Friday, July 08, 2005

"you can't sink a rainbow"!

Copyright: Greenpeace-Walsh

When man’s materialistic ways have threatened and abused the earth, stripping her of her bountiful resources, just before it is too late, the Great Spirit of the Indians will return to earth. A new race of warriors will come forth to fight for the earth, called the Rainbow Warriors. They will teach us to respect the earth again, and will restore harmony.
- A Cree Indian legend

Greenpeaceis a unique global organisation which was founded in 1979. They have done pioneering work since then. (no, really! These guys do do amazing stuff!)

They are a group which has developed the use of nonviolent, creative confrontation as a potent weapon with which to address global environmental problems and to force the solutions which are essential to a green and peaceful future. Greenpeace's goal is to ensure the ability of the earth to nurture life in all its diversity.

Greenpeace is committed to :

1. stopping climate change
2. saving the oceans
3. protecting old forests
4. combatting genetic engineering
5. eliminating toxic chemicals
6. campaigning for disarmament
7. encouraging sustainable trade.

Their activists sail around the world in a flagship called the Rainbow Warrior, christened by Bob Hunter. One of the co-founders of Greenpeace, he named the ship after an Indian legend when the story literally leapt into his hands one stormy night.

So why this sudden post you ask? Well, it’s the 20th anniversaryof the bombing of the Rainbow Warrior. That’s right. Bombing. Now why would a group reknown for “non violent confrontation” have their ship bombed? Well, probably because when you speak up for people, and force governments and corporates to acknowledge some issues and act on them, youre bound to get under their skin. And as history has amply demonstrated, both are not really averse to using mindless violence.

The Rainbow Warrior was bombed when she was taken out to protest against nuclear testing. the American government had been testing nuclear weapons in the Bikini Atoll. As a result, the nearby Rongelap island was contaminated. Nobody responded to the appeals of the Rongelapese people to be evacuated until Greenpeace came along. The Rainbow Warrior was used to evacuate the Rongelapese to Majeto. From there, they proceeded to Auckland to attend to the ship’s wear and tear and plan for the Pacific Peace Voyage which was to follow.

Their next strategy was to build a “peace flotilla” to protest against the French governments plans for underground nuclear testing. Though they expected stiff opposition from the french government, nobody was prepared for what eventually did happen. The french had ordered their secret service to sink the Rainbow Warrior at Waitemata Harbour, Auckland. After initially denying responsibility, the French government confessed to having sabotaged the ship and was ordered by the UN to pay $13 million to the New Zealand government, which then gave Greenpeace $8 million to build their next ship, Rainbow Warrior II.

Greenpeace being the irrepressible outfit it is (thank god!) rebuilt the Warrior and undeterred, continues with their amazing work around the world.

We NEED a group like Greenpeace today to stand up to rogue governments and corporate entities. There’s a link on the right hand side of this page dedicated to Exxon Mobil’s way of working, which you may like to check out. The link is called Exxon Secrets. It’s a crisp demonstration of how manipulation happens. (i got this off the greenpeace site of course!)
For samples of Greenpeace's campaign issues, please have a look at their work on these fronts.
They have also campaigned against use of toxic and hazardous chemicals and forced manufacturers of consumer goods (such as TVs, cellular phones, toys and so on) to remove toxic substances from their products.

So what can we do to help Greenpeace?

Would you like to help from wherever it is youre located? Look em uphere for more details.

Dyou have a blog or personal home page? link up: let more people know about GP.

Would you like to know about greener living? Here are some practical do-able things. (no, you don’t have to live like a hippie - just give this a shot! :) )

Work in your local Greenpeace office or volunteer (id love to do this some day! :d)

and of course, you can DONATE!

Kudos Greenpeace. You folks are amazing.



Blogger livinghigh said...

hmmmm.... greenpeace sounds like fun.. wud be great to go around de world in a ship, eh?!

1:07 am  
Blogger Baejaar said...

Isnt Greenpeace an amazing organization? During my school days, I had several dreams about my career. And one of them was greenpeace or some other environmental NGO. Unfortunately like the herd, I joined software industry and now I spare only the weekends for social NGOs.

To admit frankly never knew about the bombing of greenpeace ship. Thanks for the info. A nice and useful post.

8:59 am  
Blogger m. said...

thanks both of you: i was just starting to feel shattered that nobody had anything to say on such a hugely exciting occasion - and then fortunately you had!! :)

@livinghigh: YESH! :d

@baejaar: glad to have been of service to another GP fan! :))
dont you worry - ngos can swindle and corporate entities can do good : profession isnt everything!
isnt the rainbow warriors a lovely story? i got goosebumps when i heard it first! :)

10:14 am  
Blogger Senthil said...

Interesting. I had always thought of greenpeace volunteers as just another one of those irritating people who tell you to have less coffee at expensive coffee shops and donate the difference to them (this really happened to me), but looks like I should read up a bit more about them. Just read the four-page article on the sabotage, too. Shocking.

12:55 pm  
Blogger m. said...

@ senthil: lol.. the coffee campaigners sound rather barmy!!nah.. one of the reasons i like gp is that theyre looking at ways to do something : they dont just tell you whats happening is all wrong and the works are all mucked up! they actively help people generate options and work on alternatives. so naturally they face a whole lot of opposition, some of it powerful and hostile. you shd see some of the corporate human rights records. theyre blood curdling

10:18 am  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Visit to help prevent environmental destruction.
Creative Commons License
This blog's content is protected. Whack this and you get whacked.