(Source: Office of Sen. John McCain)
(Editor’s Note: This speech was given on the floor of the U.S. Senate June 3, 2009)
Mr. President, today we celebrate the unveiling in the Capitol of a statue of Ronald Reagan, one of our country’s great presidents and a personal hero to me throughout my political life. While there are many aspects of President Reagan’s legacy we might reflect on today, I’d like to take the opportunity to discuss just one of them: his dream of a world free of nuclear weapons.
Speaking before the Japanese Diet on November 11, 1983, President Ronald Reagan said, “The only value in possessing nuclear weapons is to make sure they can’t be used ever. I know I speak for people everywhere when I say our dream is to see the day when nuclear weapons will be banished from the face of the Earth.” That is my dream, too, and it is one shared by many of our most distinguished national security practitioners. In 2007, former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and George Shultz, along with former Secretary of Defense William Perry and Senator Sam Nunn, authored an article titled “A World Free of Nuclear Weapons,” in which they laid out their vision of the globe free of the most dangerous weapons ever known.