Hollybush summit threats still resonate

By Pete McCarthy
pmccarthy@sjnewsco.com

As part of an ongoing recognition of the events of the Hollybush Summit 40 years ago, Rowan University invited Congressman Robert Andrews to speak to students and faculty on Monday about the threats facing the country today.

As was the case when the two world leaders met here, there is still a real threat of nuclear attack, said Andrews, D-1st Dist., of Haddon Heights. That is because of relaxed efforts by this country's leaders to stop it, he contended.

There are reactors mostly in the former Soviet Union that still use highly-enriched uranium, according to Andrews. He argued that funding should be appropriated to make sure those are converted within the next five years.

The country's leaders also need to conduct better intelligence, he said, because not all nuclear material is accounted for.

"It doesn't take much to create a bomb," said Andrews, who suggested that an amount the size of a grapefruit could be enough for devastation. "The good news here is al-Qaida can't make a nuclear bomb sitting in a cave in Afghanistan. The bad news is, they can steal what is already made or buy what is already made."

If all of this material is accounted for, then it becomes a matter of securing what exists, Andrews said.

In June 1967 as the Cold War was waning, President Lyndon Johnson and Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin met in Glassboro to discuss several key issues just a few weeks after the Arab-Israeli Six-Day War.

What happened then is "badly needed" now, Andrews said.

"Diplomacy actually worked," Andrews said. "This is a message that has to be heard in Washington."

Rowan is planning several other events this year to remember the Glassboro summit.

"There are critical questions facing society today," University President Donald Farish said. "It's an opportunity for us to educate our students in real-world issues."

More information can be found at www.rowan.edu/hollybush.

 

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Date Published: Tuesday, September 18, 2007 - 06:00