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Report on Pugwash Conference in Nova Scotia


Canadian Pugwash organized a Strategic Foresight Workshop on “A Secure World without Nuclear Weapons” in Nova Scotia, Canada, August 16-18, 2012. The workshop was attended by over 30 Pugwashites from all around the world. This workshop included outstanding talks by Senator D. Roche, one of the founders of the Middle Powers Initiative, on “Reasons Why Nuclear Disarmament Has Not Been Achieved”; by H. Burkhardt on “Governance for a Peaceful World” and by D. Paul on “A 2012 View of the Possibility of a WWNW”. Among reasons why we have not achieved nuclear disarmament, Roche stressed the following: first, duplicity of nuclear weapons states; second, timidity of non-nuclear weapons states; third, media, that considers nuclear weapons as “old news” and never emphasizes the true danger of weapons for mass destruction; fourth, confused public opinion, nuclear weapons are never an issue in elections; and fifth, academic, business and religious leaders seldom speak of nuclear danger. Actually, quite some progress has been achieved in reducing the number of nuclear weapons in the USA and the Russian Federation, but there is a proliferation in other countries. Certainly, total elimination of nuclear weapons and abolition of war are demanding and complex tasks and major new ideas and approaches are necessary. The workshop concluded with recommendations focusing on the role of a Strategic Foresight technique in future planning, dialogue and advocacy on nuclear disarmament.

This is just one of the many Pugwash activities in early 2012. It is important to stress the significance of the conferences and workshops organized in Israel. See recent reports on the Pugwash website for more information.