Nov 26, 2019

Reflecting on 2019 while looking to 2020

This year has flown by! I'm excited to share what we've been up to and our plans for next year. Very honored and proud to share our newest board member is Ambassador Bonnie Jenkins. Ambassador Jenkins comes with 10+ years of experience in the US government, specifically in the area of WMDs. To see her full bio click here!

With the addition of Ambassador Jenkins, we are looking to broaden our reach and capabilities in regard to policymaking. We have been working with our partners and have also been asked to join a number of committees and working groups at the UN. This is a very exciting development for PEAC. Having the ability to push revolutionary love and heart-centered leadership at some of the highest levels of government and foreign policy is at the heart of why PEAC was created. It's a very exciting and proud moment for PEAC. I am beyond grateful for all your support and encouragement along the way. We could not have made it this far without you! 

Through the Survivor's Appeal | Hibakusha Appeal we have also been making inroads with other groups and organizations. PEAC was asked to speak at The Busan Democracy Forum in Busan, Korea this past October. We presented our empathy-building curriculum based on the sorties of survivors from the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. It was very well received and as we do everywhere we go, we pushed people to sign the appeal. We have a good partnership with the groups in Korea working on reunification and will be back in February 2020 to continue the work. Through this conference, we connected with the UN75 committee and are now working on the 75th-anniversary events. We have proposed there be a deeper connection to nuclear abolition establish - especially as the preamble to the UN states "to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small." We are currently working on this with the committee and this too has been very well received. 

Lastly, I'm so excited to share our new partnership with 80,000 voices! You will soon see the name of this project changed to 80,000 Voices to Save Our Planet | Hiroshima 2020. During the 75th Memorial Ceremony, in Hiroshima, we are linking the youth and the Hibakusha together pouring new light on the important message that nuclear weapons must be abolished for good. 100 million viewers will watch 80,000 Voices 2020; a youth music spectacular featuring live youth choirs from Hiroshima & Nagasaki along with a massive virtual, ‘digital’ choir of young people representing every country in the world. Setting off a chain reaction "So that the people from future generations will not have to experience hell on earth." 

This is a celebration, not a protest. We're celebrating a world that wants a future filled with hope. We are creating a council of the hope-filled and conscience to overcome our current threats and invite people to drop their fears so they can see that the solution is much easier then they think. Turning the light on and showing people that the hope they yearn for has been here all along. Collectively, our human species is spending trillions of dollars and our best minds in the world are working on our mutual destruction. Through this music and work, we hope people will be able to imagine a world free of nuclear weapons. So we can move from an isolationist world view to that of a trust economy.

We are very excited about this new project and partnership. We feel it will bring a much-needed spotlight to the appeal and hope you will join us for this new chapter! 

Oct 3, 2019

New York, Hiroshima, and back again

Interviews at Hachidorisha - the Social Book Cafe
Interviews at Hachidorisha - the Social Book Cafe

We have been busy, busy, busy, thanks to your help and support of our efforts! We're working on a multi-pronged approach. Since our project has started, we have been working on:

NYC Nuclear Divestment Campaign 

  • advocating at city hall four times so far
  • 4 Video interviews 

Japan Interviews  

  • 28 interviews in 4 days
  • Two video clips in 1.5 months 

Youth Conference for NPT

  • Collation building 
  • Meeting with NJPA 
  • Conference calls to help with setup of conference 

Direct Actions

  • United in Outrage
  • Climate Crisis Rally
  • Marched and demonstrated in both
  • Conducted video interviews for both - 5 at United in Outrage and 7 at Climate Crisis Rally 

For the NYC Nuclear Divestment Campaign, we have been working on Council Member Daniel Dromm's Package of Legislation on Nuclear Disarmament. Attached to this report are additional documents about this campaign. So far the YEPE team has participated in 4 trips to City Hall, spoken to over 25 council members and gotten interviews with 4 of them. 

We were in Hiroshima, Japan, for the 74th memorial of the atomic bombing. During this time in Hiroshima, we discussed the importance of building a coalition by joining forces with those at the forefront of Nuclear Abolition and Climate Change. We interviewed survivors, students, teachers, activists, and everyday people about the use of the bomb and how it relates to climate change.

We kept hearing the same message - If people saw and understood what happened in Hiroshima, they would realize there are no situations in which we can EVER use them. The other sentiment we heard repeatedly was about climate change. I proposed nuclear weapons are the epitome of our greed and need for power, and climate change is the result of that pursuit. The older generation agreed and said they see it as connected to our need for comfort. They told me to help climate change we will have to get used to the idea that we cannot always have everything immediately, we may need to turn the AC down or even off, we may have to eat food that is in season and grown locally. The younger people were thinking of ways to engage their politicians and raise awareness through their social groups. 

All and all, it was a very uplifting trip! We have 35 videos we recorded, and 28 of them are interviews. We plan to use this footage throughout the year to help bolster our campaign. We produced the first video for September 26th, The International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons. 

To bring climate and nuclear activists together, we are working with Peace Action to plan a World Conference on Nuclear Weapons, Climate Crisis, Social/Economic Justice in NYC, April 24-26, 2020. We have begun planning in earnest, and much progress is being made. Committees are being formed, and action plans made.

We believe it's not enough to sit around and only talk about these issues. We are firm believers in direct, non-violent actions and protests. During the UN general assembly, we participated in several conferences, meetings but, I think most importantly, taking what is being discussed inside the UN out into the streets and working with the community to protest and lift our voices together to demand change. We co-sponsored United in outrage: https://www.facebook.com/events/594402484420168/. The protest spanned 3.5 city blocks, and we even made the primetime evening news: https://abc7ny.com/politics/protesters-march-through-manhattan-to-rally-against-trump/5562677/?fbclid=IwAR3G5fjRqXDvOcSi-cn-An0XBttLXpmHSIegjVWf6ITBKsbof6RyUkii4XI. We also participated in the Climate Crisis Rally where we interviewed seven people from all over the world about why they were there and the importance of focusing on the climate right now.  All the interviews we have been doing will be used throughout the year to help promote our campaign and will be showcased at the conference in April. 

We will continue to send updates on all our activities. In the meantime have a look at some of the pictures from the last few months.

Thank you again for all your help and support - we couldn't continue to do this any of this work without you! 

Warm regards,
Rebecca

Rebecca Irby
Founding Partner, President, and Executive Director
PEAC Institute - Peace | Education | Art | Communication
Partner Organization of International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, 2017 Nobel Peace Prize
Email: rebecca@peacinstitute.org
Phone: (973) 446-5031 Ext 0001
Cell: (551) 556-7649
www.peacinstitute.org

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." MLK

Production team with Artist and survivor Toshiko
Production team with Artist and survivor Toshiko
Interview with former Mayor Hiraoka
Interview with former Mayor Hiraoka
NYC Nuclear Divestment Team at United in Outrage
NYC Nuclear Divestment Team at United in Outrage
Marching down 5th Ave
Marching down 5th Ave
Global Peace Conference on Korean Reunification
Global Peace Conference on Korean Reunification

Links:

Aug 27, 2019

74th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Rebecca and Mito, an in utero-survivor
Rebecca and Mito, an in utero-survivor

The PEAC Team just returned from Hiroshima, Japan. During this time in Hiroshima, we discussed the importance of building a coalition by joining forces with those at the forefront of Nuclear Abolition and Climate Change. We interviewed survivors, students, teachers, activists, and everyday people about the use of the bomb and how it relates to climate change.

We kept hearing the same message - If people saw and understood what happened in Hiroshima they would understand there are no situation in which we can EVER use them. The other sentiment we heard repeatedly was about climate change. I proposed nuclear weapons are the epitome of our greed and need for power, and climate change is the result of that pursuit. The older generation agreed and said they see it as connected to our need for comfort. The told me in order to help climate change we will have to get used to the idea that we cannot always have everything immediately, we may need to turn the AC down or even off, we may have to eat food that is in season and grown locally. The younger people were thinking of ways to engage their politicians and raise awareness through their social groups. 

All and all, it was a very uplifting trip! We have 35 videos we recorded and 28 of them are interviews. We plan to use this footage throughout the year to help bolster our campaign. We are producing the first video and it will be ready for September 26th, The International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons. 

We will send an update when it is ready. In the meantime have a look at some of the pictures from our trip.

Thank you again for all your help and support - we couldn't continue to do this work without it! 

Warm regards,
Rebecca

Rebecca Irby
Founding Partner, President, and Executive Director
PEAC Institute - Peace | Education | Art | Communication
Partner Organization of International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, 2017 Nobel Peace Prize
Email: rebecca@peacinstitute.org
Phone: (973) 446-5031 Ext 0001
Cell: (551) 556-7649
www.peacinstitute.org

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." MLK

DJ Spooky, Steve & Michiko
DJ Spooky, Steve & Michiko
George atop Mt. Misen getting footage
George atop Mt. Misen getting footage
Production team with Artist and survivor Toshiko
Production team with Artist and survivor Toshiko
Interviews at Hachidorisha - the Social Book Cafe
Interviews at Hachidorisha - the Social Book Cafe
Interview with former Mayor Hiraoka
Interview with former Mayor Hiraoka
 
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