News Archive
Feb 25, 2014 - Peace Boat marks 60th anniversary of Bravo Nuclear Test in the Bikini Atoll

Peace Boat participants will join people in different parts of the world to observe Nuclear Remembrance Day, marking the Castle Bravo nuclear test conducted at Bikini Atoll on March 1, 1954.

Bravo Detonation, March 1, 1954
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the Castle Bravo detonation, a test conducted at Bikini Atoll of the Marshall Islands in 1954. This bomb, 1,000 times the force of the one dropped over Hiroshima less than ten years prior, sent irradiated coral dust throughout the atolls causing what many Islanders described as falling snow. The Marshallese people of Bikini Atoll, though relocated to Rongelap Atoll, were exposed to this nuclear fallout when changing weather patterns carried this radiation throughout the northwestern Marshall Islands and its environs. Between 1946 and 1958, the U.S. military conducted 67 similar nuclear bomb tests in the Marshall Islands, and many Marshallese people continue to experience severe health issues as well as cultural upheaval due to the dislocation from and environmental degradation of many of their home islands.

81st Voyage Director Hidaka Shinsuke and journalist Maeda Tetsuo lay a wreath to commemorate victims of nuclear testing at a memorial in Tahiti.

To honor and show their solidarity with those affected by nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands and other Pacific island nations, Peace Boat participants will organize a memorial event onboard our 81st Global Voyage while sailing through the Pacific. After a recent lecture by Guest Educator and journalist Maeda Tetsuo about nuclear testing in the Pacific, participants gathered to send a message of solidarity to affected Marshallese communities (picture above).

Participants of Peace Boat's 81st voyage learned about nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands early on the voyage from Guest Educator Greg Dvorak, who spent part of his childhood in the islands. During their recent visit to Papeete, Tahiti, participants were also able to learn about the nuclear testings carried out there by France, and the continue struggle for the recognition of Tahitian nuclear bomb testing victims.

Peace Boat has continuously made strong calls for the recognition of victims and to put an end to the long lasting effects of the nuclear chain and abolish nuclear weapons. Through this action Peace Boat will be joining people around the world to observe this day and remember the terrible effects of nuclear testings in the Pacific.

Together with Greg Dvorak and his grassroots initiative to foster Pacific Islands awareness in Japan, Project35 (Project Sango), we are inviting people to join us by sharing a message or picture of solidarity via facebook, twitter or instagram using the #bravo60 and #nuclear_remembrance hashtags.
Some events occurring around the world to commemorate this Nuclear Remembrance Day are linked below.
To learn more about nuclear testing in the Pacific and Oceania, its effects and the growing movement for banning nuclear weapons in the region please read the following reports by ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons) of which Peace Boat is member:

- BANNING NUCLEAR WEAPONS - A PACIFIC ISLANDS PERSPECTIVE
- BLACK MIST - The impact of nuclear weapons on Australia
Documents for download