Happy New Year to you who have sent greetings, and to all! I was glad to hear that Ruth is writing on the global anti-war movement. You (Ruth) may want to put it on the website of the NIGD , or to tell us where we can read it.

Thank you for drawing attention to the Asian Peace Alliance. I learn (from http://www.greenleft.org.au/2002/508/27508) that it was founded, as a response to the US "war on terror", in Manila on September 1, 2002, at an assembly of about 100 peace activists, including more than 50 representing organisations from around Asia. But, like you, I do not know about its further developments.

When you said "anti-war movement", Peter Waterman came to think about the Youth CND in the UK around 1960, while I associate to the END movement of the 1980s. What do you (all) think of the nuclear issue when you say global democracy? Where do the nukes come into our thinking about global democracy? - A related, but more leading question I would also like to ask, is this: if we really want to solve those big problems, which they are talking so much about - global warming and the climate crisis, for instance - should we not start with nuclear disarmament? My own answer to this question is yes, but I would probably not have got it spelled out here now had I not stumbled over the speech by Mr Tony Benn at the international conference of the Stop the War Coalition, on 1 December, 2007, in London (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jw0kQPE6adI) ; the old leftist politician said as much.

Among the living parts of the European anti-war and anti-nukes movement, there is also the France-based "Action of Citizens for the total dismantling of Nukes" (http://www.acdn.net). I am particularly inspired by the existence of the ACDN and its growth, because France and the French, as you know, have for long been such a pain in the ass to the global anti-nukes movement.- Well, Blair and the British come in as a good number 2, of course, with their modernizing of the Trident nukes. - Anyway, the ACDN has for some time been running an appeal to prevent war (strikes) against Iran. You may want to sign it (http://www.acdn.net) even if common sense tends to say, that Bush, Cheney &Co are still rational enough to avoid that mistake. (But who says they are in control? And, even if they are, what reasons do we have for trusting their common sense?)

"The world should seek inspiration from past successes and aim to for global disarmament by 2020. it can be done", says Dan Plesch, Plesch and others organise a conference on "Disarmament and Globalisation: Old and New Wisdoms" in London 7 January 2008: http://www.opendemocracy.net/article/globalisation/disarmament_the_forgotten_issue - perhaps someone (you) will attend? If so, please report!

"Superficially, it seems remote that a new wave of mass activism against nuclear weapons comparable to the vast outpouring of popular protest during the early 1980s will develop anytime soon", writes for his part American historian Lawrence S. Wittner, coeditor of the forthcoming book Peace Action: Past, Present, and Future. At a deeper level, Wittner hopes to be proven wrong, of course, see http://www.thebulletin.org/roundtable/antinuclear-weapon-movement/

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At the beginning of December, I visited Nairobi and Kenya again, to follow up the WSF Library Project. I am shocked and depressed by the news about "escalating societal violence" (Ritu) coming out from Kenya now. Believe it or not, but I think we (Europeans) are not without guilt even in this case. The nation-state, which Europe imposed on Africa, is an everlasting curse, to quote Basil Davidson. May he have the last word of this letter. All the best.

 - Mikael