Peace Action (www.peace-action.org), the largest grassroots peace group in the United States, has made stopping NMD and reducing nuclear weapons its top priority, sponsoring call-ins, a “missile-stop tour” and issue ads that are scheduled to run against key Republican senators who voted against the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. The website of the Coalition to Reduce Nuclear Dangers (www.crnd.org) offers the single best source of critical analysis and is chock-full of good links.

At a May 25 press conference the Global Research/Action Center on the Environment (GRACE) premiered a short film clip in which Paul Newman critiques the latest missile defense scheme after showing an excerpt from the 1966 Hitchcock thriller Torn Curtain, in which Newman plays a US scientist who defects to East Germany in the hopes of developing a new technology that will render nuclear missiles “obsolete” and that can be shared by the two superpower blocs. Sound familiar? Frances FitzGerald argues in her new book, Way Out There in the Blue, that this is where Reagan picked up the idea of using the phrase “impotent and obsolete” in his 1983 Star Wars speech.

On the right, a new group chaired by the Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney (www.protectamericans.now) is planning to run ads designed to scare the hell out of everyone about the dangers of foreign ballistic missiles, then get them to go to the group’s website and punch in their ZIP code for a “customized” assessment of the missile threat to their neighborhood.