ACTION ALERT: End Trump’s Landmine Order
Win Without War
(April 25, 2021) — The White House is being incredibly coy about whether President Biden will keep a Trump landmine policy that lets the military use anti-personnel mines that never deactivate.
Landmines don’t understand a ceasefire. That means that even years after hostilities have ended, they can be triggered by a child or even livestock and explode everyone and everything within a 30-yard radius.
It’s a no-brainer that these abhorrent weapons should’ve NEVER gone into the ground in the first place. But just days ago, a Pentagon spokesman said they’re “a vital tool in conventional warfare,” which hints at a huge behind-the-scenes struggle playing out — and wehave to weigh in now to tip the balance and make sure Biden knows that these weapons must be banned for good.
164 nations have banned anti-personnel landmines because of the horrific, almost never-ending destruction of life they create. Heck, the United States has even spent more than $4 billion clearing landmines from more than 100 countries in the last 30 years.
President Obama got this. Seven years ago, he banned these mines from use, apart from on the Korean Peninsula (an unacceptable exception!). Last year, Trump tore that up and brought these heinous weapons back.
President Biden said on the campaign trail he was committed to “promptly roll back this deeply misguided decision,” but the lack of action and mixed messages since he’s taken office are not a great sign— that’s why WE have to make sure these horrific weapons are banned for good.
Over the past 30 years, the number of landmine casualties has plummeted around the world. Trump’s decision reversed years of progress and countless lives saved. President Biden has to put us back on the path to peace.
To President Biden:
The Trump administration’s decision to end prohibitions on anti-personnel landmines was egregious and dangerous.
On the campaign trail, you committed to “promptly roll back this deeply misguided decision,” but the fact that the policy has remained unchanged nearly 100 days into the new administration — combined with recent statements from the Pentagon that landmines are “vital” — has people around the country concerned about this commitment.
These reprehensible weapons cause untold destruction for decades after they’ve been deployed. It is an unconscionable decision to continue to use them as part of military operations, and we call on you to urgently make clear in policy the commitment you made on the campaign trail to ban landmines immediately.
Thank you for working for peace,
Alice, Stephen, Sara, and the Win Without War team