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Remembering Hiroshima with Peace in Our Hearts

Remembering Hiroshima: On August 6, 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped and killed thousands innocent people Photo: Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. Illustration: eEyeCam

New York, August 6, 2008- August 6th marks the 63rd anniversary of the world’s first atomic bombing of Hiroshima City.

At 8:15 am on August 6, 1945, a United States of America fighter jet dropped an atomic bomb known as "Little Boy" in the city and instantly killed 70,000 people. Another 70,000 died by the end of the year.

The Genbaku Dome in Hiroshima’s Peace Memorial Park is the witness and reminder of the world’s first nuclear bomb used as a weapon to kill our fellow human beings so mercilessly that we should be ashamed to recall our own modern history. The dome symbolizes hope for world peace and inspires us to pressure the warmongering world leaders to eliminate any kind of nuclear and WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction) weapons.

In 1996, the United Nations declared the Hiroshima Peace Memorial (Genbaku Dome) a World Heritage site.

Hiroshima's Fate and the "Little Boy"

The atomic bomb which was dropped in Hiroshima City, known as "Little Boy", was far from little in its destructive power. It contained more than 12,000 tons of TNT (Trinitrotoluene) and devastated more than five square miles area of the city. More than 60 percent of the buildings in the city were destroyed and melted due to heat generated by this very "Little Boy"!

Total number of people killed that day and later in the year was more than 140,000. Hiroshima's total population was 350,000.

Nagasaki and the inhuman "Fat Man"

Three days later, on August 9, 1945, the United States dropped another atomic bomb called "Fat Man" in the Nagasaki City which weighed 4,050 kg and killed more than 74,000 people. 30 percent of Nagasaki City was destroyed by this "Fat Man".
The consequences of these devastating atomic attacks in the city of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are far from the outcome of the ultimate end of the World War II or victory of US allies. People of both cities are still, for these last 63 years, suffering rare and painful physical and mental challenges due to the residual effects of radiation.

When I visited this peaceful and beautiful city of Hiroshima and its Peace Memorial Park in December, 1999, it was the most heart-touching moment and inspiring trip of my life. My heart was filled with grief for those tens of thousands of innocent residents who were killed on that fateful morning. How could one with good heart have thought of making a mass graveyard out of an entire city of fellow human beings?

-Pradeep Thapa Magar in New York. Comments? 551-358-7726
Peace Declaration

August 6, 2008

Another August 6, and the horrors of 63 years ago arise undiminished in the minds of our hibakusha, whose average age now exceeds 75. "Water, please!" "Help me!""Mommy!" ― On this day, we, too, etch in our hearts the voices, faces and forms that vanished in the hell no hibakusha can ever forget, renewing our determination that VNo one else should ever suffer as we did."

Because the effects of that atomic bomb, still eating away at the minds and bodies of the hibakusha, have for decades been so underestimated, a complete picture of the damage has yet to emerge. Most severely neglected have been the emotional injuries. Therefore, the city of Hiroshima is initiating a two-year scientific exploration of the psychological impact of the A-bomb experience.

This study should teach us the grave import of the truth, born of tragedy and suffering, that "the only role for nuclear weapons is to be abolished."

This truth received strong support from a report compiled last November by the city of Hiroshima. Scientists and other nuclear-related experts exploring the damage from a postulated nuclear attack found once again that only way to protect citizens from such an attack is the total abolition of nuclear weapons. This is precisely why the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the International Court of Justice advisory opinion state clearly that all nations are obligated to engage in good-faith negotiations leading to complete nuclear disarmament. Furthermore, even leaders previously central to creating and implementing US nuclear policy are now repeatedly demanding a world without nuclear weapons.

We who seek the abolition of nuclear weapons are the majority. United Cities and Local Governments, which represents the majority of the Earth''s population, has endorsed the Mayors for Peace campaign. One hundred ninety states have ratified the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. One hundred thirteen countries and regions have signed nuclear-weapon-free zone treaties. Last year, 170 countries voted in favor of Japan's UN resolution calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons. Only three countries, the US among them, opposed this resolution. We can only hope that the president of the United States elected this November will listen conscientiously to the majority, for whom the top priority is human survival.

To achieve the will of the majority by 2020, Mayors for Peace, now with 2,368 city members worldwide, proposed in April of this year a Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol to supplement the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This Protocol calls for an immediate halt to all efforts, including by nuclear-weapon states, to obtain or deploy nuclear weapons, with a legal ban on all acquisition or use to follow by 2015. Thus, it draws a concrete road map to a nuclear-weapon-free world. Now, with our destination and the map to that destination clear, all we need is the strong will and capacity to act to guard the future for our children.

World citizens and like-minded nations have achieved treaties banning anti-personnel landmines and cluster munitions. Meanwhile, the most effective measures against global warming are coming from cities. Citizens cooperating at the city level can solve the problems of the human family because cities are home to the majority of the world’s population, cities do not have militaries, and cities have built genuine partnerships around the world based on mutual understanding and trust.

The Japanese Constitution is an appropriate point of departure for a "paradigm shift" toward modeling the world on intercity relationships. I hereby call on the Japanese government to fiercely defend our Constitution, press all governments to adopt the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol, and play a leading role in the effort to abolish nuclear weapons. I further request greater generosity in designating A-bomb illnesses and in relief measures appropriate to the current situations of our aging hibakusha, including those exposed in “black rain areas” and those living overseas.

Next month the G8 Speakers' Meeting will, for the first time, take place in Japan. I fervently hope that Hiroshima's hosting of this meeting will help our "hibakusha philosophy" spread throughout the world.

Now, on the occasion of this 63rd anniversary Peace Memorial Ceremony, we offer our heartfelt lamentations for the souls of the atomic bomb victims and, in concert with the city of Nagasaki and with citizens around the world, pledge to do everything in our power to accomplish the total eradication of nuclear weapons.

Tadatoshi Akiba
The City of Hiroshima

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum

A-Bomb Dome

The Hiroshima Prefectural Commerical Exhibition Hall was constructed in 1915 as a base for promoting the sale of goods produced in Hiroshima Prefecture. The building designed by Czech architect Jan Letzel was highly regarded for its imposing, European-style design. Its name changed to Hiroshima Prefectural Products Exhibition Hall and then to Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. Intensification of the war led the government to discontinue commercial uses of the Industrial Promotion Hall in March 1944. Instead, it housed the branch office of the Chugoku Shikoku Public Works Office of the Internal Affairs Agency and the offices of the Hiroshima District Lumber and Japan Lumber Control Corporation.
When the atomic bomb exploded, it ravaged the building instantly. Heat blazing from above consumed the entire building, killing everyone in it. Because the blast attacked the building from virtually straight overhead, some walls escaped total collapse. Along with the wire framework of the dome, these form the shape that has become a symbol. At some point it became known as the "A-bomb Dome."
In 1966, Hiroshima City determined to preserve the A-bomb Dome indefinitely and solicited funds from within Japan and overseas. To date, the A-bomb Dome has undergone two preservation projects.
As a historical witness that conveys the disaster of the first atomic bombing in history, and as a symbol of the vow to pursue the abolition of nuclear weapons and enduring peace, in December 1996 the A-bomb Dome was registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List based on the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage.

Courtesy: http://www.pcf.city.hiroshima.jp/virtual/VirtualMuseum_e/tour_e/ireihi/tour_38_e.html
  तपाईंको भनाइ लेखी छाड्‍न र अरुको भनाइ पढ्न यहाँ क्लिक गर्नुहोस्
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