the presidential roles in the world campaigns to ban chemical weapons
(1919-45) and land mines (1990s)
the Centers Demilitarization for Democracy Project, With a foreword
by Gen. Robert G. Gard, Jr. (U.S. Army, retired) and Sen. Patrick
Robert G. Gard, Jr. and Sen. Patrick Leahy...p. i
and Executive Summary...p. 1
Presidents and Chemical Weapons...p. 1
Clinton and Land Mines...p. 2
1: Starting the Debate...p. 3
Weapons: Wilson and the Versailles Treaty...p. 3
Mines: Congressional Leadership, 1992-95...p. 4
Comparison of Two Debates over Banning a Weapon...p. 6
2: Building an International Consensus...p. 8
Weapons: Harding and the Washington Conference...p. 8
Mines: The Convention on Conventional Weapons, 1995-96...p.
3: Military Pressures, Executive Choices...p. 12
Weapons: Coolidge, Hoover, and the War Department...p. 12
Mines: Clinton and the Pentagon on the Road to Ottawa...p. 14
4: Commander-in-Chief...p. 16
Weapons: Roosevelt and the War in the Pacific...p. 16
Mines: Clinton and the Continuing Search for Alternatives...p.
Foreword: Historys Revealing Light
Lt. Gen. Robert G. Gard, Jr. and Sen. Patrick Leahy
1996, when he joined the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation as
its military adviser, General Gard has sought to enact international
and U.S. bans on antipersonnel mines. Senator Leahy, who has served
in the Senate since 1974, became involved in the campaign to ban the
use of antipersonnel mines in 1989 with his establishment of the Leahy
War Victims Fund. In 1992 he wrote the first law banning the short-term
export of antipersonnel mines, which became a permanent policy of
the administration in 1997.
system of checks and balances our founding fathers created in the
Constitution has been central to the success of our democratic system
of government. These checks and balances exist not just between but
sometimes within the branches of government. This is the case in the
important area of control of the armed forces, with the designation
within the executive branch of an elected civilian, and not a military
officer, as commander-in-chief.
fact that the senior commander of the United States armed forces
is our elected president ensures that our military forces will implement,
rather than determine, our national security policies. This is especially
important when short-term military needs for indiscriminate weapons
collide with longer-term military and humanitarian interests. The
need for ultimate civilian control over military decisions is well
illustrated in this report by the Center for International Policy,
which shines the revealing light of history on the role of presidential
leadership in efforts to ban the use of chemical weapons after World
War I and in efforts to ban antipersonnel land mines in the 1990s.
know that antipersonnel mines have some tactical military utility,
but their indiscriminate nature and the toll they take in civilian
lives have convinced the over 130 nations who have joined the Ottawa
treaty that they must be banned. These nations accept that, in order
to realize the strategic and humanitarian benefits of banning these
weapons, they must use other military means to compensate for, if
not perfectly replace, their role on the battlefield. The movement
toward an effective ban is hampered by the fact that the United States,
the most powerful and technically adept nation in the military field,
is unfortunately not among the signatories.
We believe that it is because President Clinton has accepted an incorrect
assessment from the Pentagon, which claims that antipersonnel mines
are essential to the success of our armed forces, most importantly
by protecting anti-tank mines from enemy tampering. But this function
can be accomplished by alternative means, such as tank-killing missiles.
The president has indicated that his understanding of his role as
commander-in-chief compels him to defer a ban until the Joint Chiefs
of Staff tell him that suitable alternatives can be discovered and
fielded. They, rather than the president, are now in the position
of determining when it is appropriate to eliminate the weapon, and
there is no indication that they will agree any time soon. In many
ways, it is unreasonable to expect military officers to voluntarily
give up a weapon that provides even marginal military utility.
Wilson, Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover all faced remarkably similar
challenges during the inter-war debate over another indiscriminate
weapon chemical weapons. This report shows that they viewed
their role as commander-in-chief quite differently from President
Clinton. Despite opposition from the War Department, they took into
account all of the civilian and military opinions on the subject,
and made a decision that it was in the best long-term humanitarian
and security interests of the United States to lead the world
toward a ban on the use of chemical weapons.
achievement was solidified by President Franklin Roosevelt, who rejected
War Department pressure in the 1930s to prepare for massive use of
chemical weapons. Then in World War II, when the Army urged the use
of chemical weapons to save the lives of U.S. soldiers in the Pacific,
President Roosevelt still continued the ban on use, giving it the
credibility that eventually led to the Chemical Weapons Convention
recently ratified by the Senate. His judgment has been proven correct
in military as well as humanitarian terms. There is no doubt that
the worldwide movement to ban chemical weapons led by these five commanders-in-chief
has been of tremendous benefit not just to civilians throughout the
world, but also to U.S. troops.
Clinton retains the authority to review his policy on banning antipersonnel
mines. We encourage the president to adopt the role of commander-in-chief
intended by the founding fathers, and weigh the marginal military
utility of antipersonnel mines against the impact of their retention
on efforts to minimize the humanitarian costs of their continued use.
If the United States joins the Ottawa treaty, it will regain its rightful
place of leadership in the effort to end the worldwide scourge of
AND EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
World War I the German Army used massive gas attacks in its attempts
to break the stalemate in the French theater. The allies responded
in kind, and when the United States entered the war, it used its industrial
prowess to outperform all other armies in the production of the weapons
of chemical warfare. At the end of the war, most strategists assumed
that chemical weapons would be as common a tool in war as the grenade.
However, chemical weapons were quickly and effectively stigmatized,
used only fleetingly in the inter-war period, and never used in the
epic struggles of World War II. This arms-control success led directly
to todays international treaty banning the production, stockpiling,
and use of chemical weapons.
since 1945 have obviously been on a far smaller scale than the World
Wars. Their cumulative toll, however, has been just as appalling.(1)
As the world has viewed the legacy of conflict in such disparate places
as Cambodia, Angola, Afghanistan, El Salvador, Bosnia, and Mozambique,
another weapon has been singled out for falling outside of the bounds
allowed for war. This weapon is the antipersonnel mine, which like
a toxic gas cloud is indiscriminate, unable to tell the difference
between a combatant and a child.
defying conventional wisdom, a movement arose in the 1990s that quickly
and effectively stigmatized antipersonnel mines, and led to the signing
of an international treaty banning their production, stockpiling,
and use. The 1997 Ottawa treaty has now been signed by 133 nations,
although its effectiveness has been undercut by the failure of many
of the worlds leading military powers such as China,
Russia, and the United States to join.
summarized on Chart 1, there are remarkable similarities between the
two campaigns to ban anindiscriminate weapon. In both campaigns public
sentiment, humanitarian considerations, and long-term security concerns
prevailed over short-term military utility and led to an international
consensus that actually changed the behavior of armed forces.
is, however, one glaring difference, the subject of this report: the
leadership of American presidents when faced with opposition by their
armed forces to the pursuit of a ban. It is this difference in the
actions of the commander-in-chief that explains why the chemical weapons
ban has been a success, and the mines ban has yet to achieve universal
Presidents and Chemical Weapons
the chemical-weapons debate from 1919 to 1945, five presidents were
subjected to various degrees of pressure from the War Department,
industry, Congress, the media, and at times even the public to reject
a ban on the first use of chemical weapons. The military also exerted
pressure promoting an effort to gain dominance in what was seen as
the inevitable use of this devastating weapon. Presidents Wilson,
Harding, Coolidge, Hoover, and Roosevelt resisted these pressures,
and balanced the military utility of chemical weapons against the
clear benefits to both U.S. troops and to civilians worldwide of an
effective international ban.
President Wilson supported the inclusion of a ban on the first
use of chemical weapons in the Versailles Treaty of 1919 that
bound the participants in World War I.
President Harding went a step farther, rebuffing a challenge
by the War Department and setting an even firmer international
standard against chemical weapons in the Washington Conference
President Coolidge rejected a military-backed lobbying campaign
and led the push for the Geneva Treaty of 1926 outlawing the
first use of chemical weapons.
President Hoover held U.S. policy firm even after a lobbying
campaign led by the U.S. Chemical Warfare Service convinced
the Senate to reject the Geneva Treaty, allowing America to
continue as a world leader in the drive to ban chemical weapons.
President Roosevelt faced the hardest test, with the War Department
and editorial headlines (We Should Gas Japan, You Can Cook
Em Better with Gas) calling for the use of chemical
weapons to save U.S. lives in the Pacific campaigns of World
War II. He rejected these appeals, solidifying the stigmatization
of chemical weapons.(2)
five presidents, in their constitutional role as commander-in-chief,
balanced military recommendations against strategic and humanitarian
goals. They took into consideration the appropriate desire of the
uniformed leaders of the War Department to save U.S. troops
lives by using a devastatingly effective weapon. However, they also
took into consideration the broader strategic and humanitarian concerns
that are part of the U.S. national interest. Ironically, their policy
protected U.S. troops better than a purely military-based policy would
Gulf War of 1991 showed the enduring benefit to U.S. forces of these
decades of presidential leadership. Fearing the response to its use
of an internationally stigmatized weapon, Iraq did not use its copious
stores of chemical weapons. Similarly, U.S. attacks in 1998 designed
to degrade Iraqs ability to make weapons of mass destruction,
including chemical weapons, show the enduring strategic importance
the United States attaches to keeping these weapons out of modern
Clinton and Land Mines
Clinton, in contrast to the five presidents who led the fight to ban
chemical weapons, upon taking office deferred immediately to official
Pentagon opposition to banning antipersonnel mines. A complex set
of political and personal circumstances made it difficult for him
to challenge the Pentagon on any issue. In arevealing commentary on
his perceived weakness with the armed forces, President Clinton actually
asked supporters of a ban to help him achieve that goal by pressuring
the Pentagon. "Get the Joint Chiefs off my back," he said,
and then there could be the progress they wanted.(3)
when an internal Pentagon debate developed, the president and his
National Security Council staff avoided engagement, so as not to be
seen as interfering with military prerogatives. The Pentagon fought
congressional efforts to place a moratorium on the export and then
the use of land mines, and broke a pledge from Clinton to the main
sponsor, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), by working to repeal the moratorium
other nations joined the call for a ban, the presidentcontinued to
seek international support for a Pentagon proposal for two exemptions,
air and artillery deployable antipersonnel mines which would be mixed
with anti-tank mines in canisters, and for all land mines used in
the defense of South Korea. In 1997 over 120 nations rejected these
exemptions and signed the Ottawa treaty. The treaty entered into force
March 1, 1999.
the administration is still hoping to modify the Ottawa treaty to
gain its two exemptions, something that international observers believe
is highly unlikely. President Clintons position continues to
be that as commander-in-chief he has a duty to deploy antipersonnel
mines, because they will save the lives of U.S. troops and of civilians
who rely on our defense. Since 1994, the Pentagon has been formally
under orders from the president to develop alternatives. With no time
deadlines and external guidance, though, the Pentagon continues to
study rather than implement concepts.
failing simply to instruct the Pentagon to replace antipersonnel mines
with the numerous currently-available technologies and tactics that
fulfill the same function, President Clinton has made the United
States a barrier to the universalization of the Ottawa treaty. (For
a detailed treatment of alternative tactics and technologies, see
Exploding the Landmine Myth in Korea, Demilitarization for
Democracy, 1997, with endorsement and a foreword by former U.S. commander
in Korea Gen. James Hollingsworth as well as Alternatives to Antipersonnel
Landmines, by Gen. Robert Gard, Jr.) Ironically, U.S. forces
could well be more secure with a functioning international ban on
this indiscriminate weapon, just as they were with a ban on chemical
weapons. In 1997 the Dupuy Institute informed the chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff that "a total banon this type of mine,
if eventually adhered to by most nations, will only benefit the U.S.
ground forces in the long run."(4)
Clintons 1998 Presidential Decision Directive states the goal
of signing the Ottawa Treaty, but not until 2006, and even then only
with the Pentagons agreement that "suitable" alternatives
are available. Congress has mandated two studies on alternatives,
one by the Pentagon and one by the National Academy of Sciences. The
release of these reports will provide President Clinton with another
opportunity to follow in his predecessors footsteps, by banning
an indiscriminate weapon and ordering military compliance with this
1: Starting the Debate
Weapons: Wilson and the Versailles Treaty
War I created a sentiment in the United States against chemical weapons,
but not a strong consensus. While an awareness of the horror of asphyxiation
by chemical weapons was spread by returned troops and their acquaintances,
there was no general outcry or movement to abolish the weapons
future use. Indeed, the carnage created by the new high-explosive
shell gave that weapon as much of a reputation as a new instrument
of terror as mustard gas had acquired.
made chemical weapons stand out was that they were seen as a tool
of aggression that Germany had used in violation of its commitments
under the 1899 Hague Convention. This convention required states to
abstain from putting poison gas into shells a weak standard
that invited creative technical work in delivering gas in other ways.
Germany had clearly violated the convention, and the United States
(which had not signed it) and Britain (which had) interpreted the
convention to permit retaliation in kind.(5)
use of large-scale gas attacks, particularly those using mustard gas,
which was developed later in the war, became an effective military
tactic available to both sides. Technical innovations and production
capabilities by the U.S. Chemical Weapons Service had the United States
poised to become a dominant power in this area. Had Germany not surrendered,
testified a War Department expert, "Our offensive in 1919, in
my opinion, would have been a walk to Berlin, due to chemical warfare."
Lt. Col. Augustin Prentiss later wrote, "The campaign of 1919
would have been largely a chemical war."(6) Despite U.S. strengths
in the technology and production of chemical weapons, President Wilson
endorsed the Foch Committee of the Supreme War Councils draft
language for the Versailles Treaty:
or use of asphyxiating poisonous or similar gases, any liquid, any
material and any similar device capable of use in war are forbidden.(7)
Wilson did not face concerted War Department opposition for this remarkable
bid to outlaw the production and use of a weapon. For both moral and
strategic reasons, many U.S. military leaders were resisting the drive
of the Chemical Weapons Service to integrate poison gas into U.S.
combat doctrine. Indeed, the continued existence of the service itself
was still in doubt.(8) However, Wilson did face the concerted opposition
of the powerful American chemical industry.
major U.S. chemical producers saw the Versailles treaty as an opportunity
to gain a decisive future advantage over the Germans in chemical production,
both civilian and military. They formed the Chemical Foundation, which
pushed not for a general prohibition, but instead for a punitive provision
that would apply only to Germany, and deny it any industrial capacity
for the production of chemicals.(9) The foundation lobbied Wilson
to consider the "five hundred millions invested in the dye industry...the
textile, paint, varnish, and other industries dependent upon the American
the need for "wresting from Germany her destructive use of chemical
science and turning it to our defense and the betterment of humanity,"
the Chemical Foundation found many friends among the European powers,
especially the British. Prime Minister David Lloyd-George appealed
for this comprehensive punitive measure against Germany because, he
said, "The British Military supported by scientific experts,
made the case that German discovery of new gases would enable her
to gain a decisive military advantage despite limited conventional
Wilson adamantly opposed the proposed amendment as a commercial ploy.(12)
The U.S. delegation had firm orders not to heed the Chemical Foundation,
but the foundations campaign bore some fruit. While the treaty
did restate the general prohibition against use (meaning, in the context
of the time, first use), it only barred production and possession
of these weapons by Germany. In the end Part V, Section 1, Chapter
1, Article 171 of the Versailles Treaty read:
use of asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases and all analogous liquids,
materials, or devices being prohibited, their manufacture and importation
are strictly forbidden in Germany.(13)
Wilson had to compromise at Versailles, his aggressive stance against
production and use set an important precedent. He had signaled well
before any domestic or international consensus developed that, despite
the stance of the powerful chemical industry and the obvious U.S.
military advantage in this area, the United States desired a complete
prohibition on production and use of chemical weapons. By at least
retaining in Article 171 the general agreement that the use of chemical
weapons was prohibited, Wilson had set the stage for future U.S. leadership
in the development of an international consensus for prohibition.
opinion in the United States soon began to shift in Wilsons
favor. The leading advocate for banning chemical weapons was the International
Committee of the Red Cross, which began its drive in 1918, and provided
a focal point for advocacy and research on the issue. Their studies
were well researched, and concluded that the costs to the civilian
population from a poison-gas attack were simply so high that gas could
never be considered "humane" in any war situation.(14) Ironically,
though, the efforts of the Red Cross to condemn chemical weapons were
less effective in affecting American public opinion than the unintended
result of a chemical-industry publicity campaign in favor of chemical
weapons and of protecting the American chemical industrys ability
to make them by establishing high tariffs for imports of all chemicals.(15)
industrys campaign was massive in scope, with DuPont alone putting
$370,000 into it.(16) It included a newspaper blitz resulting
in over 1,025 editorials, and a speaking tour to Chambers of Commerce,
Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs, and various state and national conventions.
The campaigns message was that gas warfare was the warfare of
the future, and that U.S. troops and civilians would feel its horrors
if the chemical industry did not get its way. The dark prospect of
"the Hun" dropping canisters of mustard gas on unprepared
American boys who lacked the capacity to fight back was supposed to
shock listeners into supporting protective tariffs. As a Dow Chemical
vice president said during the tour:
warfare) is the most effective weapon of all time
the most humane
ever introduced into war by man
Our land armies for future struggles
will be officered entirely by trained chemists
We need a protecting
In this war after the war our battle cry must be "To
Hell with all German imports! Down with everything opposed to American
Amos Fries, the commander of the embattled U.S. Chemical Weapons Service,
readily assisted this campaign, and technically, the chemical industry
got what it wanted in the form of higher tariffs. However, what neither
the industry nor General Fries bargained for was the adverse public
reaction to the stream of pro-chemical propaganda. Instead of being
led toward the campaigns proposed goals of preparedness for
chemical warfare, the public veered sharply towards a call for outlawing
the horrors the industry was describing.(18)
1921 the American public had been forced to consider the future nature
of warfare, and was overwhelmingly repelled by the vision of armies
marching behind lethal clouds of gas. A national public opinion survey
released in December of that year stated that of those polled, 366,975
Americans favored prohibition of poison gas, while a bare 19 favored
its retention with some restriction imposed on its use.(19)
The industry had badly overplayed its hand, and a new president was
poised to take full advantage of the new public position.
Mines: Congressional Leadership, 1992-94
governmental action toward banning land mines began in 1992. At the
urging of the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation (VVAF) and a
nascent coalition of nongovernmental organizations it funded called
the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, Congress enacted a one-year
moratorium on the export of antipersonnel mines. The amendment offered
by Senator Leahy appeared so mild that the Bush administration chose
not to fight it openly.(20) This was a tactical error the Pentagon
would come to regret.
and public support for the export moratorium was couched almost exclusively
in humanitarian terms. Congress had in previous years enacted legislation
sponsored by Leahy to establish a War Victims Fund. Leahy portrayed
the drive to ban antipersonnel mines, with the export moratorium providing
breathing room to start the effort, as a reaction to what he had seen
firsthand while visiting Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation rehabilitation
centers in developing nations supported by the War Victims Fund.
initial speech as he offered the export moratorium established the
enduring image of the land mine debate in the United States: thousands
of innocent amputees gathering to receive prosthetics and training.(21)
While the Pentagon later used the full power of the administrations
publicity machine to try to substitute the image of a U.S. soldier
pinned down in a foxhole but protected by mines, it never truly reversed
Leahys early success.
1992 most religious, human rights, veterans, development, and disarmament
groups in the United States knew little about land mines, and did
not grasp the relevance of the effort to ban this weapon. The public
knew even less. By 1995, as a result of congressional leadership and
publicity by members of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines,
hundreds of groups were working towards a ban.(22) The media was raising
public awareness through numerous stories on the damage mines did
to individuals and economies in developing countries, and also noting
the threat they posed to U.S. troops on peacekeeping missions.(23)
was little pro-mine publicity during the debate in 1992 on the amendment
for a one-year export moratorium or during 1993 on another successful
Leahy amendment to extend the export moratorium for three years. Although
4.4 million U.S. land mines had been exported between 1968 and 1992,
there were few being exported by the 1990s.(24) The U.S. Arms
Control and Disarmament Agency and Alliant Techsytems, a major manufacturer
of land mines which was poised to dominate the export market for self-destructing
mines, did try to counter the image of land mines as a humanitarian
threat, but they did so largely in Congress and in policy-making circles
in Washington.(25) The national media field was largely dominated
by proponents of a ban.
Clintons initial reaction to the land-mine question, and his
strategy ever since, was to try to please both the Pentagon and the
proponents of a ban. As twenty-five nations over the next threeyears
joined the United States in imposing a moratorium on land mine exports,
the president tried to stay ahead of the policy curve by pushing for
UN discussion of the goal of banning land mines. To Pentagon leaders,
he offered assurances that these discussions would never lead to changes
in U.S. military policy against their advice. When in the fall of
1994 Clinton made a speech before the UN General Assembly calling
for the "eventual ban" of all land mines, the fine print
of his press release exempted U.S. mines from this effort.(26)
had made it clear in meetings with advisers as early as December 1992
that for political reasons he was putting the Pentagon on his "do
not touch" list. Among the possible reasons for this decision
were Clintons desire to reduce the Democratic Partys vulnerability
with pro-military portions of the electorate, his efforts to avoid
the draft during the Vietnam War, rumors that White House staff had
ridiculed a military commander, and the controversy over his campaign
pledge not to discriminate against gays and lesbians in the armed
Clintons first significant national-security decision was to
accede to the Pentagons demand for additional nuclear tests,
a policy that was only reversed by credible congressional threats
to overturn it through legislation. Similarly, Clinton decided to
maintain three policy-changing arms sales (to Taiwan, Saudi Arabia,
and Kuwait) that had been pushed through as "jobs" measures
in the heat of the election season.(27) Land-mine policy was
simply another area in which he wished to avoid antagonizing a mistrustful
for the explosion of anti-mine sentiment, the Pentagon reflexively
opposed banning antipersonnel mines. Indeed, in discussions with ban
proponents prior to Clintons speech at the United Nations, U.S.
military officers found the idea so bizarre as to not merit detailed
rebuttal.(28) Land mines had been integrated into U.S. doctrine for
over 100 years. The UnitedStates had a monopoly on a new generation
of air-deployable, self-destructing mines, and experts expected these
mines to multiply U.S. combat effectiveness.(29) Finally, some
Pentagon officials and senior military officers were worried about
the cost of converting mixed systems. They also saw the campaign to
ban land mines as a "slippery slope," in which humanitarian
concerns publicized by nongovernmental groups would convince Congress
to strip away weapon after weapon from U.S. arsenals.(30)
Pentagon quickly developed a formulation that allowed Clinton to talk
about banning land mines while not reducing U.S. capabilities, and
it is this formulation that has endured to the present. The United
States would push for a ban on what it considered indiscriminate use
and indiscriminate types of land mines. U.S. mines, since they were
either in marked and monitored military areas (like the South Korean
border and Guantanamo, Cuba) or would self-destruct after a set period
on the battlefield, were not to be considered indiscriminate. Some
officers within the Pentagon began privately to question the need
for antipersonnel mines, but the official position remained unchanged.
Pentagon found unlikely allies in the State Department and the U.S.
Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA), which had historically
provided a counterbalance in debates on other indiscriminate weapons,
such as nuclear testing. From 1993 through 1995, the ACDA was the
administrations point agency with the media and Congress for
a policy permitting self-destructing mines. During that period, the
State Department tried to convince other governments to endorse a
U.S. and British proposal to ban, gradually, only long-lived mines.(31)
it was the ACDA, not the Pentagon, that first tried to refocus the
public debate on military rather than humanitarian issues, citing
the protection mines afforded U.S. troops. At first ACDA tried calling
U.S. self-destructing mines "safe" mines, but under public
criticism it soon settled on the phrase "smart" mines to
describe weapons that, while indiscriminate, did not create a long-term,
hidden humanitarian problem as long-lived mines did. In the meantime,
Clinton continued his policy of publicly calling for a ban, but allowing
the Pentagon to determine actual policy.
with official Pentagon resistance and the lack of an ally within the
administration to counter it, Senator Leahy and his House partner
Rep. Lane Evans (D-Ill.) decided to promote additional partial steps
toward a ban through legislation. In 1994 they introduced, but did
not pursue, a bill placing a moratorium on theproduction of antipersonnel
land mines, and in 1995 they aggressively pursued a bill placing a
moratorium on the use of these weapons. Prior to the introduction
of this last bill, Senator Leahy had quietly rounded up forty-four
co-sponsors. A barrage of national publicity on humanitarian concerns
spurred by ban proponents further overwhelmed the Pentagons
muted expressions of concern. Mainstream groups like the American
Red Cross, headed by Elizabeth Dole (wife of then Senate Majority
Leader Robert Dole), endorsed the moratorium on use, and it passed
the Senate by a 63-28 margin in 1995 and became law in February 1996.
urged the president to seek an international agreement for the
eventual elimination of antipersonnel land mines;
imposed, after a three-year period of prepara tion, a one-year
moratorium in 1999 on U.S. use of APLs, except in marked areas
along international borders, such as the Korean demilitarized
encouraged other nations to join the moratorium.(32)
enactment of this first prohibition ever on the use of antipersonnel
mines, the United States resumed leadership in the movement to ban
this weapon. As with the export moratorium, though, it had been Congress,
not the president, who had taken this action. The Pentagon, licking
its wounds from this defeat on a largely symbolic measure, realized
that if it was to prevail in the next, more concrete round of the
debate, it would need not just Clintons acquiescence, but his
OF TWO DEBATES
BANNING A WEAPON
The Germans achieved a temporary breakthrough in the static trench
warfare with the surprise use of this weapon. Limited U.S. use
further showed the great utility of chemical weapons on the battlefield
of the day.
Mixed anti-tank mine systems projected into North Korean rear
echelons are estimated to delay invading tanks a crucial twenty
minutes. Pentagon-commissioned study by defense thinktank concludes
that mines work well for "static defenses."
Risks to U.S. Troops?
WWI proved chemical weapons are indiscriminate weapons that are
difficult to counter. Possibility of their use in future conflicts
poses a major threat to U.S. forces.
Two Pentagon-commissioned reports caution that enemy mines can
hamper U.S. rapid mobility under modern combat doctrine and put
U.S. troops at risk. U.S. field-training wargame shows a significant
"fratricide" rate coming from U.S. mines.
Opposition to a Ban?
U.S. chemical producers created a lobby group, the Chemical Foundation,
to pressure presidents and Congress for full development of chemical
Alliant Techsystems supports Pentagon opposition to ban, saying
it will continue to produce land mines as long as the U.S. military
believes they are useful.
Debate on Ban?
Officers in Chemical Warfare Service worked both through and outside
the chain of command to oppose efforts to restrict use. High-ranking
officers beginning with General Pershing believed chemical weapons
to be both immoral and dangerous to U.S. troops.
Regional army commanders, especially in Korea, strongly oppose
a ban. Some Pentagon policy planners and a group of retired
high-ranking officers call for Clinton to ban land mines.Pentagon-commissioned
thinktank recommends "that the United States support a
total ban on anti personnel mines."
and Media Support for Ban?
Strong, Then Mixed: A national poll in 1921 showed that over
99 percent of Americans supported abolition of chemical weapons.
General support continues until World War II, when the press and
public becomes more divided as to use against the Japanese.
Strong, Then Mixed: Polling done by Vietnam Veterans of America
Foundation showed strong public support for a mines ban through
1996, and most media stories stressed the humanitarian cost of
land mines. Pentagon opposition then shifts public and media attention
toward the military utility of mines.
Support for Ban?
Early, Opposition Later: Senate easily ratified Washington
Treaty language prohibiting chemical weapons use in 1921. The
War Department and Chemical Foundations efforts to promote
military preparedness led to Senate rejection of the Geneva Treaty
Early, Opposition Later: Congress led by passing an export
moratorium in 1992 and a use moratorium in 1995. Opposition by
the Pentagon over military utility of land mines led Congress
to repeal use moratorium.
Calls for "Discriminate" Use?
U.S. military advisers to both the Washington and Geneva Conferences
supported prohibition on use only against civilian targets and
The Pentagon first wanted an exemption on any ban of "smart"
(self-destructing) mines, and then turned toward an exemption
for "mixed" anti-tank mine systems, and for all mines
Support for a Ban
Leads: Early leadership by Wilson and Harding creates international
consensus against chemical weapons. Continued leadership by Coolidge,
Hoover, and Roosevelt cement international stigma even in wartime.
Leads, Then Blocks: Early congressional leadership establishes
mine ban as achievable international goal and brings even major
mine exporters like Italy aboard. Pentagons proposed exemptions
turn United States into significant obstacle in the Ottawa process.
Commitment to Ban
& Consistent: Each president throughout the period makes
the case both in public and within his administration for a global
prohibition on the use of chemical weapons.
& Inconsistent: Early public statement at the United Nations
in support of ban, but hedged by words such as "eventual
elimination." In 1996 State of the Union, Clinton says goal
is to "ban all land mines." Clintons support,
however, is undermined by Pentagon opposition.
Challenge to Military Calls for Use
Chemical Warfare Service and War Department press in 1920s and
30s to permit U.S. preparation for massive use, and for
use in 40s in the war in the Pacific. Presidents reject
all requests after taking into account the full spectrum of military
and civilian concerns.
Clinton refuses to confront Pentagon unless pro-ban groups
"get the Joint Chiefs off my back." Refuses to become
involved in internal military debate over landmines policy, and
defers to each Pentagon objection as defense against ban evolves.
Orders: Between World Wars I and II, the War Department obeys
order from commander-in-chief, with only minimal preparation for
chemical weapons use. After Roosevelt rejects use on Iwo Jima,
similar plans for Biak Island are rejected by the military due
to known official policy.
Policy: Pentagon becomes lead policy-making agent of the Clinton
White House on the mines issue, and insists on exemptions for
Korea and "mixed" anti-tank mine systems. Timetable
for halfhearted search for alternatives envisions up to twenty
years of research and development.
Leadership Leads to Historic Accomplishment: Chemical weapons
are not used in World War II. The stigma of poison gas as a "pariahs
weapon" keeps subsequent use to a minimum and leads to an
international convention to ban chemical weapons.
Opposition Creates Barrier to Historic Accomplishment: Ottawa
Treaty banning land mines enters into force March 1999. Lack of
U.S. signature is serious barrier to the treatys universalization.
2: Building an International Consensus
Weapons: Harding and the Washington Conference
War Departments position on chemical weapons after the war was
unsettled. A devastating weapon was available, but in the absence
of guidance and funding, few commanders took steps to integrate it
into war plans and units. Some senior officers feared the repercussions
for U.S. troops of the worldwide acceptanceof chemical weapons, while
others, led by Gen. Amos Fries, pushed hard for large-scale production
and distribution.(33) Even the continued existence of General Friess
Chemical Warfare Service, which was responsible for the research,
development, and procurement of both chemical weapons and defensive
equipment, was in doubt.(34)
with Sen. George Chamberlain of Oregon and the chemical manufacturers,
General Fries managed to thwart a War Department decision to close
down the Chemical Warfare Service, place its research in the Army
Corps of Engineers, and end production. Using confidential War Department
documents to make his case, in 1920 Senator Chamberlain enacted a
permanent law maintaining the Chemical Warfare Service.(35) Still,
there was significant resistance within the War Department to Friess
plans when President Harding took office in 1921, and the public favored
a ban on chemical weapons.
the War Department was still debating its policy, President
Harding forced the issue by including chemical weapons on the agenda
of a conference called by the United States to slow the arms race
in the Pacific. The Washington Arms Conference was originally expected
to limit only aircraft and submarines, but President Harding and Secretary
of State Charles Evans Hughes decided to add poison gas. Harding said
that he envisaged "an America that can maintain every heritage
and yet help humanity throughout the world reach a higher plane."(36)
the conference convened in 1921, General Fries represented the War
Department general staff in negotiations on gas warfare. As a result,
the U.S. position was a big step back from the terms of the Versailles
only limitation that should be considered by the United States is
the prohibition of its use against cities and noncombatants in exactly
the same manner as the use of airplane bombs, high explosive shells,
or other weapons are prohibited.(37)
War Department believed that it possessed the technology to use chemical
chemical weapons were first discussed at the Washington Conference
in January 1922, Secretary of State Hughes simply mimicked the War
Departments posture on policy, saying that nations had to be
prepared both offensively and defensively for the use of chemical
weapons by an "unscrupulous enemy." Further, he said that
because many high-explosive shells emitted deadly gas, it would be
unrealistic to prohibit the use of gas.(38) The British and
French representatives to a subcommittee of experts on this issue
agreed with the U.S. position. The subcommittee, chaired by the president
of the American Chemical Society, concluded that "the only limitation
practicable" was to bar the use of gas against cities and noncombatants.(39)
Harding responded to this exclusively military approach by referring
the matter to an advisory committee he had created to promote ratification
of what he knew would be a controversial treaty. The twenty-one member
advisory committee included Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover,
famed World War I military commander Gen. John Pershing, Rear Admiral
Thomas Rodgers, and Assistant Secretary of War J. Mayhew Wainwright.(40)
not only at the immediate military situation as represented by the
War Department, but also at the humanitarian and longer-term security
context, the advisory committee arrived at a very different answer
for President Harding from General Friess. They offered up the
specter of massive gas attacks delivered by fleets of aircraft, and
concluded that there could be "no actual restraint of the use
by combatants of this new agency of warfare if it is permitted in
what one analyst called the "near-hysteria" in the press
and the public about gas warfare, the committee then invoked the conscience
of America by saying:
Committee is of the opinion that the conscience of the American people
has been profoundly shocked by the savage use of scientific discoveries
for destruction rather than construction
The American representatives
would not be doing their duty in expressing the conscience of the
American people were they to fail in insisting upon the total abolition
of chemical warfare.(41)
advisory committee relied not just on humanitarian and moral appeal,
but also on reports by the Advisory Subcommittee on Land Armaments
(alsosigned by General Pershing) and by the U.S. Navy. These reports
agreed that abolition of chemical weapons was both plausible and preferable
for U.S. military security and the security of noncombatants.(42)
With the official War Department stance against prohibition undercut
by these other military sources, and with public sentiment fully on
the side of prohibition, Harding instructed the U.S. delegation to
introduce the following proposal:
use in war of asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases and all analogous
liquids, materials or devices, having been justly condemned by the
general opinion of the civilized world and a prohibition of such use
having been declared in treaties to which a majority of the civilized
to the end that this prohibition shall be universally accepted as
a part of international law binding alike the conscience and practice
of nations, the Signatory Powers declare their assent to such prohibition,
agree to be bound thereby between themselves and invite all other
civilized nations to adhere thereto.
American proposal was accepted and signed on February 6, 1922, becoming
Article V of the Treaty Between the United States of America, the
British Empire, France, Italy and Japan Relating to the Use of Submarines
and Noxious Gases in Warfare.(43) Prohibition had won the day,
and the Senate readily backed up the decision with easy ratification
of the treaty.
rejecting a short-term military view, Harding had promoted a broader
view of U.S. security and moral interests. Proponents of chemical
weapons in the armed forces and in industry were unreconciled, and
would force another reckoning, but Hardings precedent would
prove to be enduring.
Mines: The Convention on Conventional Weapons, 1995-96
1980 rules governing the use of antipersonnel mines were added to
the International Convention on Conventional Weapons, a longstanding
treaty on the use of particularly inhumane weapons. However, the rules
were vague and hortatory, and had little impact on the use of land
mines in the developed or developing world.(44) The Clinton administration
turned to the convention as a way of responding to general calls for
a ban and to the particular problem of the Leahy-Evans proposal for
a moratorium on U.S. use of antipersonnel mines.
1995, the Clinton administration had not been forced to take
any concrete action limiting its own use of land mines, even as it
had concurrently claimed credit for world leadership on the issue.
While it had opposed the extension of the export moratorium by Congress
in 1993, it soon found that mine manufacturers had largely accepted
the moratorium, and the administration began to promote the ban itself
at the United Nations.(45)
the proposed moratorium on use did not raise significant opposition
among mine manufacturers. Only a few, such as Minnesotas Alliant
Techsytems, had substantial revenues from Army production contracts,
and they began to come under public pressure from a campaign of stigmatization
of producers led by Human Rights Watch. Minnesota congressman Martin
Sabo briefly promoted the "smart mines" concept to the nongovernmental
groups comprising the U.S. Campaign to Ban Landmines, but soon stopped
after seeing the strength of the opposition from these groups, his
usual allies in human-rights debates.(46)
proposed moratorium on use roused the Pentagon to full resistance
to the ban movement. A review conference was set for the Convention
on Conventional Weapons in Vienna in September 1995, in preparation
for a formal negotiation and signing in Geneva the next spring. Throughout
1995 the Pentagon argued that any restrictions should be achieved
through the convention, and not through the unilateral Leahy-Evans
moratorium on use.
restrictions the Pentagon proposed became the official U.S. position
for the Vienna conference. This position simply repeated the demands
that the State Department and the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency
had been carrying to foreign capitals with little effect for over
a year: gradual constraints on long-lived mines, and none on self-destructing
mines. Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Gen. John Shalikashvili drew
a line in the sand, issuing a statement calling antipersonnel mines"indispensable"
to U.S. troops and missions.(47)
this public facade, there existed disagreement within the Pentagon
that President Clinton could have exploited to develop a new U.S.
policy. While regional commanders were strongly opposed to banning
a weapon already integrated into their battle plans, a number of officers
believed that long-term U.S. security interests would be served by
stigmatizing land mines, and were willing to give up short-term military
utility to achieve that goal. Others were convinced that land mines
should be removed from U.S. doctrine not for humanitarian reasons,
but because they slowed down our own mobile forces, and were confounding
the Pentagons drive toward discriminate firepower and sensor-based
dissenters in the Pentagon circulated a June 1994 report by the Institute
for Defense Analysis which had been prepared for the office of the
undersecretary of defense for policy, entitled The Military Utility
of Landmines: Implications for Arms Control, which concluded,
"Issues of military utility in high intensity conflict need not
preclude further consideration of any form of landmines arms control."(48)
Their voices, however, were never heard outside of the Pentagon. With
no support from the president and his National Security Council staff,
and after General Shalikashvilis statement, their opinions failed
to alter the decision to take the so-called smart-mines policy into
the review conference.
U.S. representatives entered a lions den in Vienna in September
1995. Along with the forty-four nations convened for the review conference
seventy nongovernmental organizations were present, including the
International Committee of the Red Cross and many members of the International
Campaign to Ban Landmines. Although a universal ban was not on the
agenda, the nongovernmental groups still presented the case for a
ban, and also commented on governments proposals. In addition
to the U.S. proposal to reduce the use of long-lived mines, these
included barriers to the use of mines in an offensive fashion against
civilian targets, tighter verification and compliance mechanisms,
a minimum metal content to assure that mines were detectable, and
a prohibition of anti-handling devices.(49)
the United States, the conference was an unmitigated disaster. Both
China and Russia stalled agreement on metal content and other minimal
reforms, and the U.S. proposal to limit long-lived mines was widely
rejected as unworkable. Developing nations argued that "smart"
mines were prohibitively expensive, costing up to ten times as much
per unit as the"dumb" mines. The nongovernmental groups
also rejected the U.S. proposal to permit, rather than stigmatize
and ban, mines that self-destructed after a set period.(50)
U.S. delegation saw the short period of activation of these mines
as permitting their discriminate use. Short-lived mines were presented
as a technological fix to the humanitarian problems posed by long-lived
mines. The nongovernmental groups, in contrast, saw these mines as
a new humanitarian crisis in the making. Unlike hand-emplaced short-lived
mines, they argued, the new generation of self-destructing mines could
be scattered by the thousands from artillery tubes and aircraft: combatants
in civil conflicts who were already using every available means of
violence against civilians and the economy in areas they could not
control would simply be provided with a new, easily-deliverable one.(51)
Vienna sessions ended in October with little agreement on modifications.
In Geneva in April 1996 at the final review conference for the Convention
on Conventional Weapons, the U.S. delegation made one more attempt
to promote the smart-mine regime. Ambassador Michael Matheson, chief
U.S. negotiator, presented the U.S. position as the most humane path:
"We will be replacing land mines with a thirty-year life span
with mines that have a thirty-day life span."(52) Again the nongovernmental
groups and the vast majority of governmental delegations rejected
this approach of banning only certain types of antipersonnel mines.
final revisions to the convention were minimal and generally acknowledged
to have had mines issue, was now a major obstruction. When Canada
and a few other pro-ban nations met with nongovernmental groups in
Geneva in the aftermath of the Convention for an off-the-record planning
session, the U.S. delegation was not invited. By surrendering mine
policy to the Pentagon, President Clinton had taken the United States
out of the international loop. The ban would move forward not with
the efforts of the United States, but against them.
3: Military Pressures, Executive Choices
Weapons: Coolidge, Hoover, and the War Department
Fries and the Chemical Warfare Service did not simply salute and carry
out U.S. policy after the Senate ratified the Washington Treaty and
its clear prohibition on the offensive use of chemical weapons. Fries
and his allies in Congress and the chemical industry continued to
speak out for "preparedness" for gas warfare, which had
become a code word for massive production and the integration of delivery
mechanisms into military structures. The Washington Conference, however,
led to a clear change in military policy away from plans to prepare
and use chemical weapons, and the Chemical Weapons Service saw its
1922 budget cut from its requested $8.5 million to $4.5 million by
the War Department, and then to $1.5 million by Congress.(53)
making war plans, General Pershing, now army chief of staff, took
to heart the new policy he had created with President Harding. For
example, in November 1922 a corps commander requested that one of
his war plans provide for the employment of toxic and nontoxic gases.
The request was disapproved by General Pershing, who wrote:
is inconceivable that the United States will initiate the use
and by no means certain that it will use them even
in retaliation. Aside from this, it is quite unlikely that the
will invite retaliatory measures by using
gases in any form. Should he do so, however, the action to be
taken will be decided when the time comes.(54)
General Fries and his allies continued to argue for the preparedness
of all units to respond immediately and massively with chemical weapons,
senior military officials were moving in the opposite direction. Chemical
weapons were being relegated to the fringe of U.S. war plans, leading
to a policy of storing them away from likely battlefields, with plans
to transport them for use in retaliation only after the fact.
1925, as Calvin Coolidge took over the Oval Office, the policy of
prohibition had gained so much institutional and international recognition
that the State Department was looking for any opportunity to strengthen
it. As the State Department prepared forthe Geneva Conference for
the Control of the International Trade in Arms, Munitions, and Implements
of War, President Coolidge met with Secretary of State Frank Kellogg,
head of the U.S. delegation, Rep. Theodore Burton of Ohio,
and Commerce Secretary Herbert Hoover, who, like Pershing, had backed
Harding on the Washington Conferences advisory committee. They
agreed to add chemical weapons to the agenda, and proposed a ban on
trade to go with the Washington Treatys ban on use:
High Contracting Parties therefore agree absolutely to prohibit the
export from their territory of any such asphyxiating, poisonous or
other gases and all analogous liquids, intended or designed for use
in connection with operations of war.(55)
irritated the War Department by not including it in the decision-making
process for what he saw as a purely humanitarian issue.(56) When
the War Department did have an opportunity to express itself as part
of the military committee of the conference, it balked and went back
to the same argument that it had used in the Washington Conference,
saying that it was not feasible to restrict the use of chemical weapons
except against civilian targets. Representative Burton quickly cleared
up the confusion over the U.S. position, telling the conference:
President of the United States, Mr. Coolidge, will be glad to extend
an invitation for a Conference at Washington with a view to the framing
of a Convention for the prohibition of the use of asphyxiating gas
chemical weapons were dropped from the trade provisions of the final
Geneva Treaty, the delegates approved a separate Gas Protocol in 1925
that restated the complete prohibition on chemical warfare.(58)
The War and Navy departments, while not strong proponents of chemical
"preparedness," nonetheless objected to being excluded from
U.S. deliberations, and strongly opposed ratification of this new
treaty restriction.(59) They teamed up with the chemical industry
and the American Legion to conduct a national publicity blitz against
Foreign Relations Committee favorably reported on the Geneva Protocol,
but a maelstrom of opposition hit it on the Senate floor. Supporters
of the protocol, which was simply a restatement of existing U.S. policy
and treaty commitments, were caught unprepared for the debate of 1926.
The Senate clearly accepted General Friess arguments for military
preparedness, and believed that the United States would be putting
itself at a military disadvantage with other nations who would not
observe the protocol. Senator James Wadsworth of New York, a
leader in the opposition said:
know just about as certainly as we know we are sitting in this chamber
that it is against all human nature to expect a nation to deny to
itself the use of a weapon that will save it.(61)
the Senate rejected the protocol, the Chemical Weapons Service finally
achieved one of its primary objectives: legitimacy. U.S. policy at
least gave lip service to being prepared for the use of chemical weapons
in retaliation. Secretary of State Kellogg said in a December 1926
letter to the American Chemical Society:
governments recognize that it is incumbent upon them to be fully prepared
as regards chemical warfare, and especially as regards defense against
it, irrespective of any partial or general international agreements
looking to the prohibition of the actual use of such warfare.(62)
practice, though, preparedness remained a low priority in the War
Departments tight budget. While aviators in particular were
trained in delivery techniques throughout the 1930s, the limited stores
of chemicals and bombs were still kept in rear areas rather than distributed
to air bases. When World War II broke out, the United States was unprepared
to wage significant retaliatory chemical warfare.
of the explanation for the continued lack of focus on chemical weapons
in the War Department was that despite the Senate defeat of the protocol,
the official U.S. position was still strongly in favor of prohibition.
Herbert Hoover, who became president in 1929, had helped develop this
position on the advisory committee in 1921, and he made clear that
he was not going to change it. His instructions to the U.S. delegation
to the World Disarmament Conference in 1932 continued the U.S. tradition
of strong international leadership against the use of chemical weapons:
United States is prepared to accept not merely the abolition of lethal
gases as heretofore announced, but the abolition of the use of all
toxic gases in war.(63)
War Department had made several efforts to water down the language
that President Hoover was suggesting, inserting such clauses as "subject
to reciprocity" and language to make sure that American "preparedness"
was not hindered by any treaties or policy proclamations.
from Coolidges mistake, Hoover did not exclude the War Department
from his decision-making process. He coordinated the wording of the
U.S. position with military leaders, and included the chief of naval
operations on the delegation. Gen. Douglas MacArthur, the Army chief
of staff, was given early word of the decision in order to relay it
to others in the War Department. The decision, however, was still
to promote an international ban, despite the limitations that would
place on U.S. military capabilities. While Hoover was willing to be
more inclusive, he also let the War Department know that the U.S.
position in favor of prohibition still stood.(64)
Mines: Clinton and the Pentagon on the Road to Ottawa
March 1996 it was clear that the smart mine position advocated at
the Convention on Conventional Weapons was a failure. During the next
two months, an intense debate took place within the Clinton administration.
U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Madeleine Albright visited mine-plagued
Angola, and wrote a private note to Secretary of Defense William Perry
urging the Pentagon to review its policy so that a workable agreement
could be reached "in our lifetime." Perry ordered General
Shalikashvili to conduct a review.(65) Agency for International
Development administrator J. Brian Atwood wrote more openly: "I
am hopeful that the United States will join neighboring Canada in
banning the use of antipersonnel landmines."(66)
Shalikashvilis review was released at the same time that a draft
report prepared for him by the Dupuy Institute, a thinktank for military
issues, began to circulate publicly. The report stated that a global
ban observed by most nations might, on balance, work in favor of U.S.
armed forces.(67) At the same time Deputy Assistant Secretary
of Defense Timothy Connolly, a Gulf War veteran, pushed for a ban
with an exception in the Korean demilitarized zone.(68) A senior
military officer admitted that there was more support among officers
for banning mines than had emerged publicly.(69)
April 3 the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation published a full-page,
pro-ban letter in the New York Times signed by fifteen retired
flag-rank U.S. officers, including Gulf War commander Gen. Norman
that you as Commander-in-Chief could responsibly take the lead in
efforts to achieve a total permanent international ban on the production,
stockpiling, sale, and use of antipersonnel landmines. We strongly
urge you to do so.(70)
letter had a tremendous impact on the media and Congress, both of
whom became more comfortable challenging the Pentagons claims.
However, it did not move its intended target, President Clinton. Facing
reelection, Clinton was reluctant to question the Joint Chiefs, who
were being aggressively lobbied by the regional commanders in Korea
and elsewhere to hold firm.(71) He asked Vice President Al Gore to
explore the issue, but Gore came down firmly against a ban, arguing
that it would endanger U.S. troops.(72)
April at a fundraising dinner for the FranklinRoosevelt memorial Clinton
discussed the issue with Gen. Robert Gard, a military adviser to the
Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation and one of the letters
signers, and the foundations president, Bobby Muller. He said
that while he wanted to negotiate a ban, he "could not afford
a breach with the Joint Chiefs." He asked them to do what they
could to "get the Joint Chiefs off my back" so he could
move toward a ban.(73)
lack of involvement allowed the Pentagon process to play itself out.
The regional commanders carried the day and Connolly was dismissed.(74)
By the end of April the Pentagon had unified its policy, and then
set out to dictate the administrations policy. The Joint Chiefs
first proposal was for a "ban 2010" plan that would phase
out "dumb" mines in five years, and "smart mines"
(except mixed systems) in 2010.(75) This proposal set the limits
of debate within the administration, and is essentially the policy
maintained to date.
repeatedly asked the Joint Chiefs if they could find a way to get
the United States onto a ban treaty. The Joint Chiefs restated their
support for Clintons goal of banning mines, but reported that
their studies had not yet found workable alternatives.(76)
Joint Chiefs insisted on searching for a particular device that would
function like a mine but not be lethal, like a mine emitting sticky
foam. This set at least a ten-year delay on signing a ban, because
of the need for research, development, procurement, and deployment.
What was needed, if the United States were to take part in a ban treaty
in the short term, was simply an order to use already-available tactics
and weapons to approximate the mines function of delaying enemy
1995 Demilitarization for Democracy published a report that noted
this distinction between replacing a weapon and replacing its function.
The report suggested some alternative delaying tactics that would
comply with a ban, such as placing a "man in the loop" of
decisions to target with command-detonated Claymore mines, artillery,
or aircraft areas where sensors or surveillance indicated enemy infiltration
or attempts to tamper with anti-tank mines.(77)
planning groups reported favorably on these tactical shifts, but correctly
noted that they would not meet the requirement of a single device
that worked as effectively as an antipersonnel mine in terms of money,
number of U.S. forces required, and likely U.S. casualties.(78) General
Gard and Nick Krawciw of the Dupuy Institute both encouraged the Pentagon
to search for alternative tactics to fulfill such functions as slowing
down enemy forces who are trying to disable anti-tank mines, and not
for a replacement weapon.(79)
Army doctrine most anti-tank minefields are directly observed by U.S.
forces in any event, andscattering antipersonnel mines raises the
risk of fratricide if U.S. forces must change plans and move through
an area when mines are still active. An internal Army report in 1997
said that air-dropped mines were the largest source of simulated combat
deaths among U.S. troops during war games at the Armys National
Gard also promoted the idea, consistent with the Pentagons focus
on discriminate firepower in its "Revolution in Military Affairs"
doctrine, of simply jumping past the problem of finding other ways
to protect anti-tank mines. Rather than concentrating resources on
slowing tanks, he argued for buying more tank-killing weapons, such
as the Multiple Launch Rocket System, the Army Tactical Missile system,
and a variety of guided bombs, rockets and artillery-fired anti-tank
political caution toward the armed forces kept his National Security
Council staff from engaging, or even monitoring, the Joint Chiefs
and the Pentagon planning groups in a search for such alternative
tactics. In this permissive environment, years could and did slip
by without progress. The staff revealed their passive role in 1996
when they declined a request by ban campaigners to assess the role
of mines in Korea.
Clinton had publicly claimed that if U.S. mines were removed, North
Korea would defeat U.S. and South Korean forces and seize Seoul.(82)
This was not, as a report by Demilitarization for Democracy, Exploding
the Landmine Myth in Korea, pointed out, actually the result of
the Pentagons war games. Even with its extremely pessimistic
assumptions (for example, weather that grounded allied aircraft but
permitted a rare fording of rivers; allied refusal to attack North
Korean forces during a week of obvious preparation for invasion; and
rapid enemy advance despite allied control of the air and of the well-fortified,
mountainous terrain) the war games found that a North Korean invasion
would be defeated before it could take Seoul.(83)
National Security Council staff were pressed by ban advocates to review
the extreme assumptions, rerun the war games with more reasonable
asssumptions, and ask for the replacement of mines in the study with
a variety of currently available alternative tactics. They declined,
with a senior staffer explaining why:
trust General Shalikashvili. We arent experts on war games.
We have to accept his findings.(84)
won reelection in 1996, but the decision he had made to allow the
Pentagon to determine mines policy was now completely entrenched.
The Ottawa process was initiated in October 1996 in the Canadian capital
at a planning meeting of pro-ban states and nongovernmental groups,
when Canadian foreign minister Lloyd Axworthy stunned the delegates
with a call to reconvene in December 1997 and sign a ban treaty. Conferences
to discuss different draft treaties were held in Vienna in February,
Bonn in April, and Brussels in June. By the summer of 1997 over one
hundred governments, including the United Kingdom, the earlier U.S.
partner in the smart-mines proposal, had signed a declaration affirming
their objective of concluding the negotiation for an antipersonnel-mine-ban
treaty by the end of the year.(85)
and the other pro-ban states kept theInternational Committee of the
Red Cross and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines fully involved
in the drafting and the strategy of a ban treaty. The participation
of these groups prevented the process from being mired down in details,
and helped keep it moving toward completion. The United States was
also present during the preparatory conferences, but because it was
an observer asking for exceptions rather than a pro-ban state, it
remained on the fringe of decision-making.(86)
decided to send a full delegation to the final drafting session in
Oslo in September 1997. It was controlled by the Pentagons agenda,
included top-ranking U.S. generals, and had specific orders not to
sign without guaranteeing its two exemptions: Korea and mixed canisters
of antipersonnel and anti-tank mines.(87) Former ban advocate and
now Secretary of State Albright wrote a letter to all the delegates
restating the case for the loopholes.
U.S. delegation claimed it had narrowed its differences with the text
(outside of the issue of Korea) to only one word, "near,"
which would permit antipersonnel mines "near" anti-tank
mines (as with U.S. "mixed" systems). The Vietnam Veterans
of America Foundations Jody Williams, coordinator of the International
Campaign to Ban Landmines, responded that this one word would have
had the same effect as putting another single word, the word "not,"
before the word "banned" throughout the treaty.(88)
a flurry of last-minute calls from Clinton to heads of state, including
South African president Nelson Mandela and Canadian prime minister
Jean Chretien, the treaty was completed with no exceptions.(89) Clinton
had spent a year fruitlessly seeking loopholes from other countries
rather than working with his own Pentagon to move toward workable
military alternatives. A wave of pro-ban publicity, generated by,
among other things, advertisements by the Vietnam Veterans of America
Foundation, visits to mine victims by Princess Diana, circulars by
the U.S. Catholic Conference, and speaking tours by the United Nations
Association of the United States, failed to move Clinton, and the
U.S. delegation arrived in Ottawa advocating the same position it
had in Geneva.
December 1997 over 120 nations came to Ottawa to sign the International
Treaty to Ban Antipersonnel Land Mines. The United States came to
observe. The result of President Clintons unwillingness to challenge
the Pentagon was that as pen was put to paper in Ottawa, the United
States stood with China, Libya, and Iraq as an obstacle to the universalization
of a historic humanitarian effort.
Weapons: Roosevelt and the War in the Pacific
President Franklin Roosevelt took office in 1933, he continued his
predecessors policy of prohibiting the first use of chemical
weapons and discouraging preparation for large-scale use of any kind.
Public opinion was on his side, but the War Department was not. The
War Department established its own formal policy calling for the use
of chemical warfare, although it was unable to win Roosevelts
approval for the necessary tools: higher appropriations and a Chemical
1933 the World Disarmament Conference, at which Roosevelt had agreed
to a British plan banning the use of chemical weapons and allowing
preparation for defensive purposes only, failed to reach agreement
on its more general treaty.(91) The State Department held that
the United States was still legally bound to adhere to this position,
but the War Department adopted a policy that "the United States
is not a party to any treaty, now in force, that prohibits or restricts
the use in warfare of toxic or non-toxic gases." It formed a
Joint Board that in 1934 called for full preparation to use chemicals,
both in retaliation and, because of the claimed lack of binding treaties,
disputes aside, the War Department was unable to win Roosevelts
approval for significant production and distribution to the field
of chemical weapons. The limited stores of these weapons remained
physically isolated from combat units, and any decisionto move or
use them remained with the president. According to a leading scholar
in the field, it was primarily due to Roosevelts intransigence
that the War Departments recommendations were never carried
out: "The attitude of the President was the most significant
restraint to military implementation of the Joint Board policy."(93)
United States entered World War II in 1941, leading the War Department
to revisit the issue repeatedly over the next four years. Prior to
U.S. entry, there were isolated cases of covert use of chemical weapons
by Italy (against Ethiopia) and Japan (against China), and of course
Germany murdered millions of civilians with chemicals. However, the
Axis powers made a clear decision not to use these weapons against
Allied forces or cities. Scholars of the period agree that this decision
was motivated not just by the threat of Allied retaliation, a threat
that, unknown to the Axis powers, was empty, at least in the short
twenty years of stigmatization of chemical weapons, beginning with
the Washington Conference in 1921, also played a role in convincing
Germany, Italy, and Japan to forego the offensive use of these weapons.
Strange as it seems, even dictators bent on invading their neighbors
felt that they would be discredited if they flouted the international
consensus against using chemical weapons. In this "total war"
that broke the barrier against bombing cities, the Axis powers privately
and publicly kept assuring the Allies that they were holding to the
relevant international agreements regarding chemical weapons.(94)
well before World War II, President Roosevelt had seen the far-ranging
costs to U.S. security of the use of chemical weapons. After the United
States entered the war, he continued to resist War Department requests
to prepare for the massive use of these weapons, even in retaliation.
In June 1943, Roosevelt made the U.S. position clear to even the most
ardent War Department advocates. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill
had stated that the Allied powers would respond in kind if the Germans
initiated gas warfare against the Russians. Roosevelt agreed, but
made a broader statement that took into account not just the military
situation, but also the humanitarian aspects of the chemical weapons
debate over the preceding twenty-five years:
have been loath to believe that any nation, even our present enemies,
could or would be willing to loose upon mankind such terrible and
Use of such weapons has been outlawed by the
general opinion of civilized mankind. This country has not used them,
and I hope that we never will be compelled to use them. I state categorically
that we shall under no circumstances resort to the use of such weapons
unless they are first used by our enemies.(95)
late 1943, however, Roosevelt was facing an important test of his
resolve. The battles on the many Pacific Islands had been increasing
in their ferocity, and the Japanese strategy of using caves and underground
tunnels as centers for attack and escape had cost thousands of American
troops their lives. The American media began a drumbeat for the use
of chemical weapons to clear out Japanese resistance and save U.S.
lives. Editorial headlines included: We Should Gas Japan, We Should
Have Used Gas at Tarawa, and You Can Cook Em Better with
public opinion could easily have been swayed to accept such a policy.
In September 1944 a poll concluded that only 23 percent of Americans
would support the use of gas in the war with Japan, but that number
increased to 40 percent by June 1945.(97) Japan, after all,
had broken an international norm to start the war with a surprise
attack. In addition, it had brutalized civilians in occupied territories
and U.S. prisoners in violation of international treaties of far longer
standing than those on chemical weapons.(98)
1944 the War Department was developing plans to take the Japanese
stronghold of Iwo Jima. Chemical weapons were an integrated part of
the plan.(99) There is little doubt that chemical shells wouldhave
been far more effective than napalm in flushing out Japanese troops,
and would have saved thousands of the twenty-five thousand American
casualties when the invasion took place in February 1945. When Roosevelt
received this recommendation from the War Department in 1944, he denied
permission.(100) His simple, hand-written explanation on the
request read: "All prior endorsements denied Franklin
D. Roosevelt, Commander in Chief."(101) The general responsible
for the June 1944 invasion of Biak also removed chemical shells from
his plans, because of his judgment that their use would violate what
a historian called "known official policy."(102)
decision was clear. Army chief of staff George Marshall made sure
that it was understood down through the ranks, rejecting requests
for massive pre-positioning of chemical weapons in the Pacific as
the war moved toward its conclusion. Roosevelts policy
was so firm that it survived his death in April 1945. Proponents of
chemical warfare were unable to muster enough momentum within the
War Department even to bring the issue before President Truman.(103)
The United States had adopted a clear, unbreakable policy. It would
not be the first to use chemical weapons.
had seemed impossible to imagine in 1919 had in fact occurred in the
next major conflict: World War II ended without the use of chemical
warfare. Only the leadership of presidents from Wilson to Roosevelt
had made that possible. Their achievement cemented the stigma on chemical
weapons that exists to this very day, as symbolized by the global
Chemical Weapons Convention recently ratified by the U.S. Senate.
Although he had used them in his war with Iran, not even Saddam Hussein
was willing to risk the use of chemical weapons against Allied troops
or Israeli cities in the Gulf War, thereby significantly reducing
the risk to Allied soldiers and civilians alike. The taboo against
chemical weapons proved to be in the long-term military and humanitarian
interests of the United States, just as the presidents who had countered
the War Department inorder to create and preserve it had predicted.
Mines: Clinton and the Continuing Search for Alternatives
the failure of the United States to sign the ban treaty in Oslo the
Pentagon moved quickly to consolidate its control over U.S. mine policy.
It gained White House approval of a scheme to remove smart mines from
the search for alternatives, by redefining them as explosive devices
rather than mines. Ban supporters were stunned at this huge policy
change that broke Clintons pledge to sign the Ottawa Treaty
once alternatives had been developed.(104) The Pentagons
response was that it still hoped the Ottawa Treaty would be revised
to exempt antipersonnel mines placed "near" anti-tank mines
something no independent observer thought possible.(105)
Pentagon then went after its next target, a waiver of the one-year
moratorium on use that would go into effect in 1999. A Pentagon report
to Congress cited endangerment of Seoul and an estimate that allied
casualties would rise by 40 percent in combat without antipersonnel
mines.(106) Secretary of Defense William Cohen and Joint Chiefs
of Staff chairman Gen. Henry Shelton told the Senate Armed Services
Committee that the moratorium "constitutes an unacceptable risk
to our troops and threatens mission accomplishment."(107)
part of the push for a waiver, and to defend the decision not to sign
in Ottawa, administration representatives began claiming that antipersonnel
mines had devastating effectiveness in the Gulf War. When pressed
for details, they cited the experience of White House anti-drug coordinator,
Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who commanded a division in the Gulf War:
the Gulf War...Imagine General (Barry) McCaffreys 24th Mechanized
Division with a left hook into Iraq. Hes out there with no protection
on his flanks, maneuvering. And you see an enemy force coming in on
his flank. You pick up the phone, call in an air strike. The aircraft
comes over and drops this canister in front of the Republican Guard
unit thats threatening his flank and puts down this field of
anti-tank mines with their protective munitions as part of it.(108)
was an appropriate word for the White House staff to use. A detailed
history of the Gulf War reports that during the one hundred hours
of ground combat, McCaffreys division was protected on its flanks
by other U.S. units, and that the Iraqi forces it met were fleeing
and surrendering rather than counterattacking.(109) According to the
offical history ofMcCaffreys Twenty-Fourth Mechanized Infantry
Division and its role in the Gulf War, the only reported use McCaffrey
made of mines came two days after the cease-fire, when a firefight
broke out by mistake as he pushed forward into an Iraqi armored column.(110)
Far from threatening his flank, the Iraqis were retreating into central
Iraq in compliance with the terms of the cease-fire, and the U.S.
mines that were delivered by artillery, not from the air, were redundant.
Iraqis were retreating north toward the Hawr-al-Hammar causeway, which
crosses a massive swamp, when they came into contact with General
McCaffreys division, which was coming from the west. After a
confused initial exchange of fire, McCaffrey ordered the destruction
of the armored column. Apache helicopters closed off the northern
end of the causeway, U.S. artillery fired self-destructing anti-tank
mines (with antipersonnel mines mixed in) onto the southern entrance
and to the rear of the Iraqi column, and U.S. tanks and artillery
destroyed 346 Iraqi vehicles (including 30 tanks) with long-range
the mines might have sealed off the causeways southern end,
few Iraqi vehicles had a chance even to reach the mined entrance to
the causeway, since U.S. tanks and artillery could pick them off from
longrange. In addition, McCaffrey turned down air attacks that could
have easily destroyed the Iraqi vehicles.(111) McCaffrey declined
to be interviewed or to respond in writing to this portrayal of his
use of mines.(112)
opponents in the House told the Senate Armed Services Committee that
they would insist on a waiver of the deadline, rather than agree to
drop it in conference committee at the behest of Senator Leahy, as
they had twice before. Leahy and Rep. Lane Evans agreed to permit
the waiver in exchange for a Presidential Decision Directive stating
an intention to sign the Ottawa Treaty when alternatives became available,
and for a reversal of the explosive devices redefinition that had
exempted smart mines from the search for alternatives.(113)
waiver was agreed to by the Senate in June 1998, with the addition
of the Leahy language providing funding and a mandate for two studies
on alternatives to mines, to be done by the Pentagon and the independent
National Academy of Sciences.(114) Leahy had hoped to include
in the legislation the Presidential Decision Directive statement of
intent to sign the Ottawa Treaty, but dropped his effort when Sen.
Ted Stevens threatened to offer an amendment that would bar U.S. signature
without the approval of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.(115) Stevenss
amendment was patently unconstitutional, since it would have conditioned
the actions of a commander-in-chief on the permission of his subordinates,
but it accurately reflected the relationship between commander-in-chief
Clinton and his military advisers on the issue of land mines.
the definition of a land mine now clear and with funds appropriated
for competing studies of alternative tactics, technologies, and weapons,
the United States is in a position to move toward signing the Ottawa
Treaty. President Clinton and his National Security Council staff
must closely monitor the Pentagons study, so that it identifies
the most workable options rather than simply reports, again, that
nothing works quite as well as antipersonnel mines.
President Clinton becomes deeply involved in the search for alternatives
to land mines and then orders that the best options identified in
both the Pentagon and independent studies be implemented, he will
take his place in history beside the five other commanders-in-chief
who bucked the odds, challenged the notion that the armed forces can
be the sole arbiter of weapons policy, and banned an indiscriminate
weapon. As was the case for the banning of chemical weapons, not just
innocent civilians but U.S. troops will thank him for his leadership
for generations to come.
Ruth Leger Sivard, World Military and Social Expenditures 1993,
15th Ed. (Washington, DC: World Priorities, 1993), p. 20.
Frederic Brown, Chemical Warfare: A Study in Restraints (Westport,
CT: Greenwood Press, 1968), pp. 267-8. This book is a definitive
work on the history of chemical weapons. The bulk of the references
to the history of the movement to ban chemical weapons in this report
come from this book. Further, Prices The Chemical Weapons
Taboo, as well as other sources used in this report, use Chemical
Warfare as a major source.
Interview with Lt. Gen. Robert Gard, Jr., Vietnam Veterans of America
Foundation, Washington, DC, May 1996.
Letter from Nick Krawciw, the Dupuy Institute, to Gen. John Shalikashvili,
chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, January 2, 1997.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 6-8.
Benedict Crowell, Army Reorganization Act Hearings, as cited
in Brown, p. 32; and Augustin Prentiss, as cited in John Van Courtland
Moon, "Controlling Chemical and Biological Weapons Through
World War II," in Encyclopedia of Arms Control and Disarmament,
vol. 2, Richard Dean Burns, ed. (New York: Charles Scribners
Sons, 1993), p. 662.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 52.
Richard M. Price, The Chemical Weapons Taboo (Ithaca, NY:
Cornell University Press, 1997), p. 72.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 54.
U.S. Congress, Senate, Hearings: Special Committee Investigating
the Munitions Industry pursuant to S. 206, 74th Congress, 2nd Session
(1936), Garvan Cable for Palmer Bradley, April 19, 1919. Exhibit
4874D, as cited in Brown, p. 55.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 55-6.
Ibid, p. 54.
Ibid, p. 167.
Price, The Chemical Weapons Taboo, p. 71.
U.S. Congress, Senate, Hearings
, Exhibit 913, as cited
in Brown, p. 58.
U.S. Congress, Senate, Hearings
, Exhibit 914, Address
by Dr. William Hale, Vice President of Dow Chemical Company to the
Rotary Club of Flint MI, December 16, 1921, as cited in Brown, p.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 58-9.
The New York Times, January 8, 1922, as cited in Price, p.
Interview with congressional staff, Washington, DC, July 1992.
Remarks by Senator Patrick Leahy, "Introduction of the Anti-Personnel
Landmine Moratorium Act," July 30, 1992.
Second NGO Conference on Landmines Participants Preliminary
List, May 1994.
David A. Hackworth, "The Troops: Learning About the War the
Hard Way," Newsweek, December 4, 1995, p. 33; Karen
Long, "Hidden Killers: Mines Kill, Maim Long After War,"
Plain Dealer (Cleveland OH), October 16, 1995; and Edward
Ruiz, "Cambodia: Land of mines and amputees," The Desert
News (Salt Lake City, UT), September 7, 1995.
Interview with General Gard, Washington, DC, January 1999.
Vago Muradian, "U.S. Mine Farms Hit Foreign Ban: Claim Overseas
Sales are Critical to Keep Design Skills," Defense News,
July 19-25, 1993, p. 36.
White House, Office of the Press Secretary, Fact Sheet, "U.S.
Policy on a Landmine Control Regime," September 26, 1994.
Project on Demilitarization and Democracy, Hostile Takeover
(Washington, DC, November 1995), pp. 9-11.
William Taylor, "Potentially Explosive US Land-mine Ban,"
The Washington Times, October 17, 1993.
Briefing given to Instructors at the United States Military Academy,
West Point, 1994.
Gard, Alternatives to Antipersonnel Landmines (Washington,
DC: Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, April 1999), pp. 24-5.
Interviews with John Holum, director of the Arms Control and Disarmament
Agency (ACDA), ACDA staff, and State Department staff, Washington,
"Ease threat from land mines," The Patriot-News (Harrisburg,
PA), July 19, 1995.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 72.
Price, The Chemical Weapons Taboo, p. 72; and Brown, Chemical
Warfare, p. 61.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 77-85.
Ibid, p. 61.
Memorandum from Gen. Amos Fries, commander, Chemical Warfare Service,
to the assistant secretary of state, War Planning Division, October
17, 1921, as cited in Brown, p. 62.
Charles Evans Hughes, U.S. secretary of state, Minutes from a presentation
to the sixteenth meeting of the Committee on the Limitation of Armaments,
January 6, 1922, as cited in Brown, p. 63.
Admiral de Bon, French delegate to the Washington Conference on
the Limitation of Armament, cited in Price, p. 77.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 64.
Minutes, Sixteenth Meeting of the Committee on Limitation of Armament,
January 6, 1922, as cited in Brown, p. 65.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 64.
Treaty Between the United States of America, the British
Empire, France, Italy and Japan Relating to the Use of Submarines
and Noxious Gases in Warfare, article V. February 6, 1922, as
cited in Brown, p. 67.
Sen. Patrick Leahy, "Question to Secretary of State Warren
Christopher," Senate Hearing on Landmines Moratorium, March
Paul Lewis, "Makers of Anti-Personnel Mines Are Urged by U.S.
to Ban Exports," New York Times, December 16, 1993.
Interview with the staff of Rep. Martin Olav Sabo and attendance
at a public meeting with his staff, Washington, DC, 1993.
Lora Lumpe, "Report on ATWG Delegation Activities at the CCW
Review Conference, Vienna, 25 September-13 October 1995," November
Stephen D. Biddle, Julia L. Klare and Jaeson Rosenfeld, The Military
Utility of Landmines: Implications for Arms Control (Alexandria,
VA: Institute for Defense Analysis, 1995), p. iii.
Lumpe, "Report on ATWG Delegation Activities."
Robert O. Muller, "The Land Mine ScourgeHow Much Longer?"
Christian Science Monitor, February 8, 1996.
Anne Goldfeld and Holly Myers, "Ban the land mines," The
Boston Globe, December 21, 1995.
Ambassador Michael Matheson, U.S. arms negotiator, as cited in Colum
Lynch, "U.S. Supports Limited-life Land Mines," The
Boston Globe, March 5, 1996.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 74-9.
Memorandum to Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg, "Chemical
Warfare Service Functions, G-3/5749," Chemical Warfare Service
Policy Book, March 28, 1927, p. 11, as cited in Brown, p. 92.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 98.
Ibid, p. 99.
League of Nations, Proceedings of the Conference for the Supervision
of the International Trade in Arms and Ammunition and in Implements
of War, Annex 3, 739, Geneva, 1925, as cited in Brown, p. 101.
League of Nations, Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use in
War of Asphyxiating, Poisonous or Other Gases, and of Bacteriological
Methods of Warfare, Geneva, 1925, as cited in Brown,
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 101.
Ibid, p. 103.
Senator James Wadsworth, U.S. Congressional Record, 69th
Congress, 2nd Session, LXVIII, Part 1, 149, as cited in Brown, p.
Letter from Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg, toMr. C. L. Parsons,
secretary, American Chemical Society, December 7, 1926, as cited
in Brown, p. 108.
Cable from Secretary of State Henry L. Stimson, to the secretary
of state for the American delegation, Geneva, April 2, 1932, as
cited in Brown, p. 112.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 112-3.
The Associated Press, "Leahy Happy with Pentagon Rethinking
Policy on Mines," The Washington Times, March 18, 1996.
J. Brian Atwood, "The Legacy of Land Mines," Christian
Science Monitor, March 21, 1996.
Letter from Nick Krawciw, The Dupuy Institute, to Gen. John Shalikashvili,
chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, January 2, 1997.
Raymond Bonner, "Pentagon Weighs Ending Opposition to a Ban
on Mines," The New York Times, March 17, 1996.
Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, "An Open Letter to
President Clinton," April 3, 1996.
Bonner, "Pentagon Weighs Ending Opposition."
Interview with Mike Leaveck, Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation,
Washington, DC, December 1998.
Interview with General Gard, Washington, DC, January 1999.
The Associated Press, "U.S. Official Dismissed; Opposed All
Landmines," The New York Times, April 19, 1996.
The Associated Press, "Advisors Urge Clinton to Renounce Land
Mine Use, but Not Immediately," The Washington Post,
April 18, 1996.
Philip Shenon, "Joint Chiefs Weaken Proposal for Land-Mine
Moratorium," The New York Times, May 11, 1996.
Project on Demilitarization and Democracy, Making the World Unsafe
for Landmines: A Timetable for Developing Military Alternatives
and Implementing a Worldwide Ban on the Smallest Weapon of Mass
Destruction (Washington, DC, June 1995), pp. 6-8.
Briefing by Brig. Gen. Larry J. Dodgen, deputy assistant secretary
of defense for policy and missions, Arlington, VA, December 11,
Presentation by General Gard to the United States Campaign to Ban
Landmines, Washington, DC, April 1998; and Letter from Nick Krawciw,
The Dupuy Institute, to Gen. John Shalikashvili, chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff, January 2, 1997.
George Wilson, "Report blames land mines for fratricide at
NTC," Army Times, October 13, 1997.
Gard, The Military Utility of Anti-Personnel (AP) Mines (Washington,
DC: Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, 1998), p. 25; and Gard,
Alternatives to Antipersonnel Landmines.
Demilitarization for Democracy, Exploding the Landmine Myth in
Korea (Washington, DC, August 1997), p.1.
Ibid, pp. 1-4.
Meeting of the United States Campaign to Ban Landmines with National
Security Council staff, Washington, DC, June 1996.
International Campaign to Ban Landmines, Report on Activities:
Diplomatic Conference on an International Total Ban on Anti-Personnel
Landmines (Oslo, September 1-18, 1997), p. 3.
Interview with Representatives of the International Campaign to
Ban Landmines, Washington DC, January-August 1997.
International Campaign to Ban Landmines, Report on Activities,
"U.S. To Make Final Attempt to Maim Landmine Ban Treaty,"
International Campaign to Ban Landmines, September 15, 1997, press
Interview with representatives of the International Campaign to
Ban Landmines, Washington, DC, September 1997.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 122-5.
Ibid, pp. 119-20.
Ibid, pp. 122-3.
Ibid, p. 124.
Price, The Chemical Weapons Taboo, pp. 117-20.
Statement by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, June 8, 1943, as cited
in Brown, pp. 264-5.
"We Should Have Used Gas at Tarawa," Washington Times
Herald, December 20, 1943; "We Should Gas Japan,"
New York Daily News, November 20, 1943; E. Lindley, "Thoughts
on the Use of Gas in Warfare," Newsweek, November 20,
1943; "You Can Cook Em Better with Gas," Washington
Times Herald, February 1, 1944; and G. F. Eliot, "Should
We Gas the Japs?" Popular Science Monthly, August 1945,
as cited in Price, p. 125.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 287.
Price, The Chemical Weapons Taboo, p. 125.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 268, 287.
Interview with James Bradley, Washington, DC, October 1998.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt, as cited in Richard Wheeler, Iwo
(New York: Lippincott and Crowell, 1980), p. 13.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, p. 269; and H. Riegelman, Caves
of Biak (New York: The Dial Press, 1955), p. 153.
Brown, Chemical Warfare, pp. 271-5.
Dana Priest, "Administration Drops Plans to Find Substitutes
for Antipersonnel Mine," The Washington Post, October
Interview with Jan Lodal, deputy assistant secretary of defense,
Washington, DC, April 1998.
Lt. Col. Mike Thumm, USMC, Report to Congress on the Anti-Personnel
Landmine Use Moratorium (Washington, DC: Department of Defense,
April 15, 1998).
Steven Lee Myers, "Clinton Seeks to Overturn Land Mine Moratorium,"
The New York Times, May 3, 1998.
Robert Bell, National Security Council Arms Specialist, as cited
in Joseph Fitchett, "European and US Allies Split on Use of
Landmines on NATO Soil," International Herald Tribune,
February 5, 1998.
Michael Gordon and Bernard Trainor, The Generals War (Boston:
Back Bay Books, 1995), pp. 435-8.
Jason Kamiya, History of the 24th Mechanized Infantry Divisional
Combat Team during Operation Desert Storm: The Attack to free Kuwait,
January through March 1991 (Fort Benning, GA: United States
Army, March 1991), p.56.
Letter from Caleb Rossiter, Director, Demilitarization for Democracy,
to Gen. Barry McCaffrey, May 14, 1999.
Gordon and Trainor, The Generals War, pp. 435-8; and
Kamiya, History of the 24th Mechanized Infantry, p. 56.
Letter from Samuel Berger, NSC assistant secretary for national
security affairs, to Senator Leahy, May 15, 1998; and Senator Leahy,
Statement on US Policy Concerning the International Landmine Treaty,
May 22, 1998.
Senator Leahy, Statement.
Interview with congressional staff, Washington, DC, May 1998.
report was produced by a writing team from Demilitarization for Democracy
(DFD), a U.S. arms-control -advocacy organization that in July 1999
merged with the Center for International Policy. DFDs guiding
theme is the work of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Oscar Arias. During
his successful pursuit of a Central American peace accord in the 1980s,
Arias said that democracy and peace require demilitarization -- dramatic
reductions in conflict, military spending, and the political and economic
power of armed forces.
for Democracy project at the Center for International Policy will
promote three programs to mobilize U.S. support for demilitarization
and democratization of developing countries:
"No Arms to Dictators" Code of Conduct
Year 2000 Campaign, to Redirect World Military Spending to Human Development
International and U.S. Campaigns to Ban Land Mines
for additional reports, interviews, and public appearances may be
directed to the Center for International Policy.
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to the Center for International Policy. The Center is a nonprofit
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