Evidence submitted by Quaker Action St Andrews


Quakers are commited to peace keeping and see no justification, either morally or for practical security considerations that can warrant the renewal of the Trident nuclear weapons system.

What is the purpose for renewing the Trident nuclear weapons system? The primary threats to national security today come from economic collapse and climate change. Diverting the cost of renewing Trident to investment in renewable energy schemes, would address both problems at the same time and at once boost the economy significantly. Other direct threats include international terrorists, cyber and organised crime, crimes to which nuclear weapons, either by threat or actual use cannot make a contribution. Only an extremist group is likely to use a nuclear weapon without thought; a nuclear deterrent is futile against such groups who show no sign of self preservation of themselves or civilians. The UK’s present military commitments have shown conclusively that the defence of the realm does not rely on possession of nuclear weapons and there is a more than serious doubt that any British Prime Minister would actually sanction use.

Nuclear weapons are a disproportionate response, even in self defence, they are fundamentally indiscriminate, unable to differentiate between military targets and civilians, the consequences of their use lie beyond anything that can be predicted. The fact that other countries posses nuclear weapons does not in itself mean that the UK must have them too.

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