By Jeremy Corbyn
What we need is real security – my statement on today’s announcement 👇
Real security will be provided by working co-operatively internationally to tackle the major challenges of our time – from climate catastrophe to global poverty, to the international refugee crisis to health pandemics.
In contrast to this, today’s defence and security review shows Boris Johnson’s Tories are intent on an increasingly militaristic and belligerent agenda.
Lifting the cap on the number of Trident nuclear warheads the UK can stockpile by more than 40% to 260 is totally wrong. It is in conflict with our legal obligations under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and is at odds with the new UN Treaty to ban all nuclear weapons globally. It also runs counter to the example set by President Biden of renewing a nuclear weapons reduction treaty with Russia.
At a time when our public services are at breaking point due to a decade of austerity, the decision to spend billions more on nuclear weapons we should never use shows the Tories have the wrong priorities.
Sabre rattling, initiating a new nuclear arms race and increasing tension with Russia and China provides no way forward for humanity and will make the world more, not less, dangerous. We need to be working together internationally to solve problems not creating new ones.
The Tories have not learnt the lessons of how ill-prepared we were to deal with the Coronavirus pandemic; they should be prioritising the health service and regenerating our economy rather than ploughing vast amounts of resources into nuclear weapons and hikes in military spending.
Real security is not provided by increasing our nuclear arsenal and taking an increasingly bellicose stance in the international arena.
Nor is it provided by continuing arms exports that fuel wars and conflicts, not least the UK’s continuing sales of arms to Saudi Arabia that are used in the war on Yemen.
It is time for a change of priorities – to push for peace and to put our planet, health, lives and livelihoods first.
By Mark Zuckerberg
Between Covid and insufficient public funding for elections, there are unprecedented challenges for election officials working to make sure everyone can vote safely this year. Last month Priscilla and I donated $300 million to support election officials with the infrastructure they need to administer the vote – including voting equipment, PPE for poll workers and hiring additional poll staff.
We’ve gotten a far greater response than we expected from election officials needing funding for voting infrastructure, so today we’re committing an additional $100 million to the Center for Tech and Civic Life to make sure that every jurisdiction that needs funding to help people vote safely can get it. So far, more than 2,100 local election jurisdictions have submitted applications to CTCL for support.
Since our initial donation, there have been multiple lawsuits filed in an attempt to block these funds from being used, based on claims that the organizations receiving donations have a partisan agenda. That’s false. These funds will serve communities throughout the country — urban, rural and suburban – and are being allocated by non-partisan organizations. The Center for Tech and Civic Life shared data on the grant applications so far that shows that while a number of large jurisdictions have applied, the majority of applications have come from jurisdictions with fewer than 25,000 registered voters. All qualified jurisdictions that apply for the funds will be approved.
Voting is the foundation of democracy. It’s how we express our voice and make sure our country is heading in the direction we want. Priscilla and I remain determined to ensure that every state and local election jurisdiction has the resources they need so Americans can vote.
To be clear, I agree with those who say that government should have provided these funds, not private citizens. I hope that for future elections the government provides adequate funding. But absent that funding, I think it’s critical that this urgent need is met.
Voting is voice, and we believe every American should have the chance to make their voice heard in this election.