So far, 2014 has proven to be a year of progress, change, and challenge. But WILPF members and leaders are up for the challenge and continue their important work. This month, we bring you an update on the Y-12 activists and their recent sentencing. We urge you to read and follow their story as appeals are proceeding to dismiss the $53,000 charge and to challenge the charge and conviction of sabotage.
Be sure to mark your calendars for the upcoming Triennial Congress July 31-August 3. Full details are below.
The DISARM/End Wars Issue Committee continues its important work and urges you to get involved on Tax Day and on the Global Day of Action on Military Spending.
Newly elected WILPF-US treasurer, Altair Hatton, has started a blog detailing the work she will be doing in her new role. Be sure to follow her blog!
We are also excited to introduce Haruna Asoh, an exchange student from Japan Women's University, who recently spent a few days in the WILPF-US Boston office as the membership drive intern.
WILPF-US continues its mission to create the peaceful transformation we wish to see in the world. WILPF envisions a transformed world at peace, where there is racial, social, and economic justice for all people everywhere—a world in which:
- The needs of all people are met in a fair and equitable manner
- All people equally participate in making the decisions that affect them
- The interconnected web of life is acknowledged and celebrated in diverse ways and communities
- Human societies are designed and organized for sustainable existence
We invite WILPF-US Branches and Issue Committees to send articles along for inclusion in WILPF eNews, published each month. To find out more, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Table of Contents
Sentencing of Y-12 Activists
Triennial Congress to be Held July 31-August 3, 2014
Resist Militarization, Nuclear Weapons and Killer Drones
From the Treasurer's Desk
"High Power" Film Review
Membership Drive Intern, Haruna Asoh, Welcome and Bio
Sentencing of Y-12 Activists
by Coralie Farlee, WILPF-US DC Branch. DISARM/End Wars Issue Committee Member
Gregory Boertje-Obed, Megan Rice and Michael Walli, in July 2012, walked into the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee and up to the Highly Enriched Uranium Maintenance Facility – the building that stores the US’s supply of weapons grade uranium. On February 18, 2014, they were sentenced to 5 years, 3 years, and 5 years, respectively. This was known as the Transform Now Plowshares action, part of the non-violent civil resistance Plowshares movement by people of faith to transform weapons into real, life-giving alternatives, to build true peace. At the time of their action in 2012, they indicated that the Y-12 facility was chosen because of its plans for a new multi-billion dollar H-bomb factory – the Uranium Processing Facility (UPF). The sole purpose of the UPF (cost now estimated at $19 billion) is to produce thermonuclear cores for H-bombs and ballistic missile warheads. Read more . . .
Triennial Congress to be Held July 31–August 3, 2014
By the Congress Committee
Mark your calendars for July 31–August 3, the dates for the WILPF-US Triennial Congress. The congress will be held at Wayne State University, Detroit. The congress theme, “Global Detroit: Women, Democracy and Corporate Power,” reflects how the struggle for democracy and against corporate power—in Detroit and all around the world—infuses our struggles for disarmament, peace, human rights, a sustainable environment, and more. In addition to workshops and plenary sessions, members will be treated to special events each evening. The opening event on Thursday evening will feature a conversation among renowned activist-leaders and a meet-and-greet reception with the new WILPF board members. On Friday night, we’re presenting a forum on Detroit with local Detroit activists. Detroit poets and other performing artists will provide an evening of culture on Saturday.
Those who can stay in town on Sunday afternoon can attend the annual Hiroshima-Nagasaki commemoration sponsored by the local peace and justice network. Look for details and the registration form in the next Peace & Freedom. You can find the workshop proposal form here. We look forward to seeing you in Detroit!
Image: Michigan Labor Legacy Landmark: “Transcending,” 2003
Resist Militarization, Nuclear Weapons and Killer Drones. Help the UN and US Legislators Build Peace
by the DISARM/End Wars Issue Committee
Thousands of peace builders from around the world will join us in resisting militarism in the US and in their own countries on April 14-15 this year. Some WILPF-US Branches have already planned actions for Tax Day and every WILPFer can take action in some way. Go to the US web pages of the Global Day of Action on Military Spending for rich resources all of us can freely use. Explore any of the other headings across the top of the GDAMS US page and find more wonderful resources. How great to know that so many in the world are standing with us on April 14-15 to end militarism and war and to use our resources instead for human rights and the benefit of all! Our country, tragically, has now become the greatest promoter of war and militarism in the world.
All of April and May WILPF Branches and each of us can take action to ban militarized drones. Go to Know Drones find resources, read about actions and report your own. WILPF US endorses this call to action.
Register now for Alliance for Nuclear Accountability DC Days May 18–24. Read more . . .
From the Treasurer's Desk
Our newly elected WILPF-US Treasurer, Altaira Hatton, has started a blog, which will allow WILPFers an inside look at the work she is doing. From the blog:
"I decided that providing an account of my work would not only be helpful to my fellow board, but also offer members a chance to get to know me, and our mutual challenges. I hope that it answers your questions, and invites you to contact me.
So far, I’ve been reading up on old board meeting minutes, finance committee meeting minutes, our by-laws, previous year’s budgets and expenses, income sources, and current issues.
Some issues I’m researching:
Signatory policy; how are we protected from internal or external fraud? How are our employees protected? Are our policies fiscally modern?
How does the projected 2014 budget compare with our income and expenses in 2013?
How can our board learn and integrate active listening, de-escalation and consensus techniques?
What high priority issues are ahead of us?"
Be sure to follow along as Altaira continues to share her ongoing work. You can find her blog here.
"High Power" Film Review
by Edith Bell, WILPF-US Pittsburgh Branch
Pradeep Indulkar, a nuclear engineer from India, showed his award winning documentary "High Power" at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh on March 3 on his tour through the US. He appeared in many cities across the country, and we will feature a photo of him in the next issue of Peace & Freedom with Native American activists in Arizona.
The event was sponsored by the local group Remembering Hiroshima/ Imagining Peace and WILPF.
"High Power" is set in the village of Tarapur, India, where a power plant was built. It tells the story of following betrayal and slow destruction of the health and livelihood of the 10,000 people who lived there.
Begun in 1969, the project promised jobs and services, none of which materialized. The film interviews many residents about the negative physical consequences they have endured due to radiation exposure, including miscarriages , kidney disorders, high blood pressure, heart problems, low IQs of children, and how the environment has changed (i.e. deformed coconut trees which do not grow to their full height). Dr. Sonia Sarve reported about the serious infertility issues she observed. The hot water discharge by the nuclear plant warms the temperature of the ocean killing the fish in the area. Fishing was the main trade of the village, the fish that are left now are unmarketable. Read more . . .
Welcome to New Membership Drive Intern, Haruna Asoh
Haruna serves as the WILPF-US membership drive intern. She recently had an opportunity to visit the Boston office, and kindly shared a brief bio below:
"I am from Japan and studying at University of Utah as an exchange student from Japan Women's University for a year. I became a member of WILPF in April 2012 and formed a student society of WILPF Japan with some students from Japan Women’s University where WILPF Japan has an office. We study and discuss women-related issues around the world, share information with one another and talk about the problems of students who belong to other WLIPF sections in Japan. We also read articles and books related to Jane Addams and other notable women in the world and display reports about the readings at the university with the aid of members of WILPF Japan.
Recently, I had an opportunity to work in the WILPF-US Boston office for a few days. I am really interested in the activities of WILPF, especially safety and education for women in developing countries and the situation in the Ukraine. I came here to learn more about what actions are being taken for women today and to learn more about the work that the members of WILPF are doing on a daily basis. I look forward to reporting what I learned in the WILPF-US office to WILPF Japan and with other students at my university. Finally, I am grateful to Ms. Ria Kulenovic for giving me this opportunity."