Hiroshima: Images of Peace Park memorial to the lives lost

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  • Iconic remnant of world's first nuclear bombing: Hiroshima, Japan's Atomic Bomb Dome standing after WWII bombing August 6, 1945. Iconic remnant of world's first nuclear bombing: Hiroshima, Japan's Atomic Bomb Dome standing after WWII bombing August 6, 1945. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Iconic remnant of of the world's first atomic bombing: Hiroshima, Japan's Atomic Bomb Dome which withstood the WWII attack. Iconic remnant of of the world's first atomic bombing: Hiroshima, Japan's Atomic Bomb Dome which withstood the WWII attack. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • The infant Christ Jesus, life-size and in a manger crafted by European artists in a Nativity scene at Christmas on the grounds of Hiroshima, Japan's Memorial Cathedral for World Peace. Earlier church was vaporized by the world's first atomic bomb in 1945 during World War II. Present cathedral was constructed from 1950-54 with Vatican aid, mostly from European countries. The infant Christ Jesus, life-size and in a manger crafted by European artists in a Nativity scene at Christmas on the grounds of Hiroshima, Japan's Memorial Cathedral for World Peace. Earlier church was vaporized by the world's first atomic bomb in 1945 during World War II. Present cathedral was constructed from 1950-54 with Vatican aid, mostly from European countries. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Logo atop tower of Memorial Cathedral for World Peace, Hiroshima, Japan Logo atop tower of Memorial Cathedral for World Peace, Hiroshima, Japan Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • New "best friends":  American photojournalist from California with two helpful tourist information professionals in Hiroshima, Japan. (MR) New "best friends": American photojournalist from California with two helpful tourist information professionals in Hiroshima, Japan. (MR) Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Fountain of Prayer enhanced by a rainbow in its mists on the plaza of Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Museum. Centerpiece of the Memorial Park which was the epicenter of the world's first atomic bombing during WWII on August 6, 1945. Fountain of Prayer enhanced by a rainbow in its mists on the plaza of Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Museum. Centerpiece of the Memorial Park which was the epicenter of the world's first atomic bombing during WWII on August 6, 1945. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Bas relief in bronze depicts Japanese students mobilized for industry during WWII at Hiroshima Memorial Tower. Bas relief in bronze depicts Japanese students mobilized for industry during WWII at Hiroshima Memorial Tower. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Motorman smiles from his street car's front window in Hiroshima, Japan. Motorman smiles from his street car's front window in Hiroshima, Japan. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Statue of Mother and Children in the Storm, meaning the nuclear storm created by the dropping of the world's first atom bomb on Hiroshima, Japan during WWII on August 6,1945. Statue of Mother and Children in the Storm, meaning the nuclear storm created by the dropping of the world's first atom bomb on Hiroshima, Japan during WWII on August 6,1945. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Statue of Mother Sheltering Her Children during nuclear storm at main entrance to Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Park and Peace Memorial Museum located at the epicenter of world's first atomic bomb explosion August 6, 1945. Statue of Mother Sheltering Her Children during nuclear storm at main entrance to Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Park and Peace Memorial Museum located at the epicenter of world's first atomic bomb explosion August 6, 1945. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Branches frame moat and guard tower of the Hiroshima Castle grounds in central Hiroshima, Japan. Castle and grounds have been restored following their destruction in 1945 by the WWII atomic bomb. Branches frame moat and guard tower of the Hiroshima Castle grounds in central Hiroshima, Japan. Castle and grounds have been restored following their destruction in 1945 by the WWII atomic bomb. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Garlands of folded cranes made by children adorn winged statue beneath Memorial Tower dedicated to Japanese students mobilized in industrial tasks during WWII. Garlands of folded cranes made by children adorn winged statue beneath Memorial Tower dedicated to Japanese students mobilized in industrial tasks during WWII. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Japanese Christian preschoolers and their teachers pose for the camera during a Christmas pageant rehearsal break in the sanctuary of Hiroshima, Japan's Memorial Cathedral for World Peace. The church's original building was vaporized by the WWII and world's first ever atom bomb attack. Japanese Christian preschoolers and their teachers pose for the camera during a Christmas pageant rehearsal break in the sanctuary of Hiroshima, Japan's Memorial Cathedral for World Peace. The church's original building was vaporized by the WWII and world's first ever atom bomb attack. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Train attendent of Japan's newest N700 ultra modern Bullet Train salutes prior to departure to Tokyo from Hiroshima's Central Station.(MR) Train attendent of Japan's newest N700 ultra modern Bullet Train salutes prior to departure to Tokyo from Hiroshima's Central Station.(MR) Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Curved stone "rainbow" bridge or "Koko-kyo" is centerpiece of Hiroshima's elegant Shukkeien formal garden dating to AD 1620. Destroyed by the 1945 WWII atom bomb, the garden has been restored to its original splendor today. Curved stone "rainbow" bridge or "Koko-kyo" is centerpiece of Hiroshima's elegant Shukkeien formal garden dating to AD 1620. Destroyed by the 1945 WWII atom bomb, the garden has been restored to its original splendor today. Photo by: Dave Bartruff
  • Statuary atop Childrens' Peace Monument shows girl holding an origami folded crane, symbol of Peace. Monument is located in Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Park at the epicenter of the WWII atom bomb explosion. Statuary atop Childrens' Peace Monument shows girl holding an origami folded crane, symbol of Peace. Monument is located in Hiroshima, Japan's Peace Memorial Park at the epicenter of the WWII atom bomb explosion.
  • Teacher explains significance to visiting students of the Atomic Bomb Dome framed in distance through Hiroshima's Centotaph for victims of the world's first nuclear bombing during WWII on August 6, 1945. Teacher explains significance to visiting students of the Atomic Bomb Dome framed in distance through Hiroshima's Centotaph for victims of the world's first nuclear bombing during WWII on August 6, 1945.
  • -Display of folded cranes by children at Children's Peace Monument, Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima, Japan. -Display of folded cranes by children at Children's Peace Monument, Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima, Japan.
  • Historic photo of devastation at epicenter of world's first nuclear bombing on Hiroshima, Japan in WWII on August 6, 1945. Now the area is the site of the city's Peace Memorial Park. Historic photo of devastation at epicenter of world's first nuclear bombing on Hiroshima, Japan in WWII on August 6, 1945. Now the area is the site of the city's Peace Memorial Park.

JAPAN – U.S. forces bombed Hiroshima 67 years ago today, August 6, 2012, and more than 50,000 people, including the grandson of President Harry Truman, Clifton Truman Daniels, attended today’s commemoration ceremony.

Also in attendance was Ari Beser, grandson of radar operator Jacob Beser,   the only person who directly took part in both the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings.

There to commemorate the goal of peace through all nations, approximately seventy countries sent representatives to gather near the epicenter of the 1945 blast that killed as many as 140,000 people at the time of the bombing and from injuries and subsequent radiation radiation fallout.  

Prior to the bombings, on 11 July, the Allied leaders had come to agreements, the Potsdam terms, in regard to Germany and the ending of the conflicts, demanding the surrender of Japanese forces. It was stated that without Japan’s unconditional surrender, “the alternative for Japan is prompt and utter destruction”.

Japan refused and President Harry Truman ordered the atomic bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (August 9, 1945) while Soviet Forces invaded Manchuria, defeating the Kwantung Army, the largest Japanese fighting force.

Following the memorial Clifton Daniel declined to comment on President Truman’s decision saying to Japan’s Kyodo news service:  

“I’m two generations down the line. It’s now my responsibility to do all I can to make sure we never use nuclear weapons again,” he said, according to Japan’s Kyodo news service.

A statement by Daniel, 55, made earlier said that “he decided to visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki because he needed to know the consequences of his grandfather’s decision as part of his own efforts to help achieve a nuclear-free world.”

Kazumi Matsui, Hiroshima’s mayor remarked that Japan “must take a bolder role in leading global disarmament efforts” calling on other world leaders to come to his city to “contemplate peace.”

“I firmly believe that the demand for freedom from nuclear weapons will soon spread out from Hiroshima, encircle the globe, and lead us to genuine world peace,” he said.

Matsui noted that the average survivor of the bombing is now 78 years old, and said the city is increasing its effort to provide them with health care and chronicle their experiences so the events of that day are remembered.

From the destruction of Hiroshima comes a place, and peoples from around the world, dedicated to the prospect of world peace.  As thousand of colorful origami cranes, created by school children in honor of a young girl Sadako Sasaki, who died of leukemia ten years after the atomic bombing, flutter in the wind, so does all our hopes for world peace free of nuclear weapons. 


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Dave Bartruff

California-based Dave Bartruff is an award-winning photojournalist who has traveled to more than ninety countries.

Column Description: “Faraway places with strange-sounding names” is my middle name.  I’d like to introduce myself to you as often as I can.

 

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