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Nuclear Weapons

How A Small Activist Sailing Ship Challenged The Nuclear Arms Race

In today’s polarized context, progressive movements need their best strategic thinking. One source for inspiration should be the Golden Rule, a historic sailing ship that’s currently visiting ports along the Eastern U.S. Organized by Veterans for Peace, this national tour puts the 1958 Golden Rule voyage back in the news. Nearly 65 years ago, the Golden Rule defiantly sailed toward the Pacific Ocean site where U.S. nuclear weapons were being tested, sparking a movement that forced the U.S. government to sign the Partial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. As a young activist, I got to know and learn from some of the original crew members and organizers. So, it was a delight to set foot on the Golden Rule last week for a sail in the Philadelphia harbor.

Activists Blockade US Nuclear Ballistic Missile Sub Base

Silverdale, Washington - Activists blockaded the entrance to the US Navy's west-coast nuclear submarine base, which is home to the largest operational concentration of deployed nuclear weapons, in a nonviolent direct action the day before Mother's Day. Eight peace activists from the Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action, holding banners reading “The Earth is Our Mother Treat Her With Respect”  and “Nuclear Weapons are Immoral to Use, Immoral to Have, Immoral to Make,” briefly blocked all incoming traffic at the Main Gate at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor in Silverdale, Washington as part of a May 13th Mothers Day observance. 

Golden Rule Peace Boat Brings Message Of Nuclear Disarmament

Baltimore, MD—Do you know about the back story behind the U.S., U.K., and USSR signing the “Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapon Tests in the Atmosphere, in Outer Space, and Under Water” in 1963? It is a very dramatic tale, involving illegal arrests in international waters, switching missions from one ship to another, children tasting nuclear fallout as it came down like snow—and it all began with Hiroshima. The atomic bomb which the U.S. dropped on that Japanese city on Aug. 6, 1945, caused Albert Bigelow to leave his military career as a Navy captain just before his date of retirement.

Seymour Hersh: My Meeting With Pakistan’s Pervez Musharraf

During the first year of the Obama administration, I spent months in the summer and fall of 2009 reporting about the Pakistani nuclear arsenal from here in Washington; from Islamabad, the Pakistani capital; from New Delhi, the Indian capital; and from London, where Pervez Musharraf, the former president of Pakistan as well a former army chief was living in exile. The story I eventually published in the New Yorker was edited slightly in accordance with a White House request that I did not contest.  The issues then and today are the same: Pakistan is a nuclear-armed nation. So is India, its rival, an on-and-off ally of both Russia and America that rarely, if ever, discusses its own nuclear capability.

Action Alert: False NYT Spy Claim On Iran Nukes Needs Correction

The New York Times (5/1/23), reporting on Iran’s execution of British spy Alireza Akbari, reported: The spy had provided valuable information — and would continue to do so for years — intelligence that would prove critical in eliminating any doubt in Western capitals that Iran was pursuing nuclear weapons. This is not correct; as FAIR has often pointed out (, 10/17/17, 9/9/15, 9/24/13; 1/31/13; Extra!, 3–4/08), the position of US intelligence is that it has no proof Iran has decided to build a nuclear weapon. As the US State Department reiterated in April 2022: The United States continues to assess that Iran is not currently undertaking the key nuclear weapons–development activities it judge necessary to produce a nuclear device. This is a serious error that deserves prompt correction.

First Boat To Protest Nuclear Weapons Inspires A New Generation

Fredy Champagne has been a peace activist ever since he returned from combat in Vietnam. He’s been kicked out of college, where he was accused of starting a riot. He’s opened health clinics in Vietnam. He’s delivered school buses to Cuba. But in 2010, he received a call that opened his eyes to a story of resistance he had never heard before. The call was from one of Champagne’s fellow members of Veterans for Peace, or VFP, asking him to go check out a boat that had been hauled out of the water in Humboldt Bay, California — only an hour’s drive north from his home in Garberville, where he was serving as the president of the local VFP chapter. The boat — named the Golden Rule — wasn’t much to look at.

It’s Time The US Signed A Peace Treaty With North Korea

New York City — It is far beyond hypocrisy for the US and its allies to condemn North Korea for testing a long-range missile when the US boasts about its Air Force Global Strike Command of more than 33,700 Airmen and civilians responsible for the nation’s three intercontinental ballistic missile wings capable of delivering nuclear weapons. Indeed, a US Minute Man Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (IBM) was tested this past February, with another scheduled for this August. The 1950-1953 Korean War is the longest-standing US conflict. It has never actually ended. It was only suspended by a truce and armistice between North Korea, representing the Korean People’s Army and the Chinese People’s Volunteers and the United States, representing the multinational UN Command.

Protest At Australian Nuke Sub Port

Under the AUKUS plan, Australia would pay the U.S. and Britain to the build and deliver three nuclear submarines by the early 2030s to the Port of Kembla in the city of Wollongong, 85 kms south of Sydney. Opponents of the plan, including the former Prime Minister Paul Keating, say China poses no military threat to Australia, but rather that the U.S. is leading Australia into a dangerous provocation against China.

US And Britain’s Submarine Deal Crosses Nuclear Red Lines

The recent Australia, U.S., and UK $368 billion deal on buying nuclear submarines has been termed by Paul Keating, a former Australian prime minister, as the “worst deal in all history.” It commits Australia to buy conventionally armed, nuclear-powered submarines that will be delivered in the early 2040s. These will be based on new nuclear reactor designs yet to be developed by the UK. Meanwhile, starting from the 2030s, “pending approval from the U.S. Congress, the United States intends to sell Australia three Virginia class submarines, with the potential to sell up to two more if needed”.

US, UK, Australia Unveil AUKUS Nuclear-powered Submarine Deal

On Monday, the US, Britain, and Australia unveiled their plans to develop nuclear-powered submarines under AUKUS, a military pact the three countries signed in September 2021 to coordinate on advanced military technology against China. President Biden, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese formally announced the plans at the US Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego. The ultimate goal is for Australia to begin producing a new type of nuclear-powered submarine known as SSN-AUKUS, but that isn’t expected to happen until the 2040s.

President Putin Announces Suspension Of The New START Treaty

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday announced that Moscow is suspending its participation in New START, the last remaining nuclear arms control treaty between the US and Russia. “In this regard, I am forced to announce today that Russia is suspending its participation in the strategic offensive arms treaty,” Putin said in a state of the nation address delivered to Russia’s Federal Assembly. New START was first signed in 2010 by then-President Obama and former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who now serves as the deputy chair of the Russian Security Council, and replaced the START I Treaty that was signed in 1991.

The Golden Rule Peace Boat And The Kings Bay Plowshares Seven

On Friday, February 7th, the Golden Rule peace boat gently sailed over sacred whale breeding grounds, with an ever respectful sense of protection to our beautiful fellow creatures, then bravely showed its sails entering St. Mary's River of the historic town of St. Mary's which joins the beautiful, yet ominous entrance of the East River. Along the East River exists the most deadly concentration of Ohio Class nuclear weapon laden submarines on the East Coast, if not the world, the Naval Submarine Base of Kings Bay. This base remains the most extensive single construction project ever undertaken by the U.S. Navy.  It contains the largest indoor dry dock in the world, and as a result, it services not only our own fleet but the Tridents of the United Kingdom.

US Veterans Sail Historic Peace Boat To Cuba

The Golden Rule anti-nuclear sailboat, crewed by US veterans and friends, has successfully completed an historic voyage to Cuba. The 34-foot wooden ketch, which in 1958 was sailed toward the Marshall Islands to interfere with US nuclear testing, is owned by Veterans For Peace, and carries out an important part of its mission, “to end the arms race and to reduce and eventually eliminate nuclear weapons.” Five crew, including several members of Veterans For Peace, sailed the Golden Rule from Key West, Florida and, after 22 hours at sea, arrived at Havana’s Marina Hemingway on December 31, just in time to celebrate New Years and the 62nd anniversary of the Cuban Revolution. The Golden Rule was sailed to Havana under a General License issued by the US Treasury Dept. that allows US residents to travel to Cuba for educational and people-to-people purposes.

Envisioning A World Without Nuclear Weapons

While nuclear weapons governments and their bomb-making industries are criminally sleepwalking into what could mean the end of our planet’s life, many others – scientists, high-level military, citizens and whole countries – are countering the weapons holders’ political idiocy with principled intelligence.    At their 40th reunion in Los Alamos, New Mexico, 70 of 110 physicists who worked on the atomic bomb signed a statement supporting nuclear disarmament.  When have the brightest scientists of their day ever admitted that their most notable work was a colossal mistake?      On February 2, 1998 retired General George Butler, former Commander of US Strategic Air Command addressed the National Press Club: "The likely consequences of nuclear weapons have no…justification. They hold in their sway not just the fate of nations but the very meaning of civilization."  Sixty other retired generals and admirals joined him calling for nuclear weapons abolition.

Historic Golden Rule Peace Boat On Its Way to Cuba

The historic Golden Rule anti-nuclear sailboat is on its way to Cuba. The storied wooden boat, which was sailed toward the Marshall Islands in 1958 to interfere with US nuclear testing, set sail from Key West, Florida on Friday morning, and will arrive at the Hemingway Marina in Havana on Saturday morning, New Years Eve day. The 34-foot ketch belongs to Veterans For Peace, and implements its mission “to end the arms race and to reduce and eventually eliminate nuclear weapons.” The five crew members will be joined by Veterans For Peace members who are flying to Havana to participate in an educational Arts & Culture program coordinated by the Proximity Cuba tour agency. The veterans will also be visiting communities that suffered great damage from the recent Hurricane Ian, which destroyed thousands of homes in Pinar del Rio province in western Cuba. They are carrying humanitarian aid for people who lost their homes.
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