News Release

Controversial “Enola Gay” Exhibit: Interviews Available

SAYURI MIYAZAKI
PAT ELDER
Miyazaki and Elder will accompany Japanese survivors of the atomic bomb [Hibakusha] as they deliver signatures on a global petition to the Smithsonian Museum. The petition states: “The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum has announced that it has completely restored the B-29 bomber Enola Gay, which dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima…. The public display devotes a great deal to the performance characteristics and the like of the Enola Gay, but is said to restrict itself to a brief reference to the dropping of the atomic bomb…. Of the 140,000 people estimated to have died in Hiroshima within that year, 65 percent were women, children and elderly people…. Deep wounds and radiation-induced handicaps … continue to afflict victims…. We request that you also exhibit photographs and materials showing the damage inflicted by the atomic bomb that was dropped from this airplane.” The petition will be delivered following a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington on Friday, December 12 at 9:00 a.m.
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TERUMI TANAKA, HIROTAMI YAMADA, MINORU NISHINO, TAMIKO TOMONAGA [via John Steinbach],
Tanaka is the president of HIDANKYO, the national organization of atom bomb survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Yamada, Nishino and Tomonaga are members of the delegation of atom bomb survivors.

GAR ALPEROVITZ
Alperovitz is the author of “The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb.” He said today: “The use of the atomic bomb, most experts now believe, was totally unnecessary. Even people who support the decision for various reasons acknowledge that almost certainly the Japanese would have surrendered before the initial invasion planned for November [1945]…. As the criticism [of the bomb] grew, there was an organized, semi-official response to put it [the criticism] down. The argument was that the bomb was the least abhorrent choice we had available. The documents available show that isn’t true — but it was an extraordinarily successful propaganda effort…. One of the lessons from Hiroshima is how terribly small the group of people was who made decisions that had incredible world-shaking implications….[Another] is the way information can be manipulated so that for 50 years a whole society is taught to believe a myth.”
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PETER KUZNICK

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PETER KUZNICK
Kuznick is a professor at the Nuclear Studies Institute at the American University and an organizer of the upcoming “Hiroshima in the 21st Century: Will We Repeat the Past?” conference [Saturday, December 13]. He said today: “We are not opposed to exhibiting the Enola Gay, we welcome any exhibition that will spur an honest and balanced discussion of the atomic bombings of 1945 and of current U.S. nuclear policy. Our greatest concern is that the disturbing issues raised by the atomic bombings in 1945 will not be addressed in the planned exhibit and that President Truman’s use of atomic weapons will legitimize the Bush administration’s current effort to lower the threshold for future use of nuclear weapons.”
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PHIL WHEATON
Wheaton, an Episcopal priest, will co-host the inter-faith/secular witness liturgy, “Remembrance, Repentance and Re-Commitment,” honoring [Hibakusha] nuclear radiation survivors on Sunday, December 14 at 3 p.m., at the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church, two blocks east of the White House.
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167