News Release

70 Years After U.S. Nuked Japan: Calls for Nuclear Abolition

The U.S. dropped nuclear weapons on Hiroshima August 6 and Nagasaki August 9 in 1945 — 70 years ago next week. Activists from the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Peace Committee of the National Capital Area are planning a full slate of events to advocate for “the abolition of nuclear weapons and power, and in support of nuclear victims.”

JOHN STEINBACH, johnsteinbach1 at verizon.net
Steinbach is one of the founding members of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Committee in the D.C. area. Said Steinbach: “We believe that if the world is to avoid repeating the horrors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we must strive to keep alive the memory of the bombings. This August we again plan a full schedule of events.”

The following individuals who are visiting from Japan can be reached through Steinbach:

GORO MATSUYAMA
Currently the president of the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Hibakusha Association of Neyagawa City in Osaka Prefecture, Matsuyama was 16 years old at the time of the bombing and working as a mobilized student worker at a military factory two and a half miles from the epicenter of the bomb. After retiring from teaching in Hiroshima Prefecture, he has become very active in Hibakusha peace movements.

Matsuyama discussed his experience living through the atomic bomb in an interview earlier this year. He said we wants to make sure Americans understand the impact of the bombs dropped on Japan. “Why does an 85-year-old hibakusha [A-bomb survivor] go to America? I want world leaders who don’t know the terrors of nuclear weapons to think about that.”

TAKAKO CHIBA
The president of Ashiya City Hibakusha Association, Chiba was three years old at the time when the bomb was dropped and was just one and a half miles from the Hiroshima bomb’s epicenter. After retiring from teaching, she started working for anti-nuclear movements.

Wrote Chiba: “I strongly feel that, in order to build society where my sons and grandchildren can live in peace, it is the duty of us survivors to share our experience with as many people as possible to help them identify with it. I sincerely hope that we are the last generation of people who are tormented on a daily basis by this kind of uneasiness. Nothing is as valuable as peace.”

YUKIE IKEBE
Ikebe is the leader/instructor of the 16-person Heartful Chorus choral group, in Takarazuka, Hyogo Prefecture and a peace activist who has held peace concerts throughout Japan.

To see the schedule of the upcoming Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Committee events click here, or see accuracy.org/calendar.

Note to producers: You may want to use the song “Enola Gay” by OMD as a musical lead-in; this version by Elisa Salasin includes audio clips of President Harry Truman claiming that Hiroshima was “a military base” and J. Robert Oppenheimer: “I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.” See on YouTube.