Johnson, Rebecca

Rebecca Johnson
1 December 2017Comment

Rebecca Johnson remembers an indefatigable

Helen John, midwife turned feminist peace campaigner, was best known as a founder of the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp, but her extraordinary life of commitment and peace activism went much further.

After joining a 10-day protest walk from Wales to US air force base Greenham Common in August 1981, Helen chained herself to the fence on 5 September, demanding a public debate about NATO’s deployment of cruise missiles. When that was ignored, she led the way in setting up the…

13 August 2011Feature

The Scottish Parliament is now led by a Scottish Nationalist Party administration opposed to Trident. The result has been renewed optimism about making progress with anti­Trident campaigning, particularly by working through the Scottish Parliament. However success will only be achieved if pressure is maintained on both Westminster and Holyrood by further campaigns of direct action and lobbying, as well as an increase in trade union involvement. Four Scottish based peace activists explain.

In May 2007, Scotland elected a minority government committed to getting rid of Trident.

Opinion polls showed that opposition to Trident was the foremost reason cited by people who transferred their votes from the Labour Party to the Scottish National Party (SNP). It is important to recognise that the outcome was not due to an upsurge in nationalist opinion, but reflected disgust with Tony Blair's government, not least over Labour's decision to renew Trident for a further 30 years.…

1 February 2010Feature

Next steps for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is scheduled to hold its next review conference from 3-28 May, just when Britain is likely to have a general election. For many governments and NGOs, the NPT will be a major focus for their work in 2010. But should it be the main focus for disarmament activists? What, realistically, can be achieved at the 2010 review conference?

Even when important commitments have been adopted at NPT conferences, as with the “13 Practical Steps on…

3 November 2006Comment

After pulling out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in 2003, this October North Korea "officially" joined the international nuclear club when it carried out an underground nuclear test. Rebecca Johnson reflects on the implications.

It might have been described in North Korea as a “happy” test, but North Korea's nuclear explosion on 9 October was deeply sad.

Sad for the people of North Korea who are oppressed while their preening “dear leader” Kim Jong Il beggars the economy and pours scarce resources into building plutonium weapons. Sad for the nuclear non-proliferation regime, widening its credibility gap and yet again showing how the “promise” of nuclear power can be diverted into nuclear weapons by…

1 July 2006Feature

On 1 October 2006, Faslane 365 (F365) will be kicking off what organisers hope will be a year of civil resistance at the nuclear submarine base near Glasgow. Peace, justice, environmental and women's groups from Scotland, elsewhere in the UK and a few from abroad, have already committed themselves to bring at least 100 people each to blockade the base during the first three months: more are signing up every week. PN challenged organisers to make the case for why F365 is the campaign people should get behind. Rebecca Johnson responds.

Faslane 365 is a grass -roots campaign to mobilise public opinion and action to oppose Trident and prevent any commitment to further nuclear weapons.

The strategy is to influence the future decision by raising the political and financial costs of deploying the current Trident system. As we did with cruise missiles in the 1980s, Faslane 365 plans to combine persistent,nonviolent opposition at the site of deployment with creative actions, political pressure and wide networking.

3 May 2005Comment

Most of the nations of the world have joined the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which has its seventh Review Conference in New York this month. India, Israel and Pakistan remain outside, and North Korea announced its withdrawal from the treaty in 2003. Yet the NPT is weak and getting weaker, and forecasts suggest that the conference will fail to find solutions to the most pressing challenges.

Up to the job?

Though the NPT is usually represented as a…