Major Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemorations at U.S. Warhead Facilities Across the Nation Protest Trump’s Risky Nuclear Posture and Budget; Advocate Disarmament

Updated 6 weeks ago Edited from a Press Release

Thousands of peace advocates, Hibakusha (A-bomb survivors), religious leaders, scientists, economists, attorneys, doctors and nurses, nuclear analysts, former war planners and others across the country are coming together to commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the U.S. atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki this August 6 through 9 at key sites in the U.S. nuclear weapons complex.

 

Major commemorations, rallies, protests, many including nonviolent direct action, will place at the Livermore Lab in CA, the Y-12 Plant in TN, the Los Alamos Lab in NM, the Kansas City Plant in MO, the Rocky Flats Plant in CO, the Pantex Plant in TX, in Santa Barbara, CA near Vandenberg’s ICBM launch site, and in GA near the Savannah River Site, along with other locations around the U.S. nuclear weapons complex. (See list at the end of this release.)  

These diverse events are sponsored by members of the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA), a network of three-dozen groups located downstream and downwind of U.S. nuclear weapons sites. These Hiroshima-Nagasaki commemorations are united by their reflection on the past, and, uniquely, by their focus on the present and future with a resolute determination to change U.S. nuclear weapons policy at the very locations that are linchpins in producing a costly, destabilizing new stockpile of U.S. nuclear warheads, bombs and delivery vehicles.  

“Here in Tennessee, as in other locations across the country, I see daily evidence of a dangerous, escalating global nuclear arms race,” noted Ralph Hutchison, the longtime coordinator for the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance. “This is epitomized by government plans for a new Uranium Processing Facility to produce H-bomb components at Y-12, including for new-design weapons.”  

“U.S. plans to ‘modernize’ the arsenal are also underway in California at the Livermore Lab,” stated Marylia Kelley, Tri-Valley CAREs’ executive director. “Livermore’s new Long-Range Stand Off warhead design geared toward ‘first use’ and its rapid re-start of an ‘interoperable’ warhead design previously delayed by the Obama Administration reveal two facets of this new arms race,” Kelley continued. “In contrast to the cold war, which was largely about sheer numbers, the new arms race and its dangers stem from novel military capabilities now being placed into nuclear weapons.”

  “The Trump Administration has put the U.S. on a trajectory to spend nearly $2,000,000,000,000 [trillion] over the coming thirty years on new nukes and bomb plants to build them, when inflation and the new concepts in this year’s Nuclear Posture Review and fiscal 2019 budget request are considered, said Joni Arends, the director for Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety in NM.   

Around the world, pressure for the U.S. to show leadership toward the abolition of nuclear weapons is growing. Pope Francis has repeatedly pressed the moral argument against nuclear weapons, inveighing not only against their use but also against their possession. Moreover, the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted by 122 states parties at the United Nations one year ago. Already, fourteen have completed their ratification procedures for the Treaty, which will fully enter into force when 50 states parties have ratified it. The Treaty establishes new law and a new norm, outlawing nuclear weapons development, testing, possession, use, transfer and/or any offer of assistance in a prohibited activity.  

“The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons shows us another future is possible,” said Rick Wayman, Deputy Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and a member of the ANA Board of Directors.  “The Treaty and the aspirations of millions of people for a nuclear weapons free future give me hope on this important anniversary of the first use of a nuclear bomb in war,” he continued. “We must listen to those in the U.S. and around the world who have been impacted by nuclear weapons. These weapons must be eliminated so that no one suffers the same fate ever again.”     

Actions this week at U.S. nuclear weapons facilities will highlight the mounting international calls for nuclear abolition, with U.S. organizers lending their deep and often unique “on the ground” knowledge from the gates and fence lines of the facilities involved in creating new and modified U.S. nuclear weapons. “This anniversary should be a time to reflect on the absolute horror of a nuclear detonation,” mused Ann Suellentrop of Physicians for Social Responsibility-Kansas City, “yet the new Kansas City Plant is churning out components to extend U.S. nuclear weapons 70 years into the future. The imperative to change that future is what motivates me to organize a peace fast at the gates of the Plant.”    

Key events at U.S. nuclear weapons complex sites include:

  • Y-12 – remembrance, rally and nonviolent direct action, peace fast and lanterns. (www.orepa.org)

• Livermore Lab - peace camp, Aug. 6 rally, march, nonviolent direct action. (www.trivalleycares.org) • Los Alamos Lab – commemoration and vigil, August 4, Ashley Pond, Los Alamos. (jarends@nuclearactive.org or scott@nukewatch.org

• Kansas City Plant – vigil and peace fast. (www.psr.org/chapters/kansas/)

• Savannah River Site – Aug. 9 seeds of peace observance, Carter Center Rose Garden, Atlanta, GA. (www.nonukesyall.org)

• Rocky Flats Plant – peace quilt, film, labyrinth mourning walk. (judithmohling76@gmail.com) • Pantex Plant – Hiroshima exhibit, panel discussion. (www.peacefarm.us)

• Santa Barbara – commemoration to remember victims of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and all innocent victims of war. (www.wagingpeace.org)

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