The UN was founded that year. The preamble begins: "WE THE PEOPLES OF THE UNITED NATIONS DETERMINED to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind..."
Across the street from the UN a wall was erected, inscribed with the words of a Hebrew prophet who lived 2600 years earlier: Isaiah 2:4 "And they will beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore."
In 1947, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, put out by people who understood better than anyone else the implications of these new weapons, started the Doomsday Clock. This famous clock shows how close we are to nuclear annihilation. It was set at 7 minutes to midnight then, got as close as 2 minutes when the H-bombs were developed in 1953, was back to 17 minutes to midnight in 1991, and has steadily moved forward since, as the US has grown increasingly belligerent.
Two weeks ago, it was moved again, in response to the threats of nuclear war over Iran. It now reads 5 minutes to midnight- the end of human civilization, perhaps of higher life forms.
Since 1945, the international community has struggled to make treaties that prevent the spread and use of nuclear weapons. Although imperfect, and sometimes ignored, these treaties have, in fact, served to limit their spread and prevent their use. Key treaties are the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (1968), the Antiballistic Missile Treaty (1972- Bush withdrew the US from this one, which capped the arms race, shortly after 9-11), and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (1996- the US has signed this one, not ratified it, but does observe it).
It's an amazing fact that no thermonuclear devices have been used in war since 1945, a form of self-discipline unheard of in human history. Of course, "depleted uranium" weaponry is also terrible, in disseminating radioactive, mutation and cancer-causing material over wide areas, but some self- restraint has developed. There are also rumors, unconfirmed, that mininukes were used in Lebanon last year. Bush keeps pushing for new and more horrible weapons.
The lesson of Hiroshima was simple- it's time for humanity to grow up, learn self-control and cooperation, work for peace and survival. With the added threat of global warming and climate change, the need for spiritual growth has become more urgent than ever.
Now Bush is threatening to start a nuclear war over Iran, and the pundits are predicting it will happen sometime this year. Have we forgotten the lesson of Hiroshima?
In reaction to the despair about the future engendered by the horrors of contemplating nuclear extinction, people develop psychological defenses. The key defense is psychic numbing, a shutting down of awareness in many areas. People concentrate on individual goals, or at best goals for the nuclear family, and ignore the big picture. We used to work for future generations, for leaving a good legacy to our children and grandchildren. Now the goals tend to be short-term. Why worry about the future when there may not be a future?
I have written elsewhere about the role that the rapture cult has played in conditioning us to passively accept nuclear annihilation as our fate. (Nuclear Terror and Psychic Numbing www.counterpunch.org/wolman12082003.html)
The Bible has been hijacked, along with the US government, by a pseudo-christian cabal that seeks to empower and enrich itself at the expense of everyone else. With the coming of George W. Bush, these satanic forces became firmly entrenched, and are driving us to mass suicide.
In fact, the Bible tells us to choose life (Deut. 39:19), and says that the Prince of Peace will return and overthrow antichrist, using the weapons of truth and "the iron rod with which to rule the nations" (Rev 19: 15) - which I believe is the threat of nuclear annihilation.
The blatant aggression of Bush has stimulated an awakening on the part of the American people. Let's turn our attention to the overriding threat of nuclear war. We were given a powerful lesson in August 1945. We don't need to repeat it.
We need to get rid of the warmongers in power, by impeaching Bush and Cheney. We the people need to assert our sovereignty, given us by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution. We have little time, with nuclear war over Iran looming. If Congress won't do impeach Bush and Cheney, we need to impeach them too!
Remember Hiroshima! Impeach now, before it's too late!
In the name of the Prince of Peace, Carol Wolman