McNamara: Risk of nuclear weapons should disappear
BY MARELYS VALENCIA
ROBERT McNamara, former Defense Secretary during the
Kennedy administration, admitted he was mistaken in believing
there was nothing new to learn about the October missile crisis
when the recent conference was announced. The meeting however,
had allowed him to learn the reasons why, even before the
crisis occurred, the Soviets and Cubans thought there would
be imminent military aggression by the United States, and
why the missiles were installed in Cuba.
McNamara referred to the fact that mistakes are committed in
specific times of tension noting the recent bombing of an
Afghan wedding some weeks ago. He relayed his sadness for
what happened adding that although he holds the military
leaders in high esteem they do make mistakes.
He commented that conventional weapons can kill thousands
of people, but the same mistakes cannot be repeated two or
three times. "We must learn."
The former defense official pointed out the need for the
Powers to accept
the risks that nuclear weapons mean for humanity must
disappear, although he was not proposing complete weapons
elimination if a responsible policy is adhered to. McNamara
gave the example that some hundreds of nuclear warheads
could destroy the world’s largest nations.