Saturday, March 01, 2008

Nuclear Freeze Advocate Proven Wrong Dies

See New York Times article October 26, 2007 by Dennis Hevesi Randall Forsberg, 64, Nuclear Freeze Advocate, Dies. May she rest in peace.

In response to the USSR’s SS-20 intermediate missiles which could strike several targets anywhere in Western Europe in less than 10 minutes, President Ronald Reagan organized the Western Alliance to respond with putting the Pershing II missiles in a Peace Through Strength response. This action by President Reagan eventually lead to the defeat of the Soviet Union. The New York Times obituary notes: “Some historians and military experts argue that Reagan’s insistence on increasing military spending, combined with economic and political instability in the Soviet Union, led to the downfall of the Soviet bloc and to the eventual, if often tenuous, improvement in relations between the United States and Russia.”

The world according to Randall Forsberg was very different. After the provocative Soviet action, the Nuclear Freeze movement advised the United States to do nothing but rather freeze in place allowing the USSR to have our European allies under the intimidation of the SS-20s. Many people agreed with her:
■ “By 1982, nuclear freeze proposals had been approved by dozens of town, city, county and state legislatures throughout the country, and by referendums in eight states. The effort peaked on June 12, 1982, with a mass march through Manhattan and a gathering of more than 700,000 people in Central Park”.
■ “In 1982, addressing the rally, Dr. Forsberg looked out over the crowd and exulted: ‘We’ve done it! The nuclear freeze campaign has mobilized the biggest peacetime peace movement in United States history. The politicians don’t believe it yet’.”
■ “The movement lost momentum that year when a resolution urging President Ronald Reagan to negotiate a bilateral freeze with the Soviet Union failed by two votes in the House of Representatives.”
■ “In 1983, a year after the rally, Dr. Forsberg received the so-called “genius award” from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. In 1995, President Bill Clinton appointed her to the Director’s Advisory Committee of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.”


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