Monday, August 06, 2007

Lincoln Tribute to Lives Lost at Hiroshima Draws Silly Complaints

by Kyle Michaelis
Today's Lincoln Journal-Star contained an entirely harmless report on a memorial service held Sunday in Lincoln remembering the lives lost and the scars of suffering that remain from the United States' dropping the atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, setting into motion Japan's surrender in World War II.

There's no suggestion that this event in any way denounced America for its decision to unleash this devastating technology upon the Japanese...and upon the world. But, the horrors and destruction of nuclear warfare - which once inspired so much fear that they changed the global landscape forever - remain just as real as they ever were, although now far removed from the public's consciousness.  That's why the responses this solemn event received in the LJS article's comments are so disheartening and asinine. Let's take a look at some of the most insulting and reactionary, reflecting most poorly on their writers and our state:
"Maybe they could light a candle for the 100,000 US lives lost fighting the brytal [sic] Japanese. Or perhaps they could light a candle for the one million plus Chinese that the Japanese killed during WWII. Nice thought and all, but why is it that activists like this only remember things like this...."
"Why are we doing this in Lincoln,Ne, much less the USA. Pretty soon, the Iraqies will be putting lights out on other lakes to mourn their dead."

"What a shame there was no memorial to the thousands of Americans killed in the war against Japan, which, most LJS readers remember, was started by a japanese sneak attack. But thankfully we don't need a memorial to the millions more Americans and Japanese who would have been killed in an American invasion of the Japanese home islands, because the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs spared their lives. There is a resurgence in WWII revisionism in Japan. It's curious to see Nebraskans helping the effort."  "I guess I missed the lantern lighting ceremony this bunch held on Pearl Harbor day or to commemoration of the rape of Nanking….atrocities perpetrated by "you know who"...How about blaming the Japanese government for not surrendering sooner and saving their own people from the brutalities of a war they started!"  "As an American do I feel any remorse for the bomb drop on Hiroshima and I say no. Pearl Harbor was an act of aggression by Japanese and because of that American's lost thousand of lives. Do I now resent the Japanese, of course not it's a different time and a different generation, but I'm not going to morn [sic] or feel responsible for their past loss. The bomb was a tool to end horrific act of the Japanese people against Americans and other world people."  "Have these people forgotten that Japan attacked Pearl Harbor? Have they forgotten the atrocities the Japanese military committed during WWII? Have they forgotten the estimates as to how many Americans would have been killed if Japan would have been invaded because the Japanese would not surrender and would have fought to the last person? Kyoko Matsunaga's grandmother is alive, which is a lot more than many American servicemen who lost their lives fighting Japanese aggression can say."

Kind of depressing, aren't they folks? Of course, these are not all of the comments that were posted. Several others were more reasonable and even challenged some of the over-defensive lunacy contained above.

It's just so sad that there are those who can't recognize the cry of "never again" is not a finger pointed at the United States. It is a prayer for our future and the futures of our children around the world.  Let's hope it is a prayer that never goes silent and that never falls on deaf ears.

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