Since the first Citizens’ Festival "Disarm to Live" (Désarmer pour vivre) was held in Saintes, western France, on ACDN’s initiative, on 6-9 August 2021 during the Covid pandemic, the world has seen wars break out in Ukraine and in the Near East, both of them involving a nuclear power. This is flagrant proof that nuclear weapons do not guarantee peace to anyone or any state, not even those that possess them. On the contrary, they encourage war, with the additional risk that war might extend to the whole planet and strike any one of us. According to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, they place us all at 90 seconds from Doomsday and have done since 2022.
The nation-states, whether nuclear-armed or not, need to stop becoming superarmed - never in all history did the world spend as much on military stuff as in 2023. The resources wasted on creating weapons and war need to be devoted to satisfying key human needs and protecting life on earth, not on destroying it. It is the right and duty of every sensible person to require that states, notably one’s own state, is oriented towards general disarmament, both conventional and nuclear.
France, as "Homeland of Human Rights", ought to contribute to this, in particluar by a diplomatic initiative to bring together all the nuclear-armed states, including those currently waging war, to negotiate the complete, elimination of these weapons, incremental and controlled. Nuclear disarmament is not just required by international law, it is virtuous in itself: it implies that the reasons for conflict need to be reduced at the same time by diplomatic means.
ACDN proposes that you affirm the desire to live in peace and to reflect together on how to build peace despite the obstacles of the current situation, which need to be rigorously analysed to help overcome them.
We will do this on 6-9 August this year, between two traditional ceremonies during which the Nuclear Disarmament Flame will burn in memory of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The festival will join utility with enjoyment through concerts, exhibitions, lectures, debates, films and performances open to all, placing art and thought at the service of peace.
The city of Saintes, a member of "Abolition 2000" and "Mayors for Peace", has since 2001 had many national and international events in favour of peace and disarmament. It is preparing to welcome this new event with the hope that the participants will be more numerous because the itnernational situation so requires. It invites you and thanks you in advance for your presence and support.
A preparatory meeting will be held in Saintes on Tuesday 6 February at 8.30pm, in salle Saintonge N°1, 11 rue Fernand-Chapsal. It is open to all persons motivated by the Festival.
If you wish to support the event, to attend it, or to take the floor, you are invited as from now to write to email@example.com or to phone +33 6 73 60 76 61