Skip to content

Why do we still have nuclear weapons?

March 30, 2023
The 1st Meeting of States Parties to the TPNW “condemn(ed) unequivocally any and all nuclear threats, whether they be explicit or implicit and irrespective of the circumstances.” ICAN photo by Alexander Papis

The danger of nuclear war is growing. With the aid of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, a chorus of voices delegitimising nuclear weapons may be helping. 

Two months ago, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the hands of the Doomsday Clock forward, largely due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the increased risk of nuclear escalation, which by accident, intention, or miscalculation could spin out of anyone’s control. The Clock now stands at 90 seconds to midnight—the closest to global catastrophe it has ever been. Knocking at Doomsday’s door is an alarming place to be, no less than 38 years after Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, at their Geneva summit in 1985, agreed that “A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.”

Read more…

Uranium mining harms people and the environment

March 28, 2023
Anthony Lyamunda, a recipient of the Nuclear-Free Future award, will speak at IPPNW’s World Congress next month in Mombasa, Kenya.

[Anthony Bonifasi Lyamunda received the Nuclear Free Future Award in the resistance category. He lives in Dodoma, the Capital City of Tanzania and he is the founder of the NGO CESOPE. His organization has long supported the people of Bahi, an administrative district very close to Tanzania´s capital Dodoma and the place where he grew up. Bahi is among the places in Tanzania that have known uranium deposits. Patrick Schukalla, an advisor with IPPNW-Germany on energy issues and climate, spoke with the environmental justice activist who will participate at the IPPNW World Congress in Mombasa, Kenya in April.]

You won the NFF Award in the resistance category, congratulations! 

I would like to thank the Nuclear Free Future Foundation for considering me and my organization for this award. I see it not only as recognition of my personal work but of the work of many Tanzanian and African activists who struggle against uranium mining on our continent and beyond. Such recognition of our struggle will motivate the communities we are working with to continue to defend the environment against uranium mining and consequently stopping the proliferation of nuclear power in the world, and enable the goal of a nuclear-free future.

Read more…

Ocean discharge is the worst plan for Fukushima waste water

March 12, 2023
Japan may soon start dumping radioactively contaminated waste water from the Fukushima Daichi nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean, despite warnings from neighboring countries, marine scientists, and health experts.

As soon as within a month or two, Japan could begin dumping into the Pacific Ocean 1.3 million tons of treated but still radioactively contaminated wastewater from the stricken Fukushima Daichi nuclear plant.  Construction of the kilometer long undersea discharge tunnel and a complex of pipes feeding it commenced last August. 

This cheap and dirty approach of “out of sight out of mind” and “dilution is the solution to pollution” belongs in a past century. It ignores the significant transboundary, transgenerational and human rights issues involved in this planned radioactive dumping, projected to continue over the next 40 years.

Read more…

India could be more influential than it has chosen to be

March 9, 2023
Indian doctors gathered in Ludhiana in March 2022, calling for a ceasefire in Ukraine.

[IPPNW co-president Tilman Ruff sent the following message to Indian Physicians for Peace and Development (IDPD), which will hold its national conference in New Delhi from 11-13 March.]

IDPD is a vital organisation in India, in South Asia, in IPPNW, in the world.  In nuclear-armed India, within a few months to become the world’s most populous nation, with rich multicultural and multireligious diversity and wisdom, the tradition of Gandhi, and strong and active civil society movements, you in IDPD serve as a vital evidence-based voice of reason and conscience of the healing professions in one of the world’s most hazardous nuclear flashpoints.

Read more…

Whose red lines?

March 7, 2023

In the conflict-ridden realm of international relations, certain terms are particularly useful, and one of them is “Red Lines.”  Derived from the concept of a “line in the sand,” first employed in antiquity, the term “Red Lines” appears to have emerged in the 1970s to denote what one nation regards as unacceptable from other nations.  In short, it is an implicit threat.

Read more…

Health appeal: avert nuclear war and respect international humanitarian law

February 22, 2023

One year on since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, we call once again for peace.

The danger of a nuclear war is escalating every day this war continues. Any and all nuclear threats, explicit or implicit, should cease immediately. The use of nuclear weapons would be a crime against humanity and could easily lead to full-scale nuclear war. 

We once again call on all nuclear-armed states to declare that nuclear weapons will not be used. It is paramount that we step back from the brink of nuclear war, where even an accident or use of tactical nuclear weapons would be a disaster of enormous proportions and could spark an even greater nuclear conflagration. As a second step, we call on nuclear-armed states to de-alert their nuclear forces to prevent the risk of a launch due to a false alarm and allow more time for communication between adversaries.

Read more…

The Ukraine war and international law

February 1, 2023

The Ukraine War has provided a challenging time for the nations of the world and, particularly, for international law.

Since antiquity, far-sighted thinkers have worked on developing rules of behavior among nations in connection with war, diplomacy, economic relations, human rights, international crime, global communications, and the environment.  Defined as international law, this “law of nations” is based on treaties or, in some cases, international custom.  Some of the best-known of these international legal norms are outlined in the United Nations Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the Geneva Conventions.

Read more…

90 seconds to midnight: what the Doomsday Clock means in 2023

January 27, 2023

We are now at the most dangerous moment in history. We face multiple existential crises that are not under control, but growing more acute, while failures of leadership become more damning. 

We have no time to lose.

This week, in Washington DC, the international scientific and policy experts of the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists announced that they were moving the hands of the iconic Doomsday Clock forward from 100 to 90 seconds to midnight, the closest to global catastrophe it has ever been

Read more…

Cities are not targets

January 25, 2023

by Carlos Umaña, MD

Carlos Umaña at the IPPNW European Forum in Hamburg.

[IPPNW co-president Carlos Umaña spoke on 21 January at the IPPNW European Forum in Hamburg, Germany.]

I am honored speak on such a special occasion, to such a special crowd, and humbled to do so in such a special place. Here, the name of my presentation, “Cities are not targets” takes a special meaning, as in the basement of St. Nikolai’s Memorial Church one cannot help but marvel at the grandeur of human enterprise, while at the same time be appalled by the reaches of human destruction.

“Cities are not targets,” the title of my presentation, is also the name of a campaign launched in 2006 by Mayors for Peace, an organization founded in 1982 by the mayor of Hiroshima with the aim of producing nuclear abolition, an organization that currently has over 8,200 member cities.

Read more…

An outstanding historical achievement

January 16, 2023

Review: Gambling with Armageddon:  Nuclear Roulette from Hiroshima to the Cuban Missile Crisis, by Martin J. Sherwin

The development and the deployment of nuclear weapons are usually based on the assumption that they enhance national security. But, in fact, as this powerful study of nuclear policy convincingly demonstrates, nuclear weapons move nations toward the brink of destruction.

The basis for this conclusion is the post-World War II nuclear arms race and, especially, the Cuban missile crisis of October 1962. At the height of the crisis, top officials from the governments of the United States and the Soviet Union narrowly avoided annihilating a substantial portion of the human race by what former US Secretary of State Dean Acheson, an important participant in the events, called “plain dumb luck.”

Read more…
%d bloggers like this: