By Yon Bonnie Banks

_82121836_tridentsturgeonprotest1“The WHO (World Health Organisation) has calculated that would take 200 atomic explosions to create a nuclear winter, and in effect sterilise the planet. That is the number we have at Coulport.” Brian Quail has stepped up.

If you go roamin’ in the gloamin’ by the Bonnie banks of Loch Lomond at the right time, you’re sure to get a surprise. A long convoy comprising 4 Foden trucks (at 48 tons each is 4 tons over the legal limit), repair wagon, army escort, police vehicles, flashing lights, and cops on motorbikes will thunder by stunned tourists and locals as it tears along the Loch Lomond road, over the hill to Coulport on Loch Long. There they complete the long journey they began from Aldermaston in Berkshire, in South England.

They do this journey at irregular intervals when they take the H Bombs down to test them to make sure they really work, an exercise called – by an incredible piece of unconscious irony – “integrity verification”. The convoy regularly passes through built up areas and along busy roads. In spite of bland reassurances from the MoD, there have been several accidents. I personally witnessed the occasion when a convoy broke down on the slipway off the Erskine Bridge (18th May ’93). Smoke was pouring from the vehicle; it pulled up at the side of the road and lay helpless and vulnerable to the vagaries of passing traffic for four hours. Armed soldiers patrolled anxiously round the convoy in the growing dark.

Likewise, I was following a convoy (the way one does) up the M74 when smoke began pouring out from the rear of a carrier. The police hurriedly directed the convoy into the service station there, and waved the traffic on. These are only two of the many “incidents” which can be examined on SCND’s website www.banthebomb.org., where you can also view photos of the convoy.

When they first brought up the warheads, and the convoys were coming up regularly every six weeks or so, they were usually stopped at Balloch by the good folk of Faslane Peace Camp and supportive peace people. Now that the convoy movements are more erratic and less frequent, it is more difficult to track them. The splendid people of Nukewatch in England monitor Aldermaston and contact the network, though Nukewatch is weak in numbers in Scotland.

xmam14nte6xouakhevfas-qjhabssh-largeOn March 10th, I managed to halt the convoy at Balloch, by the revolutionary act of pressing the Pelican crossing button! I then lay on the road in front of the lead vehicle, was arrested, and taken to Clydebank police station, from where I was released several hours later. My pleading diet is on October 4th.

Likewise, on Thursday Sept. 15, Alistair Ibbotson, a young student from Stirling University, and myself peacefully flagged down and immobilised a convoy carrying H Bombs at Raploch in Stirling, We successfully delayed the convoy for 20 minutes, were arrested and taken to Falkirk police station.

Meanwhile, the government presses on with its programme to replace Trident with a newer, more advanced version. Thus, the considered judgment all the faith groups, the view of the STUC, and of all civic Scotland, are ignored and defied by the UK Government. The political voices of 56 Scottish Members of Parliament are rendered impotent by the collective forces of British nuclear nationalism. Never mind right and wrong, might has prevailed. This is democracy – Great British style. Rejoice, and be glad.

The WHO (World Health Organisation) has calculated that would take 200 atomic explosions to create a nuclear winter, and in effect sterilise the planet. That is the number we have at Coulport. Global nuclear suicide is not a rational defence policy. We may want to go on playing Russian roulette with the future of the planet, but the rest of humanity wants to live free from the threat of instant Armageddon.

An independent Scotland, as being first of the nuclear club to get rid of these, will play an absolutely crucial role in the international in the drive for a global treaty.

The Pope, the Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu and 123 nations of the world have called for an International Treaty banning nuclear weapons, as articulated in the Vienna Initiative. This may be put before the UN in October. There are already in existence treaties banning Biological and Chemical weapons world-wide. Why not nuclear weapons also?

A treaty banning nuclear weapons, even without the participation of nuclear-armed states, will delegitimize and stigmatize nuclear weapons, because such at a law will be “ius cogens” (compelling law) that means that even states that do not agree with it will be compelled because it is the will of the overwhelming majority of humanity.

In the same way nukes can be outlawed even, if the 9 nuclear states don’t agree with this. In fact they must be. Extinction is forever. Either we have a future without nuclear weapons, or we have no future at all.

An independent Scotland, as being first of the nuclear club to get rid of these, will play an absolutely crucial role in the international in the drive for a global treaty.

Comments (6)

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  1. Kevin Brown says:

    Well done Brian! Good article, and a great revolutionary act. You should be an example to all of us.

  2. Andrew Sanders says:

    Chapeau, Brian !

  3. Alastair McIntosh says:

    Good on you, Brian, holding the faith (literally) for all these years, and sharing it in such Epistles as this.

  4. ian miller says:

    My goodness, 200 of these obscenities sitting on my doorstep. Wnough to bring about the end of the world and why? Simply because those who lead us still think that we are “Great Britain” and it is our moral right to be at the top table. Possession of those weapons indicate whatever morality we once clingter to is now well and truly binned.

  5. Paddy says:

    Good on you BRIAN for writing this. It was Prof Carl Sagan who coined the term ‘nuclear winter’ wherein he described how a limited nuclear war would result in the stratosphere being blacked out and no sun would shine through thus causing freezing across the globe so no agriculture would grow after the mass annihilation of millions of people, thus the survivors, the maimed and radioactive clouds and winds which would slowly kill many millions more, would kill off most who initially survived. What Sagan and other scientists have shown is that on an environmental scale, there are no borders to radioactive pollution, to methane gas escape and other environmental disasters. Nuclear weapons and methane leakage from global warming over the arctic threaten us all yet many Neo Cons view the impending environmental crisis as a Left wing conspiracy of humbug lies, ignoring all the scientific evidence. Trump and Farage are climate deniers. So many in the Right wing Neoliberal towers of control in the UK paint Russia as all things evil and have now created a new Cold War mentality to justify the military industrial complex in the USA, which is little more than the mafia, the CIA and corporate power working as one. It’s good the Nukes of Hazard is getting good coverage in the social media to alert the people of Scotland to the real dangers posed by this insane world power status game being played by the UK government. And yet there are still people in Scotland who are so flagrantly deluded that we need these weapons here to protect ourselves (from who?) and they speak to those of us opposed to nuclear weapons as though we were dangerous Lefties and Communists and keeping weapons of mass destruction is some sort of grown up mature proper thing to do. Patronising crap. They consider unstable nut cases! It is staggering how brainwashed some people can be. Many UK military experts themselves know that over reliance on nuclear weapons may lead to more errors and potential disasters such as the accidental dropping of nuclear bombs as happened on the coast of Spain many years ago and one bomb accidentally dropped in the USA which almost ignited! Or even more likely now, misinformation or poor communication that could lead to potential launch of nuclear weapons. We live in an era of false flag propaganda rouses and in one where NATO has become a remote control extension of Neo Con corporate aggression in the USA for their own Geopolitical ends. We have never been slower in my life to a potential nuclear war and yet almost no one is aware of this. The Syrian conflict has every ingredient and potential, like the dress rehearsal of the Spanish Civil War, for major war erupting which could result in nukes being considered. Good wake up article BRIAN!

  6. Thrawn says:

    “A treaty banning nuclear weapons, even without the participation of nuclear-armed states, will delegitimize and stigmatize nuclear weapons, because such at a law will be “ius cogens” (compelling law) that means that even states that do not agree with it will be compelled because it is the will of the overwhelming majority of humanity.”

    This is priceless…the overwhelming majority of humanity disapprove of many things…it doesn’t stop people or states doing them if they think they will gain an advantage from it. And there is no greater advantage to be the only actor in possession of a weapon that the mere threat of its use will suffice for you to get everything you want.

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