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Thursday, 25 January 2018 13:56

Today’s rhetoric recalls horror of atomic bombs

Written by  Staff Writer

To the editor,
The angry, strained rhetoric between our president and the leader of North Korea brings back memories of the atom bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 at the end of World War II. Historian Paul Ham has written a book on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He states the Nagasaki bomb was subject to a force equal to 22,000 tons of TNT. More than 100,000 people were killed by the two bombs and thousands suffered severe burns.

Ham reports that after the bomb was dropped, blue sky was not seen at Nagasaki for many days. There were so many burned patients that it was impossible to administer even minimum treatment. Parents filled with grief endlessly searched for their children. There were no radios, no lights — not even a candle. What could be heard were the sobs and groans of the people. Orphanages, medical clinics, schools and hospitals were obliterated by the bomb.
Mostly women, children and the elderly were killed. The bomb destroyed 55,000 buildings out of 90,000 at Hiroshima. The flash from the bomb was only a fraction of a second, but it caused third-degree burns to exposed skin up to a mile. In 1945, the secretary of war had told President Truman that “a new weapon (the atomic bomb) was being built that was so powerful it could end civilization.”
The two atomic bombs were built by thousands of employees at a cost of $2 billion ($24 billion in 2010 money).
Nuclear war issues require us to examine the moral compass and soul of our politicians and citizens. Don’t you wish our president and the leader of North Korea would act like adults?

Leon K. Freeburg
Janesville

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