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The anti-nuclear mountain is being scaled
by Douglas Roche
June 22, 2011

A three-week global speaking tour has convinced me that the world is moving into a new stae in the long quest to eliminate nuclear weapons. Weakened government ideology in support of nuclear weapons is now colliding with chronic deficits and other economic realities that make them unaffordable.


The path towards eliminating nukes is clear-cut
by Douglas Roche
March 9, 2011

Two events have coincided to give the Canadian government a powerful opportunity to play a key role in the growing effort to rid the world of nuclear weapons.

Both the Senate and the House of Commons have unanimously adopted a motion calling on the government "to deploy a major worldwide Canadian diplomatic initiative" for nuclear disarmament. At the same time, a draft resolution asking Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to convene a diplomatic conference in 2014 to start negotiating a legal ban on nuclear weapons is circulating among governments.


MPI Founder Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
February 10, 2011

The International Peace Bureau (IPB), itself a Nobel Peace Laureate Organization, has nominated for the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize the Hon. Douglas Roche O.C. for his lifelong devotion to the cause of disarmament -- notably nuclear disarmament.


MPI Is Pleased to Announce the Appointment of its New Chairman, Ambassador Richard Butler AC
Media Advisory
December 21, 2010

The Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C., founding Chairman of the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI), announced today the appointment of Ambassador Richard Butler AC as Chairman of MPI, effective January 1, 2011. Senator Roche made this announcement on behalf of MPI’s International Steering Committee.


Non-proliferation meets non-partisanship
by Douglas Roche
December 15, 2010

Hansard recorded the event in the House of Commons under “Routine Proceedings,” but there was nothing routine about it. For the first time in the history of Canada’s Parliament, both the House of Commons and Senate united in a motion calling on the Canadian government to engage in negotiations for a legal ban on all nuclear weapons.


An Ottawa Process for Nukes?
by Alyn Ware
November 10, 2010

In 1996, Canadian Foreign Minister Lloyd Axworthy invited 'like-minded States' to Ottawa to draft a treaty banning landmines- bypassing negotiations on a more limited landmines control regime that were bogged down in Geneva. The "Ottawa" Process achieved a landmines treaty in just over a year. Ten years later a similar process starting in Oslo achieved an international treaty banning cluster munitions, also in a relatively short time.


Douglas Roche Named Honorary Citizen of Hiroshima;
Calls for Start on Legal Ban of Nuclear Weapons
July 30, 2010

Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C., former Canadian Ambassador for Disarmament and Chairman Emeritus of the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI), was named a Special Honorary Citizen of Hiroshima at an international conference in Hiroshima July 28-29 for his work in founding MPI.


International Experts on Nuclear Arms Attending the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference
Media Advisory
May 4, 2010

NEW YORK – May 4, 2010: Experts on nuclear weapons from countries including the United States, Sweden, Canada and New Zealand are attending the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference as speakers at side events and are available for media interviews on NPT issues including Iran and the Middle East, the US/Russian strategic balance, and the relationship between nuclear energy and proliferation.


Cutting the Gordian Knot
Peace and Health
op/ed by Xanthe Hall
April 25, 2010

Before you all physically or mentally traipse off to New York – volcanic ash allowing – I’d like to say something. Nuclear weapons do have a purpose. What I want to share with you may seem a tad too philosophical for your liking, but as the daughter of a philosopher and a nurse I feel that we may have been missing the point. Of course, we need to get rid of them. Like cancer, they are spreading disease that cause pain and suffering and no-one wants to talk about because of the feelings of helplessness they engender. But we are now, at last, really talking about nuclear weapons. That is a good start in the process of healing ourselves. Getting out of denial.


Salander Names Roche as MPI Special Adviser
April 23, 2010

Ambassador Henrik Salander, Chairman of the Middle Powers Initiative, is pleased to announce the appointment of former Senator Douglas Roche of Canada as Senior Adviser to MPI. Amb. Salander created this position with a mandate for Sen. Roche, the founding Chairman of MPI, to work "in the further development of MPI’s organization, structure, strategy and working methods, including the formation of a Special Advisory Committee, as well as implementing ad hoc tasks specifically requested by the Chairman."


Principles and Process
Arms Control Today
by Henrik Salander
April 2010

For anyone who attended the 2005 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference, where the parties failed to agree on anything at all, the recent debacle at the Copenhagen climate change conference seemed very familiar. In both cases, nation-based egocentrism made it impossible even to try to solve problems that are truly and fundamentally global, such as the health of the biosphere and weapons threatening to destroy the planet.

It is often said that another NPT review failure this year will signify the beginning of the end of the treaty. Such prophecies are risky, but also trivial. It has been clear for years that the NPT is under stress, so alarmism is unnecessary. States-parties are disappointed with the treaty for diverging reasons. What is needed for the review conference in May is pragmatic expectations and constructive multilateralism. The cynical negotiating tactics by a few states-parties in 2005 must not be repeated.

The success of the review conference will depend not only on the substance of the agreements reached there, but also on the way in which those agreements are reached.


Will Canada go the non-proliferation distance?
by Douglas Roche, O.C.
April 14, 2010

US President Barack Obama dramatized world attention on nuclear dangers during his extraordinary 47-nation Washington summit this week by warning that just an apple-sized container of plutonium could set off a nuclear bomb that "could kill and injure hundreds of thousands of innocent people." A "catastrophe for the world" is waiting to happen, he said.

...But since there is enough nuclear fuel in dozens of nations to make another 120,000 nuclear boms, the question can rightly be asked: Did the Obama summit do enough to protect people from an impending catastrophe?

MORE... (see page 7)

President Obama Is on the Right Track
National Journal National Security Blog
by David Krieger
April 12, 2010

President Obama is on the right track with his multiple efforts to reduce nuclear dangers. I only wish that it were a faster track and reflected a greater sense of urgency. His policies take account of some important current realities: The Cold War has ended (20 years ago); the greatest threat confronting the US and the world is no longer all-out nuclear war, but nuclear proliferation and nuclear-armed terrorists; and the United States has obligations under the Non-Proliferation Treaty to engage in “good faith” negotiations to achieve total nuclear disarmament.


Japan needs to loosen the US nuclear leash
Asahi Shimbun
Hiromichi Umebayashi
April 20, 2010

The greatest achievement of the investigation into "secret pacts" between Japan and the United States was a clear recognition that there was indeed a tacit agreement between the two governments concerning the introduction of nuclear weapons to Japan and that the Japanese government had been lying to the public about it for decades....

As negotiations advance, Japan is sure to face the obstacle of the U.S. government's policy of neither confirming or denying the presence of nuclear weapons in specific situations. However, there is ample room for negotiations on this point.


New nuclear weapons treaty promises a durable 'Prague Spring'
Edmonton Journal
by Jayantha Dhanapala
April 2, 2010

The long-awaited and successful conclusion last week of the nuclear arms control treaty negotiations between the United States and the Russian Federation -- which together control 95 per cent of the nuclear weapons in the world -- must surely be welcomed…It is a return to traditional arms control (replacing the 1991 treaty signed by presidents George H.W. Bush and Mikhail Gorbachev) with a seriously negotiated three-tiered treaty, and not by a perfunctory "handshake" as preferred by the previous U.S. administration ...


Nuclear Non-proliferation and disarmament: Shifting the mindset
Global Research
by David Krieger
March 30, 2010

Throughout the Nuclear Age, leaders of the United States, Russia, United Kingdom, France and China – the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, known as the P5 – have been locked in old ways of thinking about security.  They believe that nuclear deterrence in a two-tier structure of nuclear haves and have-nots can hold indefinitely without significant nuclear proliferation and further use of nuclear weapons.  This way of thinking continues to place not only the P5 and their allies in danger of nuclear annihilation, but threatens global catastrophe for civilization, the human species and most forms of life…


More Talk-- and Maybe Action -- on Nuclear Weapons in May
World Bulletin
by Jim Wurst
March 31, 2010

Could 2010 finally be the year for a breakthrough in the world’s most intractable arms control problem: the elimination of nuclear weapons? There have certainly been important positive developments, most notably willingness by the United States to re-engage in multilateral diplomacy and to entertain the idea of a world free of nuclear weapons as a realistic – rather than rhetorical – goal.


Stand up and speak out for what's right
Edmonton Journal
by Douglas Roche
March 24, 2010

So the Grant MacEwan swimming pool won't be closed, after all. Well, not at least for another year. And the words of the national anthem won't be changed. And the Canadian government's foreign aid programs will continue to include the teaching of family planning.

What binds these disparate topics? Each shows the power of protest. When the public gets mad, politicians (my definition of the word includes university presidents) back down. When the kitchen gets too hot, they run outside gasping for fresh air.


Harper government missing on nonproliferation
by Douglas Roche and Ernie Regehr
February 3, 2010

High-ranking officials of the US State Department, NATO and the United Nations were in Ottawa last week to meet with the leaders of five national nuclear disarmament groups and experienced civil society leaders. It was all designed to move the Canadian government to actively support US President Barack Obama's commitment to a nuclear weapons-free world.

Did it? Time will tell and we want to remain optimistic.


Building bridges to a better future
Edmonton Journal
by Douglas Roche
December 23, 2009

Ask me what I want for Christmas. I'd like a bridge. Actually, three bridges.

Lest Santa Claus think I'm a bit greedy, I hasten to point out that these bridges are not just for me, they're for our society as a whole.

There are so many walls between us -- walls of fear, walls of weapons, walls between rich and poor -- that we need a new system of bridges to help bring people together to express our common humanity.


A Well-Deserved Nobel Prize
The Edmonton Journal
by Douglas Roche

"But he hasn't done anything yet!" That sentence was on the lips of skeptics the minute they heard that President Barack Obama had won the Nobel Peace Prize.

The doubters are wrong. Obama has already restored humanity's hope for peace.


Physicians Honor Roche
Media Advisory
September 27, 2009

President Obama needs strong international backing, as well as powerful domestic support, to achieve his desire for a nuclear weapons-free world, Douglas Roche told a conference of Physicians for Global Survival (PGS) in Montreal on September 27.


A Nuclear-Weapons-Free World: Is it achievable?
UN Chronicle
by Miguel Marin-Bosch

After the worst of times, we are perhaps entering the best of times for proponents of nuclear disarmament. At long last, advocates of the elimination of nuclear weapons have reason for some guarded optimism. The road to a nuclear-weapons-free world will be long and bumpy, but those expected to take the initiative seem to have finally decided to lead. That is encouraging.


Middle Powers Initiative Issues Statement to the UN Security Council
September 14, 2009

NEW YORK: The Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) applauds President Obama’s convening of the 24 September 2009 UN Security Council Summit on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament. This meeting presents an opportunity, first, to ensure that the 2010 NPT Review Conference strengthens the nuclear weapons regime and, second, to advance the achievement of a world free of nuclear weapons. We urge all middle power states to work for an outcome that meets those objectives. Among many important steps in UN and NPT commitments, the MPI regards the following as the Council’s highest priority.


Nuclear Weapons Free: It is Time and Necessary
Huffington Post
by GSI President Jonathan Granoff
August 27, 2009

Nuclear weapons are abhorrent in anyone's hands.

Imagine if the Biological Weapons Convention said that polio and small pox as weapons are banned universally but the plague as a weapon can be brandished and held at the ready by nine countries because these special countries are uniquely moral, restrained, trustworthy, and responsible.

Such is the incoherence in which the world is living under the sword of nuclear annihilation.


Japan ready for 'no nukes'
The Japan Times
by Shingo Fukuyama and Hiromichi Umebayashi

As the Obama administration contemplates major reductions to its nuclear arsenal, Japan's commitment to nuclear disarmament is being tested as never before.

In his Prague speech on April 5, President Barack Obama said, "We will reduce the role of nuclear weapons in our national security strategy and urge others to do the same." He went on to say, "we will begin the work of reducing our arsenal."

But in between these two landmark pledges he said, "as long as these weapons exist, we will maintain a safe, secure and effective arsenal to deter any adversary, and guarantee that defense to our allies."

» Read the PDF


Obama Needs Friends on Nuclear Weapons
by MPI Chairman Emeritus Douglas Roche
August 19, 2009

When President Barack Obama chairs a summit of the UN Security Council Sept. 24 on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, a new and exciting moment will have arrived in the long struggle to rid the world of nuclear weapons. This unprecedented event gives Canada a rare political opportunity to obtain several political goals with one stroke.


Prophet Obama's Fight for Peace
by Douglas Roche
May 6, 2009

In the first 100 days of his presidency, Barack Obama has started to move the United States towards a culture of peace, a remarkable achievement in a world still torn by conflict.

His actions on winding down the war in Iraq, restarting nuclear disarmament negotiations with Russia, thawing relations with Cuba, closing Guantanamo and ending the policy of torture have been dramatic. In short, the new president is bringing the world to...


An open, honest nuclear debate
by Douglas Roche
May 6, 2009

The consultation process launched by the Alberta government to determine if a nuclear power plant should be built in the Peace River area appears designed to dampen any opposition to the plan.


Memo to Obama: Nuclear Weapons
Jonathan Granoff
December 2008

A two-class world, with nuclear weapon “haves” and “have nots,” is incompatible with the cooperation needed to effectively protect the global commons, address crushing poverty, and ensure sustainable development.


UN Sets Ground for Future Disarmament Battles
Arms Control Today
Jim Wurst
December 2008

The UN General Assembly committee dealing with nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament issues ran a wait-and-see session in October 2008, with progress perhaps stymied by the upcoming presidential transition in the United States. The session, which ended four days before the U.S. election, debated and voted on 58 resolutions. Under the umbrella of nuclear disarmament, the committee usually considers numerous drafts on specific issues-such as operational status, security assurances, and nuclear-weapon-free zones-and three comprehensive, omnibus drafts each year.


Back to the drawing board
The Hindu
Op-ed by Aaron Tovish
August 29, 2008

Last September, I was accorded the privilege of contributing an article to The Hindu on the subject of the U.S.-India nuclear cooperation deal. The editor chose to introduce the piece by spotlighting the following two sentences from the article: “Good leadership looks as far down the road as possible to anticipate obstacles and detours. On the nuclear deal, a combination of U. S. and Indian hubris has led India down the garden path without any clear strategy for reaching the ultimate destination other than economic enticements and intimidation.”


Triumph of Peace
South China Morning Post
Op-ed by David Krieger
August 27, 2008

The world has again witnessed 16 days of extraordinary beauty and talent by young athletes gathered from throughout the world. The athletes met in Beijing for the XXIXth Olympic Games of modern times and competed on a global stage. They inspired me and I believe they must have inspired billions of people in every part of the world by the amazing feats of speed, strength, agility and teamwork of which we humans are capable.


Canada should not abet erosion of international nuclear restraints
The Chronicle Herald

by Tamara Lorincz
August 6, 2008

Canadians should be very concerned about nuclear weapons proliferation because our country is one of the main suppliers of uranium, a raw material needed for these weapons, on the world market...We must heed their call and support the work of the Middle Powers Initiative, Physicians for Global Survival, the Pugwash Peace Exchange and other partners to abolish the estimated 25,000 nuclear weapons in existence today. This week, events are happening across the country to mark the 63rd anniversary of the first nuclear bombings and to promote the Mayors for Peace 2020 Vision for nuclear abolition...


Placing Nova Scotia at centre of disarmament movement
The Chronicle Herald

July 11, 2008
by Alexa McDonough

AS ONE of the global council co-presidents of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (PNND), I will have the privilege this weekend to collaborate with legislators from five continents and leading experts in nuclear disarmament who will be gathering in Pugwash. Through energetic and visionary efforts of Pugwash Peace Exchange, the goal of this international conference is to build the necessary political will to advance nuclear non-proliferation and, ultimately, a nuclear weapons-free world.


Time for NATO to leave the nuclear dinosaur age?
Press Release: For publication May 24
Contact: Uta Zapf, MdB +49 30 227 7 49 73 

Parliamentary leaders and nuclear non-proliferation experts today challenged members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and other countries ‘defended’ by nuclear weapons to abandon the outdated doctrine of nuclear deterrence and redirect nuclear weapons budgets to meeting social and development goals.


Preventing Future Nuclear Catastrophes
The Korea Times

by David Krieger and Stanley K. Sheinbaum

Throughout the Cold War, nuclear deterrence was at the heart of U.S. nuclear policy. But deterrence has some important limitations that make it highly unreliable, particularly in a time of terrorism.


Nuclear proponents: "irresponsible in the extreme"
Press Release
January 24, 2008
For immediate release

Five retired military leaders who have called for increasing NATO’s willingness to use nuclear weapons are “irresponsible in the extreme,” said Senator Douglas Roche, O.C., Chairman of the Middle Powers Initiative, releasing a new MPI Briefing Paper.  Rather than planning to use them, NATO needs to show a “visible intent” to downgrade nuclear weapons.


Addressing the nuclear threat
The Courier-Journal
November 7, 2007
by Jonathan Granoff

Religious leaders gathering this week at the Festival of Faiths in Louisville must make a forceful call to forge a consensus of conscience and reason: Nuclear weapons are unworthy of civilization. No other threat to human survival is as immediate and hazardous as the 27,000 warheads still in existence.


Jayantha Dhanapala Appointed President of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs
For Immediate Release

Bari, Italy, 26 October 2007--At a time of both opportunity and challenge for non-proliferation, the Pugwash Council, meeting in Bari, Italy, has unanimously elected Jayantha Dhanapala of Sri Lanka as the new President of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs.  Taking office on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the first Pugwash Conference, Dhanapala is the eleventh person to hold this title.  He follows in the footsteps of such eminent scientists and thinkers as founder Bertrand Russell, and former presidents Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin, M.S. Swaminathan, and Sir Joseph Rotblat. 


Indonesia Lauds MPI's Article VI Forum for Identifying Key Priority Areas
Octoer 17, 2007

In his statement to the General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security, Indonesian Ambassador H.E. Mr. Sudjadnan Parnohadiningrat voiced his country's staunch support for the priority areas identified by the Middle Powers Initiative through the Article VI Forum (A6F).


The Best US Weapon against Iran is diplomacy
September 26, 2007
by John Burroughs

On Friday at the United Nations, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will discuss strategy regarding Iran's nuclear program with her counterparts from Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China. What is needed is not another UN Security Council resolution strengthening existing sanctions. Rather the Bush administration should talk directly with Iran, and soon, because the U.S.-Iran confrontation is heating up dangerously. Tensions over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit this week are just the tip of the iceberg.


US/Iran Confrontation: Intensified Diplomacy and Adherence to International Law
For Immediate Release

New York - The Middle Powers Initiative today issued an appeal for a diplomatic and peaceful resolution of the Iran crisis.  In a statement widely released to governments around the world, MPI appealed for their help in influencing the United States not to launch a military attack on Iran. 

“To avoid unpredictable and extremely dangerous escalation arising both from the Iraq war and the nuclear dispute, the United States and Iran, bilaterally and with other concerned countries, must now negotiate on the range of issues dividing them,” said MPI. Following the precedent of the recent agreement with North Korea, MPI advocates “a maximum effort … to reach agreement over time with Iran on nuclear matters.”


MPI Chairman to Receive Christian Leadership Award
Edmonton, Canada

Douglas Roche, O.C., is the 2007 recipient of the Kevin Carr Christian Leadership Award.

Named to commemorate Newman Theological College's seventh president, the award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in the Christian community and beyond.


Pugwash 50th Anniversary Media Coverage
Pugwash, Nova Scotia, July 7-9 2007

Major media covered the historic conference in Pugwash, Nova Scotia, interviewing several prominent leaders within the MPI network, including Chairman Douglas Roche, O.C., Advisor Jayantha Dhanapala, GSI Advisor Mikhail Gorbachev and more.


Revitalizing Nuclear Disarmament: Policy Recommendations of the Pugwash 50th Anniversary Workshop
Press Release
For Immediate Release
Pugwash, Nova Scotia, 8 July 2007

As long as nuclear weapons exist, they will one day be used.

This sober, inescapable truth continues to haunt the international community. Every minute of every day, more than 26,000 nuclear weapons - many thousands of them on hair-trigger alert - are poised to bring monumental destruction if they are ever used. Nuclear weapons have spread to more countries, and the international non-proliferation regime is perilously close to collapse. Poorly guarded stockpiles of highly enriched uranium and plutonium around the world could fall into the hands of terrorists who would think nothing of exploding a nuclear device in a major city.


Dhanapala, Johnson Named MPI Expert Consultants
Press Release
For Immediate Release
June 29, 2007

The Middle Powers Initiative, an NGO dedicated to the worldwide reduction and elimination of nuclear weapons, is pleased and honored to announce the appointment of two of the most distinguished figures in international arms control issues as Expert Consultants to MPI.

Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala, the former UN Under-Secretary General for Disarmament Affair and commissioner on the Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission, and Dr. Rebecca Johnson, the Executive Director of the Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy and Editor of the Institute’s journal Disarmament Diplomacy, will lend their expertise to MPI as it enters a new phase in its work to help revitalize the nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation agenda as embodied in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).


Global Nuclear Experts Return to Pugwash, Canada, for Historic Meeting
Press Release
For Immediate Release
June 18, 2007

(Washington DC – New York – Pugwash, Nova Scotia, Canada)  Fifty years after nuclear scientists from East and West held a historic meeting in the village of Pugwash to discuss peace, a new generation of experts is returning to Nova Scotia to discuss ways to revitalize nuclear disarmament.


Thinking Nuclear Weapons Were a Thing of the Past?
Commentary, The Globe and Mail
June 4, 2007

The second nuclear age? If you thought the first one, the Cold War, was menacing, check in with Douglas Roche on the new era.

Brian Mulroney appointed the former Alberta MP as disarmament ambassador to the United Nations in 1984. Twenty-three years later, having worked the issue ever since that time, Mr. Roche surveys what is happening in Iran and India, Britain, the United States, Canada and the like and shakes his head in despair.

Nuclear weapons stockpiling proceeds apace. And, unlike in the Cold War, there are loose nukes, insecure systems, leakage of materials, risk of terrorism. It's more dangerous now, said Mr. Roche, and yet the issue gets little public notice.

Click here for a PDF version of the article


Saving Our Nuclear Allies Despite Themselves
Embassy editorial
June 6, 2007

Senator Roméo Dallaire wants to remove Canada from NATO until it drops its dangerous nuclear weapons first-strike strategy. Former senator Doug Roche, who is the chair of the Middle Powers Initiative, remains one of Canada's most tireless advocates for nuclear disarmament. If anyone believes they are voices of the past when they speak out against nuclear weapons, they better think again.

Click here for a PDF version of the article

Click here to read the statement by Senator Dallaire in the Canadian Parliament


A Nuclear Disarmament Agenda for Canada

Embassy Op-Ed
By Ernie Regehr
May 30, 2007

Parliamentarians are also working for Canada to show leadership. The
Parliamentary Network Against Nuclear Arms, an all-party group of MPs
chaired by Alexa McDonough, meets regularly to educate parliamentarians
about nuclear issues.

There is also the Middle Powers Initiative, an international committee led
by retired senator and former UN Ambassador for Disarmament Douglas Roche,
that works at the UN and around the world to press for nuclear disarmament.
Among its supporters is former prime minister of Canada Kim Campbell.


Speech by MPI Chairman Douglas Roche, O.C., at High-Level Conference in Berlin
Berlin, Germany
March, 2007

At the 16th Forum Global Issues from March 5-6, the German Foreign Office and the German Foundation for Peace Research organized a conference entitled "New Ways in Arms Control and Disarmament."

At this prestigious conference, MPI Chairman, Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C., delivered a presentation entitled "Turning Pessimism into Optimism: A growing consensus on nuclear disarmament." In his remarks, Senator Roche offered a sense of hope:

"In historical terms, the tide is turning against nuclear weapons. The moral, legal and military case against them is now better understood than ever before. The intellectual argument-that nuclear weapons are needed for security-is now rejected as baseless. Only a small coterie of defenders of nuclear weapons can be found today. We know that this coterie still possess immense political power. But the opponents of nuclear weapons are gathering strength. That itself is a new reason for hope. In the present crisis lie the seeds of opportunity."

Click here to download the speech in PDF


MPI Chairman Douglas Roche, O.C. Featured in National Catholic Register
Interview with MPI Chairman Douglas Roche, O.C.
Rome, Italy
November, 2006

MPI Chairman Douglas Roche, O.C. was interviewed in an article, "Vatican: Nuclear Disarmament Remains Key Goal for Humanity," in the National Catholic Register, December 3-9, 2006.

Click here to read the electronic PDF version of the article

"The central problem, Roche said... is that nuclear arsenals are becoming permanent instruments of military policy, regarded as weapons to be actually used in battle rather than just as a deterrent to prevent others from attacking," writes Register Correspondent Edward Pentin.


Secretary-General Calls for Progress on Both Nuclear Disarmament and Non-Proliferation
November 28, 2006
Princeton University
Introduction by Hon. Douglas Roche

On November 28, 2006, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, speaking at Princeton University, called for both nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation through strengthening the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.


MPI Releases Statement on North Korea
October 24, 2006
Contact: Jim Wurst at +1.646.289.5170 / mpi-ny@gsinstitute.org

To view the electronic version of this article, please click here.

The Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) deplores the nuclear test by North Korea and urges all parties to exercise restraint and place their faith in diplomacy rather than ratcheting up bellicosity. MPI is dedicated to the promotion of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation through diplomacy and the rule of law. We deplore the proliferation of nuclear weapons as well as the failure of the nuclear weapons states to demonstrate adequate leadership in fulfilling their legal duty to work for and obtain the universal elimination of nuclear weapons.


Shape Up and Deliver, Says Blix
By Lee Berthiaume
Embassy Magazine
October 4th, 2006

To view the electronic version of this article, please click here.

Former UN weapons inspector Hans Blix says the West needs better tactics and incentives if it wants Iran to stop its nuclear enrichment program.

Former UN chief weapons inspector Hans Blix believes countries like Canada must band together to break the complacency that has taken hold over the world on nuclear weapons disarmament, or more countries can be expected to join the exclusive group in their bids to attain a level playing field.

"We need a revival of disarmament," Mr. Blix said in an interview with Embassy last week. "People don't seem to worried about it, it's global warming they're worried about and not nuclear mutual destruction any longer.


Sleepwalking Towards a Nuclear Catastrophe
By Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C.
Embassy Magazine
October 4, 2006

To view the electronic version of this article, please click here.

It takes technical prowess as well as political rhetoric to move the world away from the nuclear precipice, and both skills were on display last week in Ottawa as diplomats and experts from 25 countries wrestled with how to cut down the existing 27,000 nuclear weapons in the world.


Canadian expert urges nixing US-India N-deal
Source: Web India 123
October 8, 2005

President George W. Bush should abandon the civilian nuclear cooperation agreement with India, a former head of the UN Disarmament Committee has said.

According to the Global Security Newswire, Douglas Roche, a Canadian diplomat who once chaired the UN Disarmament Committee, urged US lawmakers at a Capitol Hill meeting to kill the initiative rather than agree to any changes in US laws that would allow civilian nuclear cooperation with India.


Overcoming the Obstacles to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World
By Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C.
Address to 60th Anniversary Observance
August 4, 2005

As we gather in this historic location to observe the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, my first thoughts turn to the hibakusha. I pay my respect to these brave people who have suffered so much and who have taught the world. The stories of the hibakusha must never be lost. Future generations must understand the reality of nuclear weapons. They must continue to learn from these brave people who overcame Armageddon and chose the path of life. The hibakusha rejected retaliation and embraced reconciliation as their guiding force. That is a lesson for the ages.


Iran's Nuclear Weapons Ambitions Key International Issue
By Andre de Nesnera
Voice of America News
14 July 2005
To listen to the report, click here.

The United States and Europe believe Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons. But Tehran says its program is aimed at producing fuel for peaceful purposes.

In an agreement last year with three European countries - Britain, France and Germany - Iran decided to temporarily suspend its nuclear enrichment program: a technology that could lead to producing nuclear weapons. The United States is not directly involved in the talks, but backs the Europeans who are continuing their negotiations with Iran.


World Religions and Nuclear Disarmament
By Tracy Early
Tidings Online
Friday, June 3, 2005

The religions of the world "need to speak up much more strongly" about nuclear disarmament, a Canadian adviser to the Vatican on disarmament and security issues told a United Nations meeting last week.

Calling nuclear weaponry "the paramount moral issue of our time," Douglas Roche, a Canadian adviser to the Vatican on disarmament and security issues, said May 27 said that "nuclear weapons and human security cannot coexist."


At the Unholy Altar of Nuclear Weapons
By Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C.
Op/Ed in Toronto Star
April 19, 2005

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the 35th anniversary of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which was supposed to lead to a nuclear-weapons-free world. Both anniversaries remind us of the stark dangers nuclear weapons still pose to the world.

It is a moment of intense diplomatic challenge for Canada, a country at the centre of the debate over the future of nuclear weapons. That debate will take place at the NPT Review conference May 2-27 at the United Nations.


Our Greatest Threat: The Coming Nuclear Crisis
By Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C.
Article in Commonweal Magazine
March 11, 2005

When the first atomic bombs destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it could hardly have been imagined that nearly sixty years later 34,145 nuclear weapons would be in existence. In a long career as a parliamentarian, diplomat, and educator, I have come to the conclusion that the abolition of nuclear weapons is the indispensable condition for peace in the twenty-first century. Yet progress toward that goal has been halted.


Nuclear Non-Proliferaton Treaty (NPT) Facing a Tough Road Ahead
February 18, 2005
Contact: Zachary Allen, Tel: 415-397-6760, zack@gsinstitute.org

SAN FRANCISCO-Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter recently hosted a consultation of diplomats and government officials at The Carter Center. The Consultation sought to preserve and strengthen the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) which President Carter said "was deeply wounded and whose very life is threatened." He called the policy of the nuclear weapons states "irrational" and gave eight "corrective actions" to save it.

Entitled "Atlanta Consultation II: On the Future of the NPT," the consultation was organized by the Middle Powers Initiative, a program of the Global Security Institute, in cooperation with The Carter Center, January 26-28, 2005.


Nonproliferation and disarmament go hand in hand
International Herald Tribune
Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Seven foreign ministers speak out Nuclear weapons, a legacy of the cold war, today give rise to dangerous new perspectives. Old and new threats converge, putting at risk the security of us all.

Seven years ago the foreign ministers of our countries - Brazil, Egypt, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa and Sweden - joined together in a New Agenda Coalition to work toward a security order where nuclear weapons would no longer be given a role. Today, we are more convinced than ever that nuclear disarmament is imperative for international peace and security.


The Role of the United States in Nuclear Disarmament
By Hon. Douglas Roche, O.C.
An Address to the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation Symposium
"Charting a New Course for U.S. Nuclear Policy"
Santa Barbara , California
May 13, 2004

I approach the subject of the United States' performance in the nuclear disarmament debate with great respect for the country and a dedication to the facts of nuclear weapons.

For eight years I lived in this great country and, in fact, three of my children were born here. I have had the opportunity in my professional life of travelling through or visiting all 50 states, and I understand well the energy and creativity of the American people in the arts and sciences, commerce, and outreach to the world. The aspirations for freedom and liberty have been a beacon for the world.

There are many wonderful things I could say about the United States . But regrettably that is not my task tonight. I have been asked to speak on the United States and nuclear weapons. Here it is not easy to be complimentary.


"NATO is a major impediment to progress," MPI Policy Paper for Canadian Government finds
Press Release
March 22, 2004

Contact: Senator Douglas Roche, Ottawa, (613) 943-9559 or Zachary Allen, San Francisco, (415) 397-6760.

NATO's nuclear policies have put Canada in conflict with its goals for the elimination of nuclear weapons, the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) and the Canadian Pugwash Group (CPG) state in a joint Policy Paper to the Canadian government released today.


MPI Supports 2003 NAC Resolutions
October 20, 2003

As part of our ongoing efforts to promote nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) over the past month has engaged in numerous activities in support of the two New Agenda Coalition (NAC) (a coalition of Brazil, Egypt, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, and Sweden) resolutions before the 58th UN General Assembly (UNGA).

At the United Nations on October 6, Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell chaired an MPI Forum, "Challenges of the Second Nuclear Age: Preserving Multilateralism, Advancing Disarmament." Speakers included Mr. Nobuyasu Abe, Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs; Ambassador Sergio de Queiroz Duarte of Brazil; Ambassador Henrik Salander, Secretary-General of the Independent Commission on Weapons of Mass Destruction; and Senator Douglas Roche, O.C. The forum was attended by dozens of diplomats and NGOs.

MPI Delegations, led by Senator Douglas Roche, met with government officials in Belgium, Germany and Norway to encourage their support of the NAC resolutions. MPI also wrote several memoranda in support of the NAC resolutions, which were broadly circulated among key States in Europe and North America, as well as within the international NGO community.


MPI Forum, Oct. 6: USG Abe, Ambs. Duarte and Salander to address "Second Nuclear Age"
Press Release
Sept. 25, 2003

On Monday, October 6, 2003, the Middle Powers Initiative will hold a Forum at the United Nations in New York entitled "Challenges of the Second Nuclear Age: Preserving Multilateralism, Advancing Disarmament."

Mr. Nobuyasu Abe (Japan), the new UN Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs, will deliver the key note address. Other speakers include Ambassador SÚrgio de Queiroz Duarte (Brazil), who currently coordinates the efforts of the New Agenda Coalition; Ambassador Henrik Salander (Sweden), the designated Secretary-General of the new Independent Commission on Weapons of Mass Destruction; and Senator Douglas Roche, Chair of MPI.

The Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell, P.C., former Prime Minister of Canada, will chair the Forum.


New Under-Secretary-General Abe to Speak at MPI Forum
Press Release
August 25, 2003

On Monday, October 6, Mr. Nobuyasu Abe, the new United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs, will deliver one of his first major public addresses in his new position during a forum at the United Nations sponsored by the Middle Powers Initiative.

Entitled "Challenges of the Second Nuclear Age - Preserving Multilateralism, Advancing Disarmament," the forum will be chaired by the Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell, former Prime Minister of Canada, and will coincide with the start of a four-week period of disarmament discussions in the First Committee of the UN General Assembly.


MPI and GSI host Key Note Address by Jayantha Dhanapala, UN Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs
MPI Event
Palais des Nations
United Nations, Geneva
April 29, 2003

At a special session hosted by the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) and the Global Security Institute (GSI), Mr. Jayantha Dhanapala, UN Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs, delivered a riveting speech about the past, present, and future of the NPT. Mr. Dhanapala, who is retiring from his current position this summer, spoke to the assembled delegates and NGO representatives of the 2nd NPT PrepCom in Geneva.


2003 PrepCom: MPI Calls for Advancing 13 Steps
MPI Event
Palais des Nations
United Nations, Geneva
April 25, 2003

On April 25, 2003, the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) held another successful Strategy Consultation. The closed door meeting - the 8th of its kind since the creation of MPI in 1998 - preceeded this year's 2nd NPT PrepCom, which took place from April 28 to May 9 in Geneva, Switzerland. The Right Honourable Kim Campbell, former Prime Minister of Canada and MPI Steering Committee Member, chaired the Consultation. Speakers included H.E. Mr. Laszlo Molnar, Permanent Representative of Hungary to the UN in New York and Chair of the 2nd NPT PrepCom; Dr. Tadatoshi Akiba, Mayor of Hiroshima and GSI advisor; H.E. Mr. Tim Caughley, Permanent Representative of Aotearoa/New Zealand to the UN in Geneva and Ambassador for Disarmament; and Dr. Tariq Rauf, Head of the IAEA Verification and Security Policy Coordination in Vienna.


April 2003 MPI Strategy Consultation: Advancing the NPT 13 Practical Steps
GSI Offices
San Francisco
Thursday, April 17, 2003

On Friday, 25 April 2003, the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI) will hold another Strategy Consultation at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. The Consultation is chaired by Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell, former Prime Minister of Canada. Presenters include H.E. Mr. Laszlo Molnar, Chair, 2003 NPT PrepCom and Permanent Representative of Hungary to the UN in New York; Dr. Tadatoshi Akiba, Mayor of Hiroshima; and H.E. Mr. Tim Caughley, Permanent Representative of Aotearoa/New Zealand to the UN, Geneva and coordinator of the New Agenda Coalition.
Dr. Tariq Rauf, Head, Verification and Security Policy Coordination, IAEA, is responding to the presentations.


Reflections on the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates
Douglas Roche, O.C.
UN Chronicle
March 1, 2003

The view from the balcony of the Campidoglio, overlooking the ruins of the Roman Forum, provides a good perspective on the war culture of the modern age. Not even the might of the Roman Empire could prevent its collapse; yet, the human spirit soared again and again through the ages to create the vibrancy of today's Rome.

The Campidoglio provided the setting for a remarkable gathering from 18 to 20 October 2002 of Nobel Peace laureates to consider the principal challenges of our time: widespread war, violence, terrorism, poverty, water and the ecological crisis. The laureates sought solutions leading to a new world order emphasizing peace, humanity and equity.


Former PM Returns to Hill as Anti-Nuke Peace Activist:
Kim Campbell backs Chretien's Caution with US

Peter O'Neil
Vancouver Sun
October 30, 2002

ILLUSTRATION: Photo: Wayne Cuddington, Ottawa Citizen / Harvard lecturer Kim Campbell waits to appear before the Commons foreign affairs and international trade committee.

OTTAWA -- Kim Campbell, Canada's first and only female prime minister and a former tough-talking defence minister, made a surprise Parliament Hill comeback Tuesday as a "hard-nosed" peace activist.

Campbell, who now lives primarily in Boston and lectures at Harvard University, is leading an international delegation that advocates as its ultimate goal the complete elimination of nuclear weapons from the planet.


Former Canadian Prime Minister Joins the Middle Powers Initiative
MPI Press Release
September 9, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO--Former Canadian Prime Minister Kim Campbell has been appointed to the International Steering Committee of the Middle Powers Initiative (MPI), Senator Douglas Roche, MPI Chairman, announced today.

Ms. Campbell will chair an MPI Strategy Consultation at the United Nations, New York, October 3, and lead an MPI delegation of civil society leaders to meet with Canadian government officials in Ottawa October 29-30. Both events will deal with MPI's new Briefing Paper, "Priorities for Preserving the Non-Proliferation Treaty in the New Strategic Context."


The Middle Powers Initiative and the Global Security Institute Link Arms for Disarmament
January, 2002

In January 2002, the GSI Board of Directors and the MPI International Steering Committee unanimously endorsed a resolution accepting "the Middle Powers Initiative as a program of the Global Security Institute." GSI will now take responsibility for the administration and finances of MPI. The leadership of GSI and MPI are confident that the new alliance will play a dynamic and pivotal role in the international movement to eliminate nuclear weapons.