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a DVD by Nukewatch and Camcorder Guerillas

At CND's global summit at London's City Hall in February, activists and experts explored the options for a nuclear weapon-free world, the two strands often interweaving and overlapping.


Adam Conway spoke about Nukewatch in the campaigning session; in addition to the importance of citizens' verification– there was a time when the very existence of nuclear weapons convoys was denied - he spoke about the emotional awareness raised when local residents on the route see the convoy. Nukewatch has learned about the nuclear warhead convoys by tracking them; watching out, following and observing them. Once seen, a nuclear warhead convoy is easily recognisable and unlike anything else on the roads. There is now a new tool available to help people to know what a convoy looks like, and where it goes. The Camcorder Guerillas' new film, Deadly Cargo, premièred at the Glasgow Film Theatre in March is to be shown in communities along the convoy route. There is no doubt that it will raise emotional awareness of the convoys, the nuclear weapons and our unique position in Scotland of having these weapons transported, stored and deployed in a country whose people and government oppose them. Fully assembled Trident nuclear warheads are regularly transported on ordinary roads, passing Edinburgh and Glasgow on their journey between AWE Burghfield, Berkshire and RNAD Coulport, Scotland.The Camcorder Guerillas show ordinary citizens in the NukeWatch network as they track the convoy and campaign against its deadly cargo. Rob Edwards, the Sunday Herald environmental correspondent quotes the MOD who have in recent years admitted the danger of nuclear detonation in the event of a terrorist attack. They said “this is an issue of national security given that such an attack has the potential to lead to damage or destruction of a nuclear weapon within the UK. The consequences of such an incident are likely to be a considerable loss of life and severe disruption both to the British people’s way of life and to the UK’s ability to function effectively as a sovereign state” For CND groups and members, a DVD of Deadly Cargo is an invaluable resource. It includes Karine Polwart's heartstopping “Better Things” on the soundtrack, and footage that was retrieved from police forensic evidence data, as well as many weel kent faces, including Eric Wallace, whose moving testimony is as eloquent as it is simple. Notice of a convoy coming can be very short, and information is often sketchy, so people are needed to go and look for it. The action materials provided show that this is less diffi cult than people might imagine; it can involve picking a spot where you can see the road comfortably; a car and a second person is helpful, and a phone is important. A rota or at least two people watching allows one to take a break. Guidelines to ensure that campaigning actions do not increase the attendant risks are explained in the film as well as in the action pack. During the film, there is a shot of the main weapon carrier travelling in the slow lane taken from a car overtaking it. The voice over tells us, “You overtake them on the motorway, you reach out your arm – they are an arm's length away from you. That's how close the UK public comes to nuclear weapons”. Campaigning against the convoys will be more effective if there is a good meshing between local and national campaigning, and there are good suggestions for collective and individual action set out on the Nukewatch website. (www.nukewatch.org.uk) If you would like to see the film, Glasgow West CND has a screening on the 11th of June, and Edinburgh CND on Monday 2nd at the Edinburgh Peace & Justice Centre. There will also be a showing at St John's Church Hall during the Edinburgh World Justice Festival later in June hosted by ECND (see www.ewjf.org.uk), or else you could get your own copy and arrange a screening. Leaflets about the film are available for anyone who is able to help distribute it within their local area, or to give to their local authority. A sticker is being produced for the inside of your car windscreen to hold your tax disc in place while reminding you of the phone number and what the convoy looks like. For leafl ets, or to order a copy of the film contact 0141 416 3161, or check out the website. They are available to buy from the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre St John's, Princes Street, Edinburgh. (Open 6 days) Local groups are asked to feedback to the Nukewatch network not only information about the convoy but also to share their lobbying and other activities.

Meantime, put this number into your phone - 0845 45 88 365!

Janet Fenton