Washington State: The Nuclear State

Jinsung Kim, a student at the University of Washington, produced this video focusing on Washington State’s nuclear weapons legacy as a class project.

It begins with Dr. John Findlay, UW Dept. of HIstory professor discussing the history and impact of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, and then moves on to the Trident ballistic missile submarines based at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor in Kitsap County.  Interviews with Fr. Steve Kelly (of the Disarm Now Plowshares action) and Senji Kanaeda (a Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist Monk) provide perspectives on Trident and nuclear weapons issues.  There is also footage of the Pacific Life Community vigil and nonviolent direct action at the Main Gate of the Bangor submarine base on March 4, 2013.

Please note that there is at least one error in the video: Lynne Greenwald was unable to give an interview not because she was in prison – she was not in prison at the time the video was being made – but because of her work schedule.

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Mom says: ABOLISH NUKES NOW!

CLICK HERE to see the full day’s schedule.  Click here for directions to GZ.  Hope to see many of you local folks there on Saturday! 

Questions: Contact Anne Hall, annehall@familyhealing.com, 206-545-3462, or Sue Ablao, gznonviolencenews@yahoo.com, 360-930-8697.

Faith and Disarmament

On June 12, 1981, Archbishop Raymond Hunthausen gave a prophetic speech to the Pacific Northwest Synod of the Lutheran Church of America.  Taking up our cross with Christ in the nuclear age, he proclaimed, means unilateral disarmament. Furthermore, he suggested that “our paralyzed political process” needs a catalyst and that catalyst is tax resistance.
Hunthausen’s statement was received enthusiastically by religious leaders and followers of nonviolence across the country.  His words remain urgent and relevant to us today, as we continue to struggle with the question of how to build peace in this nuclear empire.

Faith and Disarmament

I am grateful for having been invited to speak to you on disarmament because it forces me to a kind of personal  disarmament. This is a subject I have thought about and prayed over for many years. I can recall vividly hearing the news of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945. I was deeply shocked. I could not then put into words the shock I felt from the news that a city of hundreds of thousands of people had been devastated by a single bomb. Hiroshima challenged my faith as a Christian in a way I am only now beginning to understand. That awful event and its successor at Nagasaki sank into my soul, as they have in fact sunk into the souls of all of us, whether we recognize it or not. Continue reading

Still Unrepentant After All These Years

Friends,

Bix sat down with “The News Chick” – that’s what they call KIRO Radio’s Linda Thomas – for an interview the other day.  As usual Bix spoke truth, and she allowed him to pour it out.  At the end of the interview Linda asked Bix if he had any regrets or remorse for what he did (at Bangor), and whether he would do it again.  Bix replied, “You might say I’m unrepentant.”  Yes, one might say that about Bix!!!

Perhaps those who truly need to repent are the ones dutifully dismantling and re-assembling the W-76 nuclear warheads that, after being refurbished, will be returned to the Bangor base where they will be attached to their missiles and deployed on the Trident submarines.  Perhaps those who cruise silently beneath the sea, prepared to dutifully “press the buttons that will initiate the great festival of destruction…” (to quote Thomas Merton) need repentance.  And perhaps it is those who dutifully work in laboratories further developing and refining the technologies that prepare for the end of the world in dire need of repentance. Continue reading

Time to Push Back against Trident Replacement

Friends,

It’s time to write letters to the editor in response to the U.S. Navy’s plan to build a new generation of ballistic missile submarines!

The Kitsap Sun published an article yesterday about the Navy’s work on a replacement for the current fleet of OHIO class submarines. The Seattle Times picked right up on it and published it essentially verbatim.

A new ballistic missile submarine program (even with fewer missile tubes) will continue to foster our nation’s reliance on the false security inherent in the concept of nuclear “deterrence”, and will likely destabilize efforts at disarmament and nonproliferation. Now is the time to make use of the newspapers’ coverage by writing letters to the editors of your local paper, whether you live near the Bangor Base, South Sound, Seattle, or even New York City. Continue reading

No New Nuclear Subs! Time to Speak Out!

Ahoy Mateys,

Avast and shiver me timbers!  Our nation’s nuclear “deterrent” is at risk; our submarines are “aging” and we must develop a new generation of Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile Submarines (SSBNs), aka “Boomers” (eek!).  The admirals, defense hawks and corporations that stand to make huge profits from the development and production – and don’t forget all the great stuff they add on later, along with more MISSILES to fill those launch tubes – of the new Trident replacement are like children beneath the tree at Christmas.  New subs are coming!!!

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a public dialogue about such programs?  Allow the people to speak about such issues at town hall meetings?  Consider how better to spend our nation’s treasure than on weapons designed to kill millions of civilians? Continue reading

Questions… (And New START)!

Friends,

Ever since the news media got wind of the jury’s verdict in the Disarm Now Plowshares trial there has been an onslaught of questions about the trial: What were the reasons for their Plowshares action?  Will they appeal?  Why did they choose to defend themselves?  What happens next?  What does this mean for the nuclear weapons abolition movement? Continue reading

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