The Scenario

The Task

The Players

The Process

Evaluation

Conclusion

The Scenario

The year is 1995 and French President Chirac has just announced France's intentions to renew nuclear testing at the Mururoa Atoll in the South Pacific. The immediate uproar to the decision was monumental. Protests organized by Greenpeace and other anti-nuclear groups sprung up at French embassies all around the world. The governments of Japan and Australia, issued firm warnings to the French, subtly threatening economic sanctions if the tests were to continue. Within the borders of France, the populous reacts with mixed emotions, but the overall sense of nationalism brings enough of the people together to support this final set of testing.

While France has determined to hold its ground and has refused to back away from its decision to continue with the testing, the Chirac administration has agreed to attending a Nuclear Testing Summit before the first test. However, the first test has been scheduled for two days into the three day summit. France, Japan, Australia, the United States, and the organization Greenpeace have been invited by the overseeing group of moderators from the United Nations to attend the conference.

It will be the responsibility of the moderators to bring all the nations/organization together in an organized and productive manner, that will allow all sides to explain themselves and there position on this sensitive issue. Additionally, all participants must contribute to, and later sign, a treaty that will redefine the issue of nuclear testing in the South Pacific drafted by the neutral moderators.

 

The Task

At the end of this unit each group will have completed the following:

  • Designate roles within each group,
  • research topic using provided or otherwise found resources,
  • develop an an argument for the nation/organization being represented by each group,
  • support stance with relevant information,
  • prepare any visual aids for presentation and report,
  • create questions to address possible weaknesses in opponents' arguments,
  • submit written report of all findings,
  • present argument at final summit,
  • and participate in the drafting of a nuclear testing treaty.

The Players

 

 

Each group has been provided with a specific set of resources on the below linked pages. Additionally, a set of General Resources are available for all groups to assist in your research.

France is the country that has caused all of the commotion. It was their decision to continue nuclear testing in the South Pacific that started this debate.

Australia holds a particular interest in nuclear testing in the South Pacific because of the proximity to its shores. Australia has always stood strong against nuclear testing

Greenpeace has conducted massive campaigns to stop testing, and numerous environmental tests to show its damage to the environment.

Being the only nation to fall victim to the devastation of the atomic weapons, Japan feels it is its duty to fight any attempt at renewed testing and developing of nuclear devices.

Being the world's nuclear powerhouse, the United States finds itself in an interesting role. The U.S. has opposed all nuclear testing, but understands France's desire for national security. The U.S. must make its opinion known, but must not attempt to dominate the negotiations.

Moderators

This role is very important to the summit at the end of the week. The moderating group will be responsible for conducting the summit, asking follow up questions, and drawing up a treaty to be signed by all members at the end of the summit.

The Process

During the next week, you will be doing a number of different tasks that will ultimately lead to a summit conference where the future of nuclear testing in the South Pacific and the world will be discussed. You will need to follow the instructions provided by your teacher and outlined below to complete the worked needed to participate fully in the summit.

  1. You will first be given a short introduction to nuclear testing and its brief, but brilliant history. A special history of nuclear testing page has been set up for you to reference while conducting your research.

  2. Build Teams, Assign Country/Organization, and Select Roles
    You will be divided into six teams and assigned a country/organization by your teacher. Within each group you will decided who will be assigned to each role described below, with the exception of the moderating group whose instructions can be found on the
    moderating page. Some of you may end up doing two or three of the jobs depending upon your group and how you delegate responsibility.
       
    • President - Organizes team activities and monitor completion of assignments. Coordinate and assign research topics to team members.
    • Secretary - Take notes at team meetings and in charge of the final written report.
    • Delegates - Two people will sit at the conference table and will present the main points and arguments (questions can be asked by all members!).
    • Artist - In charge of gathering appropriate images, creating maps and other artwork.
    • Spy - Examine arguments of other parties. Come up with counter-arguments. In charge of not being caught off-guard.
    • Researchers - Everyone will act as a researcher in some capacity.

     

  3. And so it begins...
    At this point you will examine the page specific to your team, and begin research. Each nation/organization page has questions to be addressed and links to find useful information. Library research should supplement the Internet resources. Once you have a good idea as to the stance you want to take on the issue, begin doing specific research to the topics you will be addressing in your presentation.

    Research Position
    From data collection and research activities your team will assemble a report containing and information supporting the stance the nation/organization will be making. A set of questions specific to each group has been provided to get students started off in the right direction. These questions are only starters, they do not address the entire issue as should be seen by each nation/organization. The report should include the following information:
       
    • Introduction/Stance on nuclear testing
    • Research
    • Maps, Charts, and other images
    • Possible solutions
    • Conclusion

     

  4. Conduct International Summit
    On the summit day, your classroom will be organized to best suit the needs of the conference. Be sure to have all of your materials ready for your presentation. The moderating group should have already determined the order of presentations. Make sure to listen closely to all of the other presenters. Ask any questions you have to the presenting group (at the end of their presentation), whether they oppose or agree to your stance on the issues.

    The moderating group is responsible for running the summit, you will need to follow the guidelines they have set up for you.

Evaluation

Two rubrics are being designed to grade you both individually and as a group.

Conclusion

At the end of this unit you will be familiar with the threat nuclear technology still poses in a post-Cold War world. Additionally, you have worked as a group to help solve this problem. While this has only been a simulation of a real life issue, it has allowed you to examine the evidence and argue a position that may or may not be close to your heart. It is important to see all angles and to understand why an individual, organization, or nation acts the way it does, often in opposition of what has been deemed right.


- Teacher's Page - Index of Pages -

This unit written, researched, and designed by Dan McDowell. Last updated August 20, 1997.
E-mail any questions, comments, or suggestions!