Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Time for sanity and healing

Published on Pambazuka, by Horace Campbell, August 12, 2010.

It is 65 years this August since the US dropped atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing hundreds of thousands of unarmed Japanese civilians, writes Horace Campbell. Although US history books say that thousands of servicemen were saved as a result of those two bombings, the reality, says Campbell, was different … //


The mindset that committed genocide in the Americas and enslaved millions continues to dominate the thinking of those in power in the West. Samir Amin, in his book ‘The Liberal Virus’ has warned that this mindset is laying the foundations for the genocide of billions of citizens. Capitalism has reached a point where the barbarism of the system is everyday becoming clearer. 

It is this clarity that is inspiring a global movement for healing and truth telling about the real reasons for the dropping of the atom bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Today, the truth about the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is not a matter of mere historical accuracy. With the trillions invested in nuclear weapons and the lowering of the threshold for the use of nuclear weapons, it is urgent that there must be truth about the real reasons for the dropping of the bomb. This truth is necessary to promote the dismantling of nuclear weapons in all parts of the world. It is here worth repeating the warning of Bertrand Russell in 1945:

‘One is tempted to feel that Man is being punished, through the agency of his own evil passions, for impiety in inquiring too closely into the hidden secrets of nature. But such a feeling is unduly defeatist. Science is capable of conferring enormous boons: it can lighten labour, abolish poverty, and enormously diminish disease. But if science is to bring benefits instead of death, we must bring to bear upon social, and especially international, organisation, intelligence of the same high order that has enabled us to discover the structure of the atom. To do this effectively we must free ourselves from the domination of ancient shibboleths, and think freely, fearlessly and rationally about the new and appalling problems with which the human race is confronted by its conquest of scientific power.’

The challenges of reparative justice dictate that we need a new social system. It is only a different mode of thinking and mode of economic organisation that can move our societies to healing and repair in order to create a society that instinctively and spontaneously recoils at the very notion of using an atom bomb on other human beings. This healing and repair is inscribed within the principles of Ubuntu. (full long text).

Comments are closed.