« Test of Russian atomic-powered rocket engine explodes in missile test range above the Arctic Circle | Main | The promise of offshore wind »

Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui's peace declaration on August 6

We offer here the opening paragraphs of Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui's (pictured) remarks on the anniversary of the atomic bombing of his city. Click at the end to read the full statement:

"Around the world today, we see self-centered nationalism in ascendance, tensions heightened by international exclusivity and rivalry, with nuclear disarmament at a standstill. What are we to make of these global phenomena? Having undergone two world wars, our elders pursued an ideal -- a world beyond war. They undertook to construct a system of international cooperation. Should we not now recall and, for human survival, strive for that ideal world? I ask this especially of you, the youth who have never known war but will lead the future. For this purpose, I ask you to listen carefully to the hibakusha of Aug. 6, 1945.

A woman who was five then has written this poem:

Little sister with a bowl cut / head spraying blood

embraced by Mother / turned raging Asura

A youth of 18 saw this: "They were nearly naked, their clothes burned to tatters, but I couldn't tell the men from the women. Hair gone, eyeballs popped out, lips and ears ripped off, skin hanging from faces, bodies covered in blood -- and so many." Today he insists, "We must never, ever allow this to happen to any future generation. We are enough." Appeals like these come from survivors who carry deep scars in body and soul. Are they reaching you? 

"A single person is small and weak, but if each of us seeks peace, I'm sure we can stop the forces pushing for war." This woman was 15 at the time. Can we allow her faith to end up an empty wish?" Read More