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The Doomsday Machine - David Peutherer

The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner by Daniel Ellsberg, Bloomsbury Publishing, 2017 [2018 in UK]

From Dresden to Doomsday

In the early 1960s Ellsberg worked for the RAND Corporation on how to avert a nuclear exchange between the Soviet Union and the United States, was a consultant to the United States Department of Defense and the White House, and drafted Secretary Robert McNamara's plans for nuclear war. He had access to top secret documents, senior military personnnel and other senior officials. He now writes and lectures about the dangers of the nuclear era.

Disarming Nuclear Scotland Conference - Helensburgh CND

 

The conference this year explores some of the main campaigning work that will enable us to achieve a Scotland mercifully free of all nuclear armaments.

In the morning session Janet Fenton provides an update on Scottish CND's priority areas of work such as the UN Treaty Ban (TPNW), while Gordon Dickson and Jean Anderson outline our efforts to work with and through trusted political partners such as the SNP and the Greens. Martin Docherty will reiterate the SNP commitment to a speedy removal of Trident given earlier this year at the party's Spring Conference. The addience will have an opportunity to question all speakers throughout the day.

Scottish CND join Hiroshima Fast

SCND’s Iona Soper, Emma Cockburn, Janet Fenton and Brian Quail, and are undertaking a fast in commemoration of the atomic attack’s by the US Government on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6th and 9th August 1945. They act as part of an international initiative. Their statements will be issued, one for each day and published on http://www.nuclearban.scot 

Roadmap for Trident Removal

SNP CND have published a Roadmap for Trident Removal. This is a detailed map of how an independent Scotland can get rid of Trident. 

READ THE REPORT

Campaigners Reclaim UK Nuclear Base for Peace on Anniversary of TPNW

On the second anniversary of the day the United Nations agreed to ban the bomb, Trident Ploughshares, in order to challenge Faslane's legitimacy and highlight the progress that has been made since a huge majority of the world's states took the ban decision, used spray paint to re-decorate the main entrance of the base for peace and blocked the base's other entrance.

Response to Scotland's Energy Future

In light of increasing demand for policies that adequately address climate change concerns by reducing carbon emissions and producing energy in a sustainable manner, last month, the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) released a report titled 'Scotland's Energy Future'. Scottish CND respond below:

SNPCND Roadmap to Nuclear Disarmament

SNPCND put forward a Roadmap to Nuclear Disarmament resolution at the SNP Spring Conference in April 2019. It was passed unanimously.

       Conference welcomes the continued support for nuclear disarmament and, with the impending inevitability of independence, we need to set out a clear timetable for removal of nuclear weapons from Scottish soil and waters.

       Conference believes that we need a practical description of the process and timescale to safely remove nuclear weapons at the very earliest opportunity on Scotland regaining our independence.

       Conference therefore agrees that we should develop a credible road map that has at its end point the removal of the Royal Navy’s nuclear armed and nuclear-powered submarine fleets from Scottish soil and the repurposing of related support bases on Scottish soil.

       Conference calls on the Scottish Government to work with the STUC to undertake a diversification study that will set out the positive contribution the skilled workers of Faslane and Coulport can make to the Scottish Defence sector free of nuclear weapons.

The SNPCND committee will consult with Scottish CND and the Scottish Trades Union Council and will work with the SNP Policy Development Committees to ensure the Roadmap is progressed. This is a very positive commitment from the SNP to take action to disarm on independence.

 
 

Raytheon and Lockheed Martin bidding for Faslane training contract

 According to recent reports US arms companies linked to alleged war crimes in Yemen are in the running for a Ministry of Defence contract that will involve training Royal Navy recruits at the home of Britain's nuclear weapons.

RIP Jim Taggart from Brian Quail and Scottish CND

Dr Jim Taggart was a hands-on and hard-working officer on Scottish CND's executive committee for many years. He was a well-regarded member of CND UK's Council, travelling to London for meetings regularly, and an integral part of Helensburgh CND and immensely practical supporter of the Peace Camp.

Jim’s funeral is on Saturday 6th July, at 10:30am in Craigrownie Parish Church, Cove Burgh Hall, Shore Road, Cove, near Helensburgh G84 0LY


The service will be followed by burial at the Barbour Cemetery and then refreshments by the Green Kettle will be served in the Gibson Hall, Garelochhead G84 0AT


Many years ago when Trident Ploughshares first started I stayed in Jim's house at Cove. He took me on a tour of Linn Gardens, which had been a barren wilderness before Jim transformed it into the wonderful place it became. They even made a TV programme about it.

Whenever I go to that hellish place, the North Gate at Faslane, I see the tourist signpost at the roundabout indicating the way onward to Linn Gardens. The mere sign of this always gives me a brief fluttering of hope, which is otherwise drained from me by the unalloyed evil that is the base.

Jim's gardening genius was integral to his dedication to peace. His making of a garden was the re-making of our primary home, our Eden. A myth is not a lie, but a primal truth told in a tale. Our pride and arrogance drove us into exile from Eden, our garden home. Basically, we are all trying to get back home. And a garden is the nearest place to heaven on Earth.

The last time I saw Jim, it was in the Clyde Bar, at a Helensburgh CND meeting. Jim was ensconced in the corner with the campers and CND'ers around his - Gandalf with the Hobbits. This was not long after he had received the terrible news that his son Jamie had been found dead in Vietnam. The worst news any parent could get. Some people are destroyed by grief, others grow stronger, and are thus ennobled. I admired Jim then more than ever.

It was not all sweetness and harmony; Jim was old-school Brit left, and had no sympathy for Scottish independence. But then, neither did Alan MacKinnon - and he was a giant in the peace movement. To use that most boring cliche, CND is a broad church.

Jim was exceptionally active in Scottish CND locally and on the Executive, for many years. His dedication and untiring efforts will be sorely missed by all who yearn for peace and justice.

The Global Net - Stop the Arms Trade

Stephan and Magdalena from the Arms Information Centre (RIB) visited Scotland in early March 2019 to introduce us to Global Net - Stop the Arms Trade 

Their mission was to remind us that International cooperation is essential if we are to limit the harms of arms trade - arms manufacturers often have operations that are global; they manoeuvre to avoid national restrictions,  sometimes exporting whole factories to bypass national laws or make their legal entity to avoid reparations required by international law. National laws often make it very difficult for victims of weapons to receive any compensation. For example, a Somalian soldier who lost a leg and could identify the rifle as made in Germany would have to be in Germany to seek legal redress - you cannot file a complaint without being on German soil. They are making public, visible detailed case studies on arms manufacturers and the arms they cause on the Global Net website.