The bells have sounded again this Thursday, August 6 in Hiroshima for the 75th anniversary of the world’s first nuclear bomb. A ceremony that has been held with a smaller number of attendees due to the coronavirus pandemic, and that has served to insist on the need for the Government of Japan, the only country to have suffered an atomic attack, to sign the Treaty on the Nuclear Weapons Ban approved three years ago within the UN.
The appeal was made by the Mayor of Hiroshima, Kazumi Matsui, in the act commemorating the nuclear attack that the city suffered on August 6, 1945, three days before another atomic bomb destroyed the Japanese city of Nagasaki. .
Matsui has spoken before some 800 people gathered in the Peace Park of this city, including authorities such as the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, and representatives of the “hibakusha” (survivors of the nuclear attack).
The worst nuclear explosion in history
“On August 6, 1945, a single atomic bomb destroyed our city. It was rumored at that time that nothing will grow here for 75 years,” said the mayor. “And yet, Hiroshima recovered, becoming a symbol of peace.”
“An increase in nationalism led to World War II and the atomic bombings. We must never allow this painful past to repeat itself. Civil society must reject selfishness nationalism and unite against all threats,” Matsui has sentenced.
“I ask the Japanese government to abide by the call of the ‘hibakusha’ to sign, ratify and become part of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons,” he added.
August 6, 1945
On August 6, 1945, the lives of the people of Hiroshima changed forever. At 8:15 a.m. the American B-29 fighter jet, piloted by Commander Paul Tibbets, who named him Enola Gay in honor of his mother, took off from the Tilian Island air base in the Pacific, and headed for Japan.
The bomb was dropped when the plane was flying over the center of Hiroshima, almost 9,500 meters high, and exploded when it was about 600 meters from the ground, releasing a destructive power equivalent to 16,000 tons of TNT. The temperature in the center of the explosion reached between 3,000 and 4,000 ºC and the destruction was practically total in a kilometer and a half. Some 70,000 people died instantly.
That atomic bomb nicknamed ‘Little Boy’ completely wiped out the Japanese city, taking the lives of more than 140,000 people. The dramatic number later grew due to injuries or radiation that affected many other inhabitants of the area.
The world divided into two blocks
The consequences of the atomic bombs dropped on Japan would be felt throughout the 20th century and even today, completely changing international relations.
The most obvious was the establishment of the so-called Cold War, the confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union until the mid-1980s. Both powers delimited their sphere of influence by creating two blocks, which were reflected in the birth of NATO and the Warsaw Pact.
The world was divided between capitalists and communists and, although the two superpowers never faced each other directly, they were behind conflicts such as the Korean War, the division of Berlin and the construction of the wall or the wars in Vietnam and Afghanistan.
With information from Marca.com