President condemns Indian tests;
urges action on Test Ban Treaty

Newspapers around country join call for immediate ratification

The recent nuclear tests by India have underscored the importance of prompt Senate ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
President Clinton, proclaiming that India was on the "wrong side of history" in conducting nuclear tests, said of the CTBT in his May 16 radio address, "This treaty ... bans all nuclear explosions, thus making it more difficult for the nuclear states to produce more advanced and dangerous weapons and much harder for non-nuclear states to develop them in the first place. Already, 149 other nations have signed on.
"The CTBT also strengthens our ability to detect and deter nuclear testing by other countries. That's a mission we must pursue, with or without this treaty, as India's actions so clearly remind us. The CTBT's global network of sensors and the short-notice on-site inspections it allows will improve our ability to monitor and discourage countries from cheating.
"I submitted the treaty to the Senate last fall. Now it's all the more important that the Senate act quickly, this year, so that we can increase the pressure on, and isolation of, other nations that may be considering their own nuclear test explosions."
The nation's top newspapers agree that the CTBT is important to our national security, and have urged the Senate to act now.

The New York Times
"India and Pakistan must be persuaded to sign and abide by the 1996 test ban treaty that has now been signed by 149 nations. By joining the treaty, India and Pakistan would bind themselves to refrain from any future testing. Their inclusion would also make it easier to detect violations by permitting the installation of monitoring equipment at their nuclear test sites.
"Enlisting India and Pakistan would be easier if the Senate ratified the test ban treaty .... Ratification would allow Washington to participate in a review conference next year that will develop diplomatic strategies for bringing holdout nations into the treaty.


Without American leadership, the treaty itself and the conference will be empty exercises."

The Dallas Morning News
"The right approach is not to shelve the treaty but to ratify it, and to encourage other countries to ratify it, thereby intensifying India's pariah status."

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"The United States would be in an excellent position to condemn India if we had ratified the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. ... Without ratifying the treaty, the United States can only talk out of both sides of its mouth."
Denver Post
"While the United States has pressured other countries to abide by nuclear non-proliferation pacts, its own Senate hasn't yet voted on the crucial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty -- ... the pivotal Foreign Relations Committee has refused to even schedule a hearing on the matter."

Dayton Daily News
"Now that India has gone back into the nuclear testing business ... the U.S. Senate needs to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. ... What it would do is give the signers more solidarity with which to pressure others not to test, the same way important signers of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty have reacted to India's tests with sanctions."

Produced by the White House Working Group on the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
For more information on the CTBT: Phone: 202-647-8677 Fax: 202-647-6928