Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Peace Thinking Month

August is an important month for Japanese when we think about war and peace. The reason why is that two atomic bombs were dropped by the United States on Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the 6th and 9th of August in 1945 leading Japan surrendered on the 15th of the month.

Every year a peace memorial service for atomic-bomb victims takes place in each city on each memorial day. Each mayor of the city makes a peace declaration, which is a remarkable statement each time. I was especially impressed by the speech of Nagasaki City’s mayor.

He asked the United States and Russia by name to try hard to decrease nuclear weapons because they have 95 percent of these weapons. In addition, he asked the Japanese government to legislate for three non-nuclear principles and to act as a global leader for elimination of all nuclear weapons.

However, I wonder if his speech really reached the ears of the United States and Russia. The United States has not attended the ceremony, although they are invited every year. The US President, Bush, was in Beijing this year but he was just watching the Olympic Games. Russia attended this time but they have just started taking military action in Georgia.

I really want them to know how terrible it was and how many people are still suffering from the after effects. They should try to decrease such terrible wars and weapons.

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