WiLL/WAND Applauds President Obama’s Plan to Make Historic Hiroshima Visit
May 10, 2016 – The White House announced today that President Obama will visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park while in Japan for the G7 Summit May 26 and 27.
Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND) applauds President Obama’s historic decision to become the first sitting president to visit Hiroshima. In the words of executive director Susan Shaer, “By making this trip, the president will shine a light on the devastation and suffering that nuclear weapons cause, commemorate the legacy of the hibakusha (the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing survivors), and reinforce the imperative that nuclear weapons are never again used in war.”
Earlier this month, WAND launched a petition urging President Obama to go to Hiroshima and to take this opportunity to announce concrete steps toward his vision for a world without nuclear weapons. We encouraged the president to:
- Reverse plans to spend $1 trillion upgrading the U.S. nuclear arsenal.
- Reinforce the global moratorium on nuclear explosive testing and lay the foundation for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty's entry into force.
- Call on all nations with nuclear weapons to commit to working toward nuclear disarmament.
“President Obama entered office with a vision for a world without nuclear weapons. This vision underscores WAND’s core mission and values. Ridding the world of the threat of nuclear annihilation is an essential component in the struggle for global peace and security,” said nuclear weapons policy director Erica Fein.
WAND congratulates all those who have added their names to voice support for the president’s visit to Hiroshima. With potential backlash expected against the president’s visit from the usual critics of President Obama’s foreign policy, we urge continued support for this historic decision. It’s important to make your voice heard as the president’s visit approaches.
"It is vital to support President Obama's historic decision and face down the predictable naysayers,” said GA Senator Nan Orrock, president of Women Legislators Lobby (WiLL). “The president's visit to Hiroshima demonstrates American leadership and strength, with a commitment to take steps leading toward a safer world, a world without nuclear weapons.”