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World Military and Social Expenditures by Ruth Sivard, 5th edition (1979)
 

Foreword by William C. Foster

In many years of negotiating arms control matters, I found that there were certain times when the signals were favorable and we could be sure of progress. The progress was sometimes in smaller steps than we might have wished, but every step that helped to move us toward the ontrol of nuclear weapons was important.

Among such steps was the Test Ban Treaty of 1963. Though limited, it successfully reduced atmospheric testing and the contamination of the environment by radioactive substances. It is quite possible that the treaty also slowed the development of new missile systems. Another step of great importance was the Treaty on the Non- Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in 1968. I believe we can all agree that the NPT has been a vital force in inhibiting the widespread dissemination of the most dangerous weapons known to mankind.

Now in SALT II one more such opportunity presents itself. Again the scope of achievement may be more modest than one may like, some of the features of the treaty less than perfect. But this is an awesome task that we have begun, and it is of supreme importance that we continue the effort step by step.

Mrs. Sivard’s review of the world situation in 1979 should remind us all how futile and dangerous the continued build-up of nuclear arms has become. As the record shows all too clearly, the world has reached a point of overabundance in weapons while suffering from an undersupply of the necessities of life which can add to mankind’s well-being and security. For the sake of all humanity we can well afford to take the further step toward peace represnted by SALT II.

William C. Foster
Director of the United States Arms Control and Disarmament Agency

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