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“Nuclear–Free Future” Month Marked in Idaho

August 25, 2008

Boise, ID – August is designated as "Nuclear-Free Future" month by the coalition United for Peace and Justice. In Boise, Idahoans are observing it by gathering this week to watch a documentary about the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings of August 1945, and to discuss the lasting effects of those attacks.

Nuclear-industry watchdog Andrea Shipley with the Snake River Alliance says nuclear weapons can still be found in military arsenals all over the world, which are capable repeating the destruction of Hiroshima 400,000 times over.

"It's critical that we take the time as a community to remember the effects of this devastating event, and commit ourselves to never allowing such a disaster to happen again."

This year's commemoration has special significance in Idaho, where plans are being promoted for a nuclear power plant in Elmore County. Shipley says Tuesday's discussion will include information about how nuclear reactor development is linked to the nuclear weapons industry.

Those who promote nuclear power maintain the two are not connected but, to Shipley, their denials don't make sense. As she points out, the United States objects when other countries develop nuclear reactors - on the very grounds that they could be using them to develop weapons.

"The more you learn about nuclear reactors, the more you know that having that kind of technology can push the nuclear weapons industry forward."

United for Peace and Justice is a coalition of national and international groups opposed to current U.S. military policy.

The documentary will be shown Tuesday, 6:30 PM at the Boise Public Library, 715 S. Capitol Blvd., Boise.

Deborah Smith/Craig Eicher, Public News Service - ID