WASHINGTON (May 18,1998) -- India's detonation of five nuclear weapons last week "raises troubling moral issues," according to the Chairman of the U.S. Catholic Conference International Policy Committee, who urged restraint in any U.S. response.
In a letter Friday to Samuel Berger, President Clinton's National Security Advisor, Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick of Newark (NJ) said he shares "the dismay of the Clinton Administration and so many others" at India's decision to test nuclear weapons.
At the same time, Archbishop McCarrick reminded Mr. Berger that "the moral credibility of the United States in urging India and other nations to forego nuclear weapons depends on our own nation's willingness to ratify the comprehensive test ban and to make further progress toward nuclear disarmament."
In addition, Archbishop McCarrick asked the Administration to take "due care" in its response to ensure that India's poor are not made to bear the burden resulting from economic sanctions.
"U.S. government aid is vital for large numbers of India's most vulnerable people," said Archbishop McCarrick. "I respectfully urge that this critical humanitarian and development aid be exempted from the measures taken in response to India's actions."