KPC/CND Report for year ended February 2007
Campaigns and Meetings
The year has been dominated once more by
dreadful events in the Middle East. Iraq is virtually in a civil war, while US and
British troops continue to occupy the country. The situation in Palestine
deteriorates, the wall is nearing completion and Gaza resembles a
We have campaigned against the occupation
of Iraq and against war between Israel
and Lebanon, attending London marches and leafleting from our twice-monthly market-place stall.
We have endeavoured to publicize the danger of an American attack on Iran, and
had a speaker, Professor Abbas Edelat, from CASMII (Campaign against Sanctions
and Military Intervention in Iran) at
a well-attended meeting in the Quaker Meeting House.
Another planned speaker was Susan Kramer,
MP for Richmond Park, who had to cancel due to her husband’s serious illness. We were
grateful to Jeanette James for stepping in and telling us about recent progress
in trade, justice and development issues.
Susan later met a small group of members including our secretary Noel
and they had a long and productive discussion.
Carol Clisby visited Israel
and Palestine at Easter, meeting Mordecai Vanunu, and seeing the desperate
situation of the Palestinians. She gave a very moving description of her visit
at the June meeting.
At our November meeting we heard about the
activities of SSAW (School Students against War) which has two active local
members, Sam and Simon, who we were very pleased to welcome to our group. On 2nd December Jim McCluskey spoke on the
work of the Ministry of Peace.
In August we held our usual commemoration
of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, on the river bank at Canbury Gardens. Our
deputy mayor, Sheila Griffin, gave an uncompromising speech. The weather was
fine and about 50 people took part.
Individual members joined protests at Deso,
Aldermaston, BAE AGM, and Faslane. Rosemary and Jim took part in the Vancouver World
Peace Forum in June. We have kept in
touch with MP Edward Davey and have pressed him to vote against the replacement
of Trident in the forthcoming debate. We
are grateful to him for his dedication to the case of Bisher-al-Rawi, still in Guantanamo Bay.
We are very lucky that our two newsletter
editors, Harry Davis and Gill Hurle have continued to produce our excellent
monthly Kingston Peace News, which receives many compliments. Many thanks to them. Thanks must also go to Johann Martin and Ed
Evans for organising the stall rota – not an easy task!
Thanks go to Maggie Rees who organised
Clutter Sales, Garage Sales and the wonderful Green Fair stall,
also stalls at New Malden and Sutton. We could not carry on with our many
activities or give donations to good causes without her and her many
This has remained fairly constant, thanks
to Hilary for this and for her work as Treasurer. We were sorry to hear of the death of one of
our oldest members, David Oakeshott, during the summer.
The big challenge now is to try and prevent
the Labour government committing us to the renewal of Trident. We must also
support CAAT in their legal action against the dropping of the investigation of
bribery by BAE. We still have to campaign to get Britain
and the USA out of Iraq and to prevent the US
attacking Iran, with or without British help.
As ever, we must try to increase local awareness of the issues, and of
Rosemary Addington (chair)