Monday, January 15, 2018

OMNI NUCLEAR WEAPONS ABOLITION NEWSLETTER #23

OMNI
NUCLEAR WEAPONS ABOLITION NEWSLETTER #23, JANUARY 15, 2017.
Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace, Justice, and Ecology

TICK TOCK
By Gerald Sloan (2017)

When I was born the doomsday clock
was set at seven before midnight.
As my grandchildren are being born
it has jumped five minutes ahead.

Five minutes. Five children.
Yet the heads of state
continue to behave as if
nuclear weapons are popguns.

In any psychological profile this
would be diagnosed as psychosis.

This really captures my feelings about the topic.  Did you hear of the Trump supporter in Washington State (I have forgotten his name) who believes that nuclear warfare might actually be good for humankind?  Unbelieveable.  Sensing the decision to use nuclear weapons may be in the hands of an administration that is denying science at every turn, psychosis sounds understated.  Burnetta

#1 US FIRSTS
 “…it was we ‘who first produced and tested’ the bomb, we who were ‘the first to raise its destructiveness to a new level with the hydrogen bomb…and we alone, so help us God, who have used the weapon in anger against others, and against tens of thousands of helpless noncombatants at that.’”  Jonathan Schell, The Gift of Time: The Case for Abolishing Nuclear Weapons Now.  P. 26.  A brilliant writer Schell, now dead but his books against nuclear weapons provide bright light for our struggle.

September witnesses important Days and the importance of the United Nations to abolishing nuclear weapons:: 20th, UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons opened for signatures.  21st, UN International Day of Peace.  26th, UN Day for Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.


CONTENTS: NUCLEAR WEAPONS ABOLITION NEWSLETTER
Two Books on Nagasaki Nuclear Bombing
   Stelson, Sachiko
   Southard, Nagasaki
World War III

   Michel Chossudovsky.  Towards a World War III Scenario. The Dangers of Nuclear War.
           2
012.   US and Israel v. Iran
   Trump’s “Usable” Nucs
Anti-Nucs Movement 2017
   Greenwood, UN Ban Treaty
   UN Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons and Nobel Peace Prize
       Awarded to ICAN
      Lieu/Markey Bill Barring U.S. president from starting a nuclear war without a
         declaration of war by Congress.

     Eiger. Film.  The Nuns, the Priests, and the Bombs.  Pacific Life Community,
       Disarm Now Plowshares v. Trident Submarines at Strategic Weapons
        Facility, Pacific, Bangor, Wash.
 
  Symposium at University of New Mexico
Organizations Against Nuclear Weapons
  Harvey, American Anti-Nuclear Activism, 1975-1990
  Zac, Almighty, Three Catholics break into the uranium-enrichment facility at Oak
      Ridge


 
Analyses: Letters, Articles, Books
  Lichterman: Trump, Destroyer
  Wittner, Why So Little Public Protest 
  Krieger, Letter to Trump and Putin
  Sprey and Spinney, US MICC Drumming Up anti-Russian
        hysterics.


Special Focus:  Accidents
Nuclear Weapons Mishaps
Near Nuclear Disaster at Damascus, AR, Film and Book:
      Command and Control
      Nuclear War, the Damascus Incident, and the Illusion of Safety by Eric
          Schlosser   

 US/SU Nuclear Subs Collide,  Nukewatch Quarterly (pub. by the Progressive
          Foundation). 
Spring 2017. 

Special Feature of MICC we don’t hear often
Graff, Raven Rock, Save the Leaders

OMNI Opposition to Nuclear War
October 14, 2017, Celebrated UN Nuclear Ban Treaty and ICAN’s Nobel Peace Prize
OMNI’s Long Opposition to Nuclear Weapons
   Annual Remembrance each August
   Newsletters

Related:  Marshallese Education Initiative (MEI) 3-4-17.


    
TEXTS

TWO BOOKS ON NAGASAKI
HIROSHIMA AND NAGASAKI NUCLEAR BOMBINGS

Susan Southard.  Nagasaki: Life After Nuclear War.   2016. https://www.amazon.com/Nagasaki-Life-After-Nuclear-War/dp/0143109421    Susan Southard.

For much of the world, the United States’ 1945 atomic bombings of Japan represented an end to a long and costly global war. But for tens of thousands of survivors who barely escaped death beneath the mushroom cloud, their new lives as hibakusha (atomic bomb–affected people) had just begun.
In the late morning of August 9, 1945—three days after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima—the people of Nagasaki moved through another day of hunger and wartime routine. At 11:02 a.m. a brilliant flash illuminated the sky, followed by an explosion equal to 21,000 tons of TNT. With searing heat and an annihilating force that defies imagination, the blast tore through factories, shops, and homes, carrying unprecedented levels of radiation that penetrated the bodies of people and animals. Approximately 74,000 people were killed, and another 75,000 were wounded.
Nagasaki takes us on the astonishing journeys of five survivors, all teenagers at the time of the bombing. From 1945 to Nagasaki today, we watch them and hibakusha across the city navigate an uncertain future with punishing injuries, acute and late-onset radiation-related illnesses, and haunting fears that they would pass on genetic disorders to their children and grandchildren. In a remarkable demonstration of human resilience, a small number of hibakusha made the very personal choice to speak out about their experiences, even as U.S. policies kept their suffering hidden in both in their own country and across the world. The survivors’ goal: To ensure that Nagasaki remains the last atomic-bombed city in history.

 

 

Caren Stelson.  Sachiko.  a Nagasaki Bomb Survivor's Story. 2016

This striking work of narrative nonfiction tells the true story of six-year-old Sachiko Yasui’s survival of the Nagasaki atomic bomb on August 9, 1945, and the heartbreaking and lifelong aftermath. Having conducted extensive interviews with Sachiko Yasui, Caren Stelson chronicles Sachiko’s long journey toward peace. This special book offers readers a remarkable new perspective on the final moments of World War II, the fifty years that followed, and the courage it took for one woman to tell her story of nuclear war and peace.
ABOUT NAGASAKI
WINNER of the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize

FINALIST for the Ridenhour Book Prize • Chautauqua Prize • William Saroyan International Prize for Writing • PEN Center USA Literary Award

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
The Economist • The Washington Post • American Library Association • Kirkus Reviews

“A poignant and complex picture of the second atomic bomb’s enduring physical and psychological tolls. Eyewitness accounts are visceral and haunting. . . . But the book’s biggest achievement is its treatment of the aftershocks in the decades since 1945.” —The New Yorker

A powerful and unflinching account of the enduring impact of nuclear war, told through the stories of those who survived.


On August 9, 1945, three days after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, the United States dropped a second atomic bomb on Nagasaki, a small port city on Japan’s southernmost island. An estimated 74,000 people died within the first five months, and another 75,000 were injured.

Published on the seventieth anniversary of the bombing, Nagasaki takes readers from the morning of the bombing to the city today, telling the first-hand experiences of five survivors, all of whom were teenagers at the time of the devastation. Susan Southard has spent years interviewing hibakusha (“bomb-affected people”) and researching the physical, emotional, and social challenges of post-atomic life. She weaves together dramatic eyewitness accounts with searing analysis of the policies of censorship and denial that colored much of what was reported about the bombing both in the United States and Japan.

A gripping narrative of human resilience, Nagasaki will help shape public discussion and debate over one of the most controversial wartime acts in history.

SEE MORE


US AND ISRAEL PLANNED WWIII AGAINST IRAN

Review of Towards a World War III Scenario. The Dangers of Nuclear War.  2012.


U.S. plans to attack Iran with a mix of nuclear and conventional weapons have been in readiness since June, 2005, according to Michel Chossudovsky, a distinguished authority on international affairs.
“Confirmed by military documents as well as official statements, both the U.S. and Israel contemplate the use of nuclear weapons directed against Iran,” writes professor Chossudovsky, Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization in Montreal.
The plans were formulated in 2004. The previous year, Congress gave the Pentagon the green light to use thermo-nuclear weapons in conventional war theaters in the Middle East and Central Asia, allocating $6 billion in 2004 alone to create the new generation of “defensive” tactical nuclear weapons or “mini-nukes”. 
https://www.globalresearch.ca/towards-a-world-war-iii-scenario-breaking-the.../5348384
Oct 12, 2017 - WW III has been contemplated by the U.S. and its allies for well over ten years as revealed in Michel Chossudovsky's 2012 best-seller: “Towards a World War III Scenario: The Dangers of Nuclear War“. Excerpt below. The US has embarked on a military adventure, “a long war”, which threatens the future….

TRUMP WANTS MORE USABLE NUCS
“Usable” nuclear weapons?!  WIN WITHOUT WAR
Cassandra Euphrat Weston  1-13-18 
9:20 AM (8 hours ago)
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
Dick,
Just leaked: Trump wants more usable nukes.
A leaked draft of the Trump administration’s nuclear weapons policy calls for more nuclear weapons with a “small” enough blast radius to be used in a targeted attack.
There is no such thing as a “small” nuclear bomb. The type of new nuclear weapon Trump is after could kill 100,000 with a single detonation. Even worse, there’s only one person who needs to give the approval to use these shiny new nuclear weapons:
Donald “My Nuclear Button is Bigger than Yours” Trump.
Win Without War is pulling out all the stops to pass legislation that would take away Trump’s ability to single-handedly launch nuclear weapons. But we need your help.
Trump isn’t just collecting more nuclear weapons. He’s speeding toward reasons to deploy them. Trump is goading North Korea into a war that could turn nuclear in an instant. And he continues to threaten to tear up the Iran nuclear deal — and destroy the historic progress toward curbing a major nuclear threat.
More “usable” nukes. More reasons to use them. Dick, we are staring down the barrel of nuclear war.
Every American needs to jump in to get Trump’s finger off the nuclear button, stat. The future of our world is at stake. Will you step in with a $3 contribution today?
Thank you for working for peace,
Cassandra
https://ci6.googleusercontent.com/proxy/aN4ShBVjFfUEp0CioyXETreWAiiXY9aB49EndpgQ9DYOahumOVxLVDhek01qOgbD8gNR1YvPEogvBh0frLjWapExY_eXOWhKW2QsKEbL6RU8=s0-d-e1-ft#https://act.winwithoutwar.org/o.gif?akid=1250.241021.4Q0QXW 


ANTI-NUCS
HOPEFUL INTERNATIONAL ANTI-NUCLEAR WEAPONS EVENTS DURING 2017


Max Greenwood
July 7, 2017
The Hill

The treaty is intended to bar countries from developing, testing, manufacturing, acquiring or even possessing any kind of nuclear weapon.

A majority of the world's countries voted at the United Nations on Friday to adopt a global treaty banning nuclear weapons. 
The vote marks the first time in history that a majority of countries moved to approve a binding instrument prohibiting nuclear weapons. In all, 122 nations voted in favor of the treaty, while only one, the Netherlands, voted against it. Singapore abstained. 
The treaty is intended to bar countries from developing, testing, manufacturing, acquiring or even possessing any kind of nuclear weapon.
Not part of the treaty negotiations, however, were the world's nuclear powers, including the United States, France, the United Kingdom and Russia — all permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — who argued that the treaty was unrealistic and that countries like North Korea would not cooperate. 
"There is nothing I want more for my family than a world with no nuclear weapons, but we have to be realistic," U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haleysaid in March when negotiations on the treaty began. "Is there anyone who thinks that North Korea would ban nuclear weapons?”
The vote, however, was celebrated by arms control groups, who said the treaty was a first real step toward eliminating nuclear arms. 
“By delegitimizing nuclear weapons and raising awareness of the terrifying dangers that come from continued reliance on them, the nuclear ban makes a valuable contribution to nonproliferation and disarmament efforts," Meredith Horowski, the global campaign director for the anti-nuclear weapons group Global Zero, said in a statement.
"There are many more steps to come in order to secure a world without nuclear weapons, but today the world took a step in the right direction," she continued.
Daryl Kimball, the executive director of the Washington-based Arms Control Association, applauded the treaty as a way to "delegitimize nuclear weapons and strengthen the legal and political norm against their use."
But the prohibition passed at the U.N. on Friday "should have been stronger," he said.
"In our view, and in the view of many delegations, the final text of the Nuclear Weapons Prohibition Treaty should have been stronger," Kimball said. "Key areas, particularly Article 3, which outlines the requirements for safeguards against nuclear weapons programs, could have been strengthened and improved."


*   

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) is a coalition of non-governmental organizations in one hundred countries promoting adherence to and implementation of the United Nations nuclear weapon ban treaty.
The UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted by 122 UN members on July 7, 2017.    The “BAN Treaty” came into force when 50 nations ratified the Treaty.
Then on October 6th the Nobel Committee awarded the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) "for its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its ground-breaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons."

Lieu/Markey Bill
From ROOTSACTION
As president of the United States, Donald Trump has supreme authority to launch a nuclear strike, and literally no one can stop him.

We can change that. Click here to help.

Two members of Congress, Rep. Ted Lieu and Sen. Ed Markey, have proposed urgent legislation to prevent the U.S. president from starting a nuclear war without a declaration of war by Congress.

Trump exposes the terrifying power of a system built for speed and mass destruction at the president's sole discretion. From keeping the door open to using nuclear weapons in the Middle East to questioning why the U.S. builds nuclear weapons if it can’t use them, to proposing that it's good to be unpredictable, to allowing people at Trump's Florida resort to snap photos posing with and identifying the man who carries the nuclear launch information, Donald Trump has shown just how dangerous it is to let any one person have the unchecked power to destroy the entire world with the push of a button.

Sign the petition and call on Congress to keep us safe by making it illegal for President Trump, or any successor, to start a nuclear war.

Here's the petition: 

To all U.S. Senators and Representatives:

We call on you to take action to ensure that no president can unilaterally launch a nuclear war.

U.S. nuclear launch procedures have been designed for speed, not for democratic decisions. The president (or his designee) is the only person who can order the use of nuclear weapons and there are no checks or balances on that authority. As President Richard Nixon observed in 1974, “I can go back into my office and pick up the telephone and in 25 minutes 70 million people will be dead.”

While it should be inconceivable that any American president would conduct a nuclear first strike, President Trump’s past statements and erratic behavior make it imperative that we put checks and balances on nuclear launch authority. Only Congress can declare war, and that authority should apply to a nuclear first strike as well. Please co-sponsor H.R. 669/S. 200 to make America and the world safer by prohibiting the president from unilaterally starting a nuclear war. 


ADD YOUR NAME.

After signing the petition, please use the tools on the next webpage to share it with your friends.

This work is only possible with your financial support. Please chip in $3 now.

-- The RootsAction.org Team

Partners on this petition: American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Council for a Livable World, CREDO, Daily Kos, Global Zero, Just Foreign Policy, Peace Action, Ploughshares Fund, Progressive Congress Action Fund, Public Citizen, RootsAction.org, Union of Concerned Scientists, United for Peace and Justice, Watchdog.net, Win Without War, Women's Action for New Directions 

P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Frances Fox Piven, Lila Garrett, Phil Donahue, Sonali Kolhatkar, and many others.

 

Thirteen nuclear resisters arrested at Bangor Trident base

https://pacificlifecommunity.wordpress.com/ (Also published in The Nuclear Resister)
17015727_10155134220897915_5113577077608606578_o
Photo by Fumi Tosu
The Pacific Life Community returned to Washington state for its annual gathering, concluding with a blockade of the main gate into the Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor. The base is the Pacific homeport of the Trident nuclear ballistic missile submarine fleet.
A two-day program at a nearby retreat center built on the legacy of now-retired Raymond Hunthausen. As Archbishop of Seattle in 1984, he declared that “Trident is the Auschwitz of Puget Sound.” Hunthausen’s wages were garnished when he publicly refused to pay the war tax percentage in protest.
Snow and rain did not deter the demonstration at the Trident base gate on March 7. More than 40 people joined together for prayer, reading Hunthausen’s words before peacekeepers safely blocked the incoming traffic and several banners were stretched across the road.
“War is Immoral” read one, and another read, “Abolish Nuclear Weapons”.
Police soon moved in and arrested seven people who were blocking the road on the state side of the line.
Ticketed and released for “pedestrian leaving the curb” were Kelsey Chalmers, Susan Crane, Ed Ehmke, Allison McGillivray, Nick Mele, Mary Jane Parrine and Sam Yergler.
Six others who crossed over the marked property line onto the federal side read sections of the Nuremberg Principles out loud before being arrested by military police. Alexandria Addesso, Karan Founds-Benton, Fr. Steve Kelly, SJ, Betsy Lamb, Mary Mele and Charley Smith were charged with trespass and received ban and bar letters before being released.

The Nuns, the Priests, and the Bombs
New Documentary on Plowshares Actions
By Leonard Eiger.  2017

In the early morning darkness of November 9, 2009 five friends slogged their way toward the belly of the beast – the Strategic Weapons Facility, Pacific (SWFPAC). Along with Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, SWFPAC represents the largest concentration of operational nuclear weapons in the entire US arsenal – far more than enough nuclear destructive power to end the human experiment. They arrived at the double-fenced perimeter of the storage facility and set to work with bolt cutters, finally entering the secured area, designated as “Deadly Force Authorized.” They lifted hammers against the fences, scattered sunflower seeds and poured their own blood, symbolizing the murderous potential of nuclear weapons. They carried banners declaring: “Disarm Now!” They became known as the Disarm Now Plowshares….continued here: http://www.gzcenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/October-2017-newsletter-for-web-2.pdf)

Trailer: The Nuns, The Priests, and The Bombs

Nuclear disarmament activists, including Catholic nuns and priests, challenge the security and legality of America's nuclear weapons when they break into the "Fort Knox" of uranium and a Trident nuclear submarine base. Are they criminals or prophets sending a wake-up call to the world?
Marcus Pegasus: That's the greatest expose of the power of Christ subverting the American Empire. We hinted at it 2 years ago with: vimeo.com/115445555 from CatholicWorker.biz . Thanx to Helen Young for bringing up this new explanation of how to stop the nuclear powers from robbing the community treasury that belongs to the masses...

SYMPOSIUM AT U OF NEW MEXICO
Nov 10, 2017Local Anti-Nuke Group Announces Symposium to “Dismantle the Nuclear Beast.”  The Nuclear Issues Study Group will hold a unique and timely symposium at the University of New Mexico in December to connect local activists with the national anti-nuclear movement. The Nuclear Issues Study Group is an ...  Dismantling the Nuclear Beast: Connecting Local ... - World Beyond War
worldbeyondwar.org/.../dismantling-the-nuclear-beast-connecting-local-work-to-the-...


ORGANIZATIONS SEEKING INTERNATIONAL REGULATION OR ABOLITION OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS
(these could have appeared in the preceding section)

K. Harvey.  American Anti-Nuclear Activism, 1975-1990: The Challenge of Peace.   (Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements).   

(Reviewed in Peace & Change)

Looking at national peace organizations alongside lesser-known protest collectives, this book argues that anti-nuclear activists encountered familiar challenges common to other social movements of the late twentieth century.  [This book should receive attention.  You will organize a Forum?  Or?]

 

Almighty: Courage, Resistance, and Existential Peril in the Nuclear Age.  Dan Zak. Penguin/Blue Rider, 2016.  Rev. Publisher’s Weekly. 
This well-researched history from Washington Post reporter Zak tells the riveting story of three nuclear weapons protestors and how, in 2012, they infiltrated the ultrasecure uranium-enrichment facility in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Sister Megan Rice, Greg Boertje-Obed, and Michael Walli took different paths to becoming activists opposed to nuclear weapons, but they united on a breathtaking mission to protest America’s ongoing nuclear program. Zak also dives into the history of how the United States devoted enormous resources to the initial development of the nuclear bomb. At one point, nuclear weapons accounted for 10% of the country’s gross national product, and the Oak Ridge facility alone consumed around 14% of the U.S.’s electricity. Zak shows how the country continues to grapple with the tension between ensuring peace and maintaining weapons with the power to cause our own extinction. Despite President Obama’s early experience of antinuclear activism, his administration has continued to prolong the life of the U.S. nuclear weapons program. Much of the antinuclear movement is intertwined with Christian ethics and the Catholic Church, and it still uses as its central metaphor the Biblical idea of turning swords into plowshares. Zak gracefully synthesizes the stories of the politicians and bureaucrats controlling stockpiles of weapons and those of the activists working to disarm them. Agent: Lauren Clark, Kuhn Projects. (July)
DETAILS
Reviewed on: 05/09/2016
Release date: 07/12/2016

 


NUKEWATCH QUARTERLY
Spring 2017 (published by the Progressive Foundation, an excellent organization, also publishes The Progressive Magazine, all needing and deserving your financial assistance)
Examples from this number:
John LaForge, “Fukushima: Six Years On.”  Remembers the 6th anniversary March 11 of the “world’s worst nuclear reactor disaster: the 2011 meltdown of three large power reactors on the Pacific Coast of Japan—Fukushima Daiichi….”  [LaForge is editor of NQ and a scholar and historian of nuclear power and weapons.  This article typifies his high level of knowledge conveyed with strong moral direction and lucid prose.]
Bruce Blair.  “What Does It Mean to Have Trump’s Finger on the Nuclear Button?”   He discusses various scenarios and presidential power, and concludes that “The only real protection against nuclear disasters is total elimination of nuclear weapons.”  This is an excerpt of a longer piece published in Politico, which includes analyses of statements made by Trump. 
 “US and UK Cover-Up of Trident Missile Failure.”  Compiled by LaForge from several sources on the “colossally expensive failure,” the military-industrial complex, violations of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, and more.
OMNI and WAND in LR provide Arkansas with its only Nuclear Watch, including both nuclear power and, particularly, nuclear weapons.  We have published information pertaining to nuclear power, illustrated by LaForge’s article.  We publish a newsletter Nuclear Weapons Abolition and information and notices regarding UN International Day Against Nuclear Tests, Global Network Against Nuclear Weapons, Nuclear Free Independent Pacific, Nuclear Abolition Month August.  And we are the Arkansas connection via the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation for the Marshall Islands Nuclear Nations Law Suits.  For example see Nuclear Weapons Abolition Newsletter #21 http://jamesrichardbennett.blogspot.com/2015/03/nuclear-weapons-abolition-newsletter-21.html 
     I invite you to help the Watch in any way that interests you—perhaps reporting on one of the nuclear magazines like this one. 

ANALYSES: LETTERS, ESSAYS, BOOKS
Donald Trump, Destroyer of Worlds
FROM TIKKUN: THE NETWORK OF SPIRITUAL PROGRESSIVES.  11-26-17    Editor’s Note: Andrew Lichterman’s analysis (below and online at http://www.tikkun.org/nextgen/donald-trump-destroyer-of-worlds.   This is “an important review of why Trump's threats of nuclear war are illegal, and why the underlying nationalism to which he appeals is destructive. Lichterman's work is important to understand and circulate to others.  [Outstanding essay.  –Dick]
Yet there is a missing element here, namely that we need to understand the legitimate fear Americans have about terrorism after 9/11 and about other irresponsible leaders (including Trump) having access to nuclear weapons.We’ve argued that the key to reducing the risk of nuclear war is not to deny the possibility of threats from other nations (the young leader of North Korea at times seems as much a delusional narcissist as Trump) but to understand that we have to focus on the core beliefs about what will bring real security. We have been arguing for the past thirty years that for both the US and  Israel the best path to achieve homeland security is to abandon the failed strategy of domination over others as the best path to homeland security and to replace that with the strtegy of generosity as manifested in Tikkun’s proposed Global Marshall Plan (Tikkun ally Congressman Keith Ellison of Minneapoli  introduced House Resolution 87 to Congress in February--supporting our reasoning for a Global Marshall Plan. Read our proposal at: www.tikkun.org/gmp).
No matter how wise various appeals to law and rights and U.N. Resolutions can be, It is  Americans are unlikely to reject atomic weapons until they fully understand that we will be less vulnerable when we reject the strategy of "security through power over others" and replace it with the “strategy of generosity.” Instead of trying to coerce other countries to not develop the nuclear weapons that we already have and are held by many other countries as well, Americans will be far safer when the U.S. is perceived to be the most generous country in the world by virtue of its genuine caring about the well being of everyone on the planet and not just the country with the most destructive military capacity.  And that strategy of generosity would work for Israel too, for China, Russia, and most other countries of the world as well. 
The progressive world needs both the kind of thinking provided by Andrew Lichterman below and the kind of thinking Tikkun provides as an important supplement to the more narrowly focused specific projects of liberal and progressive organizations and movements are providing. This is why Tikkun and our interfaith and secular-humanist-and-atheist-welcoming Network of Spiritual Progressives deserves your financial support  with a tax-deductible donate at www.tikkun.org/donate –because liberals and progressives will never stop the growth of right-wing extremists until we have a more persuasive alternative that recognizes rather than dismisses the fears and needs that drive people to the Right. Those fears and needs have to be answered by the kind of psycho-spiritual strategies that we’ve developed. And if you’d like to join us in this, besides donating you could join our Network of Spiritual Progressives (NSP) at www.spiritualprogressives.organd sign up for the online training (you can take it anywhere in the world) which focuses on being an effective activist in the Trump years. The next round starts this Tuesday, Nov. 28th. Info at www.spiritualprogressives.org/training.
Donald Trump, Destroyer of Worlds
                  by Andrew Lichterman
Donald Trump’s first appearance at the United Nations was a watershed moment. In an address notable for its belligerence, he marked his place not only as a harbinger of the erosion of the post Cold-War international legal order, but as an active agent of its destruction. Trump’s bald threat that to defend the U.S. or its allies, the United States government would be willing “to totally destroy North Korea” is alarming enough standing alone. In the context of a rambling speech colored by Christian nationalist metaphors, in which the world is divided between good and evil and parts of it are “going to hell,” it evoked the forces that brought the terrible wars of the first four decades of the 20th century, the very forces that the United Nations was designed to reign in. 
A threat to “totally destroy” a country and its people runs contrary to both the letter and spirit of United Nations Charter. Adopted in the wake of World War II and proclaiming the determination “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war,” the United Nations Charter established a prohibition on the use of force to resolve disputes among states.[1] Article II Section 3 requires all members to “settle their disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.” Article II section 4 prohibits “the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.” The Charter contains two exceptions to the prohibition, authorizing the Security Council to use force on behalf of the United Nations to maintain international peace and security, and recognizing the right of self-defense against an armed attack.
Trump did couch his threat to destroy North Korea in terms of defense of the United States and its allies.  But this must be read in the context of the very broad right to “self-defense” that the government of the United States has claimed, encompassing not only armed response to an actual or imminent attack but the right to wage “preventive war” whenever U.S. leaders deem it necessary. In the 2002 National Security Strategy of the United States, the U.S. government explicitly asserted the right to wage preventive war to prevent adversaries from developing weapons of mass destruction, stating that “as a matter of common sense and self-defense, America will act against such emerging threats before they are fully formed.”[2] Shortly thereafter, the Bush administration launched a hugely destructive war and occupation of Iraq, unleashing a cycle of wars and violence in the region that continues to this day. That war was launched without UN sanction, and on far thinner evidence (much later proved false) that Iraq had active WMD programs.
The United States government never has repudiated the doctrine of preventive war, and in fact has continued to conduct unilateral military actions in a number of countries, less visible “small wars” employing drones, special forces, air power, and occasionally small numbers of regular ground forces. All of this goes well beyond any principle of “self defense” recognized under international law, and has contributed to the slow erosion of what legal checks there are on war-making that has brought us to this moment.  And it is apparent that the Trump administration is contemplating more than a defensive response to armed attack by North Korea against the United States or its allies, and is considering a unilateral preventive war against North Korea if, in their view, sanctions and diplomacy have failed. The New York Times has reported that a “pre-emptive military strike, while a last resort, is among the options they have made available to the president.”[3] U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Halley recently reinforced the threat of preventive war, telling CNN that “We wanted to be responsible and go through all diplomatic means to get their attention first…. If that doesn’t work, [Secretary of Defense] General Mattis will take care of it.”[4] 

[*] Andrew Lichterman is a lawyer and policy analyst at the Western States Legal Foundation, based Oakland, California. He also is a member of the Coordinating Committee of United for Peace and Justice, and of the boards of the International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms and the Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security. The opinions expressed in this piece are his alone.N  [30 Notes follow –D]

 

Lawrence Wittner.  “Why So Little Protest Against Threats of Nuclear War?”  (Northwest Arkansas) Free Weekly (April 27, 2017).  The essay is about Trump and Kim threatening annihilation of the other.  Half of the essay describes the braggadocio of each and the responses of the public and the peace and disarmament organizations.  In part three he gives five reasons why the public is passive: preoccupation, fatalism, complacency, nuclear arsenal, and “perhaps most significantly,” denial.    His final paragraph offers lamentation.   See his excellent book, Confronting the Bomb.   This essay was widely published, for example in antiwar.com:  http://original.antiwar.com/lawrence-wittner/2017/04/24/why-is-there-so-little-popular-protest-against-todays-threats-of-nuclear-war/     --Dick

 

An Open Letter to Trump and Putin: The World Needs Nuclear Zero [A remarkably comprehensive appeal in few words.  D]

BY TRANSCEND MEMBERS, 20 February 2017
https://www.transcend.org/tms/2017/02/an-open-letter-to-trump-and-putin-the-world-needs-nuclear-zero/
David Krieger | Nuclear Age Peace Foundation – The Hill   Go to Original – counterpunch.org
16 Feb 2017 – This may be the most dangerous time in human history.
In a dramatic recent decision, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved its iconic Doomsday Clock ahead from three minutes to only two-and-a-half minutes to midnight.
Our focus here is on nuclear dangers, but we strongly encourage you, Presidents Trump and Putin, to undertake in a spirit of urgency all necessary steps to avert further global warming.
As the leaders of the United States and Russia, the two countries with the largest nuclear arsenals, you have the grave responsibility of assuring that nuclear weapons are not used — or their use overtly threatened — during your period of leadership.
The most certain and reliable way to fulfill this responsibility is to negotiate with each other, and the other governments of nuclear-armed states, for their total elimination.
The U.S. and Russia are both obligated under Article VI of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to engage in such negotiations in good faith for an end to the nuclear arms race and for complete nuclear disarmament. Your success in this endeavor would make you heroes of the Nuclear Age.
Initiating a nuclear war, any nuclear war, would be an act of insanity. Between nuclear weapons states, it would lead to the destruction of the attacking nation as well as the nation attacked. Between the U.S. and Russia, it would also destroy civilization and threaten the survival of humanity.
There are still nearly 15,000 nuclear weapons in the world, of which the United States and Russia each possess some 7,000. Approximately 1,000 of these weapons in each country remain on hair-trigger alert — a catastrophe waiting to happen that could be prevented with the stroke of a pen.  MORE https://www.transcend.org/tms/2017/02/an-open-letter-to-trump-and-putin-the-world-needs-nuclear-zero/
 David Krieger is founder and president of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment.  He is a recipient of several awards and honors, including the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology Peace Writing Award for Poetry (2010). He has a new collection of poems entitled Wake Up.  For more visit the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation website: www.wagingpeace.org.


Sleepwalking into a Nuclear Arms Race with Russia:  WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION, 27 February 2017

Pierre M. Sprey and Franklin “Chuck” Spinney – CounterPunch
https://www.transcend.org/tms/2017/02/sleepwalking-into-a-nuclear-arms-race-with-russia/
24 Feb 2017 The Nuclear Question is becoming increasingly obfuscated by spin and lobbying as the West sleepwalks into Cold War II — a walk made all the more dangerous when the loose lips of the U.S. tweeter-in-chief announced that another nuclear arms race is a great idea (see link and link).  Two Cold War II issues are central and almost never addressed: What will be the Russians’ understanding of all the propaganda surrounding the Nuclear Question and the looming American defense spendup? And how might they act on this understanding?  MORE  [This excellent scholarly study protesting a new Cold War, if read by a critical mass of citizens,  might prevent its repetition, and the danger of a first strike is worse today.   --  Dick] https://www.transcend.org/tms/2017/02/sleepwalking-into-a-nuclear-arms-race-with-russia/
[Here’s a quick look at their concluding paragraph]
Yet the mainstream media and the politicians of both parties in thrall to our MICC are working day and night to pump up anti-Russian hysteria and hype fear to ensure Americans remain completely oblivious to the powerful, dangerous impact of our senseless Obama-Trump nuclear spend-up on the Russians — or on anyone else, for that matter.
Chuck Spinney and Pierre Sprey, between them, have over 75 years of Pentagon and industry experience in engineering weapons as well as in analyzing military systems effectivness and defense budgets.  Sprey was one of the early whiz kids in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) in the 1960s. Working in OSD in the 1980s, Spinney’s critical analyses of the Pentagon’s defective planning and budgeting landed him on the March 1983 cover of Time.  Leaving the Pentagon in 2003, he did an in-depth interview on the military-industrial-congressional complex with Bill Moyers which resulted in a special Emmy Award winning edition of Bill Moyers’ Now that aired on 1 August 2003.

SPECIAL FOCUS  ON NEED TO ABOLISH NUCLEAR BOMBS BECAUSE OF ACCIDENTS
Article on nuclear weapons mishaps.

NEW FILM ON THE NEAR DISASTER AT DAMASCUS, ARKANSAS
Command and Control” to Screen Across Arkansas October 7-9
David Orr
9-19-16
8:33 PM (12 hours ago)
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How the U.S. Narrowly Avoided Nuclear Disaster at an Arkansas Missile Complex. The Leonard Lopate Show interviews ERIC SCHLOSSER.   https://player.fm/1gKbWS #nowplaying
http://player.fm/series/the-leonard-lopate-show-from-wnyc/how-the-us-narrowly-avoided-nuclear-disaster-at-an-arkansas-missile-complex
BASED ON THE BOOK BY ERIC SCHLOSSER
Command and Control:
NUCLEAR WEAPONS, THE DAMASCUS ACCIDENT, AND THE ILLUSION OF SAFETY By ERIC SCHLOSSER
Look Inside | Enlarge Cover
Aug 26, 2014 | 656 Pages

**The upcoming documentary Command and Control, directed by Robert Kenner, finds its origins in Eric Schlosser’s book and continues to explore the little-known history of the management and safety concerns of America’s nuclear arsenal.**
A myth-shattering exposé of America’s nuclear weapons
Famed investigative journalist Eric Schlosser digs deep to uncover secrets about the management of America’s nuclear arsenal. A groundbreaking account of accidents, near misses, extraordinary heroism, and technological breakthroughs, Command and Control explores the dilemma that has existed since the dawn of the nuclear age: How do you deploy weapons of mass destruction without being destroyed by them? That question has never been resolved—and Schlosser reveals how the combination of human fallibility and technological complexity still poses a grave risk to mankind. While the harms of global warming increasingly dominate the news, the equally dangerous yet more immediate threat of nuclear weapons has been largely forgotten.



PRAISE

The New Yorker
“An excellent journalistic investigation of the efforts made since the first atomic bomb was exploded, outside Alamogordo, New Mexico, on July 16, 1945, to put some kind of harness on nuclear weaponry. By a miracle of information management, Schlosser has synthesized a huge archive of material, including government reports, scientific papers, and a substantial historical and polemical literature on nukes, and transformed it into a crisp narrative covering more than fifty years of scientific and political change. And he has interwoven that narrative with a hair-raising, minute-by-minute account of an accident at a Titan II missile silo in Arkansas, in 1980, which he renders in the manner of a techno-thriller…Command and Control is how nonfiction should be written.” (Louis Menand)


Review of Command and Control by Philip Martin, “Almost Armageddon,” NADG (October 7, 2016), 1E.
Keeping Nuclear Forces at Bay
Jessie Calkins,   9-10-16 WAND peace@wand.org via uark.onmicrosoft.com 
9:26 AM (1 hour ago)
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US/SU Nuclear Subs Collide
Matthew Weaver, “Nuclear-Armed Submarine Collision Off Scotland Kept Secret for 43 Years.”  Soviet and US subs near the US naval base at Holy Loch west of Glasgow.  Nukewatch Quarterly (Spring 2017).


MANY FEATURES OF THE MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL-CONGRESSIONAL COMPLEX:  SAVE THE LEADERS
Raven Rock: The Story of the U.S. Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself--While the Rest of Us Die.  By Garrett M. Graff.  Simon and Schuster, 2017.
The eye-opening true story of the government’s secret plans to survive and rebuild after a catastrophic attack on US soil—a narrative that spans from the dawn of the nuclear age to today. 

Every day in Washington, DC, the blue-and-gold 1st Helicopter Squadron, code-named “MUSSEL,” flies over the Potomac River. As obvious as the presidential motorcade, the squadron is assumed by most people to be a travel perk for VIPs. They’re only half right: while the helicopters do provide transport, the unit exists to evacuate high-ranking officials in the event of a terrorist or nuclear attack on the capital. In the event of an attack, select officials would be whisked by helicopters to a ring of secret bunkers around Washington, even as ordinary citizens are left to fend for themselves.

For sixty years, the US government has been developing secret Doomsday plans to protect itself, and the multibillion-dollar Continuity of Government (COG) program takes numerous forms—from its plans to evacuate the Liberty Bell from Philadelphia and our most precious documents from the National Archives to the plans to launch nuclear missiles from a Boeing 747 jet flying high over Nebraska.

In Raven Rock, Garrett Graff sheds light on the inner workings of the 650-acre compound (called Raven Rock) just miles from Camp David, as well as dozens of other bunkers the government built its top leaders during the Cold War, from the White House lawn to Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado to Palm Beach, Florida, and the secret plans that would have kicked in after a Cold War nuclear attack to round up foreigners and dissidents, and nationalize industries.

Equal parts a presidential, military, and political history, Raven Rock tracks the evolution of the government’s plans and the threats of global war from the dawn of the nuclear era through the present day. Relying upon thousands of pages of once-classified documents, as well as original interviews and visits to former and current COG facilities, Graff brings readers through the back channels of government to understand exactly what is at stake if our nation is attacked, and how we’re prepared to respond if it is.

OMNI ACTIONS FOR NUCLEAR ABOLITION
OCTOBER 14, 2017, OMNI CELEBRATED THE UN NUCLEAR BAN TREATY AND ICAN’S NOBEL PEACE PRIZE   Arranged by Abel Tomlinson and Dick Bennett
Program at Fayetteville Town Center
Music by Still on the Hill
Talks by Abel Tomlinson, Bill Williams of Bella Vista, and Art Hobson, Prof. Emer., Physics UAF.

OMNI AGAINST NUCLEAR WEAPONS, OMNI ABOLITION ADVOCACY
OMNI Actions
 Our oldest action, which long preceded the beginning of OMNI: Annual August Hiroshima/Nagasaki Remembrance.  In recent years we have assembled either at the Fulbright Peace Fountain at UAF or at the Kaminsky Peace Planet at Town Center. 

Nuclear Age Peace Foundation has been the international facilitator of the MARSHALL ISLANDS NUCLEAR ZERO LAWSUITS COALITION, of which OMNI is a member.   We have corresponded with NAPF, the local Marshall Islands Consul, and other supporters of the lawsuit.  Members of OMNI’s committee include Gladys Tiffany, Lauren Hawkins, Terry Michaels, David Orr, Grace Donoho, Karen Madison, Kelly Mulhollan, Dick Bennett coordinator

OMNI NEWSLETTERS vs. NUCLEAR WEAPONS
Hiroshima-Nagasaki (August 6 or 9 and follow-up)
Nuclear Weapons Abolition
North Korea
Iran
UN Nuclear Weapons Abolition Day (June 2)
UN Nuclear Free Future Month (August)
UN International Day against Nuclear Tests (Aug. 29)
UN Nuclear Victims and Survivors Remembrance Day (formerly Nuclear Free and Independent Pacific Day and Marshall Islands Nuclear Victims Day) (March 1)
AND MORE

RELATED LOCAL ACTIONS
Nuclear Forum / Nuclear Remembrance Day – March 4, 2017
MEI hosted a Nuclear Forum held in conjunction with Nuclear Remembrance Day in Springdale at the Jones Center on Saturday, March 4, beginning at 1:00 PM.  Nuclear Remembrance Day was commemorated following the forum at 4:00 PM. Contact albrown.mei@gmail.com for more information.   Marshallese Educational Initiative: Marshall Islands | Springdale   https://www.mei.ngo/

 

Contents:   Nuclear Weapons Abolition Newsletter #22, October 10, 2017 http://jamesrichardbennett.blogspot.com/2017/10/nuclear-weapons-abolition-newsletter-22.html
Fayetteville Celebrates Two 2017 Nuclear Abolition Achievements!
United Nations General Assembly Bans Nuclear Weapons
     Slater, 122 Nations Vote Abolition
     Gerson, Building the Treaty Globally
     Loretz, Analyzes the Treaty
     Veterans for Peace, Affirms the Treaty
     NAPF, Stop Funding Nuclear Weapons
ICAN Wins Nobel Peace Prize
     Celebration!
     Jan Oberg, Thanks to the Nobel Committee
      Richard Falk, Essay on the Award
      Tara John, 5 Reasons Why It Won

Some History Leading to the Ban
Recent US Nuclear Aggression
     $1Trillion Upgrade
      Burst-height Super-fuze

Ginger, Precursor to Ban, World Court 1998

Reform:  No First Use
     Just Foreign Policy
     WAND

Organizations:  From Reform to Abolition
Reform:  Stop the $1 Trillion “Modernizing” Proliferation
Council for a Livable World, Carl Sagan Remembered
WAND:
Women's Action for New Directions (WAND)
Global Zero
NAPF
CLW
Chomsky  

END NUCLEAR WEAPONS ABOLITION NEWSLETTER #23, January 15, 2018