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Remember Hiroshima: 76th Anniversary Program

remember hiroshima logo
Remember Hiroshima: Anniversary Program: August 6, 7pm commemoration of the 76th anniversary remembrance of the American bombing of Hiroshima. Presented by Arkansas WAND, Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice, Arkansas Peace Week, Pax Christi Little Rock and students from Pulaski Academy, the event is a reminder of the urgency to rid the world of living under the threat of nuclear annihilation.

All guest are asked to wear mask and maintain social distancing of 6′.

Friday, August 6, 2021 at 6 PM UTC-06

Reservoir Park Pavilion

Dr. Ira Hefland speaks

poster of Dr. Ira Hefland

Along with Climate Change, nuclear weapons present an existential threat to the future of life on planet Earth. Experts all agree that the only solution to the nuclear threat is complete abolition of these destructive weapons. Cancelling the plan to upgrade our nuclear arsenal would also slow the progress of climate change. Arkansas WAND is happy to announce the return of Dr. Ira Hefland, who spoke on the urgency of the nuclear threat at the Clinton Center before the pandemic. Don’t miss it!

To join this zoom presentation on Thursday, July 17 at 6:30 CST, use the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89158450068

PAX CHRISTI LITTLE ROCK SPEAKER SERIES

Annual Meeting via Zoom

collage of women's faces

Dear Members and Friends of WAND,

We invite you to attend our Annual Membership Meeting by Zoom on January 24th at 3:00pm to 4:30pm.

The link to the Zoom meeting will be posted also be posted on our Facebook page.

We also encourage you to renew your membership by returning the enclosed envelope with your check. You may also renew at here on this website.

We are especially excited that Medea Benjamin, Founder of CODEPINK and author of 10 books, primarily on the Middle East, will be our speaker. She has worked on peace and justice issues over 40 years, traveled extensively, and has won numerous awards for her work in many parts of the world. Her vision for the future will inspire us to use our power as women, to disarm the patriarchy, and demand diplomacy not war. CODEPINK women use their power strategically on many fronts including today’s campaign, China is Not the Enemy. Visit their website!

January 22nd we will be celebrating the day that nuclear weapons become illegal after 50 nations ratified the Treaty to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. Our challenge will be to join CODEPINK and others in convincing the U.S. to take steps toward reducing our arsenal and signing the treaty. Let’s turn the Doomsday Clock back from the brink!

WAND thanks you for your support in the past as we worked to empower women to reduce violence and militarism and abolish nuclear weapons. Now, more than ever, our mandate is to cut military spending significantly and fund climate change, education, and health care.

We look forward to seeing you on Sunday, January 24th.

Armistice Day Intent

Armistice day
Growing up in a military family we observed Veterans Day. We thanked and honored our veterans for their sacrifices with patriotic parades. Later, I learned about Armistice Day, the forerunner of Veterans Day, and wondered about its roots in our country.

Armistice Day began Nov. 11, 1919. The president announced a day of mourning for the dead of World War I. Congress later adopted it as a national holiday. It joyfully celebrated the end of war and committed to ensuring peace and diplomacy among nations to prevent future military conflicts.

After the Korean War, the U.S. Congress rebranded Nov. 11 as Veterans Day. Honoring the warrior quickly morphed into honoring the military and glorifying war. Armistice Day was flipped from a day of peace into a day of displayed militarism.

Both days claim to honor our veterans and our country. But how we focus and what we honor matters. Shall we glorify war and killing? Or shall we honor one another and our humanity by choosing diplomacy first, to prevent war? Armistice Day focuses on prevention. It reflects on the cost and horrors of war rather than glorifying it.

We should honor one another when we live in peace with our neighbors. War should be a last resort to defend our great nation. This Armistice Day, let’s remember the full cost of war: the loved ones lost while serving their country, the wars we waged despite no evidence that we were in danger, the innocent casualties of war, the veterans who battle post-traumatic stress disorder and the despair of job losses, homelessness and suicide. Perhaps we’ll conclude that the message of Armistice Day and preventing future wars is the measure of true patriotism.

JANE ESTES
Little Rock
Jane Estes is chair of Arkansas Women’s Actions for New Directions.

Support the USPS, Part 2

Support the postal service

Arkansas WAND will join Indivisible Little Rock and Central Arkansas and other local organizations and stand in solidarity to protect Arkansas votes and to support our US Postal Service. Some of the proposed cuts to the USPS are on hold, but others may go forward.

The Rally will take place SATURDAY at 11 a.m. in front of the Brady Station on Markham. Location map: https://goo.gl/maps/m4c39xy6HWXi179T9. Please park responsibly. Representatives of the organizations will speak. Bring a sign in support of our USPS and employees.

Support the USPS!

Support the USPS

Some WAND members are planning an ACTION on Tuesday at 11:30 at the post offices in Hillcrest and the Heights (or other post offices as people see fit).

We would love for anyone who feels this is important to join us with your signs to SAVE THE POST OFFICE. This won’t take much of your time. Come for 15 minutes to an hour and make yourself heard! #USPSProtests

Remember Hiroshima

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Remember Hiroshima: 75th Anniversary: Thursday August 6th, 7p.m. is an online, virtual commemoration of the 75th anniversary remembrance of the American bombing of Hiroshima. Presented by Arkansas WAND, Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice, Arkansas Peace Week, Pax Christi Little Rock and students from Pulaski Academy, the event is a reminder of the urgency to rid the world of living under thee threat of nuclear annihilation.

The program will include interviews, music, stories, short video, poem, and pleas for citizen action.  

Students from the Amnesty International chapter at Pulaski Academy will read stories of the Hibakusha, or survivors, of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings that killed over 120,000 people and fatally injured thousands  more.  They will also interview two women, Melisa Laelan and Faith Laukon, from the Marshallese community in northwest Arkansas. Their families left the islands after the U.S. testing of nuclear weapons there during the 1950s left the islands uninhabitable. 

Other speakers will include Tristan Norman and Dr. George Simon with Dr. Ira Helfand on video. Suzanne Michell will provide music and Jane Estes, Co-chair of the event, will moderate.   

The 75th anniversary should raise awareness of the consequences of testing and using the most powerful weapons on earth with emphasis on actions citizens can take to influence Congress to ensure the safety of the bombs in the U.S. arsenal. Congress also needs to cancel plans for a $2 trillion  modernization of those weapons. The ultimate goal is to eliminate the threat of a nuclear disaster by abolishing the weapons worldwide.       

Peace groups around the world will be commemorating the event from  August 6 through August 9 with church bells ringing, prayers for peace, and calls for citizens everywhere to sign the pledge to work toward worldwide nuclear weapons disarmament. U.S. leaders are urged to adopt a no-first use of nuclear weapons and repeal the sole authorization for the president to control the nuclear button.  The International Treaty to Abolish Nuclear Weapons introduced in 2017 has been ratified by 40 countries.  When 50 nations ratify the treaty, it will be illegal worldwide to build or possess nuclear weapons.    

“Hiroshima Remembered: 75th Anniversary” will be archived on YouTube for later viewing. For more information, contact PeaceWins.org.

March Potluck

Dr. Ira Hefland and Sherry Simon, Ph.D.

If you missed Dr. Ira Helfand’s talk last Monday, be sure to attend this month’s potluck! We will discuss his narrative of how  how  the U.S. and Russia did agree to reduce their arsenals and how we can do it again. Our challenge as WAND is to  work together with Pax ChristiACPJ and our national peace groups in helping to prevent a nuclear war.  Sherry Simon, recently honored by the Arkansas Catholic magazine as “Arkansas Peacemaker of the Year,” will lead the discussion on his talk and Pax Christi’s project, Back from the Brink, about  things we can do, large and small, to prevent a nuclear war for our children and future generations.  The nuclear threat has not gotten the media attention that climate change finally has, but many of the solutions overlap. At least we can keep the public reminded of the critical nature of the nuclear threat.

We have many questions.  Here are a few:

  • How can your actions have any impact on nuclear weapons policy?
  • Should WAND change our name back to it’s original name, Women’s Action for Nuclear Disarmament?
  • Does my vote have any relevance for the future of our world?

Bring a dish to share

Bread and drinks provided

All are welcome!

Pizza, Peace, and Politics

Pizza, Peace & Politics

This month, we are excited to welcome former WAND board member and chair of Arkansans for the Arts, Garbo Hearne. a group that aims to “serve the people of Arkansas as an independent statewide organization providing leadership focused on the promotion and advancement of the creative economy, on transforming policy in arts education, and uniting the state into one voice with a call to action by policy makers to increase investment in the arts.”

Tuesday, February 25th at 6 p.m. at US Pizza in Hillcrest, 2710 Kavanaugh Blvd. Mark your calendars now!

Garbo Hearne