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Jody Williams’s Coordination of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines

Jody Williams has worked from early 1992 as the founding coordinator of the international campaign to ban Landmines, ICBL. Jody states that she wanted a simple job, but, instead, landed into the landmines (Williams and Ensler 143-170). A big part of her life, relatively 11 years, was spent working on different projects in El Salvador and Nicaragua as well as on various projects related to war. In order to realize her success in the area of banning landmines, she had to corporate with various governmental and non-governmental bodies, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the United Nation (UN). To ensure that her information is passed throughout the world, Williams stood as a chief strategist and more so, as the spoke’s person of the international campaign to ban Landmines. The coordinative activities grew from two non-governmental organizations of which she was the sole staff to more than 1400 NGO’s across 90 nations (Williams and Ensler 143-170).

Williams helped to coordinate the first ICBL’s global action in the United States in 2010, following the launch of the U.S. policy review on landmines ban, which occurred in 2009. The purpose of the action was to look into stipulated the U.S. policy reviews on the use of antipersonnel and anti-vehicle mines. This paved the way to the second global action, which was scheduled on April of 2011. Through this conference meeting, the campaigners were expected to meet at the U.S. Embassies across the world and write letters to the world’s leaders. The main purpose of the letters was to urge them to consider the case of the Landmines, the threats posed by mines, and the strengths of joining forces, which later led to Landmine ban treaty. “Tell United States to ban landmines now” was the slogan used during the campaign. Over 60 countries made their requests to meet with the U.S. Embassy officials, pertaining the 2010 Global Action Review, proposed by ICBL (Williams and Jody 230-245). A total of 35 meetings were conducted, which involved the U.S. officials, campaigners, and survivors of the landmines collapse incidences. Together they asked for updates from the United States on the landmine policy review and asked the government to accede to the mine Ban Treaty. Some of these meetings were attended by the ambassadors representing such countries, as Sierra Leone, Cambodia, Serbia and Belgium. The U.S. ambassadors then agreed to relay the information by ICBL to the Department of State in Washington D.C. Therefore, campaigners reported that most of the U.S. representatives were conversant about the landmine policy review, but had no clue on its completion date; they were receptive to the grievances presented by the ICBL. Williams coordinated the campaign initiatives, which occurred in Washington D.C., together with the co-host, the Georgetown University. Together they presented the issues of landmines and the necessity to ban them; she was accompanied by Stephen Goose and Ken Rutherford as panelists. The events of the occasion were also propagated to mark the ICBL Anniversary, where the proud students against landmines and cluster bombs, PSALM, from West Virginia flew 50 balloons. These balloons had the meaning of passing on the messages of hope in convincing the remaining countries to come together and ban landmines and cluster bombs (Williams and Jody 230-245).

Williams through ICBL has helped to coordinate the third meeting of States Parties, 3MSP, worldwide. This meeting occurred in Managua, Nicaragua on September 2001 to discuss the implementation and the universalization of the 1997 mine ban treaty. The meeting in Nicaragua was important, because it marked the half-way point from the inception of the convention in 1999 to the first review conference, which took place in 2004. The participation of the 150 ICBL delegates from various parts on the continent was recognized. The delegates through strategic campaigns contacted various governments regarding the participation. Moreover, these governments were urged to come up with the innovative ideologies to be implemented during the session. Ratification and accession of different governments were also of concern to the ICBL because through that, their dream could be achieved. During the meeting, ICBL presented Landmine monitor report to the third meeting of the States and made their proposals live on the mitigation measures. The comprehensive report, which contained 1175 pages, had information of almost every country in the world. The report was prepared by approximately 122 landmine monitor researchers, from 95 countries, who collected data and made their conclusions. There is a need to make the world mine-free. ICBL, in coordination with Jody Williams, has launched the executive summary alongside the report to various countries in the world, including Geneva, Nairobi, Bangkok, Ottawa, Brussels and other regions of the world. Though some nations chose to suspend the launches in their cities because of the tragic events in the United States, other nations continued with the plan (landmine monitor report, pp. 3-11). Through 1997 Landmine Ban Tour trip across the world and the Ottawa Convention, Williams says that she coordinated with Canadian and Korean governments. To achieve this, she used Bob Lawson, who was the primary link to the Canadian government on his bad outfits and brown suede shoes (Williams & Ensler 200-226). Bob was the natural partner due to his personal experience in different worlds, which entailed both the government and the non-governmental organization. Bob together with Steve Goose, the chairman of the U.S. Campaign to ban landmines and also the arms director at human rights watch, cooperated to work together with different governments and some would make fun of them, as being the “Dynamic duo.” She propelled the U.S. Government to check on the Korean exception to the use of the antipersonnel mines and landmine banning policy. In accordance with the 1997 landmine ban treaty, the Korean government was not an exception and, hence, the push by the United States was important. Steve stated that there was no compelling justification for the future use of the landmines in the southern peninsula by the United Sates (Williams and Ensler 200-226). To him, these landmines would not make any difference to the protection and defense of the Southern Korea. It is to this cause that the 1997 treaty would help in the protection of civilians from the dangerous weapons that are known to cause sufferings to the people. The United States, South Korea and the Northern Korea are not among the one hundred and sixty-two nations that have joined the Ottawa Convention, that is also known as the Mine Ban Treaty. 2014 saw the U.S. state that they were on the consideration to actively realign with the Mine treaty Act after the conclusion of the Pentagon. This will be after the study of the “unique study” of the Korean Government. 18 years ago, the United States sought to carve out the regional exception of the Korean Government, but this was met with harsh criticisms and the point was that the United States wanted to use the antipersonnel landmines to be protected, in case of war. The United States wanted to use the landmines in the due course of invasion by the North Korea, but the retired U.S. officers have commented that it was futile. Their basis was that those antipersonnel landmines had very little or no significant value to the military (Williams and Ensler 200-226).

Williams coordinated the transition of international Campaign to Ban Landmine, ICBL, to the creation of the Mine Ban Treaty, MBT. This was done in a little lifespan of about five years and she says that it was the moment of joy, which lasted from October 10, 1992 to December 10, 1997. Jody claims that this was phenomenally faster than anyone could have expected (Williams and Jody 227-245). It was three weeks later, after 10, October 1997 that she was awarded a Nobel Peace prize. Through Mine Ban Treaty, Williams was able to present her the contributions, pertaining to the international diplomacy, majoring on the humanitarian imperatives. Mine Ban Treaty conducted the fourteenth meeting of the States in Geneva, which was held on 30, November 2015. More than 90 countries participated in the ban treaty with the United States being one of the observatory countries in the treaty. Some countries, for example, Mozambique and Finland declared free of landmines use after the completion of the clearance of the mined regions. Poland had its commitment to destroy the last antipersonnel mines in 2016; this was one of more than a million stockpiles that existed. Moreover, Oman had its intention of destroying the remaining landmine stocks before the next Mine Ban treaty, which was scheduled on 2019. Sri Lanka excused herself of the intentions to destroy landmines; their basis was the paradigm shift, which created a number of problems. However, they made preparations to destroy the landmines in 2016. Ukrainian government denied using antipersonnel landmines in Lugansk and Donetsk provinces and blamed it on Russia. The government stated that the Russian Government backed armed groups in the region, who used the antipersonnel landmines. The proposal was brought forward by Mine Ban Treaty to the nations, like Niger, Ethiopia, Senegal, Mauritania, and Cyprus and they agreed to clear their landmines, as provided in the new extension deadline (Williams and Jody 227-245).

Works Cited

“Third Meeting of the States Parties to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction.” Third Meeting. Managua, 2001. pp. 3-11. http://www.apminebanconvention.org/fileadmin/APMBC/MSP/3MSP/Reports/3MSP_Final_Report_E.pdf. Accessed 12 May 2017.

Williams, Jody, and Eve Ensler. “I Thought I Wanted a Straight Job—Instead I Got Landmines.” My Name Is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girl’s Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize, 1st ed., University of California Press, 2013, pp. 143–170, www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt24hsvq.13. Accessed 12 May 2017.

Williams, Jody, and Eve Ensler. “The Ottawa Process and the 1997 Landmine Ban World Tour.” My Name Is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girl’s Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize, 1st ed., University of California Press, 2013, pp. 200–226, www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt24hsvq.15. Accessed 12 May 2017.

Williams, Jody, and Eve Ensler. “Whirlwind: October 10 to December 10, 1997.” My Name Is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girl’s Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize, 1st ed., University of California Press, 2013, pp. 227–245, www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt24hsvq.16. Accessed 12 May 2017.

Williams, Jody, and Eve Ensler. “Whirlwind: October 10 to December 10, 1997.” My Name Is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girl’s Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize, 1st ed., University of California Press, 2013, pp. 230-245, www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt24hsvq.16. Accessed 12 May 2017.