The atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 76 years ago were commemorated Friday at the Fresno State Peace Garden.
About one hundred people gathered for the solemn event, designed by the Central Valley Human Rights Coalition to show solidarity by remembering “those who have died, continue to suffer, and in the hope for peace and justice, and to advance the elimination of nuclear weapons and war as a tool of foreign policy. A minute’s silence and the start of a three-day fast took place, with speakers remembering the detonation of two nuclear weapons over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9, 1945, respectively. The two attacks killed between 129,000 and 226,000 people, most of them civilians, and remain the only use of nuclear weapons in armed conflict.
92-year-old Kiyoko Sakamoto performed a 300-year-old Japanese song “Shie Do Ri No Kyo Ku” on the traditional string instrument in honor of the day. Sakamoto, a 17-year-old living in Sendai, Japan at the time of the bombings, said the day was very important to remember, declaring: âNo more war, no matter what, no matter what. happens, no one wins, no one wins in war. “
An estimated 2,600 origami cranes, the traditional Japanese symbol of peace, strung together, drifted in the breeze in the trees of the Peace Garden, held in the hands or draped in statues.
Events to commemorate the bombings continue, with the screening of the film “Hibakusha” on Saturday at the Big Red Church at 7pm, and Monday at Shinzen Friendship Garden, Woodward Park at 10.30am.