JAPANESE

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Messages from Hiroshima

Kazutoshi Hino (male)
'Nyushi hibaku'  / 17 years old at the time / current resident of Yamanashi
6015

The scenes of the A-bombed city are introduced here. The photographs are not directly connected with the messages. In the afternoon on the 7th, relief squads of soldiers arrived in Hiroshima one after another, and rescue activities started. Ordinary people who had come to inquire after their relatives' safety were also seen in the city. I think it was in the evening of the 8th when restoration work for the freight train was finished and the Sanyo Line was reopened for service.

We, the trainees of the school, became engaged in train services in Hiroshima Station since the reopening of the Sanyo Line until August 20, which was after the war.

Many ditches five meters [16.4 feet, or 5.5 yards] wide and a hundred meters [109.4 yards] long were dug out in the East Drill Grounds. The corpses of the atomic bomb victims were carried in and cremated there while relief operations were carried out actively.

This bomb attack without any warning was a complete surprise to us. The keen, sky-splitting flash and the deep, earthshaking rumble knocked Hiroshima to pieces in an instant.

I could not figure out what caused such a tragedy. A week later, I learned from the news that it was a "new type of bomb."

After the war, in 1954, the ship named "Lucky Dragon No. 5" was exposed to radiation due to the United States' hydrogen bomb test on Bikini Atoll, and ione of ts crewmen Mr. Kuboyama was killed from the exposure. This tragedy touched off the campaign for nuclear disarmament throughout the country. In 1955, the first World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs was held in Hiroshima, and I realized that I had seen the atomic bomb myself in Hiroshima. I had completely forgotten about it until then.

Fifty-seven years have passed since then. It' s said that a modern nuclear bomb is about a thousand times more powerful than the Hiroshima atomic bomb. The main island of Japan would be entirely destroyed by two explosions. The mere thought of it makes me shudder.

I have repeatedly joined in the campaign for "Total Abolition of Nuclear Arms" and the movement for enactment of the "State Compensation for Atomic Bomb Survivors' Relief Law" at every opportunity. I was exposed to the atomic bomb at seventeen, and now that fifty-seven years have passed and I have grown old, I am working hard to pass down my experience to younger generations and hoping for everlasting world peace without any more wars.
(Previously published text received 2010)