“We were worried. We were indignant. We were angry. The Soviet Union and the U.S.A were accusing each other of having broken a moratorium on nuclear testing. What matter who broke it when everyone’s children would fall victim to radioactive Strontium 90?… Perhaps, we told ourselves that night, in the face of male ‘logic,’ which seemed to us utterly illogical, it was time for women to speak out.” – Dagmar Wilson
On November 1, 1961 an estimated fifty thousand women walked out of their kitchens and off their jobs, in an unprecedented nationwide strike to “end the arms race — not the human race.” Across the country, 68 strike actions took place in 20 states. In Washington, D.C., over 1,000 women picketed the White House, leafleted, and sent delegations to the Soviet Embassy. Letters were dispatched to First Ladies Jackie Kennedy and Nina Petrovna Khrushchev inviting them to join the Women’s Strike for Peace and help end the arms race.
Fifty six years later, we face escalating nuclear threats the likes of which many thought we would never see again, or ever: incendiary tweets and off-the-cuff statements incite dangerous reactions from North Korea, petty politics threaten the Iran deal and risk a new costly Middle East war while adding a gratuitous nuclear crisis to the global threat environment.
Throughout the month of November and beyond, help us honor the contributions and achievements of those who came before by educating and activating women on the critical nuclear weapons and foreign policy challenges our country is faced with today. Join in the tradition of women working for, and achieving, peace by taking the following actions to safeguard our communities and civilization as a whole.