Wow. Inspiring speeches. Presentations of activities of the growing campaign- now over 350 partners in more than 90 countries. Strategy. Debate. Mariachi music.
That’s how the first day of the ICAN Campaigners meeting seemed to me- a member of the steering group, a long-time campaigner against nuclear weapons, and a person who has a learned a LOT today from campaigners around the world.
A few examples-
Jean-Marie, talked about how now the discourse has changed in France to now include the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons.
Ray, suggested that nuclear deterrence isn’t actually about deterring war (it hasn’t) but it’s about deterring us from trying new things and taking action on the issue.
Samir, reminded us that all countries, even his own (Togo) have a voice and a role to play in this.
Nasser talked about how the Middle East is transitioning and he’s working to make a nuclear ban part of its future.
Vanessa told us how there was nuclear testing just a few islands away when she was younger- and that it drives her to demand a ban now.
Gemma reminded us that there are nuclear victims, from testing, all over the world- including in her Australian home.
Bekele reminded us that a soft and friendly approach is a good way to get governments on board with our ideas, and Ward, reminded us that we should be nice to those who think nuclear weapons are important, because they are going to lose.
The discussions and presentations of campaigner activities- including some of the work that Pax has done recently- was amazing. Despite being exhausted, jet lagged, going from one event to another- this has been a rejuvenating and exhilarating day.
ICAN is here in Nayarit, we’re getting ready for the government conference taking place on Thursday and Friday. We’re also getting ready to ban nuclear weapons. And we will, maybe with a little bit of dancing to Mariachi bands along the way.
To follow the action- check in on twitter: #goodbyenukes and #HINW14 or seewww.goodbyenuk.es