Wednesday, May 11, 2005

ALERT: Psychologists for Social Responsibility

CONTACT: Psychologists for Social Responsibility
Contact: Anne Anderson
PsySR (202) 543-5347
Email: anderson@psysr.org
Nuclear Weapons, Terrorism, United Nations, Culture of Fear
Psychologists for Social Responsibility Urges UN to Rethink Nuclear Policy

WASHINGTON -- May 10 -- Dr. Paul Kimmel, President of Psychologists for Social Responsibility (PsySR.org), announced that a PsySR delegation of distinguished psychologists and young activists are in New York City for the United Nations Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference (May 2-27). He said, "Our delegation, based in the Church Center across from the UN, is working with our coalition partners (http://www.abolitionnow.org/ and http://www.unitedforpeace.org/) representing over 2000 organizations world-wide to urge the member states to rethink their current approach to reducing the threat of nuclear disaster."

To assist the NPT Review Conference participants in updating the Treaty, Psychologists for Social Responsibility is distributing the American Psychological Association's statement "Preventing Armageddon" by Morton Deutsch and Brewster Smith; the PsySR Position Paper on United States Nuclear Weapons Policies, (see http://www.psysr.org/); and a new PsySR publication "Using Psychology to Help Abolish Nuclear Weapons: A Handbook," by Marc Pilisuk and Jamie Rowen.

Dr. Marc Pilisuk, lead author of PsySR's new handbook explained "It is imperative that the delegates meeting at the U.N. this month find ways to bring the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty into the 21st Century so that it addresses the realities of the threats we currently face. The 20-year-old treaty has lost much of its capacity for safeguarding us from the spread of nuclear weapons due to the failure of nuclear states like the U.S. to comply with its disarmament provisions. Also, in a misguided attempt to protect themselves, many non-nuclear states are now engaged in a new nuclear arms race--a race to join the nuclear club. And most troubling, the resulting spread of nuclear weapons, including massive stockpiles in the former Soviet Union, has significantly increased the opportunities for non-state groups, such as terrorists, to gain access to this devastating technology."

PsySR member Diane Perlman, Ph.D. will present a seminar: "Psychologically Incorrect: the irrationality of nuclear policies, false belief systems and provoking unintended consequences," 1-3 PM on May 10th at the Church Center. She noted "While deliberating about nuclear weapons it is essential to be aware of our own psychology, the psychology of our enemies and adversaries, the dynamics of our relationships and the patterns of escalation and de-escalation, lest we make psychological mistakes that can lead to irreversible damage." She has also contributed to the Non-governmental Organizations presentation to the NPT Review Conference delegates on May 11, 3-6 PM (http://www.reachingcriticalwill.org/)

For Interviews: Please contact Anne Anderson, Co-Coordinator, (202) 543-5347 or anderson@psysr.org.

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