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International Relations

75th Anniversary of Hiroshima Bombing

  • 07 Aug 2020
  • 3 min read

Why in News

Japan marked 75 years of the atomic bombing on Hiroshima on 6th August, 2020.

  • Survivors, relatives and foreign dignitaries attend the anniversary of Hiroshima every year to honour victims of the bombings and call for world peace.

Key Points

  • About:
    • On 6th August 1945, a US bomber dropped the uranium fission bomb, codenamed Little Boy, on Hiroshima, a city in Japan.
    • Three days later it dropped another bomb codenamed Fat Man, on Nagasaki.
    • The explosion and resultant firestorms are believed to have killed around 80,000 people in Hiroshima and around 40,000 people in Nagasaki.
    • Thousands more died in the following years due to the exposure to radiation from the blast and also from the black rain that fell in the aftermath of the explosions.
    • Long-term effects of the attack included birth defects, malnutrition, cancer and other illnesses
    • This bombing marked the end of World War II, with Japan surrendering to the Allies on 14th August 1945.
      • The Allies were one of the two major alliances during World War-II, led by Great Britain, the United States, and the Soviet Union.
      • The other alliance, Axis was led by Germany, Italy, and Japan.
  • Aftermath:
    • The attacks were widely criticized around the world for being crimes against humanity.
    • Some historians argue the bombings ultimately saved lives by avoiding a land invasion that might have been significantly more deadly.
      • The United States has never apologised for the bombings.
    • However, in Japan, the attacks are widely regarded as war crimes because they targeted civilians indiscriminately and caused unprecedented destruction.
    • After the war, Hiroshima tried to reinvent itself as a City of Peace and continues to promote nuclear disarmament around the world.
    • The survivors of this attack are known as “Hibakusha", many of whom suffered physically and psychologically after the attack.
    • Japan's wartime experience has led to a strong pacifist movement in the country. At the annual Hiroshima anniversary, the government usually reconfirms its commitment to a nuclear-free world.

Way Forward

  • The 75th anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki reminds us of the power that nuclear weapons possess. In present times, we have much more powerful bombs , like Hydrogen bombs, which can unleash much more massive destruction than the nuclear bomb.
  • Division, distrust and a lack of dialogue threaten to return the world to unrestrained strategic nuclear competition. Though Non-Proliferation treaty and No First Use Policy of India are significant steps, much needs to be done to totally eliminate the danger of nuclear war.

Source: TH

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