Brief interview by phone, Moscow October 1997
Civic peace emerged in 1988. It has both individual and group memberships. Serves as a network for NGOs dealing with peace, disarmament, and democracy. Today there is no interest in disarmament issues — people are either neutral or opposed to it, especially after the Chechen war. The government encourages arms production for foreign trade. The START ratification is in issue in parliament, and it will not be ratified soon. Tair also thinks Russia has not ratified the Chemical Weapons Ban but isn’t sure. Civic peace is working to promote cooperation with groups in Europe. Has a project on Army and Society, working to reform the army and put it under civilian control. They hold security seminars that attract sometimes 100 persons. In the spring they hold a meeting of NGOs in Moscow.
I asked him about the structure of the peace movement today, and he said I could tell that by identifying the people on the program. Memorial is not involved; they don’t work with other groups. There are nonviolence organizations and Omega, Mothers of Soldiers, various foundations. There are environmental groups such as Ecological Union, and groups representing minority groups. There is Youth Solidarity, and there are some women’s groups.