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18th IPPNW World Congress Part 1

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Your Excellency, Dear Friends, and Colleagues in our great international federation of doctors for the prevention of nuclear war, IPPNW. My duty here, my honor, is to introduce what IPPNW is all about. Our federation was founded more than 25 years ago, by doctors from the Soviet Union and the United States. Why doctors against nuclear war? Because as doctors they understood that a nuclear war was the greatest threat to the survival of mankind and thus to their patients. Because we understand that doctors can do nothing if the nuclear war comes. we can only try to prevent. This is our right. This is our duty to prevent illness, to prevent to worst medical catastrophe imaginable. The organization has grown over the years and there are more than 50,000 doctors in almost 60 countries. WIth a large number of students. The Indian affiliate, one of the biggest, strongest and fastest growing We believe that from the beginning that if people really understand what a nuclear war is all about, that it means the extermination of mankind then people would demand that nuclear weapons are abolished before they abolish us. To some extent we succeeded. I'm not referring to the fact that we received to Nobel Peace award in 1985. I think that we succeeded in our education, making people understand that nuclear weapons must be destroyed that they are not weapons. They are instruments of genocide. It worked for a while, but people get used, even to the greatest danger and and more or less have forgotten about it and we have to start a new education campaign. Because the threat is still hanging over us. At this moment if the president of Russia and the president of the United States presses the button thousands of missiles, and I know the exact number...2,654 missiles, will be released within minutes. with the destructive power of more than 100,000 Hirsoshima bombs. That might be the end of the world, and two men have the power to do that. it could also be by mistake. War could be started by mistake, maybe even an internet hacker. This is, of course, an improbable situation. There are encouraging signs that this intollerable situation may be coming to an end. A large group of elder statesmen, many in the United States are now saying what we in IPPNW have always said , as long as one state has nuclear weapons, others will want to aquire it, and the biggest nuclear power, United States, must take the lead to the abolition, to zero nuclear weapons and its the only way to provide security and stop proliferation. One of the presidential candidates in the United States, Barack Obama, has supported this publically and very clearly. So, now if the United States takes the lead and Russia follows, where does India go? Will India wait to the end, be one last states to relieve itself of this terrible buren of nuclear weapons? That would be a shame. Rather, India has a tradition of work for nuclear abolition, nuclear disarmament. The time has come, that India takes a bold initiative again as it has done before and approaches China and Pakistan, the neighboring countries, to show the way and not just wait for it. We shall at this time be also reminded about the terrible cost increasing for the arms in the world. the cost of the arms race today is 2.5 million dollars every minute. I am speaking for 5 minutes that's a 12 million dollar token. With only one half of the sum going for arms, we would provide basic healthcare, education, and clean water for every child on the planet. for the health and security of the children, stop the arms race. Abolish Nuclear Weapons. Invest in health and education. That, not weapons, is security. and as President Kennedy said, "The world shall not remain a prison where a man awaits his execution. "We shall break the chains and never again be under the threat of nuclear annihilation." This advice to the world. This advice to India. Thank You.

Video Details

Duration: 7 minutes and 30 seconds
Country: India
Language: English
License: Public Domain
Producer: IPPNW
Views: 120
Posted by: danielkarp on May 15, 2008

Opening Plenary to the 18th World Congress of IPPNW in New Delhi, India. Part one features welcome address from Co-President Dr. Gunnar Westberg, MD

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