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Wise or Utopian? National Association of Evangelicals Addresses Nukes

"A nuclear weapons free world in an idealistic sense would be wonderful in the same way that a world without all weapons or all violence would be wonderful. But our fallen world must be addressed realistically and not just idealistically." -- Mark Tooley, President of the Institute on Religion and Democracy

Contact: Jeff Walton, Institute on Religion & Democracy, 202-682-4131, 202-413-5639 cell, jwalton@theird.org

WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ -- The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) has adopted a new stance on nuclear weapons that carefully falls slightly short of renouncing all nuclear weapons. Their statement lists arguments against nuclear weapons without citing arguments for continued U.S. possession.

The NAE's new anti-nuclear weapons stance seems to reflect its ongoing shift to the left on issues ranging from the environment to immigration to enhanced interrogation of terrorists to now nuclear weapons.

Mark Tooley, President of the Institute on Religion and Democracy, responded:

    "A nuclear weapons free world in an idealistic sense would be wonderful in the same way that a world without all weapons or all violence would be wonderful. But our fallen world must be addressed realistically and not just idealistically.

    "The NAE targets nuclear weapons but not the reckless regimes that have them. The Cold War's hair trigger nuclear stand-off ended when the Soviet Union fell. Today's chief nuclear threats are not French or British or even Russian nukes but chiefly rogue regimes such as North Korea and Iran, or possibly Pakistan. Would global abolition of nukes affect such regimes?

    "Even if nukes were successfully banned, the technology would survive and renegade regimes could reassemble nuclear programs. The NAE cites Ronald Reagan's dream of a world without nuclear weapons. But his vision was premised both on a strong America and also on anti-missile defenses that would make nuclear missiles technologically obsolete.

    "Christians, including evangelicals, understanding humanity's fallen nature, should shun utopian dreams and prudentially advocate policies that hopefully contain evil while knowing that no human actions can eliminate evil.

    "During the 1980s the NAE wisely stood apart from other religious groups that embraced the easy but dangerous advocacy of unilateral disarmament. It would be wise for today's evangelicals to continue in that path of pragmatic peacemaking."
 
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