World’s First Atomic Bombing – ‘Major Fallout of Political Hypocrisy’

06-08-2020 17:45:22
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On August 6, 1945, the World’s first atomic bombing was witnessed only after the United States used atomic weaponry during wartime against Japanese troops. It dropped atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima killing approximately 80,000 people on the spot and injuring almost 35,000 people. Besides, over 60,000 victims succumbed to their injuries.

This 75th Anniversary of Bombing is however being termed as a fallout of hypocrisy that was marked as a part of the Japanese government's refusal to sign a nuclear weapons ban treaty.

Highlighting it as a failure of the Japanese Government, Mayor Kazumi Matsui urged world leaders to be more committed to nuclear disarmament. In his peace declaration Matsui has said, “I ask the Japanese government to heed the appeal of the (bombing survivors) to sign, ratify and become a party to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons”. As the only nation to suffer a nuclear attack, Japan must persuade the global public to unite with the spirit of Hiroshima.

His speech highlights what survivors feel is the hypocrisy of Japan’s government, which hosts 50,000 American troops and is protected by the U.S. nuclear umbrella. Tokyo has not signed the nuclear weapons ban treaty adopted in 2017, despite its non-nuclear pledge, a failure to act that the atomic bombing survivors and pacifist groups call insincere.

The U.S. dropped its first atomic bomb on Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, destroying the city and killing 140,000 people. The U.S. dropped a second bomb three days later on Nagasaki, killing another 70,000. Japan surrendered Aug. 15, ending World War II and it’s nearly half-century of aggression in Asia. Some survivors and their relatives prayed at the park’s cenotaph before the ceremony. The registry of the atomic bombing victims is stored at the cenotaph, whose inscription reads – Let all the souls here rest in peace for we shall not repeat the mistake.

However, Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, in his speech at the ceremony, said Japan is committed to nuclear weapons ban but a nuclear free world cannot be achieved overnight and that it has to start from dialogue between opposite sides. The Japanese PM said, “Japan's position is to serve as a bridge between different sides and patiently promote their dialogue and actions to achieve a world without nuclear weapons”. He added that the nuclear policies were divided amid a harsh security environment. As such, it is necessary to create common ground first, Abe said. The U.N. Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, while speaking in his video messaging from New York, said “The only way to totally eliminate nuclear risk is to totally eliminate nuclear weapons”.

Guterres said, “Seventy-five years is far too long not to have learned that the possession of nuclear weapons diminishes, rather than reinforces, security”. Many peace events, including their talks, leading up to the anniversary had been cancelled due to the coronavirus, but some survivors have teamed with young students or pacifist groups to speak at online events, sometimes connecting with international audiences. The elderly survivors, whose average age now exceeds 83, have on the 75th anniversary, falling on August 5, 2020, lamented the slow progress of nuclear disarmament. They expressed anger over what they said was the Japanese government’s reluctance to help and listen to those who suffered from the atomic bombing. A 47-year-old man, Manabu Iwasa, came to the park to pray for his father, a survivor of the deadly nuclear bombing in Japan. He added, “Japan apparently sides with the U.S. and make more effort toward nuclear weapons ban”.


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