Sunday, August 07, 2005

Hiroshima III: Never again

Quote from Alternet's "Hiroshima Cover-up Exposed" (emphasis mine):

...Lt. Col. (Ret.) Daniel A. McGovern ... directed the U.S. military filmmakers in 1945-1946, managed the Japanese footage, and then kept watch on all of the top-secret material for decades.

"I always had the sense," McGovern (said), "that people in the Atomic Energy Commission were sorry we had dropped the bomb. The Air Force -- it was also sorry. I was told by people in the Pentagon that they didn't want those [film] images out because they showed effects on man, woman and child. ... They didn't want the general public to know what their weapons had done -- at a time they were planning on more bomb tests. We didn't want the material out because ... we were sorry for our sins."

As the article goes on to point out, this past weekend some of those censored images are being broadcast for the first time. One of them is on the Sundance Channel.

The Discovery and History channels also have documentaries including older footage and some modern computer-created graphics depicting the horrors that happened in Hiroshima.

I caught some of two of them yesterday, flipping between the two channels during ads. There really are no words that do justice to such scenes as: the blast wave rolling over and demolishing everything in sight; the horribly burned victims staggering down blasted streets in creepy silence; the charred remains of the dead with just bones amid ashes; suffering survivors so desperate for water they drink the oily, lethal black rain of fallout; the summer sunshine instantly replaced by stygian darkness lit mostly by flames; doctors later describing people as "rotting" while alive from radiation sickness.

One survivor noted, "Suddenly, a strange creature appeared out of nowhere. Since it was summer, if it had been human, it would've been wearing white. But what I saw was black from top to bottom." That, of course, was one of the thousands charred by the bomb's intense heat, face and skin seared off, still alive at that moment but only to collapse and die at the speaker's feet.

Do we need to see these things for ourselves in Boston, New York, or Los Angeles before we wake up and demand the end of nuclear weapons? Before we treat those who advocate building more of them as the madmen they are?

If you haven't already read it, please read my earlier column on Bush's plan to build more nukes. I know it's long, but their own plans show just how dangerously blind these people are to this madness.

It's not just them, after all... if these weapons ever get used again and we haven't tried to stop it, we are responsible. They are being funded with our tax dollars, by our government, in our name. If we continue to roll over and play dead, eventually we will be.

Edited 8/10 to add: Apparently the French paper Liberation agrees with me: It writes, "Because the longer it lasts, the more likely the nuclear era is to pass from 'Never again!' to 'Sooner or later ...'" and that's exactly what I'm concerned about. They also link to some 1946 footage from Hiroshima and the Bikini tests, but it's not very useful & the sound cuts out a lot.



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