Atomic war trumps chemical war! – “the bells of nagasaki” toll for us?

It would not be proper to let the month of August pass without revisiting the story of August 9, 1945 when America dropped the atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan. The story is beautifully told by Dr. Takashi Nagai in THE BELLS OF NAGASAKI. Dr. Nagai gives a first hand account of the suffering endured by the survivors of the atomic blast. The initial blast killed 73,884 with another 74,909 seriously injured(dying soon after) and another 120,802 suffering other injuries.Three days before this the USA had dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima killing an estimated 200,000 civilians. That totals almost one-half million Japanese civilian people killed or injured by the American armed forces within 3 days. Yes it did bring a close to the horror of WWII, but was this the only choice?

These past several years Iran is working feverishly to complete their own atomic bomb program which it may well share with the worlds’ leading terrorist organizations.One must shudder to think of the consequences of this terrorist state being in possession of such a deadly weapon. The “World Community” has done nothing to stop this program, yet now they are “wringing their hands” demanding action over the use of chemical weapons in Syria. As terrible as this use of deadly chemicals is, it is only “child’s play compared to the Atomic Weapons of mass destruction being readied by IRAN.

A few days ago David Cameron tried unsuccessfully to persuade the British House of Commons to join with the USA in taking military force to punish the Syrian government for using chemical weapons, citing the horrors of WWI. Mr Cameron quoted the International Treaty of 1925 banning the use of such weapons forever.The moral outrage of Mr. Cameron as a “civilized man” seemed destined to convince his fellow politicians to vote in favor of war; It didn’t! While Mr. Cameron shame-facidly licks his wounds of humiliation,one wonders; Where is the outrage over Iran building and most certainly planning to use NUCLEAR WEAPONS?

Today the United States President announced his plan to ask Congress for a “vote” to give him permission to wage war on the nation of Syria. It appears that the Assad Regime has “crossed his red-line” once to often and has activated the moral outrage of the man who sits in the Oval Office. As far as supplying us with a strategy or a sound “end-game” that would bring peace to the region or depose yet another dictator, none has yet to be announced. It just feels right to the President to be back atop his moral soap-box, pronouncing platitudes and bombast that we all are weary of hearing.This has become a “Feel Right Generation” rather than a nation of law “Right makes might” is the buzz word for today! My question is–”Why did you wait so long? Why not Iran? Why not a year ago? Two years ago?” Was “right makes might” working then, or as re-election more important?

Back to Dr. Nagai’s biographical work, we see the up-close suffering and carnage of atomic warfare in it’s infancy. How much more deadly and destructive are today’s “Super Bombs?” Dr. Nagai was transformed from war-activist to peace -activist through his suffering and subsequent death from Atomic sickness in 1951. Before his death he wrote these words; “Will the human race be happy when it enters the atomic age? Or will it be miserable? God concealed within the universe a precious sword. First the human race caught the scent of this awful treasure. Then it began to search for it. And finally it grasped it in its hands. What kind of dance will it perform while brandishing this two-edged sword? If we use this power well, it will bring a tremendous leap forward in human civilization; if we use it badly, we will destroy the earth.– I myself believe that the only way to the proper use of this key is “Authentic Religion”. DR. Nagai found his answer to authentic religion in his small sign posted at the entrance to his hut built at the center of the blast–  ”NYOKODO”, meaning “Love -Your -Neighbor- As- Yourself- House”.

Why do we debate about Syria when Iran is the most egregious of the “clear and present danger “nations? If our President is sincere in promoting world peace then why does he not start with the “head” and not the tail of the “Dragon”. The future of our children and grandchildren hinges on what we do next.Let us urge Congress to take real and meaningful action now.

May I end with Dr. Nagai’s poignant cry: “Men and women of the world, never again plan war! With this atomic bomb, war can only mean suicide for the human race. From this atomic waste the people of Nagasaki confront the world and cry out; No more war! Let us follow the commandment of love and work together. The people of Nagasaki prostrate themselves before God and pray; Grant that Nagasaki may be the last atomic wilderness in the history of the world.” Amen.


  1. I love the Japanese culture. It’s so rich in vibrant history and the Japanese people are some of the quirkiest people. I can’t wait to come back to Japan.

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