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From Asahi Shimbun

So tell me about Hiroshima

The column "So tell me . . . about Hiroshima" started with the April 2008 issue of the Hiroshima Edition of The Asahi Shimbun. The reporters followed the lives of the victims and asked them their thoughts. The words of those who have been forced to live as A-bomb survivors ring true to us as we live in the nuclear age. They also approach the thoughts of those who lived through the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. Articles appear in the newspaper basically once a week and continue to be posted. In uploading, the ages and titles of the people being interviewed are those from when the article was published.

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    Hiding the Cruelty, Even in My Paintings  -Masaki Nishitani (69 years old)

    I met the artist Masaki Nishitani at an exhibition I was covering and heard from him that he was an A-bomb survivor. Somehow I cannot connect the atomic bombing with the paintings Nishitani has created of scenes in Europe and Japan. How has the atomic bombing affected Nishitani's paintings? I asked him to tell me. ……

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    Ashamed of My Scars, I Swam in the Ocean at Night  -Toshiaki Miyashige (81 years old)

    They want to keep stuff about the atomic bombing to themselves. Their memories flood back when they speak of it. Toshiaki Miyashige, from Yanohigashi in Aki Ward, Hiroshima, was one of those people. But. . . in the time he had left in this life, and with the restarting of the ?i Nuclear Plant in Fukui, "I thought it might be all right to talk about it, you know. I've held back so much, held back so darn much, and I really have strong feelings about this, you see." The voice on the other end of the phone was kind, but held a strong sense of purpose. ……

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    Black Rain - Endless Agony  -Kiyoko Sumikawa (77 years old)

    Even today, 67 years after the A-bombs were dropped, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare continues to review the provision of government assistance to victims who were exposed to black rain shortly after the bombing. While researching this subject, I discovered that some victims who had been exposed to black rain outside the area covered by government assistance had managed to survive without receiving any government support and the A-Bomb Survivor Health Book. I visited one of them to hear her story. ……

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    "You're a Monster!" The Words Uttered by My Brothers Shocked Me  -Taeko Teramae (81 years old)

    "Haven't you noticed this?" said Ms. Taeko Teramae (81) in Asaminami Ward, Hiroshima as she pointed to her artificial left eye in answer to my question: "Were you injured in the atomic bombing?" Despite being alive, her face was forever changed and she has suffered from various cancers and cataracts since. "Even though it was a long time ago, at unexpected moments I still clearly recall the events of the day of the atomic bombing. I can never forget." With that Ms. Teramae, who was a 15-year-old girl when she was exposed to the A-bomb, started speaking. ……

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    Conveying the Experience of Hiroshima in a Foreign Country  -Sachi Rummel(75 years old)

    Traveling in Canada, I heard about a woman who had recently begun speaking publicly about her experience of the atomic bomb and I wanted to meet her. Mrs. Sachi Rummel lives in Squamish, about 40 kilometers [25 miles] north of Vancouver. I contacted her the next morning and her Canadian husband brought her by car to meet me at a caf? in Vancouver. She shared with me what had changed her mind. ……

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    My Father Prompted Me to Take Refuge and Saved My Life  -Toshihiko Sato(71 years old)

    Mr. Toshihiko Sato (71) of Fukuyama was four years old when he was exposed to the A-bomb. "Perhaps I would have a better memory of it if I had been a year older." Searching the depths of his dim memory, Mr. Sato started to talk about his exposure to the A-bomb and about his father. ……