IPPNW Statement on Attacks Against Civilization

September 12, 2001

  IPPNW shares the horror felt worldwide at the terrible acts of violence committed in New York City and in Washington, DC. On behalf of tens of thousands of IPPNW physicians in 65 countries, we offer our heartfelt condolences to the thousands of families and to friends and colleagues who have been devastated by this act of unmitigated evil. We call on physicians and other health professionals, whenever possible and appropriate, to join in the effort to care for the survivors. We also support the efforts by US and international authorities to identify the perpetrators of this crime against humanity and to bring them to justice.

  Yesterday's commercial airliners were turned into weapons of mass destruction and used against civilian populations who were going about the everyday business of their lives. The hundreds of Pentagon employees who were viciously killed, even those who were members of the US military services, were not combatants in a war and the attack against them was shameful.

  As we watched the World Trade Center towers burn and collapse with thousands of people inside, and now watch the frantic efforts to rescue a few apparent survivors, we cannot help but think of the consequences had nuclear weapons been used in this attack. The deaths and injuries would have numbered in the millions, and the hospitals and other emergency response infrastructure would have been destroyed, making it impossible to rescue and care for survivors.

  What befell New York and Washington must force us to consider the prospect, indeed the seeming inevitability, that one day terrorism will go nuclear. Current global nuclear policies may indeed hasten the day. The US, as the world's richest most technologically advanced country, is most susceptible to nuclear terrorism. No nation, therefore, has more benefit to derive from the abolition of nuclear weapons.

  Though emotions are now running high -- and rightly so -- these events must prompt all of us to reflect on the nature of security in an interdependent world, in which no nation acting alone can ensure that its people will be protected from harm. Missile defenses cannot guarantee protection against nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons themselves heighten our insecurity. Quite possibly there is no impenetrable defense against someone determined to commit the kind of atrocity we witnessed yesterday. In fact, the harder we try to achieve such a defense, the more we may invite acts of even more extreme violence.

  US Secretary of State Colin Powell has called yesterday's attack an act of war "against civilization." We believe Secretary Powell has made an important point and that the only way to prevent even greater carnage -- including the possible use of nuclear weapons -- is for US leaders to make a clear and wise distinction between justice and retaliation, and to show those who committed these acts that civilization -- and our common survival -- demands more of all of us. A violent response will only fuel the cycle of violence. As Nobel Peace Laureates, we feel a profound responsibility to implore the Bush Administration and the US Congress, at this extraordinarily painful and difficult time, not to act precipitously in response to the understandable public desire for vengeance, but to work with the community of nations to mete out justice within the norms of international law on the perpetrators of these vile acts.


文明社会に対する攻撃に関する IPPNWの声明(翻訳)


 IPPNW はニューヨーク市とワシントンDCでおきたひどい暴力行為が世界を震撼させた恐怖について心からお見舞いする。 65カ国、数万のIPPNWの医師を代表して、比類なき悪の行為によって殺戮された何千という家族や友人たちや仲間に心からの哀悼をささげる。 私たちは医師や他の医療技術者達に、可能なかぎりかつ適切に、生存者の治療活動に参加するよう呼びかける。 私たちは合衆国および国際機関が、この人類に対する犯罪の実行者を特定し、司法にゆだねる努力を支持する。

 昨日の民間航空機は大量破壊兵器となり、日常生活を送っていた民間人に対して使用された。 無惨な殺され方をした何百という国防省職員は、米国の軍人ではあったが、戦時下の戦闘員ではなかった。彼らへの攻撃は許されるものではない。

 私たちはワールド・トレードセンタータワーが燃え、そして内部に何千という人々が居たままで崩壊するのを見た。そして今少数の生残者を救助しようと懸命に努力しているのを見ていると、もし核兵器がこの攻撃で使われていたらどうなっていたのだろうかと心配せずにはおれない。 死傷者は何百万人となっていただろう。そして病院も緊急援助施設も破壊され、生残者の救助も治療も不可能になっていただろう。

 ニューヨークとワシントンの出来事は、いつの日か必ずテロリズムは核に手を出すようになるということを真剣に考えなければいけないことを示している。現在のグローバルな核政策が実際にその日の到来を早めるだろう。 合衆国は、世界で最も金持ちで、最も技術的に進歩した国であるから、核テロリズムに最も狙われやすい。 従って、アメリカにとって、核兵器廃絶は最も国益にかなうことである。

 今、非常に感情的になっているけれども − それは当然なのだが− これらの出来事は我々のすべてに、単独行動をとる国は自国民を危害から守る保証をできないという相互依存の世界における安全保障とはどういうものかを熟慮するように促しているに違いない。 ミサイル防衛は核兵器に対する確実な防御とはならないし、核兵器それ自体が不安定性を高めている。

 昨日目の当たりにした類の残虐行為を決行しようとするものに対して、完全無欠な防衛などおそらくあり得ないだろう。 実際、私たちが防衛を堅固にすればするほど、もっといっそう極端な暴力行為を招くことにもなるだろう。

 コリン・パウェル合衆国国務長官は昨日の攻撃を「(西洋の)文明社会に対する」戦争行為と呼んだ。 私たちは、パゥウェル長官が重要な指摘をしたこと、そして − 核兵器使用の可能性も含めて− よりひどい大虐殺を防ぎ得る唯一の方法は、合衆国の指導者達が法の裁きと報復の違いを明確かつ賢明に認識し、そして、これらの行為を犯した人たちに(グローバルな)文明社会のために − そして我々が共に存続するために− 人類全員が一層努力する必要があることを知らしめることであると確信する。 暴力的な反撃は暴力のサイクルを加速させるだけである。 私たちにはノーベル平和賞受賞者として、この非常に辛く困難な時に、ブッシュ政権と米国の議会に対して、市民の復讐したいという無理からぬ要求に応えて拙速な行為をとるのではなく、、国際社会と共同しこれらの下劣な行為の実行者を国際法の規範に基ずく裁判で罰するよう強く求める重い責務がある。


Statement by Physicians for Social Responsibility

  Physicians for Social Responsibility is saddened and shocked by the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001 on our nation's capital and the financial center of New York. We grieve at the horrific loss of innocent lives and condemn in the strongest possible terms such attacks on the United States, especially the cowardly use of hijacked civilian passenger aircraft as weapons of terror. Terrorist attacks like this indeed strike at the very heart of civilized society around the globe.

  We call on physicians and health professionals throughout the nation to do all in their power to assist in the extraordinary efforts needed to provide medical care to the large numbers of injured and traumatized citizens who have suffered from these attacks. Our thoughts and prayers are especially with those families whose loved ones have been killed or whose fates are as yet unknown.

  PSR also acknowledges with profound gratitude the large number of messages and resolutions of condolence and support that we have received here in Washington from physicians and organizations around the world.

  We recognize and approve UN Security Council Resolution 1368 of September 12, which calls on all states to work cooperatively to bring the perpetrators of these terrorist attacks to justice under law. It is only within the framework of international cooperation and law that terrorism can be effectively addressed.

  As an organization committed to preventing war and to reducing violence and its causes, PSR calls on the United States government to expeditiously investigate and apprehend those people and organizations responsible for these horrible deeds. As Americans, we are experiencing deep feelings of anger and sorrow. Nevertheless, we strongly caution against commencing a cycle of retaliatory attacks and reprisals that will only fuel further violence and erode the rule of law. We also believe that all Americans and our government must at this moment cling steadfastly to the ideals of openness, tolerance, civil liberties, and robust debate that are the hallmarks of our democracy at its best.

  PSR is also reminded of the very real need for the our nation to reassess our security priorities in the wake of this heinous attack. Clearly, our government's current proposals to build at great expense a vast missile defense system would have proved useless on September 11th. We believe that such immense sums would be better spent in improving security within the United States, in reducing and eliminating nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, in helping to rebuild and assist victims in New York and Washington, and in beginning to address the inequities in our society and in the world that help breed hatred, violence, and terrorism.

  As we weep for our country and take pride in the compassion and heroism that so many of our fellow Americans have shown in this hour, we know that such scenes of human devastation -- whether from war, civil conflict, terrorism, poverty, environmental degradation, starvation, or disease -- are all too frequent around the globe. These are our true common enemies. PSR believes, as with any disease, that it is the prevention of violence that will be our most effective remedy. If there is any hope to be found in this tragedy, it is that Americans and the world may at this time more deeply recognize our common humanity, its preciousness and fragility, and the need to commit ourselves once again to building a more just, equitable, and peaceful global society.