1 June 2023 AJ Muste Memorial Institute

Described by some as ‘the American Gandhi’, this lifelong activist was called ‘the Number One US Pacifist’ by Time magazine in 1939

Abraham Johannes Muste, known to the public as ‘AJ Muste’, was a remarkable and in some ways enigmatic figure bridging the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Born in Holland on 8 January 1885, Muste was brought to the US as a child of six and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan, by a Republican family in the strict Calvinist traditions of the Dutch Reformed Church. In 1909, he was ordained a minister in that church, and married Anna Huizenga, with whom he was to share the next 40 years…

1 June 2023 Julie Saumagne

How peace campaigners are using TikTok for Peace

With a billion users every month, TikTok has gone from a social media platform known for silly dances to a powerful political weapon. This has been demonstrated by the fact that two successive US presidents have tried to ban the app on ‘national security’ grounds.

Image Israeli soldier and social media influencer Natalia Fadeev gives her 2.7mn TikTok followers short, generally flirtatious, videos which often contain militaristic pro-Israeli…

1 June 2023 Peter Burt

Only 10 nations - including UK - don't support a ban

Back in 2018, Drone Wars UK published Off The Leash, a report which we considered to be a ground-breaking study into the development of armed autonomous drones – ‘killer robots’ able to operate without human control.

Our study showed that the British ministry of defence (MoD) was actively funding research into technology supporting the development of autonomous weapon systems. We mapped out the…

1 June 2023 Marc Morgan

Macron’s heavy-handed pensions reform is undermining democracy

France is experiencing extensive violence and a seemingly broken political system, with increasing numbers of people feeling left behind or left out. There is a lot to feel unhappy about – while also trying to look for the positive signs which can emerge from times of crisis.

The immediate cause of the current political turbulence in France has been the government’s pensions reform plans, which are being passed into law despite widespread opposition.

Such turbulence is not new…

1 June 2023 Eisenhower Media Network

An open letter published as a full-page advertisement in the New York Times

The Russia-Ukraine War has been an unmitigated disaster. Hundreds of thousands have been killed or wounded. Millions have been displaced. Environmental and economic destruction have been incalculable. Future devastation could be exponentially greater as nuclear powers creep ever closer toward open war.

We deplore the violence, war crimes, indiscriminate missile strikes, terrorism, and other atrocities that are part of this war. The solution to this shocking violence is not more…

2 April 2023 Mondalawy

Photo from Mondalawy

Tahrir Square in Baghdad was the centre of Iraq’s massive, nonviolent Tishreen uprising in October 2019. Protesters occupied a deserted 14-storey building (next to Tahrir Square) which people call ‘the Turkish restaurant’ – because there used to be a Turkish restaurant in it.


This is an aerial view of the Turkish restaurant and of some of the…

2 April 2023 INQUEST

Race, death and British policing

On 20 February, INQUEST published an investigation into the procedures of both the police watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), and the coroner system, with a focus on accountability for racism. As we head towards the third anniversary of the death of George Floyd on 25 May, PN is publishing extracts from the executive summary of the INQUEST report, I can’t breathe: race, death and British policing. INQUEST campaigns for truth, justice and accountability…

2 April 2023 Christina Kelly

Christina Kelly reports on the young people pushing for nuclear disarmament

‘For too long the perception, and feeling, has been that young people aren’t engaged on the topic of nuclear weapons abolition – or at least it just isn’t a priority for them. That fell away in an instant. Seeing so many peers at the last MSP in Vienna was like having a fire re-kindled inside you.’ Those are the words of Jake Atkinson, communications co-co-ordinator of Youth for TPNW (Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons), talking about the impact on him of the group’s first…

2 April 2023 Milan Rai

Milan Rai surveys some important facts about possibilities for ending the Ukraine War that are often swept under the carpet

The Ukraine War has had a horrifying impact on the people of Ukraine, and has been a disaster for people around the world hit by rising food and energy costs. There are some important facts about possibilities for ending the Ukraine War that are often swept under the carpet, that are important for us to remember to help find a way out of this tragedy.

The first and most significant fact is that Ukraine and Russia came right to the edge of agreeing a peace deal back in March 2022 – and…

2 April 2023 Robin Percival

The politics of Northern Ireland today 

Its official title is ‘the Belfast Agreement’, but it is known throughout the world as ‘the Good Friday Agreement’ (GFA) because it was signed on Good Friday, 10 April 1998.

Two of its signatories, John Hume and David Trimble, then the leaders of the largest nationalist and unionist political parties, were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize later that year.

Since then, it has been a rocky 25 years and the Agreement has faced a number of crises, too numerous to recount here. For…

1 April 2023 Milan Rai

PN marked the 20th anniversary of the invasion by talking to two Iraqi activists about the last 20 years, including the massive, nonviolent Tishreen uprising of 2019  

‘In 2003, I and my family were displaced from Baghdad, we went to Diyala [about 50 miles south-east of Baghdad]. I saw on TV the statue of Saddam Hussein collapsing and falling apart and I felt happy because we got rid of this dictatorship. But, on the second day, when I went back home, I found the sight of US tanks and military troops rather painful. Even though I was only 17 years old at the time, I had these very intense negative emotions that almost overwhelmed me. I wished that change…

1 April 2023 Forces Watch

A counter-history of the SAS

The 22nd Special Air Service regiment, better known as the SAS, occupies a unique place in the British public consciousness. For many, it embodies notions of an elite level of valour and heroism coupled with the mystique of state secrecy and a certain roguish prestige.

Even within the military, these troops are often seen as almost supernaturally tough and skilled. A sense of barely-governed violence attaches to them, which results in nicknames like ‘blades’ and ‘pilgrims’.


1 February 2023 PN

A window poster for 1 February

You can download a copy of this poster here:

File PEA012-13-FEB-MAR2023_ISSUE2664_SPREAD.pdf1.06 MB


1 February 2023 Milan Rai

What Stop the War and the direct actionists missed in 2003

Could the anti-war movement have prevented the US-UK invasion of Iraq in March 2003? I think there was a real possibility, slim though it was.

In my view, the British anti-war movement came very close to halting British participation in the invasion – and derailing the war entirely.

Well, that’s not only my view. Just days before the war began, the British government told the US government that it might be forced to pull out of the invasion force. Britain’s ministry of defence…

1 February 2023 Padraig McCarrick

Chatham House, RUSI and IISS all accept funding from nuclear-weapons linked firms

The independence of Britain’s top thinktanks working in the area of nuclear weapons policy has been brought into question, after an academic survey found they had accepted funding from companies who manufacture or maintain nuclear weapons.

Researchers from an elite French university, Sciences Po, surveyed 45 of the world’s leading thinktanks specialising in foreign policy and national security. They all admitted that they received financing from nuclear arms contractors and/or from…

1 February 2023 Pat Gaffney

The latest meeting of the Catholic Nonviolence Initiative brought together people from around the world

In 2016, I met many inspiring peacemakers in Rome when Pax Christi International launched the Catholic Nonviolence Initiative (see PN 2622 – 2623). It set in motion a process to engage with the Vatican, and the global Catholic family, in the practice of nonviolence as a way of life, a spirituality and a method for change. In December 2022, another encounter took place with 75 participants from 28 nations. It was entitled: ‘Pope Francis, Nonviolence and the Fullness of Pacem in…

1 February 2023 Brian Jones

Brian Jones reflects on the legacy of one of the most successful disarmament agreements in history

On 3 December 1997, the representatives of 122 nations met in Ottawa, Canada, to sign the Mine Ban Treaty or, to use its formal name, the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction.

This treaty is regarded as one of the most successful disarmament agreements in history, with 164 nations signed up.

The trade in anti-personnel landmines has virtually stopped, millions of mines have been destroyed…

1 February 2023 PN staff

Call for groups to join 100,000-strong protest, beginning 21 April

On 1 January, the direct action climate group Extinction Rebellion (XR) UK announced that it was making a ‘controversial’ New Year’s resolution to ‘temporarily shift away from public disruption as a primary tactic’. The move seems to have been partly motivated by a fear of the new public order legislation the government has brought in to suppress disruptive direct action.

The XR statement, headed ‘We Quit’, ended by promoting ‘The Big One’, a massive multi-day action that XR plans to…

1 February 2023 Milan Rai

Nuclear bullying of non-nuclear states is a core part of Britain's nuclear doctrine

Sometimes, Western nuclear threats against non-nuclear weapon states have been covert operations, signalled secretly by mobilising strategic nuclear weapon systems (like the British V-bombers sent out to Singapore during the Malaysian Confrontation – see PN 2659).

Sometimes, Western nuclear threats have been very, very public.

Such was the case in the run-up to the March 2003 US-UK assault on Iraq.

It was a very long run-up to war, for reasons discussed…

1 February 2023 Liam Doherty

Liam Doherty reports on the students challenging arms-trade sponsored research at UK universities

Universities across the UK draw millions of pounds of revenue from arms-trade-sponsored research, sometimes with explicit weapon-development research aims. Universities turn to the arms industry to make quick profits from consultancy work, while arms companies use universities as a base for recruitment and PR. British universities also have funds – sometimes tens of millions of pounds – invested in arms companies either directly or indirectly through fund managers and banks.

This is…