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March 23, 2007 09:18 PM

Hiroshima

A-Dome BuildingHIROSHIMA, JAPAN - On August 6th, 1945 at 8:15am, the city of Hiroshima was waking up to what most expected would be another day of business as usual. It's citizens could not have imagined that less than a minute later the city would be 90% destroyed and in flames. 70,000 people would be dead, some of them completely vaporized; literally just a shadow on a doorstep. By december of that year the death toll would stand at 140,000. Up until that point the citizenry had been spared the Allied bombing that the rest of Japan had recently suffered. They couldn't know that this omission was intentional so as to ensure that the effects of the bomb could be accurately observed.

In the centre of the city of Hiroshima stands this building (pictured). It is the only ruin left it stood 160m away from the hypocentre and was 'spared' mostly because the bomb exploded almost directly above it. Aside from the Memorial Park nearby there is almost no physical evidence of the destruction that occurred here more than 50 years ago. It's a bustling, modern, Japanese city that is completely devoted to peace and the the destruction of all the worlds nuclear arms. The A-bomb museum here drives this concept home with sledgehammer force.

I've been in Japan now for a few days, I've spent most of my time wandering and exploring the cities of Fukuoka and Hiroshima, both modern marvels. Tonight I'll be getting on another bullet train to the city of Nagoya to meet up with Caroline before heading into Tokyo for what I hope to be an exciting Saturday night. Though the trains are fast, I'd better get going if I want to arrive in the city with enough time...

Comments


matt said:

sounds crazy. I read the book "hiroshima" which detailed the lives of citizens leading up to the bomb and how the survivors coped in the days, months and years after. madness.

March 24, 2007 05:04 PM