Stop the $1 Trillion Nuclear Weapons Escalation

President Obama remembered the Hiroshima victims in May 2016. NY Times/Doug Mills

A Call to Observe Hiroshima and Nagasaki Week in Massachusetts

August 6-9, 2016

71 years have passed since the the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 46 years since the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) took effect, and yet the five original nuclear weapons states, led by the United States, have not taken serious action on their commitments to abolish nuclear weapons.

In May of this year, President Barack Obama became the first sitting U.S. president to visit the site of the 1945 attack on Hiroshima. At that historic site he met with the hibakusha (atomic bomb survivors) and spoke eloquently of the horrors of the atomic age and the scourge of using war as an instrument of policy.

President Obama’s visit was a gesture of good faith — but the actions of his administration directly contradict these efforts. On April 13, the New York Times warned its readers that the U.S. plan to spend $1 trillion to “modernize” its nuclear arsenal raises the menacing specter of a new arms race with Russia and China.

Yet without a powerful grassroots movement dedicated to nuclear disarmament, the world’s nuclear crisis will only get worse instead of better.   Therefore, Massachusetts Peace Action calls on peace groups, people of faith, youth, community groups, and human rights advocates to organize events across Massachusetts on or about August 6-9, 2016, to call attention to the people’s demand for an end to the $1 trillion nuclear weapons escalation.

In Boston, we will organize a procession and outdoor commemoration near Copley Square with music, dance, and speakers, as we have done in previous years.  This year, the Boston event will be on Tuesday, August 9.  We invite everyone to help plan and participate.

We urge your organization to plan an event in your town, church, or campus. Send information on your events to info@masspeaceaction.org. We will publish a calendar of events across the state so that all people who seek a peaceful world will know that they are not alone!   Last year, we listed 16 events in Massachusetts and we hope to top that this year!   This effort is part of the worldwide “Chain Reaction” series of events and non-violent actions for nuclear disarmament being held July 8 – October 2, 2016.

We have launched a petition to President Obama to take action on de-alerting, no first use, global negotiations, and stopping nuclear weapons modernization, and invite your organization to help us circulate it. The petition is available online or in paper form.

We hope you will collaborate with us in this joint effort! Contact 617-354-2169 or info@masspeaceaction.org with questions or to connect and exchange ideas.