To commemorate the lives that were lost in the atomic bombings, Peace Parks were created in both Hiroshima and Nagasaki. These beautiful outdoor spaces are informative and moving. With the peaceful presence of fountains, sculptures, strands of brightly colored paper cranes, and nature, you may be called to sit and ponder a while.
Both parks express strong desires for peace and pleas to end nuclear warfare, so I’ve accompanied my pictures with quotes from The Anti-War Quote Book.
During World War 2, an atomic bomb was dropped- for the first time in history- on Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945. The blast and heat rays burned and crushed all buildings within a 2 kilometer radius. Around 140,000 lives were lost and thousands more suffered (and are suffering) from the effects of radiation.
“Hiroshima signaled a failure of mankind, not just of the United States. The growth of technology has far outstripped our ability to use it wisely.” -Pervex Hoodbhoy
“As the bomb fell over Hiroshima and exploded, we saw an entire city disappear. I wrote in the log of my words: “My God, what have we done?” -Robert Lewis
“We have guided missiles and misguided men” -Martin Luther King Jr.
“I refuse to accept the cynical notion that nation after nation must spiral down a militaristic stairway into the hell of nuclear destruction. I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality.” -Martin Luther King Jr.
“Nothing enduring can be built on violence.” -Mahatma Gandhi
I found the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum (part of the Hiroshima park, pictured below) to be especially poignant- remains of a scorched tricycle and charred food in a lunch box brought me to tears.
“The practice of violence, like all action, changes the world, but the most probable change is to a more violent world.” -Hannah Arendt
Three days after the bombing in Hiroshima, a second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki on August 9th, 1945. Around 80,000 lives were lost, and again, more suffered (and are suffering) from the effects of radiation.
“I believe that there is a greater power in the world than the evil power of military force, of nuclear bombs- there is the power of good, of morality, of humanitarianism.” -Linus Carl Pauling
“There never was a good war or a bad peace.” -Benjamin Franklin
“If the Third World War is fought with nuclear weapons, the fourth will be fought with bows and arrows.” -Louis Mountbatten
“It is never too late to do right.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I am not only a pacifist, but a militant pacifist. I am willing to fight for peace.” -Albert Einstein
“There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.” -A. J. Muste
“Peace hath higher tests of manhood than battle ever knew.” -John Greenleaf Whittier
“Remember your humanity and forget the rest.” -Bertrand Russell
“In war, as it is waged now, with the enormous losses on both sides, both sides will lose.” -Douglas MacArthur
“Peace can start with just one heart.” -Holly Near
“Here and now, as we offer our heartfelt consolation to the souls of those sacrificed to the atomic bomb, we pledge to join forces with people all over the world seeking the abolition of the absolute evil, nuclear weapons, and the realization of lasting world peace.” -Matsui Kazumi, Peace Declaration on August 6th, 2014