Welcome to Pugwash, Pugwashites of the world!
This July marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs, an influential peace organization named in honor of its initial meeting place: a pretty fishing village in Nova Scotia where the industrialist Cyrus Eaton kept a summer home. There'll be another meeting where it all began.
In 1957 Eaton invited eminent scientists from around the world to meet at his home and discuss the nuclear threat. Again this year there will be conversations there (now known locally as "Thinkers' Lodge") and in the dining hall, a nicely-refurbished lobster-processing factory. Sometimes participants stay in the homes of local villagers, discussing, as always, the proliferation and lethality of nuclear weapons, which in 1957 seemed likely to be used in a new world war. The scientists continue gathering each summer, occasionally in Pugwash village but more often in cities around the world, sometimes producing insights that have proved to be poliltically useful, and now also addressing other global dangers, such as climate change and energy.
In 1995, half of the Nobel Peace Prize went to Joseph Rotblat, the lifelong leader of the Pugwash movement, and half to Pugwash itself. Here's a photo of Rotblat and friends at Pugwash a few years ago.
Most articles in this issue are by Pugwashites. You can identify them by the graphic of Rodin's "The Thinker" on the first page of each such article.