This essay is dedicated to the memory of Bertrand Russell (mathematician, philosopher, peace activist –1872-1970) on his 135-birth anniversary; to the memory of D.D. Kosambi (mathematician, historian, peace activist –1907-1966) on his birth centenary; and in commemoration of the 50-anniversary of the founding of the Pugwash Movement (1957-2007)
Ever since the end of the Second World War in 1945, there have been numerous attempts under the aegis of the United Nations Organisation (UN) to end the arms race and proceed towards disarmament. Egged on by the war-weary peoples of the world who clamoured for peace, the proclaimed aim of the UN became “general and complete disarmament”. However, even sixty-two years later –far from attaining that admirable goal –not only has budgetary allocations for armaments, and concurrently the destructive power of weapons, increased manifold but also there has been no end to the outbreak of wars and the accompanying death, destruction and misery. Of course, there have been fleeting occasions when major breakthroughs in negotiations did take place and progress towards disarmament appeared imminent. To the utter dismay of the proponents of peace, counter moves by the armaments lobby have invariably thwarted all such possibilities.
Since the pressure exerted by the global peace movement was so immense in the late 1950s and early 1960s for concrete action towards disarmament, the then two major ideological adversaries –the U.S. and the USSR –were forced to arrive at a significant agreement –the McCloy-Zorin Accord –on 20 September 1961. For the next two years, the world awaited eagerly for the signing of a comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty as the first step towards general and complete disarmament. The treaty that was finally signed in August 1963 with great euphoria by the U.S., the USSR and the U.K. was only a Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT), which banned nuclear tests in the atmosphere, underwater and in space while permitting underground ones. Although the PTBT may have been signed with good intentions, in order to allay fears of a nuclear conflagration in the background of the Cuban Missile crisis of October 1962, in effect the signing of the PTBT –instead of the much-awaited comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty –constituted a great betrayal of the peace movement.
With the signing of the PTBT, the powerful global peace movement not only almost dissipated away but also the attention of whatever was left of it was focused on the Vietnam War and similar issues related to restoring peace rather than on tackling the question of disarmament. Seizing on the opportunity, the nuclear weapon states (NWS) made a radical departure away from the goal of general and complete disarmament and began to introduce what were termed as “pragmatic steps” or partial arms control measures. Treaties such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Nuclear Weapon Free Zone (NWFZ) treaties, the retrogressed Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the Fissile Material Cut-off Treat (FMCT), etc., –while not hurting the interests of the nuclear weapon powers –gave the false impression that concrete action were being taken by the NWS to stem and reverse the nuclear arms race. The nuclear disarmament movement did resurrect in the late 1970s/early 1980s following the proposal made in 1977 to introduce enhanced radiation weapon (the neutron bomb) into the European theatre and the scare unleashed by utterances in the U.S. ruling circles of the possibility of waging “limited”/”winnable” nuclear war in Europe. However, by placing undue emphasis on benign treaties such as NPT, NWFZ, etc., the NWS have successfully managed to divert attention of peace activists away from the present nuclear danger to the probable nuclear danger in future. Potential nuclear weapon-capable states have since become the primary focus of attention of the “nuclear non-proliferation” campaign; clear and present danger held out by the NWS has been conveniently relegated to the background and has only of late, if at all, become part of the discourse, that too mostly in relation to the teeth-less Article VI of the NPT.
“Non-proliferation” has now become the catchword; the phrase “general and complete disarmament” has disappeared from the vocabulary of the dominant peace movement. (If at all any reference is made to “general and complete disarmament”, it is only in a derogatory sense by being dismissive about it and by alleging that it was “primarily designed to score propaganda points rather than serve as any true basis for negotiations.” ). So drastic has been the adverse impact of the signing of the PTBT in 1963 on the disarmament movement as a whole that since then over two generations of peace activists are hardly aware of the McCloy-Zorin Accord! Nor were the two separate proposals for general and complete disarmament put forward by the USSR and USA, on 15 March and 18 April 1962 respectively, ever an integral part of the discourse of even the dominant peace movements! These shocking facts testify to the level of disinformation that the peace loving people across the world have been subjected to since 1963. This analysis of the history of disarmament negotiations is an attempt to understand the factors behind the failure of the disarmament process till date so that it enables the peace movement to draw appropriate lessons to pursue the same with renewed vigour by avoiding the pitfalls of the past and surmounting the likely hurdles in future.
It may be recalled that the purpose of founding the United Nations Organisation was to prevent aggression and war. The UN Charter was drawn up by the 46 Allied-nations (led by UK, USSR and USA) then at war with the Axis powers (led by Germany, Italy and Japan) and was adopted by them at the San Francisco Conference on 26 June 1945. USA became the first nation to join the UN after the U.S. Senate ratified the decision on 28 July 1945. The U.S. also became the first nation to blatantly violate the basic aim enshrined in the UN Charter, namely “to save succeeding generation from the scourge of war”. Within nine days of joining the UN, the U.S. carried out its atomic bomb attack on Japan, a nation on the verge of surrender. This mindless act was a shattering blow to the high expectations of all war-weary peoples of a peaceful post-war world held out by the formation of the UN. Strange as it may seem, the UN General Assembly till date has never taken the U.S. to task for daring to violate the tenets of the UN Charter and committing that heinous crime. (In comparison, the magnitude of the crime that Saddam Hussein had supposedly committed and for which he was executed at the instance of the U.S. Administration, pales into insignificance.)
Nevertheless, the first resolution of the first session of the UN General Assembly that was passed on 24 January 1946 was entitled “The Establishment of a Commission to Deal with the Problems Raised by the Discovery of Atomic Energy”. The UNGA called upon the commission, named the UN Atomic Energy Commission (UNACE), to make specific proposals for “the elimination from national armaments of atomic weapons and of all other major weapons adaptable to mass destruction”. On 14 June 1946, Barnard Baruch introduced the U.S. Plan before the UNACE purportedly as per the UNGA guidelines. Five days later, on 19 June 1946, Andrei Gromyko introduced the Soviet Plan as a counter to the said U.S. Plan. Commenting on the two plans, Alva Myrdal, Sweden’s Minister for Disarmament (1966-73) and one of the world’s leading peace activists, later wrote:
“The Baruch Plan assigned obligations to the United States that were extremely vague, while the obligations of the Soviet Union were to be quite strict and harsh.Moreover,the United States was to retain its monopoly on atomic secrets and it did not promise to end production of new atomic weapons.Andrei Gromykoimmediately countered the Baruch Plan with a proposal to destroy all nuclear weapons in existence and cease all production and use of atomic weapons categorically. The United States instead immediately demontrated its unwillingness to sacrifice its advantage by conducting its first post-war atomic test over Bikini on 1 July 1946 –seventeen days after Baruch had presented his plan to the Commission and before its relevant subcommittees met.” 
According to McGeorge Bundy, who was Special Assistant for National Security Affairs to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson during 1961-1966 and head of the Ford Foundation during 19661979: “the Soviet proposal calledfor a big separate first stage: prohibition of use, production and possession before there was any agreement on long-term control.”  However, the U.S. not only declined to destroy its stockpile of nuclear weapons but also flatly refused to give an undertaking that it would not use such weapons.
“THE WINNING WEAPON”
Recalling the U.S. reaction, Greg Herken, a U.S. historian –later also curator at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum (Washington, D.C.) –observed as follows:
“Baruch rejected another suggestion that the United States temporarily stop producing bombs as a sign of good faith during the negotiations. The “US should retain its winning weapon as a means of maintaining its security,” he objected, since “if we were to stop making bombs we would be almost defenseless and would certainly have only a modicum of military power with which to stand up to the USSR.” 
Gregg Herken had already noted that: “the Baruch plan did not differ in substance from an ultimatum the United States might have given Russia [USSR] to forswear nuclear weapons or be destroyed.” The Baruch Plan, in short, epitomized not only U.S. Administration’s pernicious strategy for monopolizing the possession of nuclear weapons but also its insatiable craving for using them again. The resumption of nuclear weapon tests by the U.S. on 01 July 1946, just seventeen days after the submission of the Baruch Plan, spoke volumes about USA’s real intentions. The enactment of the Atomic Energy Act by the U.S. Congress on 01 August 1946 did not leave room for any further doubts. The Act underlined not only “The significance of the atomic bomb for military purposes” but also about the necessity of “A program for Government control of production, ownership, and use of fissionable material to assure the common defense and security and to insure the broadest possible exploitation of the fields.” Nevertheless, discussions on the pros and cons of the Baruch and Gromyko Plans continued in the UNAEC well until July 1949, when talks completely broke down.
Reports, which became subsequently available, show that while the Baruch and Gromyko Plans were being debated in the UNAEC: “Soviet targets were coded according to type –a city, a factory or an airfield and were then listed in the annually prepared Emergency War Plan. War Plan Broiler in 1947 called for 34 bombs to be dropped on 24 cities; war plan Trojan, one year later targeted 70 cities with 133 bombs, and war plan Offtackle, in 1949, called for 220 bombs on 104 cities with 72 weapons in reserve.” 
While negotiations were underway for amicably settling the issue of control and peaceful uses of nuclear energy, the U.S. had no inhibitions about secretly preparing to wage nuclear war on the USSR, which would have destroyed an entire nation and killed several million people! Publicly, the U.S. and its allies also set up the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) on 04 April 1949 as an aggressive military alliance against the USSR. The U.S. was all the while confident that it would retain monopoly of nuclear weapons at least for the next several years if not decades. It seems incredible that most other UN members then did not come forward to support USSR’s proposal for a convention to prohibit the use, production and stockpiling of nuclear weapons and to declare the use of such horrendous weapons as a crime against humanity as the first and most important step that the UNAEC had to take. The intransigent attitude of the U.S. and its allies and the fear of an impending nuclear attack on it forced the USSR to neutralize the U.S. nuclear advantage by making its own nuclear weapon, which was first tested on 29 August 1949 and which became public knowledge on 23 September 1949.
Peeved at the manner in which the USSR had neutralized the U.S. nuclear hegemony, the U.S. leadership was intent on regaining the advantage. On 31 January 1950, President Truman issued the order for building “super bombs”, which were to be thousands of times more powerful than atomic bombs. (However, the U.S. leadership was so appalled by the fact that Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, popularly known as the father of the U.S. atom bomb and the then Chairperson of the General Advisory Committee of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, had dared to express his opposition to the proposal. He was subsequently suspended from his post in 1953 reportedly for harbouring “communist” sympathies! His security clearance was revoked in 1954 and was denied free access to the very atomic research laboratories he had built up. ) Thus, the onus of launching a full-scale nuclear arms race rests first and foremost with the U.S. leadership. It was left to organisations like the World Committee of Partisans for Peace (consisting of scientists, writers, artists and other intellectuals and later renamed World Peace Council), led by stalwarts such as Frederic Juliot Curie, J.D.Bernal, Pablo Picasso, Pablo Neruda and others, to launch the “Stockholm Appeal” in March 1950 demanding an absolute ban on nuclear weapons. While the “Stockholm Appeal” evoked enthusiastic support from reportedly about 500 million peace loving people across the world, that was seemingly not sufficient enough to curtail the nuclear arms race that had already been set in motion.
In the meantime, on 13 February 1947, the UN Security Council had also set up a Commission for Conventional Armaments in order to regulate ‘conventional’ armaments and armed forces under an international system of control and inspection. This Commission’s debates also ended in deadlock on 27 April 1950 on the question of membership of the Republic of China [Taiwan] on the Commission, which USSR had opposed. Since neither the UNAEC nor the Commission for Conventional Armaments had made any progress in tackling their respective tasks, the UN Security Council consolidated them into a single 11-member Disarmament Commission in January 1952 with the renewed hope that the issue of disarmament would receive the urgent attention it deserved. The Disarmament Commission “was to prepare proposals for the regulation, limitation, and balanced reduction of all armed forces and all armaments, nuclear and conventional alike, and it was to propose an effective system of international control of atomic energy to ensure that atomic energy would be used only for peaceful purposes.”  However, the debates in the Disarmament Commission ended abruptly in October 1952. Soon afterwards, the U.S. carried out its first hydrogen bomb test on 01 November 1952. The USSR followed suit on 12 August 1953. Britain conducted its first atomic test on 03 October 1953. Meanwhile, another aggressive military alliance called ANZUS (Australia, New Zealand, USA) Treaty had also been set up in the South Pacific on 01 September 1951.
The ascendancy of General Dwight Eisenhower, who was the Commander of the Allied Forces in Western Europe during the Second World War as the 34th President of the United States, appeared to bring about a refreshing change. It is interesting to note that soon after he had stepped into office, in a speech before the American Society of Newspaper Editors on 16 April 1953, President Eisenhower had said:
(a) “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.”
(b) “This Government is ready to ask its people to join with all nations in devoting a substantial percentage of the savings achieved by disarmament to a fund for world aid and reconstruction.”
(c) “The monuments to this new kind of war would be these: roads and schools, hospitals and homes, food and health. We are ready, in short, to dedicate our strength to serving the needs, rather than the fears, of the world.” 
However, subsequent developments show that most of his cabinet colleagues did not share Eisenhower’s optimism. Instead of slamming the brakes on the arms race, the U.S. reacted to USSR’s hydrogen bomb test by introducing the “doctrine of massive retaliation”. According to McGeorge Bundy: “The man who tried to put it together in public was [John Foster] Dulles. On January 12, 1954, the secretary of stateannounced the decision of NSC 162/2 in a form which became known inaccurately but indelibly as the doctrine of massive retaliation”. Quoting Dulles, Bundy further added: “we needed to be ready to fight in the Arctic and in the Tropics; in Asia, the Near East, and in Europe; by sea, by land, and by air; with old weapons and with new weapons.”  Dulles did not leave any room for doubts as to the dangerous direction in which the U.S. had decided to tread despite President Eisenhower’s pronouncements to the contrary.
Dulles and his camp followers soon raised an alarm about the non-existent “Bomber Gap”. According to Michael R. Beschloss, an Adjunct Historian at the Smithsonian Institution (Washington, DC):
“In the spring of 1956, [General Nathan] Twining [Air Force Vice Chief of Staff], [General Curtis] LeMay [Commander of the Strategic Air Command (SAC)], and other Air Force titans testified before Congress that Russia [USSR] “has almost closed the air power gap. In airplane after airplane, they are approaching us in quality and surpassing us in quantity.”
Beschloss then went on to add:
“General Twinning, LeMay and their cohorts warned Congressthat Russia’s long-range bomber fleet might be twice the size of SAC’s by 1959”. 
The truth was otherwise, as the staff of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has shown. In a note titled “Truth v. Reality”, they have exposed the baseless allegations about the “Bomber Gap” with the following information:
“The [U.S.] intelligence community predicted in 1956 that by mid-1959 the Soviet Union would have 400 Bison and 300 Bear bombers “in operational use.” By 1958 subsequent assessments found the Soviet Union had built only about 85 heavy bombers. Meanwhile, the U.S. heavy bomber force had grown to 1,769, for a ratio of 21 to 1 in favor of the United States.” 
The net result was that profits of the U.S. armament industries had soared as never before at the expense of the social benefits that may have gone to the U.S. citizens, as President Eisenhower had pointed out on 16 April 1953! [See footnote: 11]
NEHRU’S FUTILE APPEAL
An integral part of the nuclear arms race was the periodic testing of nuclear weapons of various intensities in the atmosphere, underwater and underground. It did not take long before the world began to realize the high risks involved in spewing radioactive particles from the ongoing nuclear tests especially into the atmosphere and underwater. The growing menace of radioactive fallout from nuclear tests was exemplified by the 15-megaton atmospheric test conducted by the U.S. on 01 March 1954 over Bikini Atoll in the Pacific Ocean. The widespread revulsion that the Bikini (“Bravo”) Test had evoked also contributed to revitalizing the peace movement. Following the havoc caused by the radioactive fallout from the Bikini Test, it was Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who was the first statesman to give a clarion call on 02 April 1954 before the Indian Parliament for immediate suspension of all nuclear weapon tests. Nehru had made the following proposals:
“(1) Some sort of, what may be called, “Standstill Agreement” in respect, at least, of these actual explosions, even if arrangements about the discontinuance of production and stockpiling, must await more substantial agreements amongst those principally concerned.
“(2) Full publicity by those principally concerned in the production of these weapons and by the United Nations, of the extent of the destructive power and the known effects of these weapons and also adequate indication of the extent of the unknown but probable effects. Informed world public opinion is in our view the most effective factor in bringing about the results we desire.
“(3) Immediate (and continuing) private meetings of the sub-committees of the Disarmament Commission to consider the “Standstill” proposal, which I have just mentioned, pending decisions on prohibitions and controls etc., to which the Disarmament Commission is asked by the General Assembly to address itself.
“(4) Active steps by States and peoples of the world, who though not concerned with the production of these weapons, are very much concerned by the possible use of them, also at present, by these experiments and their effects. They would, I venture to hope, express their concern and add their voices and influences, in as effective a manner as possible to arrest the progress of this destructive potential which menaces all alike.” 
The USSR responded to Nehru’s call by moving a draft resolution in the UNGA for convening an international convention on the reduction of armaments and the prohibition of atomic, hydrogen and other weapons of mass destruction (a resolution that was subsequently adopted by the UNGA as Resolution No.808 (IX) on 04 November 1954 ). However, the response of the Western states, from Canada’s point of view, was as follows:
“A few days later [after Nehru’s statement] the Government of India requested that these suggestions be placed before the Disarmament Commission and its Sub-Committee. The Nehru proposals, however, have not yet been considered in the Sub-Committee or the Disarmament Commission nor was there any discussion of these proposals in the General Assembly at the 9th Session. On November 19, 1954, the Indian Government again asked that these proposals be taken into consideration by the Disarmament Commission”
“From a military point of view continuance of tests would provide the best means of following the Soviet development of nuclear weapons. Canada’s close association with the United States and the United Kingdom in the basic Western defence programme, which relies on the use of nuclear weapons, makes it difficult for us to support the suggestion of a ban on test explosions if it is considered that these tests are essential to the proper development of the defence programme. The United States recently confirmed its opposition to the proposed ban on tests.”
“The United States Atomic Energy Commission Report of February 15, 1955, implicitly rejects the suggestion of a ban on nuclear test explosions. last September  the United States expressed its firm opposition to the Nehru proposal as such which calls for “full publicity”.” 
In, what was then a secret document, USA, UK and Canada had admitted that they had no hesitation in rejecting Nehru’s proposals because “Western defence programme, which relies on the use of nuclear weapons” made it difficult for them “to support the suggestion of a ban on test explosions” Instead, in a bid to spread its global tentacles, the U.S. decided to set up another military alliance called the South East Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO) on 08 September 1954. The members of the alliance were Australia, France, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand, UK and USA. Significantly, Burma (now Myanmar), Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), India and Indonesia firmly rejected the offer to join the alliance. The U.S. went on to set up yet another military alliance called the Central Treaty Organization (CENTO) on 24 February 1955 with Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, and the UK. [USA de facto joined CENTO after the withdrawal of Iraq in 1958. Pakistan withdrew from both the alliance in 1973. SEATO was formally wound up in 1977 and CENTO too became defunct after the withdrawal of Iran in 1979.]
While USA, UK and Canada had scant respect for Nehru’s test ban and other proposals, Nehru had persisted with his efforts at building peace. Talks between Nehru and the Chinese Premier Chou En-Lai were held in New Delhi and it ended in the signing of a joint statement on 28 June 1954 on the principles on which relations between India and China were to be based. These principles, which became subsequently known as the Five Principles of Peaceful Co-Existence or ‘Panch Sheel’, were: (1) mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty; (2) non-aggression; (3) non-interference in each other’s internal affairs; (4) equality and mutual benefit; and (5) peaceful coexistence. The Panch Sheel principles were also the basis of positive neutrality, for the promotion of which the first Asian-African conference was organised at Bandung, Indonesia, from 18 to 24 April 1955.
Positive neutrality consisted in non-participation in military blocs combined with active moves against the conclusion of imperialist military alliances, and in championing general and complete disarmament and abolition of colonialism. Also mediation in the settlement of international disputes for the purpose of easing international tensions; anti-colonialism manifesting itself in active support of all peoples fighting for independence and, once that has been gained, for complete elimination of the colonial aftermath; anti-racialism expressed in the demand for complete equality of races and the banning of discrimination of any people. While the Bandung Conference appeared to provide an opportunity to build solidarity of Asian and African countries, in reality that did not happen due to the acute struggle that took place there between the real non-aligned countries and those countries that were still under the tutelage and stranglehold of the imperialist powers.
Yet, an important section of the Final Communiqué of the Bandung Conference was on “Promotion of World Peace and Co-operation” and it stated as follows:
(a) “The Conference considered that disarmament and the prohibition of the production, experimentation and use of nuclear and thermo-nuclear weapons of war imperative to save [hu]mankind and civilization from the fear and prospect of wholesale destruction. It considered that the nations of Asia and Africa assembled here have a duty towards humanity and civilization to proclaim their support for disarmament and for the prohibition of these weapons and to appeal to nations principally concerned and to world opinion, to bring about such disarmament and prohibition.”
(b) “The Conference declared universal disarmament is an absolute necessity for the preservation of peace and requested the United Nations to continue its efforts and appealed to all concerned speedily to bring about the regulation, limitation, control and reduction of all armed forces and armaments, including the prohibition of the production, experimentation and use of all weapons of mass destruction, and to establish effective international control to this end.” 
The failure of the Bandung Conference to launch a permanent Asian-African nations organisation to carry forward its objectives was a sign that it was the writ of the imperialist powers that ultimately prevailed, although Nehru, Sukarno, Nasser, Nkrumah and others did make valiant attempts later to revive it in the form of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in 1961.
SABOTAGE OF THE 1955 SUMMIT
Meanwhile, in 1953, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) had set up a sub-committee of the Disarmament Commission consisting of representatives of the Powers principally involved, namely Canada, France, the USSR, the UK, and the U.S., which held a number of meetings in the following two years. During meetings of the Sub-Committee of the Disarmament Commission at London from 25 February –18 May 1955, the USSR, on 10 May 1955, proposed a comprehensive plan for reduction of conventional forces and armaments, discontinuance of nuclear weapons tests and elimination of nuclear weapons. According to the summary report of the Canadian delegation at the talks:
“The discussions of the Disarmament Sub-Committee in London may have brought about a substantial narrowing of the gap between the Western and Soviet positions.” 
As a result of the narrowing of the gap between the Western and Soviet positions, at the summit meeting of the leaders of USA, USSR, UK and France, which was held during 18-23 July 1955 at Geneva, there was a real possibility that an agreement would be reached on drawing up a comprehensive disarmament plan. However, a right-wing clique within the U.S. Administration –led by John Foster Dulles (the then U.S. Secretary of State) and Allen Dulles (the then Director of the CIA) –did everything they could to sabotage the possibility of arriving at any such agreement. In the words of McGeorge Bundy: “In essence what [John Foster] Dulles feared about proposals for disarmament in 1955 was simply that they might lead to agreement.he did not fear the nuclear arms race, because he had confidence the Russians could not keep up. What he feared much more was an agreement [on disarmament]” Bundy’s assessment candidly sums-up the attitude of the right-wing lobby in the U.S. on the issue of disarmament.
The telegram sent by the Canadian High Commissioner in the UK to Canada’s Secretary of State for External Affairs on 27 July 1955, provides further proof of the U.S. Administration’s attitude towards disarmament. It says:
The United States position on disarmament was now even more cautious than it had been when the Sub Committee recessed in May . There was absolutely no hope of obtaining United States support for the Anglo-French 75 proposal or the proposal on levels of forces. The United States would probably not go so far as to write itself out of the Four Power plan of March 8 , but it is in fact no longer interested in pushing it. [Canadian High Commissioner to the UK] Nutting’s firm conviction, which he passed on for our secret ear, is that present United States policy is opposed to any attempt to secure nuclear disarmament.” (Emphasis added) 
The 1955 Geneva summit meeting naturally failed to live up to its expectations.
[A little known fact is that the wily brothers –John and Allen Dulles –were also instrumental in ousting Harold Stassen, chief U.S. disarmament negotiator, midway from the sub-committee meeting of the Disarmament Commission, which was being held in London from 18 March to 06 September 1957. John Dulles himself went on to occupy Stassen’s place at the talks. Stassen’s misdemeanor was that he was seriously pursuing the task that was assigned to him. However, his detractors quickly seized upon a procedural lapse on his part to undermine his position and to malign him. According to the Minnesota Historical Society: “Stassen’s views regarding disarmament and negotiations with the Russians were strongly opposed by other members of Eisenhower’s cabinet, particularly Secretary of State John Foster Dulles.” Stassen, who was nicknamed “Secretary of Peace”, had been appointed as Special Assistant to the President for Disarmament in March 1955. After the London meeting ended in stalemate, he resigned from his post on 18 February 1958 to the delight of the anti-disarmament lobby.]
Meanwhile, on 09 May 1955, West Germany was inducted into NATO. It was a disturbing move since for the first time the NATO bloc had a common border with an ally of the USSR, East Germany. USSR, which had resisted the formation of any military alliance till then (despite the existence of four U.S.-led military alliances –NATO, ANZUS, SEATO & CENTO) was left with no option but to counter the NATO decision by signing the Warsaw Pact on 14 May 1955 to defend itself and its allies against any preemptive attack. In the background of the increasing tension between USA and USSR, Bertrand Russell and Albert Einstein prepared a Manifesto with a view to warn the peoples of the world about the disastrous effects of a nuclear war and about the urgency of preventing any such misadventure. The Manifesto, which was signed by nine other scientists, was released in London on 09 July 1955. 
The Manifesto, which had a profound influence on the peace movement, helped peace groups to arouse peoples’ consciousness and organize mass movements for abolition of nuclear weapons across the world. The radiation effects of the 1954 “Bravo” test had already caused outrage in Japan. These factors led to the holding of the first World Conference against A & H Bombs in August 1955 in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, followed by the founding of the Japan Council Against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs (GENSUIKYO) in September 1955. Subsequently, India, which vociferously supported nuclear disarmament, placed yet another proposal on 12 July 1956 before the UN Disarmament Commission for ‘Cessation of All Explosions of Nuclear and Other Weapons of Mass Destruction’. 
At the request of Bertrand Russell, Nehru had also agreed to host a conference on science and world affairs in New Delhi in December 1956. However, due to India’s preoccupation with the Suez Crisis (October 1956 – March 1957), the venue of the conference to promote disarmament and peace had to be shifted to Pugwash in Canada and was held there in July 1957. Consequently, that conference gave impetus to the Pugwash Movement or, what is now known as, the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs. That same year, the National Committee for A Sane Nuclear Policy (SANE) was established in the U.S. Soon after Britain had carried out its first hydrogen bomb test on 08 November 1957, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) came into existence in Britain. The primary focus of the peace movement then was to end nuclear weapon tests.
The launching of the communication satellite “Sputnik” by the USSR on 04 October 1957, which symbolized the potential of peaceful uses of advanced science & technology, had also proved that the USSR had overtaken the U.S. in this area. This development, which was described by some journalists as the “shock of the century” , had a sobering impact on the aggressive stance of the U.S. The peace dividend from the successful “Sputnik” launch was almost immediate. Although the U.S. rejected yet another proposal for a moratorium on nuclear weapon testing, which the USSR had renewed in March 1958, at the end of April 1958, Eisenhower proposed an international conference of experts to study the problem of verification. According to the Federation of American Scientists:
“President Eisenhower propose[d] a Conference of Experts to examine the issues involved in verifying a nuclear test ban. The conference convene[d] on July 1  in Geneva with scientists from the US, Britain, USSR, France, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Romania, and Poland. On August 21, the conference release[d] a report that a comprehensive test ban (CTB) can be verified through a network of 160 monitoring stations and that nuclear tests in space out to 50 kilometers can be verified, but that current technology cannot detect tests in deep space.” 
Subsequently, the U.S., the UK, and the USSR agreed to a moratorium on nuclear weapon tests from 31 October 1958 onwards and began negotiations for a test ban treaty. The ongoing powerful worldwide campaign against nuclear weapon testing was an equally important factor that led to these developments. The moratorium on testing paved the way for establishment in 1959 of the Ten Nation Committee on Disarmament (TNCD), which formally remained outside the UN system. It comprised of five members each from the two military blocs –NATO and the Warsaw Pact –and was mandated to formulate measures leading to general and complete disarmament.
The developments that took place in the UN General Assembly during the period when the moratorium was being adhered to were just as significant. In 1957, the UNGA had enlarged the Disarmament Commission from 11 to 25 nations; and by 1958, it was further expanded to include all members of the UN. The significant development that took place in 1959 was that two major plans for general and complete disarmament was submitted before the UNGA: one by the UK on 17 September 1959 and the other by the USSR on 18 September 1959. It was said that both the plans were not too dissimilar. Both plans not only sought to abolish the ability of all states to wage war but also sought to reduce all military forces and armaments to the requirement of internal security. In the debate that followed in the Assembly’s Political and Security Committee, many proposals and suggestions were discussed virtually without acrimony or mutual recrimination.
SABOTAGE OF THE 1960 SUMMIT
Finally, on 20 November 1959, the UN General Assembly unanimously adopted Resolution No.1378 (XIV) without a formal vote, the first resolution ever to be sponsored by all member nations. The resolution on disarmament stated that the UN was “striving to put an end completely and forever to the armaments race,” and that “the question of general and complete disarmament is the most important one facing the world today.”  The resolution was transmitted to the Disarmament Commission and to the 10-Nation Disarmament Committee for thorough considerations. From the positive discussions that took place in the Disarmament Committee, a major initiative on disarmament was expected at the forthcoming Paris summit. According to McGeorge Bundy:
“By the spring of 1960, Eisenhower and Khrushchev had made a record of proposals and counterproposals, joint technical inquiry, and serious argument, that was entirely without precedent in nuclear arms control negotiations. They had drafted a treaty banning tests at all levels except that of small underground tests –for those there would be an uninspected moratorium. Only two issues remained: how much inspection would be allowed, and how long the moratorium would last. The Americans were looking forward with hope to a summit meeting in Paris as the place where Eisenhower and Khrushchev might resolve these two remaining issues.”
However, the infamous U-2 incident sabotaged the Paris Summit meeting between leaders of France, the UK, the U.S. and the USSR, which was scheduled to take place from 18 May 1960 onwards, and relations between the U.S. and the USSR seriously deteriorated. As a result, the work of the 10-Nation Disarmament Committee was disrupted and remained so for nearly a year.
The U-2 incident appears to have been stage-managed. On 01 May 1960, just two weeks ahead of the proposed Paris Summit, a U.S. airplane (code-named U-2) went on a photoreconnaissance mission over the USSR and was shot down by a Soviet missile. There have been deep suspicions that the Director of the CIA, Allen Dulles (without the company of his brother, John Foster Dulles, who was now dead) and his ilk had engineered the incident without the knowledge of President Eisenhower to disrupt the Paris Summit, where a significant breakthrough in the nuclear test ban negotiations was expected. (McGeorge Bundy has pointed out this in his observations. See footnote 28) It may also have been intended to frustrate the proposed visit of President Eisenhower soon after the Paris Summit to the USSR, where he was expected to be given a tremendous welcome. As commander of the Allied Forces in Western Europe during the Second World War, General Eisenhower had enjoyed good rapport with the military leadership of the USSR –many of whom were still around.
The visit of President Eisenhower to the USSR would have not only signaled the process of détente between the two nations but also would have been a crowning achievement for President Eisenhower, who was nearing the end of his second term as president. As it turned out, because of the U-2 spying episode, Soviet Premier Khrushchev had little option but to seek an apology from Eisenhower. However, Eisenhower could not disown responsibility for the ugly incident without losing face. So all that Eisenhower managed to offer was an undertaking that such incidents would not take place in future. Khrushchev refused to accept anything short of an apology and the summit meeting fell through. The spying incident would have anyway marred the proceedings at the summit meeting even if it had been held. It was also unlikely that Eisenhower would have visited the USSR, when a U.S. spy –the U-2 pilot –was being held as a prisoner there. Anyway, for the opponents of disarmament, the collapse of the Paris Summit of 1960 turned out to be a major accomplishment.
MYTH OF “MISSILE GAP”
U.S. President, John F. Kennedy, who had assumed office in January 1961, was elected to his post largely due to his ability to exploit fears of an alleged Soviet strategic superiority, which was dubbed as the “Missile-Gap.” The “Missile-Gap” was yet another fraud that was vociferously perpetrated by the right-wing forces in the U.S. Administration to play upon the sentiments of the U.S. citizens in order to elicit their support for increased military spending, a demand that was being canvassed by interested parties. According to McGeorge Bundy:
“Between 1957 and 1961, the nuclear weapon policy of the United States, and still more the state of public understanding on this subject, was affected by a phantom –the missile gap. The idea that the United States was faced by the prospect of a significant and possibly even a decisive Soviet advantage in long-range ballistic missiles persisted in one quarter or another until late in 1961. Drawing their numbers from different intelligence estimators at different times, the president’s [President Eisenhower’s] critics predicted a Soviet advantage of hundreds, or of thousands, in a year or two or three. Senator Stuart Symington was perhaps the most extreme, offering a flat prediction in early 1959 that “in three years the Russians will prove to us that they have 3,000 ICBMs.” 
President Eisenhower himself exposed the myth in his State of the Nation Message to the U.S. Congress on 12 January 1961 by pointing out that: “The ‘bomber gap’ of several years ago was always a fiction, and the ‘missile gap’ shows every sign of being the same.” The truth of the matter, as the staff of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has again shown in their note titled “Truth v. Reality” was that:
“The [U.S.] intelligence community predicted in 1957 that by 1961 the Soviet Union would have 500 operational intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). In mid-1960, Corona photoreconnaissance demonstrated that the Soviet Union had four ICBMs in place; in 1962 it had 36. By 1963, the United States had 500 operational ICBMs, thanks to the efforts of John F. Kennedy, who used the threat of a “missile gap” to defeat Richard M. Nixon in the presidential election of 1960.”
REVERSAL OF SOVIET POLICY
Since the myth of the “missile gap” was perpetrated by the Kennedy administration to justify a massive military build-up, the USSR had real cause for concern leading to a panic reaction from its side, which resulted in its decision to break the existing moratorium on nuclear weapon testing and to increase its stockpile of nuclear weapons. At the same time, it is inexplicable as to why the Soviet leadership chose to ignore the apprehensions expressed by President Eisenhower, in his famous Farewell Address to the U.S. citizens on 17 January 1961, just three days before he laid down office. President Eisenhower had warned:
(a) “This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence-economic, political, even spiritual-is felt in every city, every state house, every office of the Federal government.”
(b) “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.”
(c) “We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted”
(d) “Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose difference, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose. Because this need is so sharp and apparent I confess that I lay down my official responsibilities in this field with a definite sense of disappointment.” 
Eisenhower’s grave apprehensions, which no other U.S. president has ever admitted to, turned out to be prophetic. The U.S. society has since been largely under the stranglehold of the military-industrial-complex. Instead of recognizing the significance of Eisenhower’s observations and redoubling the USSR’s persistent efforts to achieve general and complete disarmament, the Soviet leadership recklessly reversed their earlier policy and opted to compete with the U.S. military-industrial-complex in the mistaken belief that they can keep pace with them or even beat the U.S. at their own game.
To the delight of the Soviet leadership, Yuri Gagarin’s path-breaking space voyage on Vostok-I on 12 April 1961 turned out to be yet another milestone for Soviet science. The envious U.S. leadership’s response to Gagarin’s historic voyage was to launch a pathetic CIA-sponsored aerial bombing of Cuba on 14 April 1961 and destroying almost all of Cuba’s aircrafts. This was followed by an amphibious counter-revolutionary attack on 17 April 1961 with a squad of 1500 Cuban exiles, which was crushed by the Cuban revolutionary forces in no time. (The then CIA Director, Allen Dulles, who had contrived the plot along with Vice President Richard Nixon, was forced to resign in September 1961 following the ignoble fiasco.)
So overwhelmed were the Soviet leadership with the recent successes of the socialist system that they apparently lost their sense of direction. Instead of exploiting its successes in the field of scientific development for furthering the cause of peace, the USSR, which was until then in the forefront of the disarmament movement, suddenly seems to have been overtaken by an illusion that it was in a position to establish military superiority over the U.S. There is no other plausible explanation as to why the USSR took the deplorable decision to break the existing moratorium on nuclear weapon testing (which was being formally observed by the U.S., the USSR and Britain from 31 October 1958 onwards) by carrying out a series of atmospheric nuclear tests beginning 01 September 1961. (Recent information suggests that the U.S., in fact, had been conducting sub-critical nuclear weapon tests during this period of the moratorium. It is also strange as to why the USSR chose to break the moratorium on 01 September 1961, which happened to the opening day of the well-publicized First Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement, a global movement that was launched by the third-world nations –one of the prime objectives of which was to oppose war and support global disarmament.
Not only did the USSR break the moratorium, much to the relief of the U.S. Administration which itself was under tremendous pressure for doing so, but the USSR also went on, with much fanfare, to conduct on 31 September 1961 a mind-boggling atmospheric test of a 50-megaton hydrogen bomb nicknamed “Tsar Bomba” as though to poke fun at humanity. (In comparison, the biggest nuclear weapon test ever conducted by the U.S. –the “Bravo” test –had an explosive power of 15-megaton TNT.) The shocking conduct of the Soviet leadership was highly appalling. This was despite the fact that there was opposition within the scientific community in the USSR against breaking the existing moratorium on nuclear tests. Dr.Andrei Sakharov, known as the father of the Soviet hydrogen bomb, had expressed his strong opposition to the resumption of nuclear tests, especially atmospheric ones. Sakharov was completely dejected after the Soviet leadership chose to dismiss his views summarily. It did not take long before the highly decorated Soviet scientist fell foul with the Soviet establishment.
The decision of the Soviet leadership to break the moratorium was all the more inexplicable since talks between the U.S. and the USSR had already restarted on 31 March 1961 for working out a framework of Agreed Principles for General and Complete Disarmament. The framework, known as the McCloy-Zorin Accord –named after its authors John I. McCloy of the U.S. and Valerian A. Zorin of the USSR –was submitted before the UN General Assembly on 20 September 1961.  In an apparent reversal of roles, the United States, for the first time ever, now took the initiative in championing the cause of general and complete disarmament. In an address to the UN General Assembly on 25 September 1961, President Kennedy presented the “United States Program for General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World”. Kennedy’s presentation was subsequently published by the U.S. Department of State under the title “Freedom From War”. The McCloy-Zorin Accord, which is considered a high point in disarmament efforts during the Cold War, set forth eight principles. The preamble of the Accord states that: “The United States and the USSR have agreed to recommend the following principles as the basis for future multilateral negotiations on disarmament and to call upon other States to cooperate in reaching early agreement on general and complete disarmament in a peaceful world in accordance with these principles.” 
On 20 December 1961, through Resolution No.1722 (XVI) , the UNGA unanimously adopted the McCloy-Zorin principles, which was to serve as the basic terms of reference for all subsequent discussions on general and complete disarmament. On 20 December 1961, the UNGA had also decided to expand the 10-Nation Disarmament Committee, which was beset with irresolvable differences a year earlier, by including eight non-aligned nations (including India) with a view to bridging the gap between the NATO and Warsaw Pact factions of the Committee. The research note titled “United Nations – General and Complete Disarmament”, which was prepared for the Parliament Library of the Parliament of Australia, gives an overview of the debate on general and complete disarmament during that crucial period. It is as follows:
(a) “The objective of general and complete disarmament was to create a world where lasting peace and security were assured. This aim has been implicit in the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations since its inception in 1945.’General and Complete Disarmament’ was first included on the agenda of UNGA 14  at the request of the Soviet Union. Premier Khrushchev addressed the assembly on 18 September 1959 and proposed a new disarmament program in three stages aimed at eliminating all armed forces and armaments within a four year period. The program was revised and submitted to the Ten-Nation Disarmament Committee (TNDC) in Geneva in March of 1960. The TNDC was created by the Foreign Ministers of France, the Soviet Union, UK and USA as a body outside of the United Nations but linked to it. Its task was to negotiate General and Complete Disarmament. For reasons of parity, the TNDC was made up of five Eastern Bloc countries (Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Romania and the Soviet Union), and five Western Bloc countries (Canada, France, Italy, UK and the USA). The TNDC met from 15 March 1960 to 27 June 1960. During this time it tried, unsuccessfully, to attain consensus on the many, complex issues facing both sides on their way to general disarmament. TNDC’s failure to reach agreement can be understood in the context of the strained relations between East and West at the time.
(b) “A joint statement by the United States of America and the Soviet Union on the agreed principles for disarmament was issued on 20 September, 1961. Also referred to as the Zorin-McCloy agreement, it stated that the goal of negotiation was to assure that war would not be used as a way of settling international disputes. The statement recommended that a program for disarmament applying to all countries should comprise the following principles as a basis for new negotiations:
* that disarmament is general and complete and war is no longer an instrument for settling international problems;
* that such disarmament is accompanied by the establishment of reliable procedures for the peaceful settlement of disputes and effective arrangements for the maintenance of peace in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations;
* that States have at their disposal only such non-nuclear armaments, forces, facilities and establishments as are agreed to be necessary to maintain internal order and protect the personal security of citizens;
* that States shall support and provide agreed manpower for a United Nations peace force;
* the disbanding of armed forces;
* the dismantling of military establishments including bases;
* the cessation of arms production;
* the liquidation of armaments, or their conversion for peaceful purposes;
* the elimination of all stockpiles of nuclear, chemical, bacteriological and other weapons of mass destruction as well as their means of delivery;
* the abolition of military institutions;
* the cessation of military training and the discontinuance of military expenditures;
* that the disarmament program should be implemented in stages within specified time limits until completion; and
* that no State or group of States gain military advantage over another.”
(c) “The statement also called for the creation of an international disarmament organisation within the framework of the United Nations. Its inspectors would have unrestricted access to all places, as necessary for verification of disarmament measures.”
(d) “As a result of the Zorin-McCloy statement, the following two proposals were submitted to the Eighteen-Nation Disarmament Committee (ENDC) in 1962. The ENDC was established in the 16th General Assembly by Resolution 1722 on 20 December 1961. The two proposals were the ‘Draft treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict international control’ submitted by the Soviet Union on 15 March 1962, and the ‘Outline of basic provisions of a treaty on general and complete disarmament in a peaceful world’ submitted by the United States of America on 18 April 1962. The proposals and their revisions were discussed over the following years, but no final agreement could be reached. The areas causing the most difficulty concerned the stages of implementation, the nuclear issue and the verification of disarmament measures. As the negotiation process continued over the years, it became apparent that general and complete disarmament was not going to be achieved through a single, comprehensive international instrument. Instead, arms control and arms limitation came to be seen as more viable and achievable, and GCD began to be regarded as a goal to work towards, with the hope that with each success, international mutual confidence and trust would grow.”
(e) “For most of the 1950’s and the early 1960’s, the approach adopted to GCD was for an all-encompassing, coordinated and rigidly phased program of disarmament. By the mid 1960’s, the focus had shifted to achieving specific short-term objectives, which could be agreed relatively easily and incorporated into legal instruments. These include the Partial Test Ban Treaty (1963), the Treaty on Nuclear Non Proliferation (1968), and most recently the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (1996).” 
In short, where there was no will, there was no way of implementing the McCloy-Zorin principles!
The submission made by the United States before the ENCD was a more precise elaboration of the proposals that President Kennedy had placed before the UN General Assembly on 25 September 1961. The McCloy-Zorin Accord and the two proposals put forward by USSR and USA in 1962 had remained the only sensible proposals on general and complete disarmament until Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi tabled India’s ‘Action Plan for a Nuclear Weapon Free and Non-Violent World Order’ at the Third Special Session of the UN General Assembly on disarmament in 1988. The radical shift from the objective of general and complete disarmament to, what were being termed as, the more “pragmatic steps” began with the signing of the PTBT in 1963. As noted in the above para, from the viewpoint of the so-called pragmatists, the PTBT, the NPT and the CTBT were “specific short-term objectives, which could be agreed relatively easily and incorporated into legal instruments”! Experience has proved that these “short-term objectives”, instead of contributing to, have only hindered the process of general and complete disarmament. Equally crucial is the fact that these “short-term objectives”, including the concept of NWFZs or regional arms control measures, never in any way infringed on the interests of the nuclear weapon powers and were mostly intended to give the false impression to the world at large that serious attempts were being made to pursue the goal of disarmament and peace. These aspects will be examined closely in the second part of this essay.
N.D. Jayaprakash works with the Delhi Science Forum/Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace. He can be reached: email@example.com
 Daryl Kimball and Wade Boese, “Limited Test Ban Treaty Turns 40“, Arms Control Today, October 2003.
 Alva Myrdal, Game of Disarmament, Pantheon Books, New York, 1976, pp.74-78
 McGeorge Bundy, Danger and Survival –Choices About the Bomb in the First Fifty Years, Affiliated East-West Press Pvt Ltd., New Delhi, 1989, p.183
 Gregg Herken, The Winning Weapon –The Atomic Bomb in the Cold War 1945-1950, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1980, p.179
 Ibid, p.171
 USA’s Atomic Energy Act of 1946, Section 1(a) & (b) (4), at http://www.osti.gov/atomicenergyact.pdf
 Peter Pringle & William Arkin, SIOP*: Nuclear War From the Inside, Sphere Books Limited, London, 1983, pp.32, 37
*[Single-Integrated-Operation-Plan for waging nuclear war against the Soviet Union. “The 1980 war plan –SIOP-5D –included a staggering 40,000 potential targets” (p.143)]
 For details, see: John Major, The Oppenheimer Hearing, Stein and Day Publishers, New York, 1971
 Worldmark Encyclopedia of the Nations –United Nations, Worldmark Press Ltd., New York, 1984, p.52
 McGearge Bundy, op. cit., pp.255-256
 Michael R. Baschloss, May Day –Eisenhower, Khrushchev and the U-2 Affair, Harper & Row Publishers Inc., New York, 1986, pp.119 & 150
 Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Chicago, (vol. 57, no. 04), July/August 2001, pp. 36-37
 Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s statement in the Lok Sabha, in India and Disarmament: An Anthology of Selected Writings and Speeches, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi, 1988, pp.36-37
 Documents of Canadian External Relations, Volume #21 –51, Memorandum from Under-Secretary of State for External Affairs to Secretary of State for External Affairs, February 22, 1955, on the Disarmament Meetings of the Sub-Committee of the Disarmament Commission in London, February 1955, at http://www.international.gc.ca/department/
 Final Communiqué of the Asian-African Conference, Bandung, 24 April 1955, para F-2, at http://www.iss.co.za/
 Documents of Canadian External Relations, Volume #21 –52, May 27, 1955, at
 McGeorge Bundy, op. cit., p.301
 Documents of Canadian External Relations, Volume #21 –55, at
 DC/98, Official Records of the Disarmament Commission, Supplement for January-December 1956. Reproduced in Disarmament: India’s Initiatives, External Publicity Division, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, 1988, p.10
 Paul Dickson, Sputnik: The Shock of the Century, Walker & Company, New York, 2001
 McGeorge Bundy, op. cit., pp.332-333
 McGeorge Bundy, op. cit., pp.334, 337-338
 Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, op. cit.
 See: http://www.shundahai.org/sub_crit.htm
 At http://www.jfklibrary.org/