Small-arms treaty, big Second Amendment threat

by James A. Lyons, The Washington Times  |  published on July 17, 2014

7_162014_b4-lyons-constituti8201_s640x780
In a little-noticed action, the U.N. General Assembly on April 2, 2013, adopted by “majority vote” an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) with the objective of regulating the international trade in conventional arms from small arms to major military equipment. The treaty’s lofty objectives were to foster peace and security by limiting uncontrolled destabilizing arms transfer to areas of conflict. In particular, it was also meant to prevent countries that abuse human rights from acquiring arms.

While the record of the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty discussions makes no mention of it, the genesis for regulating the unrestrained transfer of conventional arms to conflict areas, Third World countries and human rights violators was a key policy of President Carter’s administration. Shortly after his inauguration in 1977, he initialed a policy of restraint on conventional-arms transfer and linked such control to the human rights record of potential recipients, particularly in Latin America. To implement this policy, the Carter administration proposed to the Soviet Union, the world’s second-leading supplier of arms, that it open negotiations to conclude such an agreement. These meetings were known as the Conventional Arms Transfer Talks.

The first region selected was Latin America, because there was less competition there than anywhere else in the world between the United States and the Soviet Union. As the director of political-military affairs, I was the Joint Chiefs of Staff representative in the U.S. delegation, which was headed by Les Gelb from the State Department. Suffice to say, after four meetings over a 12-month period and the “delusion” that a successful agreement could be achieved, the talks collapsed. The esoteric objectives may sound good in the faculty lounge, but they fail to pass muster in the real world.

The Soviets were always the reluctant suitors in this enterprise. They were not about to restrict the transfer of arms in areas that they viewed to be in their political interests. Certainly, there was not unanimity of purpose in the Carter administration. The Joint Chiefs of Staff viewed the objectives as an unnecessary infringement on our strategy and sovereignty.

No comments yet - you can be the first!

Comments are closed.

?>

All Things Gun Related

Whether you’re into AR-15s, AKs, carbines, shotguns, self-defense pistols, or hunting rifles, American Firearms Review will provide you with the most up to date product reviews, news, and everything else you need to know about firearms and accessories. Join over 1,000,000 avid gun owners who trust American Firearm Review for their daily dose of Second Amendment news and reviews.

We know how important your privacy is and your information is SAFE with us. We’ll never sell
your email address and you can unsubscribe at any time directly from your inbox.
View our full privacy policy.