing American diplomacy rather than reverting to military tactics to control the current threat of a nuclear war.
“You don’t have to love your enemy,” Eisendrath said. “You just have to be willing to talk.”
“The things we discuss here will have an impact on your life,” said Aashka Merchant, sophomore political science major and point person for the undergraduate-focused branch of the SCSFD. “We are the future.”
SCSFD is currently trying to install an undergraduate program at the university in order to continue programs such as this in hopes of educating the Temple community. Eisendrath said he hopes the university will take a stand on educating its students in these matters. He recommended the university require a course in foreign policy and the economy.
“We need to be informed,” said Amanda Garcia, a sophomore communications major. “I wouldn’t normally study this stuff.”
“Read the newspaper, or at least keep up,” Eisendrath told students. “Democracy relies on citizens. If you don’t, the wool can be pulled over your eyes.”
Kathryn A. López can be reached at email@example.com