Monday, December 08, 2003
( 9:32 AM ) Jackie
December 15, 2003
What Was I Thinking????
Well, I'm sure you all know that the infamous dropping of bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was done in August of 1945 not December. I knew that : ) I guess I just got carried away with the holidy spirit! But the points remain...
December 6 to December 9: Remembrance, Reflection, Mourning, and Action
Many United States Americans reflected this week-end on what they call the "Day of Infamy".
Admiral Thomas Fargo says from the USS Arizona Memorial , "The actions of those enemies may forever live in infamy".
I'm all in favoring of remembering, of honoring those who have passed, and of gathering for observances.
However, our memories need to be not only long but also wide and deep.
We need to remember that the date December 7 is bracketed by other atrocities, in other years, committed on December 6 and December 9.
We need to remember that on December 7, 1941, the United States was an occupying force in Hawaii.
The media continues to call the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 a "surprise attack".
And yet historians have uncovered information that the United States government was well aware of the impending attack and indeed that this attack was provoked in order to gain wide popular support for war against the Japanese.
This isn't exactly breaking news. In a December 7, 1999 column, Sobrans quotes a summary of a memo dated dated October 7, 1940,” from Day of Deceit by Robert B. Stinnett :
The “memo [from Lieutenant Commander Arthur H. McCollum] outlines an eight-point plan to force Japan to attack the U.S. Among the recommendations were the relocation of the U.S. Pacific Fleet from San Diego to Hawaii and an embargo on all trade with Japan. Mr. Stinnett correctly notes that every item on McCollum’s list was acted upon — starting the day after Roosevelt received the memo.”
As we reflect on December 7, 1941, we need to reflect on this information and on the eerie similarities between those events and the events leading up September 11, 2001 documented by Greg Palast.
And, yes, of course we mourn the death of 2,388 people killed in that attack.
But as we mourn those people, our memory must broaden and deepen to take in the people who were killed by the attacks by the United States on On August 6 and 9, 1945 on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
And we need to reflect on how the decisions to drop those bombs were made. We need to look beyond the nicknames given to the bombs and see the quarter of a million people who were killed directly in Hiroshima and Nagasaki and those who were injured and died from trauma and disease as a result of the bombings.
We need to remember all this, and to reflect on it.
We need to mourn the passing of all those who were killed and maimed in these three attacks.
We need to grieve that there is something in us that allows to commit these atrocities.
And we need to root it out .
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