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Messages from Hiroshima

Japanese version

Shigeo Kitao (male)
'Nyushi hibaku'  / 20 years old at the time / current resident of Nara

The scenes of the A-bombed city are introduced here. The photographs are not directly connected with the messages. I was a student at the Naval Submarine School in Otake. That morning, during semaphore training in the school yard, we heard the massive explosion and saw the mushroom cloud in the sky to the east. "Get down!" the instructor shouted and all of us in the third unit hit the ground.

Several minutes later, we returned to our classroom. Our instructors told us that the U.S. military had dropped a new type of bomb on Hiroshima, and we were ordered to go to Hiroshima to rescue the wounded. I can never forgive this act of massacre, not a disaster as some call it, the height of cruelty perpetrated by the Americans on non-combatants including the elderly, children, the sick in the hospital, and the unborn. In the recent years, depleted-uranium weapons are being used in the war in Iraq, and many women and children are being killed injured. Again it is the American military that is doing this. As an atomic bomb survivor, I strongly protest against the three powers the U.S., Russia and the U.K. that possess nuclear weapons.

I entered Hiroshima three days after the Atomic-bomb was dropped. Someone grabbed my leg and begged for water, "Sir, water, please." When I went to pour some water from my canteen into the person's mouth, someone else shouted at me, "Don't give that person any water, or they'll will die!" and so I stopped. Around Hiroshima Station was truly a living hell. There were twenty or thirty dead bodies floating in the river. The color of water was black. I carried five wounded people to the relief station, about 550 meters [601.5 yards, or 0.3 mile] away, but three of them breathed their last on my back. My anger will never end at the United States, a band of mass murderers.

If only I had more space to write. Please excuse my poor handwriting. I am losing my sight because of a hemorrhage in my right eye.