Hiroshima, Nagasaki, We

In 75 years, have we learned something?

In August 6, 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped over Hiroshima. On the third day, no one resuscitated; a second atomic bomb was dropped over Nagasaki. Two preventive (?) bombs, two pacifist (?) chastisements. More than 260 thousand deaths in a couple of moments; the equivalent in human lives of 88 Twin Towers.

With those August 6 and 9, did a new Era started? Human condition, did it went up at least one-step? Did the respect for the different surpass tolerance? Did we develop something more than the hypocrisy muscle? In sum: beyond the prodigious growth in science and technique, did we accomplish that wars and endemic diseases and hungers, genocides and alphabetization no longer are unavoidable human customs?

We have being fulfilling years, but in the primordial have we grown? There is no point, the shameless gap between scientific evolution and moral cretinism always emerges. We learned nothing from the atrocious Jewish genocide, nothing from the brushed off Armenian genocide. The preventive genocides do not cede to exist. We have been spinning our wheels. Meanwhile, we have suicided the planet.

We are witnessing the Era of euphemisms. Our explicit history after WWII could be told by interweaving euphemisms. We are the children of heartless euphemisms, such as collateral damage, intelligent missiles, living-in-the-street situations, rationalization of personnel, department of human resources, preventive wars, illiteracy (instead of “illiterization”). The height of cynicism is found when the unbearable torture is renamed as demanding interrogations.

Being naturalized by the means of (mis)information, euphemisms buffer, minimize, pretend, liquefy, absolve the atrocities and globalization of slavery. Euphemisms are the most Vaseline-like way of impunity. Massive assassinations in Hiroshima and Nagasaki were informed to the world with euphemisms unconcerned phrases such as we had to drop the bomb—they said—“to obtain peace earlier.” This little phrase justified and even absolved a bomb and another one. Consciences of human condition were amortized.

Who carried out such barbaric actions? They were no monsters; such denomination absolves them, they were human beings … When news come regarding serial killers in US schools that finish off dozens of mates, the question arises, how is that possible? It is possible because they emerge from a society that has assimilated naturally the euphemism of those bombs that today make them incarnate the paranoia in ideology. A shooting in a liquor store they call it “critical incident.” A Borgian character would say “boys’ thing.” Paranoia gets out of control. Cynicism is at its peak.

Let us review the details of those bombings over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, two unarmed cities. Bombs were “let loose” not “dropped.” Authors did not lack tenderness; bombs were baptized “Little boy” and “Fat man.” The little plain that transported the deed was baptized “Enola Gay,” in homage to the pilot’s mother. His father was forgotten.

Beings right and human, no doubt, and thus we have Charles Donald Albury, the bombardier’s copilot who consolidated the pacifist chastisement on Nagasaki! The lad poses satisfied, smiling, and friendly. Shit, what a douche face!

The atomic episode had other humanitarian traits. For example, Kyoto had been selected as target for the first bomb, but War Secretary Henry Stimson loved Kyoto; he was whining in Kyoto during his honeymoon. That memory saved Kyoto of being scorched. Hiroshima was chosen as target, at 8.15, very early, because it was “more convenient in terms of publicity.”

After this, what do we call civilization? Our human condition is pending. Hiroshima and Nagasaki are still crackling. Morally, we are a squalid drill.

Yoshie, a survivor tells us

We pronounce Hiroshima and it sounds too remote. To shorten the distance that takes to the active indifference, I will share with you some lines of an interview I made to a Hiroshima survivor. I interviewed her 38 years ago in her home in Vicente Lopez. Let us listen to Yoshie Kamioke in her persevering language

–“I was 17 years old and the bomb fell. Hiroshima Bomb, August 6, my birthday August 10. I spent my birthday sleeping. The bomb had made my body very tired. I remember that day and my heart hurts. That morning, I got out for the office, trolley is not coming, I walk 45 minutes. I arrive at the station and plane noise, and bomb! I was 20 blocks away, but when the bomb crashed, I did not feel pain; I felt nothing. Poor my Hiroshima. Bomb with no noise. Bomb as strong wind, wind with thunder light, yellow brightness. I do not hear noise, just wind and too much yellow and day is night. Everything is dark; screams help! I stand up; my small body is too heavy. I look for my house. Of my cloths, only the white blouse is still unharmed. My face burns; I do not know that a lot of hair is missing from my head. I walk and fall; I see naked people and with all their hair white. I am very exhausted and frightened; I am a little dumb. Three hours and I arrive home. Throat and eyes burn, but I feel more the fatigue. I cannot swallow water. My mother takes out the blouse with scissors; she lays me down.  I sleep fifty days, until I get up. And, I am still living …”

Yoshie Kamioke was 29 when she arrived to Argentina. She told me proudly “But today Hiroshima is pretty with flowers and trees. When death closes my eyes, the memory of the bomb will end …”

The conversation with Yoshie happened in a sunny winter morning. At times, Yoshie thought aloud:

–“Why war? With war children die … deaf people with no arms or legs, blind people. With war, only death is happy.”

PS: We are seeded with “intelligent” missiles, hungry illiterates. How can we resist the irreparable logic of the managers of the planet? Finally learning, there is nothing less liberal than the self-designated (neo) liberalism.

Memory is not going backwards; it seeds future. Those who “make death happy” do not rest, not even on holidays. Beware! The Bolsonaros and Trumps are reproduced freely because the paranoia has become the more efficient of the ideologies. At the mercy of the unbridled absurdity, the planet (with us on top) goes straight to become a Hiroshima, a bunch of defenseless ashes wrapped in the cellophane of the euphemisms that not even the wind will take away. Ashes, we, ashes in the planet.

Let us come out of active indifference. My mother, your mother, our mother, that you are in the Earth[1].

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Text first published at Pagina12 newspaper on August 5, 2020

[1] . The author makes a word game in Spanish. My mother would be the literarily translation of the Spanish version of My goodness! The author changes the possessive form making neologisms, to end with the image of Mother Earth phrased as the beginning of Catholic Lord’s Prayer in Spanish.

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