'Peace begins when the hungry are fed'

'Peace begins when the hungry are fed'

Monday, August 10, 2020

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As we celebrate with the rest of our nation the 58th anniversary of our Independence, the Jamaica Peace Council (JPC) also must commemorate with deep regret the 75th anniversary of the barbaric atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the US Government under President Harry Truman. Humanity will always remember the loss of tens of thousands of lives and the horrific destruction of property in this senseless and totally unnecessary act of aggression against the Japanese people by US imperialism.

The threat of war, especially nuclear war, has serious implications for the attainment of our aspirations as a sovereign nation. We will continue to learn and share the lessons of these horrific acts of violence which gave rise to the formation of international bodies and integration movements aimed at promoting peaceful co-operation between nations, which is the most civilised behaviour to which humanity can aspire. There is an urgent necessity for the peoples of all nations, including Jamaica, to fight against the barbaric practice of bombing nations into submission or oblivion for the furtherance of imperialist objectives.

During the first week of August 2020 we witnessed the continuation of the horrific bombing of the Palestinians in the Gaza strip by Israel. In our own region of Latin America and the Caribbean, there have been at least seven imperialist military attacks from the 1950s. The US Special Representative to Venezuela Elliott Abrams, in testifying to the US Senate on August 4, 2020, bragged about continuing efforts to overthrow President Nicolás Maduro, the democratically elected president of Venezula. According to an article in the publication Common Dreams, a disturbing new document outlines plans for a US regime change scheme against Nicaragua's elected Government. Imperialist regime change efforts use many strategies which include manipulation through aid, destabilisation, direct interference in internal affairs, and military intervention. Military intervention is always on the table if other efforts fail. Our nation and the peoples of the region must remain vigilant in defending our region as a zone of peace, knowing full well that the imperialists have nuclear weapons in their arsenals and will unleash them if it suits their purpose.

Against this background, we also unreservedly call upon all countries that possess nuclear arsenals, including the US, France, China, Russia, North Korea, Britain, and Israel, to dispose of these deadly weapons and redirect to positive human development the trillions of dollars they waste on manufacturing arms.

We in the Jamaica Peace Council fervently believe that the wealth created by the working people in these nuclear-armed countries should not be invested in weapons of mass destruction that could end up killing not only them but every human being on the planet. Further, we take note of the fact that COVID-19, poverty, hunger, homelessness, and growing income-wealth inequalities are startling realities in all the nuclear weapons-possessing countries.

Given the dependence of the developing countries on the imperialist nuclear weapons-possessing countries, the effect is worst for us, even if our COVID-19 cases are low. Thus, we must educate our people about the situation so that they can add their voices to the demand for all countries with nuclear weapons to divert the resources, including their tax dollars and brain power, to investment in solutions to eliminate the socio-economic disparities within their own countries and across the globe. They must invest in fighting the worsening climate crisis which also threatens human existence on Earth. They need to be persuaded that, “Peace begins when the hungry are fed.”

The above piece was submitted by the Jamaica Peace Council. Send comments to the Jamaica Observer or jamaicapeacecouncil@gmail.com.

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