In 1988 Professor Guillermo Velarde, founder of the Instituto de Fusión Nuclear (IFN), chaired the 19th European Conference on Laser Interaction with Matter held in Madrid on 3–7 October 1988. About 170 scientists from Europe, the Soviet Union, United States, Japan, Canada, Israel, Australia, China, and South Africa participated in the ECLIM 88. ECLIM 88 was among ECLIM's series a turning point in inertial confinement fusion (ICF) research. The work already performed by different laboratories in Europe, Japan, and around the world had reached a level such that without explicitly expressing it, the collective scientific consensus wanted a change in the existing close policies in several ICF areas at large Laboratories in the USA, Russia, France, and UK.
Dr. Erik Storm from the US Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory proposed to Professor Velarde to write a letter to be signed by the participants of the ECLIM in favor of having an open international collaboration in ICF. Professor Velarde then suggested drawing up a manifesto instead of a letter because the name manifesto had bigger historical connotations. The manifesto received a very successful response among the conference participants and was signed by more than 130 scientists. Our paper aims at twofold objective: (1) to put into account the positive repercussions derived from the MADRID MANIFESTO in the ICF research and (2) to remember the figure of Professor Guillermo Velarde, the most influential physicist in nuclear fusion energy by inertial confinement along the 20th century. His inspiration and leadership in science contributed to make this world a safer and secure place and for us, his disciples and colleagues, an irreplaceable personality in our lives.