20 Weeks of Action at Germany’s Büchel Nuclear Base
Nukewatch Quarterly Spring 2016
The Büchel nuclear base in West Central Germany, east of the border with Belgium and Luxembourg, is home to twenty US B61 nuclear gravity bombs ready for use on German Tornado fighter-bombers.
Starting March 26, 2016, and running until August 9, groups and individuals will hold vigils and take other nonviolent direct actions at the gates of the Büchel base. Groups or individuals can choose a week to organize actions on one day or more at the base. March 26 is the 6th anniversary of the bi-partisan motion calling on the federal government to pursue a withdrawal of all US nuclear weapons.
The US is the only government in the world that deploys its nuclear weapons in other countries. Beyond the 20 deployed in Germany, US B61 are at-the-ready in the Netherlands (20), Italy (40), Belgium (20) and Turkey (~80-90).
Twenty-seven years after the end of the cold war, US B61 nuclear bombs are still deployed here as part of a so-called “nuclear sharing” agreement. The B61s are kept operationally ready for use the moment the order comes from NATO, and if ordered to do so, German pilots will take off in German Tornado jet fighters and drop the US H-bombs on pre-determined targets. These B61 bombs are scheduled to be replaced by expensive, new, precision-guided “B61-[model]12s” by 2024. This is in spite of the fact that the German parliament or Bundestag took a bi-partisan or “cross-party” decision March 26, 2010, calling on the government to have the bombs permanently withdrawn.
War in Syria
Büchel air base is not just used for “defense” and nuclear “deterrence” but is also currently taking an active role in war-fighting, playing a central role in the illegal military operation against Syria. Apart from the four Tornado jets from Jagel air base in Schleswig-Holstein, two Tornados and 20 military personnel will be provided from Büchel air base. They will be deployed for one year at the Incirlik US nuclear base in Turkey (home to 80-to-90 US B61s) to undertake operations against Syria.
—GAAA (Nonviolent Action to Abolish NuclearWeapons) More info: <firstname.lastname@example.org>