Opening session of conference starts
“The Nuclear Ban Treaty: The Path Forward”—held at Penn on September 19th—was rated as a great success by attenders who have since contacted CFPA and the PA Nuclear Ban Alliance.
We gathered at Perry World House, a welcoming place at the University. Our speakers included our Keynote, Joe Cirincione, President of the Ploughshares Fund, who advocates nuclear abolition, and works for diplomatic, not military solutions. Joe also participated in a workshop, led by Elaine Scarry of Harvard and Mary Day Kent of the UN Association, on women’s leadership in nuclear policy. Participants discussed ways that we strengthen all-gender participation and leadership in this movement, if it is to move forward most successfully.
Elaine Scarry discussed her book, Thermonuclear Monarchy,** which exposes the dangers to world peace posed by allowing one person to determine the fate of the Earth, by launching a nuclear war without Congress, or public debate - that is, the US President. Mary Day has been a national leader of CARE and WILPF—Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom—and is now a leader in the UN Association of Greater Philadelphia.
Other workshops included “Warheads to Windmills—How We Pay for the Green New Deal”, led by NuclearBan.us leaders Vicki Epson and Timmon Wallis, PhD. This popular workshop showed us how we can channel the $1.7 trillion of taxpayer monies in the pipeline for nuclear weapons, to building a strong Green New Deal, with clean energy and infrastructure, in the next decades—before it is too late for the Planet. Here’s a LINK, explaining how this works.
Last but not least, while we have no video of former Iranian ambassador Seyed Mousavian at Penn, who gave a very informative Morning Address, we have video of his appearance for us this June, 2019, at this LINK. Ambassador Mousavian debunked many of the distortions by the current Administration of the Iran Nuclear Agreement. He shows that this Agreement is still valid. CFPA as always supports upholding international law, which includes this Agreement, the best way to keep Iran free from nuclear weapons. We support talks, not war, in appeals to the US Senate.
- Ed Aguilar, CFPA Pennsylvania Director
** Order this book from CFPA—it will be on sale at our November 10 Peace Conference in Princeton, or you can call our offices and pre-order it as well!
Joe Cirincione, President of Ploughshares Fund, speaking at the event
(Photos by Walter Tsou)
On Monday, August 5, the Coalition for Peace Action held a Commemoration that marked 74 years since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Commemoration was CFPA's 40th. About 60 were in attendance.
The event featured (in order) - Glenn Swann, who plays the Shakuhachi (Japanese flute), a moment of silence at 7:15 (which correlates to the 8:15 AM bombing on August 6 in Hiroshima), singer Diane Beeny's rendition of "Never Again the A-Bomb," keynote speaker Mira Nakashima (daughter of renowned woodworker and furniture designer George Nakashima, and a celebrated artist herself), a group sing-along to "Down by the Riverside," an update on Iran and North Korea from Dr. Rob Goldston of Princeton University, a statement regarding the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton over the weekend, and a candlelight vigil accompanied by classical guitar from Charlie Frantz.
See photo below of speakers Mira Nakashim and Rob Goldston.
Please click here for a very valuable resource on presidential "first use," which very dangerously allows any sitting president to unilateraly issue an order for a nuclear strike, even if we are not under nuclear attack ourselves.
(photo by Wendy Greenberg)
(photo by John Lien)
About 125 CFPA members and guests attended our 39th Annual Membership Dinner and Gathering!
We recognized Irene Etkin Goldman for her 15 year anniversary as Board Chair, and we honored Norm Cohen, who led our South Jersey chapter for over 35 years (click here to read his remarks). Dr. Zia Mian of Princeton University was honored for his work as a scientific advisor for the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty of 2017, and NJ Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald was honored for his gun violence prevention work in the legislature.
We also heard from Ambassador Seyed Hossein Mousavian on Iran/US relations, the dangers of war, and the path forward through diplomacy. Click here for a video of his talk, including the Q+A afterwards.
Thanks to all who made this event a sucess. See more photos below, and click here for more on Facebook!
Ambassador Mousavian speaks on the current Iran situation. (photo by John Lien)
NJ Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald is presented with an award for his leadership on gun violence legislation. On the left is Rev. Bob Moore, CFPA Executive Director, and on the right is Dolores Phillips, Ceasefire NJ Legislative Director. (photo by David Crow)
The NJ Assembly voted on Thursday (May 23) on Assembly Resolution 230, which urges the federal government to ratify the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, and pursue other measures to reduce the danger of nuclear war. The Resolution passed by a vote of 56 yes, 3 no, and 15 abstentions. Special thanks to Dr. Zia Mian for spearheading this initiative.
BE IT RESOLVED by the General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
- This House urges the federal government to spearhead a global effort to prevent nuclear war by renouncing the option of using nuclear weapons in a first strike, ending the President’s sole authority to launch a nuclear attack, taking the nuclear weapons of the United States off hair-trigger alert, canceling the plan to replace its entire nuclear arsenal with enhanced nuclear weapons, and actively pursuing a verifiable agreement among nuclear-armed states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals.
- This House urges the President and the Senate of the United States to ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
Thanks to all who emailed and called their legislators to encourage the passage of this important resolution! Click here to read a follow-up op-ed in the Star Ledger and Trenton Times about the importance of the resolution.
Click here to read the full text of the resolution.