Friday, June 11, 2010

Walk for Nuclear Free Future to U.N., NYC

Walking for a Nuclear Free World

Last month four different organized walks converged and crossed over the George Washington Bridge in New York City. People came from many regions of this country and as far away as Japan and Australia to convey the message to the United Nations “Now is the time to eliminate all nuclear weapons forever.”

Several of the walkers have close links with an organization started by Hiroshima’s mayor, Mayors for Peace<>, building opposition to nuclear weapons at the crucial local level of government.

The Northern Route, wound through upstate New York and then down the Hudson River Valley, where it touched deep history that precedes (and explains) our nuclear dilemma. Walkers in New York State passed through the Onondaga and Oneida Nations, learning of nuclear dumping in this region and of the powerful peace testimony of the Iroquois confederacy.

The New England Route traveled through Vermont and coastal Maine, Boston, Rhode Island and Connecticut. My friends, the monks and nuns of the Peace Pagoda in Leverett MA initiated this walk. I was able to spend some time with them in Springfield, MA where they stopped for a while to hear Archbishop Desmond Tutu speak at a local college, before they continued their journey to NY.

The Southern Route walkers started Oakridge TN, where uranium for the WWII bombs was enriched. They traveled through winter storms across mountains that are now being dismantled for coal. They walked to Pennsylvania and approached Three Mile Island where they looked closely at the devastation wreaked by both coal and nuclear power sources.

The D.C. Region Walk started on April 8 and was organized by Proposition 1 and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. They traveled 100 miles from the nation’s capital.

On May 1 all four groups arrived at the George Washington Bridge and walked to the UN building together.

As the United Nations began its review of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty the walkers united their voices in unison. “Now is the time - to eliminate all nuclear weapons forever. Let the nations agree on a verifiable timetable for global nuclear abolition.

Now is the time - to begin making our communities, our country and the world a safer, healthier, sustainable place for all.”

After the march to the U.N., monks, nuns and supporters fasted for four days and chanted across the street from the UN as the NPT meetings progressed and activists also entered the UN to give the testimonies gathered during the walks.

There was very little written in the media about this spiritual walk made by thousands of people.

More than 23,000 nuclear weapons still exist in our violent world and more nuclear power plants are in the works for the first time since Three Mile Island. We have an opportunity to make a difference.

Go to for an update on what happened at the United Nations.


This is a very serious situation - have you contacted President Obama or your government leaders to speak up against nuclear weapons and destruction to the earth that the storage of nuclear materials has contributed? If not, please consider doing so today!


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