12 March 2008

Fifty years of CND

I have been a member of Kingston Peace Council/CND for as long as I can remember and while I read the newsletters that they send me I had not been to one of their meetings until this week. The occasion was a talk to celebrate fifty years of CND given by the current chair of CND, Dr Kate Hudson. Her talk covered the history and future of CND and was followed by questions from the audience.

I was pleasantly surprised to learn of (or be reminded of) the successes that the Peace Movement (not just CND) had contributed to over the years. These successes include various arms limitation treaties, the removal of short-range nuclear weapons from Europe, improved communications between the major powers (including the "hot phone") that prevents crisis situations from escalating, and, most importantly, no further use of nuclear weapons since WW2.

Campaigning is a slow process and the work that is being done today will not bear fruit for some time but hopefully there will be further successes in the decommissioning of Trident in the UK, unilateral withdrawal from nuclear programmes by other countries (following the examples of South Africa and Libya), and extension of the nuclear-free zones that currently exist in some parts of the world.

It also appears that the new Labour Government recognises that when one country enhances its nuclear capability then this helps to make the case for other countries to acquire their own weapons.

Overall it was a very positive and uplifting meeting, it is just a shame that after fifty years there is still a need for organizations like CND.

1 comment:

  1. That is a very poignant message on that poster!


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