February 8

Women peacemakers born today

  • 1910 Peggy Duff born London, England (d. 1981). Peace organizer. Worked for postwar relief organization Save Europe Now, 1945-48; helped establish the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), 1957; CND Organizing Secretary, 1957-67. Organized Aldermaston Marches; voiced opposition to Vietnam War and Greek junta.

  • 1916 Katharina Schuddekopf born Magdeburg, Germany. Member of White Rose, nonviolent Hitler resistance movement. Disabled university student; sentenced to year in prison for knowledge of intentions to spread anti-Nazi writings, 1943.

  • 1941 Heide Göttner-Abendroth born Langewiesen, Thuringia, Germany. German feminist, student of matriarchy. Organized Societies of Peace conference, 2005; Nobel Peace Prize nominee, 2005.

  • 1958 Marina Silva born Breu Velho, Acre, Brazil. Nonviolent environmental activist; rubber tapper. Promoter of Amazon forest preservation; led early nonviolent Empate protests with assassinated leader Chico Mendes, 1980s. Senator, 1995-2011; Environment Minister, 2003-08. Green Party presidential candidate, 2010; Socialist presidential candidate, 2014.

  • 1979 Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette born Montreal. Canadian film producer and actress; human rights advocate. Won Artists for Peace Award for film Inch’Allah on Palestine violence, 2012.

Women's peacemaking on this day

  • 1932 Dorothy Detzer convinced pacifist Republican senator Gerald Nye to investigate the role of munitions manufacturers in causing World War I.
  • 1970 Quaker Marie Bohlen had the idea to send a boat to Amchitka to protest atomic testing, laying the foundation for Greenpeace.

  • 1980 Eleanor Smeal, president of NOW, restated opposition to conscription, while noting necessity of women's inclusion: "NOW is against the registration of both young men and young women because it is a response which stimulates an environment of preparation for war. But if there is a draft, it must include women."
     
  • 2003 700+ Australian women take part in nude protest against Iraq War at Byrra Bay, Sydney, forming a big heart enclosing the phrase "NO WAR."