• Sagamihara, Kanagawa

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I am dumbfounded by what Gene Tibbets (the son of the pilot of the B-29 aircraft that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945) says about the Hiroshima memorial ceremony in the Aug. 7 Kyodo article “Fox News: Tibbets’ son likens U.S. presence to apology.” He is quoted as saying: “I don’t know what the hell they’re trying to do. It needs to be left alone. The war is over. . . . We didn’t slaughter the Japanese — we stopped the war.”

I know World War II is over, but the legacy of the atomic bombs that the U.S. dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki is not over. About 5,000 people died in the past year because of the aftereffects of radiation poisoning. I am shocked by the news that some Americans criticized U.S. Ambassador John Roos’ attendance at the memorial ceremony. Some Americans don’t seem to feel any compunction about being the first in history to have used atomic bombs that destroyed, in an instant, many Japanese families in their entirety.

Many Americans justify the atomic attacks by saying that the bombs brought the war to an end and saved the lives of thousands of U.S. soldiers by pre-empting the planned invasion of the Japanese mainland. The only way Americans can atone for their mistake is to abolish nuclear weapons under the great leadership of President Barack Obama. It is their moral responsibility.

naoshi koriyama

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