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Peace Boat Arrives At Berkeley Marina On International Day For The Total Elimination Of Nuclear Weapons

By Gerry Condon

26 September, 2015

BERKELEY, CA - The historic sailing vessel Golden Rule will arrive at the Berkeley Marina on Saturday, September 26, which the United Nations has designated International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons. Guests will be invited to go sailing on the 34-foot ketch at 10 am, 12 noon and 2 pm. The public and media are invited to meet the crew, to take tours of the boat and to sail on the bay.

In 1958, the Golden Rule and her crew of Quaker peace activists ignited an international movement to stop atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, when they attempted to sail into a nuclear bomb test zone in the Marshall Islands. Five years ago, after the historic sailboat was discovered at the bottom of Humboldt Bay on the north coast of California, local members of Veterans For Peace launched a national campaign to restore the Golden Rule and her mission to sail for a nuclear free world.

“Nuclear weapons are still with us and the threat of nuclear war is very real,” said the Golden Rule’s crew member Helen Jaccard. “We are dismayed that the U.S. government plans to invest One Trillion Dollars into upgrading its nuclear arsenal, instead of reducing and eliminating nuclear weapons, as called for in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.”

“Sailing on the Golden Rule on this second International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, we honor the heroic people of the Marshall Islands, who experienced the horrors of 67 US nuclear weapon tests between 1948 and 1956 – the equivalent of 1.7 Hiroshima-size bombs every day for 12 years,” says Jackie Cabasso, Executive Director of Oakland’s Western States Legal Foundation.

“The tiny Republic of the Marshall Islands has brought lawsuits against all nine nuclear armed nations in the International Court of Justice, as well as a case in US federal court, citing their failure to disarm pursuant to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and customary international law.”

According to Cabasso, “While we welcome the historic international agreement with Iran which limits its nuclear program, by far the greatest nuclear dangers are from existing nuclear weapons and the countries which possess them. Some 15,700 nuclear weapons, orders of magnitude more powerful than the bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 94% held by the US and Russia, continue to pose an intolerable threat, and no disarmament negotiations are underway or planned. Instead, the US is modernizing all three of its nuclear weapons delivery systems - submarines, intercontinental ballistic missiles and bombers -- along with every warhead type in its arsenal. Today we call on the US government to initiate a process, with a timetable, to achieve the universal elimination of nuclear weapons.”The Golden Rule Project is calling for an end to nuclear energy as well as nuclear weapons.

The Golden Rule is now a national project of Veterans For Peace,” said Gerry Condon, the organization’s vice president. “Over the next ten years, the Golden Rule will carry its message of peace around the United States and around the world.”

To arrange an interview, a tour, or to sail on the Golden Rule, call Gerry Condon at 206-499-1220.

For more information about the Golden Rule, go to www.vfpgoldenruleproject.org


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