Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Nagasaki Gets Short Shrift

Our bombs laid on Japan 60 years ago seem to be the WMD that keep on D-ing. With Hiroshima being first, Nagasaki tends to get short shrift in the recognition and remembarences categories. I have actually walked the hills of Nagasaki and thought it to be a very beautiful city. I have seen the twisted metal, bent shrine, and Peace Park with my own eyes. Unlike visiting Auschwitz, which feels like a mausoleum without any speck of warmth, Nagasaki has been rebuilt and thrives teeming with life.

Indeed, we might do well to also remember the long term affect of our leaders' aspirations and actions:
Fumie Sakamoto, a junior high school student home for lunch when the bomb struck Nagasaki, spoke to the crowd with resolve and anger. "The world around me was lost in a cloud of dust," she said, and she ran for shelter in the forest. "

People, clothes ripped and torn, with gaping chest wounds, whose hearts were exposed and could still be seen twitching; people burned so badly one could not tell front from back," she said. "The wood was full of such people."

Sakamoto, dressed in a deep purple kimono, her eyes and voice sharp and clear, said doctors had told her she was bound for death and not worth treating. She somehow survived over a "long and painful road."

"Yet war still persists on this Earth and, far from abolishing nuclear arms, I have heard there are even plans to develop nuclear weapons with new capabilities," she said. "We have devoted our lives to demanding that there never be A-bomb victims again, but why are our voices not heard?"

Nagasaki Mayor Iccho Itoh chastised the United States for continued nuclear proliferation and Japan for taking cover in America's nuclear fold. "The nuclear weapons states, the United States of America in particular, have ignored their international commitments and have made no change in their unyielding stance on nuclear deterrence," Itoh said. "We strongly resent the trampling of the hopes of the world's people."


Nedhead said...

Itoh said. "We strongly resent the trampling of the hopes of the world's people."

My sentiments exactly!

Anonymous said...

Remember Pearl Harbor

Then take a bath in WWII here, Winston Churchill asks Harry Truman a question.

And while you're at it, see also We're at war -- let's party.