by David Rothauser
To all activists espousing demilitarization, nuclear abolition and a true peace-in-action.
It was all accomplished 68 years ago and who noticed? Peace and prosperity, no military, lowest homicide rate among industrial nations, no hand guns, no assault weapons allowed, excellent health care at 5 dollars a visit on demand, marvelously healthy diet, affordable housing, great educational system (with a few quirks), a gem of a public transportation system and until very recently a healthy democracy. Of course I’m talking about the Japanese Constitution which both Noam Chomsky and Helen Caldicott called a model for the rest of the world to follow – especially Article 9 and the Preamble to the constitution which forbids Japan to ever again make war. Japan is also the only major industrial power to eschew nuclear weapons. All of this which the rest of the world ignored, a gift of peace on a silver platter.
Now of course that wonderful gift is under siege by their own government, bullying and illegally trashing their own constitution. Now too a slumbering infant has awakened. The youth of Japan, stung by the lies, obfuscations and blatant disregard by the Abe administration for the will of the people, has arisen in record numbers staging dramatic protests and demonstrations to retain their beloved constitution in concert with labor unions, academics, hibakusha and older generations who have long battled for their human rights guaranteed by their peace constitution.
Instead of re-inventing the wheel may we encourage you to join forces with WILPF, Veterans for Peace and the Jane Adams Peace Association to campaign for a resolution to bring a version of Article 9 as an amendment to the U.S. constitution. Strong connections have already been made in Japan for mutual support including Naomi Takasu (founder of committee to nominate Art. 9 for the Nobel Peace Prize), Global Article 9 Campaign to Abolish War, Peace Boat, Hidankyo, Allen Nelson Peace Project, academics from Ristumeikan University and Okinawa. Here in America we have gained endorsements and support from the Japanese-American Museum in Los Angeles, Georgia WAND, MASS PEACE ACTION, American Friends Service Committee and the Smedley Butler Brigade of Veterans for Peace.
In Boston Mary Popeo and David Rothauser are producing independent films focused on the abolition of war and nuclear weapons. Mary’s new film, “I Am An American,” projects the energy and enthusiasm of American College students expressing their concern and support for Article 9 as a true force for world peace. David’s films, “Hibakusha, Our Life to Live,” and “Article 9 Comes to America,” presents Japanese, Korean and American A-bomb survivors stories while his Article 9 film challenges pre-conceived concepts of war, peace and nuclear weapons.
With Peace and Love,