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Remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki

August 8, 2008

I hate to write another serious post so soon after Trevor wrote about the awful situation in Georgia but I didn’t want to let the week pass without commemorating the anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

As I’m sure all of our readers are aware, Wednesday was the 63rd anniversary of the United States Army dropping an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. Tomorrow will be the anniversary of the attack on Nagasaki.

Fr. George Zabelka, who served as chaplain to the atomic bomb crew and later became a peace activist and worked tirelessly for the abolition of nuclear weapons had this to say about the bombing of Nagasaki:

The bombing of Nagasaki means even more to me than the bombing of Hiroshima. By August 9, 1945, we knew what that bomb would do, but we still dropped it. We knew that agonies and sufferings would ensue, and we also knew – at least our leaders knew – that it was not necessary.

In their first Washington Newsletter after the atomic bomb was used, FCNL (then just two years old) had this to say about the bombings:

Perhaps nothing since the outbreak of the war has so stirred and aroused the American people to the necessity for the complete abolition of war as the use by the United States Army of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which the Japanese claim resulted in at least 70,000 killed and 120,000 wounded and 290,000 made homeless.
-FCNL Washington Newsletter #22, September 14, 1945

Let’s hope that our predecessors at FCNL were right and that the memory of this awful event will continue to teach the world (as it taught Fr. Zabelka) that war is not the answer.

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