EDITORIAL

Avoiding another Hiroshima

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Science  24 Jul 2020:
Vol. 369, Issue 6502, pp. 350
DOI: 10.1126/science.abd8622

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  • RE: Avoiding another Hiroshima

    It is interesting how today we look back on Hiroshima and judge those events in light of today's politics and values with a great deal of superiority and hypocrisy. The Japanese events on Okinawa and the Japanese military's code of Bushido left few options. It was projected that there would be over a million casualties if the planed invasion of Japan had occurred. The atomic bombs saved lives on both sides; yes, the results of it were devastating and hopefully will never be repeated.
    But let's not put the blame on America for its use; at the time, it was the best political and military option. Revisionist history is not honest. You seem to have a simplistic view that if we, Russia reduce/disarm nuclear weapons, others will somehow be encouraged to also do the same? This is the real world, not an academic or political exercise/experiment.

    Competing Interests: None declared.
  • Virus weapon is very much stronger than modernized nuclear weapons
    • Yoshiyasu Takefuji, Professor, Keio University
    • Other Contributors:
      • Tomoaki Takefuji, Graduate student, Nihon University

    Madeleine K. Albright wrote an editorial entitled "Avoiding another Hiroshima" (1). She summarized (1):
    1. the estimated cost of modernizing the nuclear enterprise—about $50 billion per year—is almost five times the budget of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    2. A new U.S. administration can reduce such spending, supporting instead the goal of nuclear disarmament.

    My (grand) father and mother were atomic bombs survivors in Nagasaki. Many Japanese did not know what was going on in World War II, because of government-controlled fake news and government censorship in Japan (2). We truly know the fact that 642,829 people worldwide have now lost their lives as a result of the coronavirus pandemic as of July 25, 2020 (3). We don’t know whether covid-19 is a deliberate pandemic or not. You can imagine that virus weapon is very much stronger than modernized nuclear weapons. The Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) has 183 States Parties as of August 2019 while five have signed but not ratified the BWC and 10 have neither signed nor ratified the agreement (4). We must know that signed and ratified the BWC cannot guarantee no usage of the biological weapons in an emergency.

    Although we live in the 21 century, we human beings are not smart enough to manage ourselves. As long as we believe power controls everything, there will be no changes in our society.

    References:
    1. Madeleine K. Albright, "Avoiding another H...

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    Competing Interests: None declared.
  • RE: UNSCEAR and the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapon Testing in the Atmosphere

    UNSCEAR and the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapon Testing in the Atmosphere

    I read the article about the nuclear weapons by Madeleine K. Albright with grave concern. [see Madeleine K. Albright, Avoiding another Hiroshima, Science, 369 (6502), 350 (24 July 2020)]. Nuclear weapons have presented unprecedented challenges in the history of armament.

    In the decade following the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, there had been about one hundred atmospheric nuclear weapons tests raising serious concerns of damage from the resulting radiation. In 1954, India called for an immediate end to all nuclear explosions. India made the first call for a “standstill agreement” on nuclear testing, who saw a testing moratorium as a stepping stone to more comprehensive arms control agreements. This vision turned out be fruitful. In response the USA proposed a resolution asking the United Nations to establish a committee to study the effects of radiation on human health. Subsequently on 3 December 1955 the General Assembly unanimously approved resolution 913(X), which established the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR). The first session was held from 14 to 23 March 1956 in New York. The original Committee was composed of senior scientists from 15 designated UN Member States, namely Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Egypt, France, India, Japan, Mexico, Sweden, UK, USA and the USSR. It is to b...

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    Competing Interests: None declared.

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