Sistercity in the works?

Published on Thu, Nov 17, 2005 by MegOlson

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Sister city in the works?

By Meg Olson

Local historian Richard Clark, has for years championed peace as a worthy banner for the city of Blaine.

It was his idea to formalize the city’s theme in a sister-city relationship with Pugwash, Nova Scotia, birthplace of an international peace conference. And, after a slow start, the two cities are getting ready to close the deal.

At an October 24 Blaine city council meeting, Clark gave council members a chance to look at his recently published history of the Peace Arch, and some of Pugwash’s history of peace, the likes of which started with a group of scientists concerned about the possible devastation threatened by nuclear proliferation.

In 1955 Albert Einstein, Bertrand Russell, Joseph Rotblat, Linus Pauling and Frederic Joliot-Curie were among the signatories on a manifesto that called for the conference to “urge the governments of the world to realize, and to acknowledge publicly, that their purpose cannot be furthered by a world war.” That manifesto led to the first conference devoted to the pursuit of peace at the Pugwash home of Canadian retail baron Cyrus Eaton in 1957.

City manager Gary Tomsic said that he had recently heard back from the Pugwash Village Commission that they would be interested in pursuing a sister city relationship. “The next step would be to develop a joint resolution that establishes the sister city relationship,” he said, as council members agreed. “It will be both communities who take the relationship beyond a resolution.

“With good community support it can be very exciting and fun,” he said.

Jerry Gay, who has worked with Clark promoting the sisterhood, said he hoped schools and local groups could participate and that he would ultimately like to see an international center for peace studies built.
“It would give the 28 million who come through the portal something to think about,” he said.