Dateline: January 12, 2001

This is the weekly electronic information service of the International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility

Editor: Tobias Damjanov, e-mail:   
INES homepage: http://inesglobal.org
INES International Office   
INES Chair: Prof. Armin Tenner   

CONTENTS of WNII No. 2/2001


Best wishes to all INES members from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia ...

(Unlike most of the other messages to me aiming at being published in WNII, the following by Solomon Zewde, Director of the National Scientific Equipment Center (NSEC) at the Ethiopian Science and Technology Commission, is not only of a quite personal attitude, but also hitherto refreshingly different; the ed.)

Dear Tobias, the year 2001 is already upon us - and I think this forms my first message for the year to you. I believe it is good to communicate with tireless people like your personality who sends us detailed, regular and most valuable information time invariably. I also thank Prof. Armin Tenner for his overall guidance and availability that we come closer to each other on the basic issue of peace and global responsibility. I am sure Engineers and Scientists world wide enshrine the INES noble cause. Incidentally, I am sending you this message on the eve of the Ethiopian Christmas to be celebrated tomorrow 7 January 2001. You know, Ethiopia has a unique calendar system in which the year is divided into 12 months of 30 days each plus an additional leap year of 5/6 days making the number of days in a year 365 or 366 days. The Ethiopian Christmas also falls on a different day than that celebrated by the rest of the world. On this occasion, therefore, may I wish you, Prof. Armin Tenner and all INES members an encouraging, peaceful and successful new year 2001. I would also appreciate if you kindly transmit this message to all concerned through your e-mail link or any other appropriate media. I thank you very much for all the understanding. Sincerely yours, Solomon Zewde, Engineer   http://www.geocities.com/s_zewde/NSEC_website.html

INES Council Forum "10 Years After Rio" - Preliminary Programme


Abolition 2000 homepage: http://www.abolition2000.org

Grassroots News: http://www.napf.org/abolition2000/news/

The Shalikashvili CTBT Report

On 4 January, US General John M. Shalikashvili (ret.), Special Advisor to the President and the Secretary of State for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), released a "Report on the Findings and Recommendations Concerning the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty." In this report, Gen. Shalikashvili, who was chairman of the Joint Chiefs from 1993 to 1997, concluded that the United States must ratify the CTBT in order to mount an effective campaign against the spread of nuclear weapons. He also outlines measures intended to assuage critics of the treaty, including increased spending on verification, greater efforts to maintain the United States nuclear arsenal and a joint review by the Senate and administration every 10 years to determine whether the treaty is still in American interests. NOTE that you can find the Report in full, including a corresponding Letter by Gen. Shalikashvili to the US President, at: http://www.state.gov/www/global/arms/ctbtpage/ctbt_report.html   Mass media comments saw this assessment as "part of a last-ditch attempt by Mr. Clinton to build support for the treaty, which Senate Republicans rejected in 1999 [by a vote of 51 to 48; the ed.] and on which President- elect George W. Bush's own top aides have sharply disagreed," as The New York Times (5 Jan 01) put it. As to the deep division of Mr. Bush's advisers on the merits of a test ban, on the one hand, Gen. Colin L. Powell, the secretary of state-designate, backed the treaty like most top military men after he retired as chairman of the Joint Chiefs in 1993, even urging India to sign the accord during a trip there. On the other hand, Donald Rumsfeld, the conservative defense secretary-designate, has heatedly opposed the treaty, saying it would preclude the United States from developing new generations of nuclear weapons. In response to the Report, US President Clinton only stated, he "urge(s) Congress and the incoming Bush Administration to act on them." Clinton added he hopes, "the Senate will take up the Treaty at an early date as a critical component of a bipartisan non-proliferation policy." Clinton's Statement, together with other statements, can be found at: http://www.state.gov/www/global/arms/ctbtpage/advisor_pg.html    Immediately, a number of NGOs concerned reacted positively on the Report:

"Proliferation: Threat and Response"

On 10 January, US Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen released the third edition of a report entitled "Proliferation: Threat and Response" - the second since he became secretary of Defense. The last report was released in November 1997. The new report details the nature of the security challenge posed by the proliferation of nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC) weapons and their delivery systems and the Defense Department's response to the challenge. The report contains updated information about countries that have or may be developing NBC weapons and the means to deliver them. It also provides updated information on the threat from NBC terrorism, and addresses, for the first time, threats to livestock and agriculture. "Our unrivaled supremacy in the conventional military arena is prompting adversaries to seek unconventional, asymmetric means to strike what they perceive as our Achilles heel," said Cohen. "The race is on between our preparations and those of our adversaries. There is not a moment to lose." The report describes DoD's efforts since the end of the Gulf War to ensure that U.S. forces are equipped and trained to fight and win in NBC-contaminated environments, including the Department's increased investments and reorganization in this area since the last Quadrennial Defense Review. It discusses DoD's contributions to international arms control and nonproliferation efforts and to enhancing the NBC defense preparedness of our allies and coalition partners. The report also newly addresses how DoD is preparing to provide support to U.S. civil authorities in managing the consequences of an NBC attack here in the United States. The full report may be viewed at: http://www.defenselink.mil/pubs/ptr20010110.pdf


CONGO Committee on Sustainable Development (CONGO is the acronym for the "Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the UN")

To be frank, I was not aware of the existence of this committee so far, although I happen to receive quite a lot of UN/NGOs'-related information with regard to sustainable development. INES has a consultative status, as far as the UN NGO community is concerned (via the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)) - but after having read the Minutes of last year's Annual Meeting of this CONGO Committee, it seems to me that up to now, INES has not dealt with the CONGO Committee on Sustainable Development. In conjunction with the INES Working Plan for this year (see last WNII issue) with particular emphasis on the "Rio+10" preparation process, I think it is recommendable that those INES members who are both interested in the subject AND (sic!) could effort some spare time might get in touch with this Committee. In the note of the Annual Meeting I referred to above, some email addresses were provided. The Committee is just about to elect a new Executive Committee, and the following representatives are members of the Nominating Committee. Other contact addresses were unfortunately not given. Chair: Mary Plante:   Co-Chairs: -- Pat Scharlin, Rainforest Alliance: -- Claudia Strauss, World Information Transfer:
Tobias Damjanov


Publication "Der Fall Nikitin/The Nikitin Case" (Source: "IALANA Update", Vol 2, No. 1, 1 January 2001)

Germany's "Der Fall Nikitin/The Nikitin Case" is a bilingual publication on the Whistleblower Award 1999, presented by IALANA-Germany to Russian marine engineer and whistleblower Alexander Nikitin in November 1999. It contains documentation on his case, such as excerpt of the Report on the Northern Fleet, which Nikitin co-authored together with the Norwegian Bellona foundation, and which caused the Russian authorities to charge him with treason, espionage and the betrayal of state secrets. The book also contains speeches by i.a. IALANA's Dieter Deiseroth and EU whistleblower Paul van Buitenen. Copies of the book can be ordered by sending an e-mail to: (Please add  book order "The Nikitin Case" in the subject line)


Re: Depleted uranium weapons

Since the 1991 Gulf War, the issue of so-called "Depleted Uranium Weapons" has been of great concern. As a weapon-related item, depleted uranium (DU) is used in the tips of missiles, shells and bullets to increase their ability - DU is extremely dense - to penetrate armor and can be pulverized on impact into a toxic radioactive dust. Depleted uranium carries two threats - radiation and chemical poisoning. The main threat comes from inhaling the dust or ingesting it, experts say. Radiation can cause leukemia, and other cancers, while metal poisoning can lead to kidney damage, experts said. During the recent NATO War against Yugoslavia, this issue came up again when mainly anti-war movements and critical journalists raised allegations NATO forces might have used this type of ammunition. By the end of last year, international mass media started to speak about a "Balkan War Syndrome", after the Italian press published articles on the death of Italian soldiers who are believed to have died from exposure to radiation from depleted uranium weapons. All of a sudden, reports from other NATO countries were mushrooming as to the possible DU-related causes of soldiers' leukemia deaths after they had served in places where NATO forces might have used DU ammunition. NATO officials, of course, would repeatedly deny any such links; it is clear, however, that NATO has used this ammunition: U.S. attack jets fired some 31,000 rounds of depleted uranium ammunition against Serbian tanks and armored vehicles during NATO's 1999 Kosovo campaign, according to a NATO Letter sent to the United Nations in March 2000. Some 10,000 were fired in neighboring Bosnia in 1994-95, NATO officials reported only last month. On 5 January this year, the United Nations announced that it had found evidence of radioactivity at 8 of 11 sites tested in Kosovo that were struck by NATO ammunition with depleted uranium. In May last year, a United Nations report had warned that much of Kosovo's water could be so contaminated as to be unfit to drink, and that a cleanup of the province could cost billions of dollars. It warned staff members not to approach any target that might have been hit by a depleted uranium weapon. Meanwhile, a number of European NATO member states are considering further investigations. The principle controversy whether or not DU ammunition effects could directly led to cancer and kidney diseases still remains unresolved. However, there are already demands to ban any DU weaponry not only put forward by a number of NGOs and specialized organisations but also even considered by some governments. Out of the great many of articles, statements and other references related to DU, I have selected some web references here:


First European Peace Convention

For more details, contact Rear Admiral (ret.) Elmar Schmaehling, secretary:  

Commemorative Canberra Commission Conference

For more details, mailto:

International Symposium on Nuclear Disarmament

For more details, mailto:


No new or changed addresses.
All INES e-mail addresses and homepages are available upon request from:  

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