By Natalie Bennett
Yesterday, as every year on August 6, Tavistock Square became a solemn place, a sad place, but also a place of resolution, as London CND held its annual Hiroshima Day commemoration.
The resolve was to continue to fight against these hideous weapons, particularly against Britain’s nuclear weapons.
The high turnout, certainly the biggest I have seen, perhaps in part reflected the fact that the is a feeling that austerity, with all of its social horrors, might at least hold out new hopes of UK disarmament.
When even very traditionalist defence experts are calling for Britain to abandon nuclear weapons, if only on cost grounds, the political ground is certainly shifting.
There were two participants who held more memories than most people present.
The veteran peace campaigner Hetty Bower, aged 106, pictured in the crowd right, said: “We have got to grow up and stop killing each other.”
MP Tony Benn said nuclear weapons are no use, we can’t afford them, and they not really independent of US. “We must get rid of them.”
Green MEP Jean Lambert, pictured right, highlighted the almost casual acceptance of India’s nuclear weapons (with real politic proponents saying “we need a bulwark against China), contrasting it with the view of Pakistan.
She said that existing weapons states need to break the stalemate on non-proliferation. It was time we put down bombs and worked for peace, she said.