Will the next generation see a nuclear weapon-free world?
When the Allies defeated Germany in World War II, the outlook many had on the war changed drastically. While Japan continued to fight, many felt it was only a matter of time before the war in the east ended as well. The Manhattan Project - the code name for the endeavor to develop the first nuclear weapon - had begun in order to counter Nazi Germany and its allies. But when Germany surrendered, the project continued. One scientist walked away, though, based on his moral objections to the eventual use of the bomb. Physicist Joseph Rotblat would go on to dedicate his life’s work to ending nuclear proliferation, eventually earning a Nobel Peace Prize, alongside the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs he helped found in 1957.
The life and work of Joseph Rotblat is explored in the new NFB documentary The Strangest Dream. And while the film looks at Rotblat’s extraordinary past, it also provokes questions for modern society and about our future. To dig deeper into these questions, panel discussions were held following a series of cross-Canada screenings, featuring some of Canada’s - and the world’s - leading experts on nuclear disarmament and the non-proliferation movement, including Walter Dorn, Sergei Plekhanov and Douglas Roche.
For episode 77 of the CITIZENShift podcast, we’re excited to bring you an interview with Howard Zinn.
Renowned teacher, historian and author, Howard Zinn is perhaps best known for his groundbreaking book A People’s History of the United States. He is also a long-time civil rights and peace activist.
At 86 years old, Zinn continues to provide fresh insight into American and international politics and social movements by drawing on the lessons of our past. Journalist Evan Light spoke with Zinn during his recent visit to Montreal. In their conversation, Zinn speaks to not only what the election of Barack Obama, as America’s first Black president, means for the country, but also the major work still needed to improve equality and justice in the United States. For more on Howard Zinn, visit howardzinn.org.
Listen to Podcast #77 Taking the Risk for Change (Running time: 18:13)