Shaming 9 nuclear powers

Shaming 9 nuclear powers

I have written about the Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons since before Open Borders came out.

One of the women who received the Noble Peace Prize for getting this Treaty passed by the UN was the commencement speaker at my granddaughter’s college graduation. She comforted me in my despair at the continued proliferation of nuclear weapons saying she and her colleagues “stood on my shoulder.” She read my manuscript and wrote a blurb for the cover.

Setsuko Thurlow, survivor of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, said “I have committed my life to the abolition of nuclear weapons. I have nothing but gratitude for all who have worked for the success of our treaty.” As a long-time and iconic ICAN activist who has spent decades sharing the story of the horrors she faced to raise awareness on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons this moment held particular significance: “This is the first time in international law that we have been so recognized. We share this recognition with other hibakusha across the world, those who have suffered radioactive harm from nuclear testing, from uranium mining, from secret experimentation.” Survivors of atomic use and testing all over the world have joined Setsuko in celebrating this milestone.

On October 24, 2020, the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons reached the required 50 states parties for its entry into force, after Honduras ratified just one day after Jamaica and Nauru submitted their ratifications. In 21 days, the treaty will enter into force, cementing a categorical ban on nuclear weapons, 75 years after their first use.

Try to wrap your head around this: Prior to the TPNW’s adoption, nuclear weapons were the only weapons of mass destruction not banned under international law, despite their catastrophic humanitarian consequences. Now, with the treaty’s entry into force, we can call nuclear weapons what they are: prohibited weapons of mass destruction, just like chemical weapons and biological weapons.

The Trump administration badgered many of the fifty states to withdraw from the treaty. Why? Because this is the beginning of the end of nuclear weapons. Nine nations may now be taken to court for building, testing, owning nuclear weapons; for failing to clean up the environmental damage left by the development and testing of nuclear weapons; for neglecting to care for the victims of past bombings and experimentation.

These nuclear powers are Israel, Pakistan, India, North Korea, China, France, the United Kingdom, Russia, and the United States.

After the treaty goes into force in January, we can expect that….

Companies will no longer make these weapons.

Investors will no longer invest in the making of these weapons.

All nations will feel the force of this treaty which becomes international law on January 22, 2021

ICAN counts nearly 600 partner organizations in over 100 countries committed to advancing this treaty and the norm against nuclear weapons. People, companies, universities, and governments everywhere will know this weapon has been prohibited, and that now is the moment for them to stand on the right side of history.

To read the entire treaty, click this link.

Join Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility to be part of a partner organization with leverage. You would add weight to the shaming effort.