Marking the 66th Anniversary

of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki Bombings

 

August 5, 2011

 

Video clips of the bombings

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  ◄   A forum on nuclearization, militarism and imperialism
UP Diliman campus
August 9, 2011

Photos and statements here

     

 

RESIST THREATS FROM NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND POWER PLANTS (In Commemoration of the 66th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Bombings)
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International Coordinating Committee
International League of Peoples’ Struggle
5 August 2011

On the occasion of the 66th anniversary of the barbaric bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the US, the International League of People’s Struggles joins the Japanese people and all peace-loving peoples in commemorating the event and in condemning the continuing nuclear threat from the US and its imperialist allies.

On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima was incinerated by a nuclear weapon with a core of enriched uranium released by the US over the city. The nuclear radiation, explosion, heat and resulting fires killed 90,000 people almost immediately. This number rose to more than a hundred thousand by the end of 1945.

On August 9, 1945, Nagasaki was destroyed by a second atomic weapon with a core of plutonium 239 killing immediately some 40,000 and left 70,000 more dying by the end of the year. Tens of thousands more died later from radiation sickness. The combined death toll from the two atomic attacks run up to nearly two hundred thousand.

Despite the passage of 66 years, the surviving victims of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings suffer from the after effects and the second and third generations of the victims live in fear of consequences adverse to their health. The Japanese government has not provided to the victims state compensation and the necessary medical services.

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki sixty-six years ago is one that is an exercise of unnecessary and excessive force. With the objective of enabling the US military to assess the effects and power of the newly developed atomic bomb, the US chose the two cities that were relatively unscathed by aerial bombing for its atrocious experiment. The twin bombing ranks as one of the worst war crimes and crimes against humanity ever committed in history. Yet despite this horrifying example of destruction, the threat of nuclear weapons remains from the only country that has used these weapons of mass destruction in war.

There are still roughly 20,500 nuclear weapons in the world. Fourteen thousand of these are in military stockpiles and around 4,830 are deployed in operational strategic role. More than 95 percent of nuclear weapons are with the US and Russia which continue to integrate these weapons into their military strategies. The rest of the weapons are with the UK, France, China, Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Although both the US and Russia have recently said that nuclear war between them is now “unthinkable,” their strategic war plans still put nuclear strikes with hundreds of targets as options. Both countries still have the capacity to initiate a nuclear attack in a matter of a few seconds. Between the two, there are more than 800 ready-to-fire ballistic missiles armed with at nearly 2,000 strategic nuclear warheads on high alert, ready for use on short notice.

The US continues to test its intercontinental ballistic missiles such as the Minuteman III for readiness and keeps its Global Strike capability to hit targets anywhere in the globe in less than an hour. As the US puts the prevention of nuclear terrorism and proliferation in its 2010 Nuclear Posture Review, it has increased funding for the rebuilding of its “aging” nuclear infrastructure.

The Obama administration plans to spend $6.3 billion until 2016 to extend the lifetime and usage capabilities of the warheads in their stockpile. It seeks to finish the construction of nuclear materials production facilities which costs more than $10 billion and pledged another $6.24 billion to modernize its missiles, SSBN submarines, Joint Strike fighter planes and B-2 and B-52 bombers that are designed to deliver nuclear warheads.

The US military budget of $698 billion in 2010 is nearly 43% of the world’s total military spending. It also remains the largest arms exporter in the world selling nearly $38 billion last year which is predicted to surge up to $50 billion in 2011. Saudi Arabia, Israel, and Egypt consistently rank among the top five importers of U.S. weaponry.

The US continues to expand its war foothold with new military bases such as that on Jeju Island in South Korea and in Okinawa despite resistance from local residents. It uses bilateral military agreements such as status of forces and base sharing agreements to virtually convert whole countries as their military base.

The new NATO Strategic Concept at the Lisbon Summit in 2010 reaffirmed the importance of nuclear weapons in the designs of the alliance in Europe. NATO’s nuclear posture with roughly 200 non-strategic warheads remains tied directly to US interests. Plans to retrofit strategic nuclear bombs currently deployed in Europe as well as to build new F-35 planes to carry these bombs are being pushed to enhance NATO’s capability to knock out military targets.

The US promotes double standards in nuclear proliferation– one set of rules for Israel and India and another set for potential enemies such as North Korea and Iran. It expands its role in assigning itself as global cop to hold “fully accountable any state, terrorist group, or other non-state actor that supports or enables terrorist efforts to obtain or use weapons of mass destruction, whether by facilitating, financing, or providing expertise or safe haven for such efforts.”

It enforces this through US-led agreements such as their Proliferation Security Initiative which lets US allies interdict ships unilaterally on the high seas on mere suspicion that these are carrying “nuclear materials and contraband”. Such initiatives which inflame tensions are mainly focused on such states as Iran and the DPRK and are seen as aggressive moves by these countries.

In 1954, the US used nuclear technology to entice and bring into its fold other countries such as Japan in order to counteract Soviet influence. The US uses the same tactic, in reverse, in denying Iran and the DPRK nuclear technologies to counter proliferation. This introduction of nuclear technology to Japan brought in US designed reactors such as the Fukushima Dai-ichi plants that melted down last March 2011. As nuclear power has shown its deadly bite with the meltdown of the reactors in Fukushima, the threat of nuclear war still remains with us.

Through nuclear intimidation and blackmail, the US has caused the suffering of tens of millions of people who came under its wars of aggression and intervention in Korea, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, and elsewhere. Further, the US has enabled its puppet regimes to massacre and maim millions more of people.. The oppressive and exploitative globalization policies unleashed by the US and its local partners have put hundreds of millions of people into misery and poverty.

In commemorating the atom bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we stand in solidarity with the people of the world against any form of imperialist war, military intervention and oppression. We are moved to resist imperialist aggression as we witness today the extremely high numbers of people being killed and injured in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.

We vigorously oppose the U.S.-Japanese military alliance and its core strategic policy of nuclear blackmail. It is just for the people of Japan and the world to condemn and resist the scheme of the U.S. and Japanese governments in the consolidation of US bases in Okinawa, Iwakuni and Kanagawa. These are meant to perpetuate US domination over the Asia-Pacific region

Since the latter half of the 1960s, the US and Japanese monopoly bourgeoisie have undermined and weakened the yearly commemoration of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atom bombings in order to reduce remembrance of these, lessen fears about nuclear radiation and pave the way for the rapid construction of nuclear power plants in Japan. There are now more than 55 nuclear reactors in Japan, with 14 more power plants previously planned.

Now, we are confronted with a grave nuclear disaster, the meltdown of reactors in Fukusihma Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Radiation leaks continue and spread. A great number of people are exposed to radiation in the Fukushima and neighboring prefectures. Land, seawater and crops are polluted and local communities are victimized. The myths of safety in the use of nuclear power plants have been exposed.

We hereby express our firm and continuing support to the Japanese people in their demands for the state to provide compensation and medical services to the A-bomb victims and their second and third generations, for banning and shutting down all the nuclear power plants and stopping the construction of new ones, for holding the Japanese state responsible for acts of aggression during World War and for indemnifying all war victims in Asia, for topping the nuclear armament of Japan, for scrapping the US-Japan security alliance and dismantling the US military bases in Japan and for the withdrawal of all US military forces in Asia.

The anniversaries of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are reminders of the continued peril that the peoples of the world face under imperialist aggression. The ILPS calls on all the world’s peoples to intensify their struggle against US imperialism and its barbaric and terrorist policy of producing, maintaining, using and threatening to use nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. ###




 

     
     
     
     
     
           
     
     
     
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U.S. IMPERIALISM AND REVOLUTIONARY INTERNATIONALISM1
by Jose Maria Sison

Speech prepared for the 12th World Conference Against A & H Bombs, Japan, July 28 to August 29, 1966.


As Philippine delegate, I am happy to extend my people’s warmest greetings of friendship and solidarity to the Japanese people and to the various countries participating in this 12th World Conference Against A & H bombs.
 

I have come with the high hope that we shall be able to share our experiences in the struggle for freedom and truly lasting peace, arrive at the correct methods of struggle, and reinforce our common determination to fight today’s chief cause of war and national oppression—U.S. imperialism. In this regard, let us take advantage of the opportunity presented by the highly representative character of this world conference which embraces six zones: Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe, Oceania, and the United States.
The Philippine delegation in this conference is of the view that the struggle for national and social liberation is inseparable from the struggle for a lasting peace. So long as colonialism, imperialism and neocolonialism—spearheaded by U.S. imperialism—exist and so long as U.S. imperialism effects the subjugation and exploitation of peoples throughout the world, no truly lasting peace can be created by any people without resolute revolutionary struggle. Only by continuing the resolute struggle against U.S. imperialism can we achieve genuine peace instead of a capitulationist postponement of struggle or a prolongation of imperialist domination.


U.S. imperialism tries to perpetuate its worldwide system of exploitation by constantly threatening a nuclear war. It is fear of this nuclear blackmail that is precisely desired by U.S. imperialism so as to weaken the resistance and determination of peoples through the world.
 

The answer to U.S. nuclear blackmail is revolutionary struggle. The power of U.S. imperialism is already overextended throughout the world. Its foundations are overstrained as may be confirmed by the American delegates here. All that we, the peoples of the world, have to do is to strike at that link of the imperialist chain which falls on each of our own countries. Every link of the U.S. imperialist chain at this stage of world development has become brittle and can easily be broken by the revolutionary struggle of the masses of the people.
 

The nuclear power of the United States becomes useless if all peoples of the world, including the American people, will engage in revolutionary struggle. The threat of a global nuclear war becomes effective only if the peoples of the world become frightened and do not perform their internationalist duty of fighting U.S. imperialism within their respective spheres of action and thus fail to scatter the attention of U.S. imperialism from the present world focus of struggle:Vietnam.
 

As long as there is no revolutionary opposition to imperialism in North America and Europe and no militant attempts to develop it there, U.S. imperialism will always take the opportunity of concentrating its aggressive forces in Asia and attempt to destroy the worldwide struggle for freedom part by part. In this light, we can see the counter- revolutionary character of modern revisionism, particularly its capitulationism, which genuine anti-imperialists readily recognize.
 

At this stage of world history, no strategy and tactics can be pursued in one part of the world without reference to other parts of the world. There is only one main line and that is: every people of the world must resolutely perform their internationalist duty of striking at the chief cause of war, U.S. imperialism.
After clarifying with you the essential principle that revolutionary struggle is the sure guarantee for world peace and the prevention of nuclear war, I wish to apprise you of the degree of imperialist domination in my country. You can easily imagine how much contribution to the worldwide struggle for freedom would my people be giving by breaking the aggressive power of U.S. imperialism in their own sphere of action.
You are, of course, aware of the fact that the Philippines was conquered by the United States at the beginning of this century. The main purpose of the U.S. then as it still is now was to make use of my country as an advance base for its monopoly-capitalistic expansionist drive towards the whole of Asia, particularly towards China under the aegis of the Open Door policy.
 

In order to achieve its imperialist purposes, the U.S. government had to murder more than 250,000 Filipinos within the short period of 1899-1902. With or without nuclear weapons, it is in the nature of U.S. imperialism to murder so many of our people, burn down our homes and commit many more bestialities. As in the Vietnam war, there is really no difference in the deadly effects of nuclear weapons and those of the weapons now currently used.
 

What really matters is whether U.S. imperialism should be done away with now or given a new lease on life by capitulationism through an inordinate fear of nuclear weapons.
 

In my country alone, you can very well see the results of flabbiness and capitulationism. Towards the end of the nineteenth century, the ilustrado or liberal-bourgeois leadership tried to give class leadership to the masses, but it was not really clear about the process of revolution. When the U.S. imperialists came to destroy the Philippine revolution and the Philippine revolutionary government, these capitulationists in the ranks of the revolutionaries were taken in by the U.S. slogans of “benevolent assimilation”, “education for self-government,” and “pacification”, which actually meant the mass murder of the Filipino people and the destruction of our national democratic values.
 

These capitulationists have become the active collaborators of the U.S. imperialists in the exploitation of the Filipino people. To continue the unfinished Philippine revolution today, more difficulties and more sacrifices must be made because of previous compromises and capitulation and betrayals.
 

The U.S. imperialists cleared the path for widespread aggression throughout Asia more than six decades ago by frontally attacking the frustrating the Philippine revolution of 1896, which was the first national democratic revolution in Asia and Africa. Simultaneously, they were aided by the capitulationists who sabotaged the revolution from within.
 

Today, the Philippines remains an important link in the U.S. imperialist chain. It is the country in Asia whose economy, politics, culture and military are most controlled by U.S. imperialism and yet having the most appearance of autonomy. The Philippines has served as a base for U.S. economic, political, cultural and military aggression.
 

With more than twenty military bases strategically located all over the Philippine archipelago, you can very well see the gravity of the task facing the Filipino people for their own sake and for the cause of the international struggle for freedom and genuine peace.
 

Against our sovereignty, the U.S. government exercises extraterritorial rights within large areas of our national territory and its troops enjoy exterritorial rights extending to every corner. The system of U.S. military bases in the Philippines has always served as the launching ground for U.S. aggression against neighboring brother peoples, particularly our Vietnamese brothers at present.
 

The U.S. government has succeeded in forcing the Philippine puppet president and congress to dispatch 2,000 combat troops to South Vietnam and appropriate P35 million for this year alone at the expense of our people who are badly in need of these funds to alleviate their poverty and suffering. This step taken by our government brings to a new level its involvement in the U.S. war of aggression against the Vietnamese people of both South and North. This step is a shameless act before all freedom-fighting and peace-loving people of the world.
 

This step was taken over the heads of the Filipino people and must be roundly condemned by this conference.
 

Cherishing our own revolutionary traditions and our national democratic aspirations we, the Filipino people, vigorously oppose the U.S. war of aggression in Vietnam. We have experienced and we know that we are still going to experience what the Vietnamese people are now experiencing from U.S. imperialism in their struggle for national liberation.
 

We are of the view that the United States and its co- aggressors should withdraw immediately from South Vietnam and allow the Vietnamese people to attain their own demands. The U.S. government’s attempt to suppress the national democratic aspirations of the Vietnamese people is basically similar its effort to suppress our own in the past six decades and more.
 

We are familiar with the U.S. imperialist siren call for peace and negotiations as a smokescreen to bring its policy of aggression and war to a new and more dangerous level. No amount of whitewashing can remove from our view the blood on the murderous hands of those thrill killers and pyromaniacs in Washington and Wall Street.
 

The bombing of the periphery of Hanoi and Haiphong is nothing but an act of desperation, a clear sign of the accelerating collapse of the Saigon puppet government and the failure of the all-out U.S. aggression.
For the first time in the history of Gensuikyo, I have been informed, the Philippines is represented in its World Conference. We, the Filipino people, take a special interest in this conference because we have hoped that in the light of recent and extremely vigorous attempts of the United States to use Japan as a shield in its aggressive acts and maneuvers, we may be able to derive deeper knowledge and better perspective of the developing situation.
 

We, the Filipino people, are very much concerned about the consistent remilitarization and nuclearization of Japan. We suffered severely during World War II from the atrocities and depredations of Japanese imperialism. We have not forgotten these and no amount of reparations goods going into the hands of a few corrupt men in my country will give your monopoly-capitalists enough license to reappear on the scene of their crime. We are once more alerted to Japanese militarism, a partner of U.S. imperialism in the exploitation of the unliberated areas of Asia, particularly Southeast Asia.
 

The Japanese people themselves, as the Philippine delegation has observed, condemn the reemergence of Japanese militarism under the wing of U.S. imperialism. Like the Filipino people, they have suffered much because of imperialist wars.
 

We are in deep sympathy with the struggle of the Japanese people against the militarization and nuclearization of Japan, against the persistence and expansion of U.S. military bases and facilities within Japanese territory, against the docking of nuclear-powered submarines, against the development of F-105D nuclear-capable bombers in Japan, against the criminal neglect of atomic bomb sufferers.
We are against the impending dispatch overseas of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, against the continued U.S. possession of Okinawa and Ogasawara, against the revision of the Peace Constitution, against the Japan-ROK Treaty and the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty and against the implementation of the “three arrow” operation plan.
 

The Philippine delegation takes note of how well- entrenched U.S. imperialism is in Japan even until now. We wish to expose before this conference the role of fugleman that U.S. imperialism has assigned to the Japanese monopoly-capitalists in such U.S.-inspired maneuvers as the Asian and Pacific Conference (a preparation for a new military alliance embracing American puppet-states) and also the Southeast Asian Economic Development Ministerial Conference (dubbed as “independent Asian diplomacy”).
 

By putting Japan at the forefront, U.S. imperialism has the sinister motive of making the Japanese people share the blame and the costs of U.S. aggression in Asia, and making the Japanese government take a belligerent attitude towards the Chinese people and support fascist regimes like those of South Vietnam, Taiwan, South Korea, Indonesia and others for the benefit of monopoly capitalists.
 

The Japanese people know the horrible effects of nuclear weapons as demonstrated by the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and by the Bikini tests. The U.S. government tested its weapons on the Japanese people in an obvious act of racial discrimination. They are, therefore, very much concerned about the possession of nuclear weapons by imperialist states. This concern is shared by the Philippine delegation.
 

The Moscow Tripartite Treaty or partial test ban treaty has not brought us any closer to the prevention of nuclear war. It has, on the other hand, brought us closer to it because it has served only to legalize the nuclear stockpile of U.S. imperialism and it has allowed it to develop and improve its nuclear weapons through underground tests. The worst result of this treaty, of course, has been the further befuddling of the minds of revisionists.
 

The “non-proliferation” treaty being proposed by the United States and endorsed by its revisionist partners does not also bring us any closer to the prevention of nuclear war. On the other hand, it is intended to bring us closer to it because it obscures further the basic problem of imperialist possession of nuclear weapons, both strategic and tactical.
 

All countries of the world must heed the call of the People’s Republic of China for the complete prohibition of nuclear weapons. All nuclear weapons must be banned and entirely destroyed. A common agreement to this effect, and no less, must be immediately made by all nuclear-armed countries. Nevertheless, if a complete prohibition of nuclear weapons cannot as yet be achieved, then there is no substitute for persistent militant struggle of all peoples of the world against U.S. imperialism. Let us simply remember that there was once a time when U.S. imperialism had nuclear monopoly and it engaged in nuclear blackmail. But, both nuclear monopoly and nuclear blackmail were rendered useless by revolutionary struggles. Why fear nuclear blackmail when the nuclear monopoly has been broken by revolutionaries?
On the part of the Filipino people, we realize fully that we can help prevent the outbreak of a nuclear war by setting ourselves free from U.S. imperialist domination. We know that we must first be freed of those U.S. military bases in our national territory to free ourselves from those nuclear weapons which they contain and which are poised against our brother Asian peoples. And we must also be freed of the U.S. economic, cultural and political domination for which these foreign military bases exist.
 

In conclusion, let me assure my brothers here that we, the Filipino people, shall prove ourselves worthy of your fraternal consideration only through militant struggle.
Long live all anti-imperialist movements in the world!

 

     
     
     
     
 
           
   
A forum on nuclearization, militarism and imperialism
UP Diliman campus
August 9, 2011
Photos by Lito Sosmeña of PCPR
   
Dr. Giovanni Tapang, AGHAM Chair  Rey Claro Casambre, Philippine Peace Center Executive Director

 

Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Fukushima

Published : Thursday, August 11, 2011 00:00 Article Views : 400 Written by : Giovanni Tapang, Ph.D.

SIXTY six years ago, on August 6 at around 1:45 a.m., the US B-29 bomber Enola Gay left its airstrip in the Mariana Islands for Japan. It carried a single uranium-core atomic bomb nicknamed “Little Boy.” The bomb was dropped by Enola Gay over the city of Hiroshima at 8:15 a.m. detonating 580 meters near the city’s center. In contrast to its seemingly harmless name, Little Boy unleashed an explosive force of some 12,500 tons of TNT.

The ensuing explosion, nuclear radiation, heat and resulting fires immediately killed around 90,000 people. A graphic description of the explosion over the city comes from a Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum pamphlet: “The temperature of the air at the point of explosion reached several million degrees Celsius...Several millionths of a second after the explosion a fireball appeared, radiating white heat...with a temperature of close to 300,000 degrees Celsius...intense heat rays and radiation were released in all directions, and a blast erupted with incredible pressure on the surrounding air.”

Three days after, on August 9, 1945, Nagasaki was destroyed by a second atomic weapon, “Fat Man,” equipped with a plutonium core. It was dropped by another US B-29 bomber named Bockscar after failing to drop it over its primary target Kokura due to cloudy weather. This second atomic bomb resulted in 40,000 immediate deaths. Tens of thousands more died later that year from radiation sickness and injuries from both bombings. The combined death toll from the two atomic attacks is approximately two hundred thousand.

“It is a harnessing of the basic power of the universe. The force from which the sun draws its power has been loosed against those who brought war to the Far East,” President Harry Truman said. After more than six decades, surviving victims continue to suffer from the after effects of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. Their descendants live in fear of long-term consequences to their health.

A shift from this perspective of atomic energy as a destructive force came from President Dwight Eisenhower’s Atoms for Peace proposal in 1953. This proposal pushed forward the idea to have nuclear nations provide access to nuclear power technology to other countries in exchange for nonproliferation. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was created and the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty was agreed upon by countries.

While the Eisenhower administration pushed for the Atoms for Peace project, it also ironically launched a nuclear buildup that increased the US nuclear stockpile by nearly five times—from 1,436 warheads at the beginning of his first term to 20,464 at the end. His foreign secretary endorsed the strategic policy of nuclear brinkmanship—one of “massive retaliation.” Robert Jungk wrote in his 1977 book “The Atom State,” that “Atoms for Peace are, in principle, not different from atoms for war.”

Atoms for Peace was supposed “to take this weapon out of the hands of the soldiers” and shift it “into the hands of those who will know how to strip its military casing and adapt it to the arts of peace.” Yet sadly, it was never taken out of the hands of the soldiers. There are still roughly 20,500 nuclear warheads in the world. Around 4,830 are deployed in operational strategic roles, ready to strike targets within minutes around the world. More than 95 percent of nuclear weapons are in the US and Russia. The rest are in the UK, France, China, Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Electricity was generated for the first time from a nuclear reactor on December 20, 1951, at the EBR-I experimental station near Arco, Idaho. It initially produced about 100 kW of electricity. EBR-I also provided the first proof that production (breeding) of plutonium from uranium is possible. It was Russia’s first nuclear power plant, the 5 MW Obninsk reactor, in 1954 that first produced electricity in a large scale.

During the Cold War under the Atoms for Peace program, nuclear technology, in the form of power plants, was used by the US to entice and bring into its fold other countries such as Japan in order to counteract Soviet influence. This introduction of nuclear technology to Japan brought in US designed reactors such as the Fukushima units that melted down last March 2011. There are now more than 55 nuclear reactors in Japan, with 14 more power plants previously planned.

As nuclear power has shown its deadly bite with the meltdown of the reactors in Fukushima, the threat of nuclear war still remains with us. It gives us no comfort to see the pattern of denial, cover-up and collusion between government and the nuclear industry. This is most especially clear with the Japanese Fukushima experience. As long as industrial profits and geopolitical interests drive nuclearization, the anniversaries of Hiroshima and Nagasaki will be our continuing reminders of this continued peril that the peoples of the world face.

Dr. Tapang is the chairperson of AGHAM-Advocates of Science and Technology for the People.

 

 Dr. Romeo Quijano of UP-PGH
 
 
   
   

 

NEWS RELEASE
10 August 2011

Reference: RITCHELDA EXTREMADURA, Executive Director (0915 5379579)

TO MARK THE 66TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE END OF WORLD WAR 2
LAST REMAINING COMFORT WOMEN PICKET JAPANESE EMBASSY; ENGAGE DFA IN A DIALOGUE

On August 15, 2011, the world will commemorate the 66th anniversary of the end of World War 2. For comfort women, this means 66 years of continuing injustice for the sexual violence they experienced in the hands of Japanese soldiers during the occupation.

To mark this date, the remaining lolas of Lila Pilipina, an organization seeking justice for comfort women of World War 2, held a picket at the Japanese Embassy together with their supporters from GABRIELA. “After 66 years of injustice and 66 lolas who departed in the 19 years of struggle, only a few lolas have remained to continue the fight for justice,” said Ritchelda Extremadura, Executive Director of Lila Pilipina.

Holding the pictures of the departed comfort women, the lolas took turns in airing out their grievances. Extremadura said that each year, the lolas bring their grievance to the Japanese Embassy to remind the Japanese government of their unpaid debt to the comfort women. The lolas have been demanding for apology from the Japanese government and for the inclusion of the comfort women system in history as well as for just compensation for the sexual atrocities done against them.

The comfort women then trooped to the Department of Foreign Affairs for a dialogue to follow up on the promise of Pres. Noynoy Aquino that he will assign the Ambassador to Japan to make representations to arrive at a compromise regarding the apology to the comfort women.

Extremadura said that the lolas hoped that when Pres. Aquino went to Japan to talk peace with the MILF, he also took the opportunity to remind the Japanese government about the concerns of the comfort women. “We hope that this issue will be settled while there are still lolas remaining for the struggle. We hope that the lolas would not die without getting the justice they deserve.” ###


Public Information Department
GABRIELA National Alliance of Women in the Philippines
(+632) 3712302

 

 
 
 
   
   
 
Video of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
 
 

 

KALIKASAN PEOPLE’S NETWORK FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
26 Matulungin St. Central Dist., Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines, 1100
Tel./Fax; +63 (2) 924-8756; E-mail: kalikasan.pne@gmail.com
Website: www.kalikasan.org

Letter to the Editor

7 August 2011

Green group commemorates 66th anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing, calls for end to US militarism

Sixty six years have passed but the horrors and destruction of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan by the US military still resonate until today. This brutal and unnecessary show of power against non-combatants and civilians is one of the most barbaric acts and worst war crimes that the United States government has committed.

At least 20% of the combined population of the two cities were killed or injured. More than 300,000 civilians were killed including old people, women and children. Half of the deaths in each city occurred on the first day of the attacks. Up until now, the remaining survivors are tormented by their trauma, injuries and diseases resulting from exposure to nuclear radiation.

Notwithstanding the horrible effects of the bombing, the United States still continue to use nuclear armaments as one of their military weapons. At present, the US government owns more than half of the 20, 500 nuclear weapons in the world.

The possession of nuclear weapons by the militaristic US government posses a large-scale threat to the people and the environment. It uses these weapons to bully nations into submission and maintain its status as a world superpower. The US has the biggest military spending, the most number of military bases and deployed military forces outside its own country.

It is also the most war-mongering country. After World War II, the US was involved in different wars of aggression and invasions in Europe, Asia and Latin America. Currently, it is directly involved in the wars of invasion and aggression in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya.

A nuclear arms-free world is necessary to avert another Hirosima and Nagasaki nuclear tragedy and have genuine world peace. The denuclearization of the United States military and an international ban on nuclear weapons should be on the top of our advocacy agenda. As long as the US and other militaristic governments employ nuclear weapons, the threat of global annihilation hangs like the sword of Damocles.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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