Tag Archives: Hiroshima

DEFEND NORTH KOREA! DPRK Defends its Right to Nuclear Self-Defense vs. “Nuclear Blackmail” of US Govt.

Voice of Korea website homepage, 17 April 2017

Voice of Korea website homepage, 17 April 2017

[N.B.: The United States and its massive propaganda machine – encompassing much of the world’s bourgeois press – has long been selling the outrageous and obvious lie that tiny North Korea, with its handful of nuclear weapons mounted (so far) only on CONTINENTAL ballistic missiles poses a deadly existential threat to the US and the entire world.  Only the willfully blind would believe this fraudulent claim, especially coming as it does from the US government, which possesses THOUSANDS of nuclear warheads capable of hitting North Korea from land, air and sea-based launch platforms.  The United States murdered an estimated 3 million Koreans in the Korean War, fought by the US capitalist class to prevent the Korean workers from taking power into their own hands and establishing a revolutionary socialist workers government at the end of WWII.  It was only due to the existence of the nuclear arsenal of the USSR that the US was prevented from using nuclear weapons against North Korea and China just as they had against the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  It was the nuclear arsenal of the USSR and, later, China, that prevented the US from deploying nuclear weapons against the Vietnamese workers during the brutal, barbaric Vietnam War.  Today, despite the massive historical record proving that it has been the USA that poses the greatest threat North Korea – and  to the human race – due to its proven willingness to use nuclear weapons – the world is supposed to believe that the quite reasonable desire of the tiny Stalinist workers state of North Korea to possess a few nukes as self-defense against the massive nuclear-armed US imperialist war machine poses a deadly threat to – the US!  Of course, this is a monstrous lie, as the following declaration of the DPRK’s “Voice of Korea” website makes clear.  Since it is impossible to get the DPRK’s side of the story from any US bourgeois press outlet, we are making an attempt to “break the US propaganda blockade” against the North Korean Stalinized workers state by publishing a few of their statements here on our website.  We say: US HANDS OFF NORTH KOREA! and US GET THE HELL OUT OF ASIA, NOW!

The following unattributed statement was transcribed from an English-language audio recording presented on the “Voice of Korea” website at http://www.vok.rep.kp/CBC/index.php?CHANNEL=6&lang= on 17 April 2017 by IWPCHI. All bracketed phrases were added by us. — IWPCHI]

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“Shamelessness of the United States, Kingpin of Nuclear Proliferation”

Some time ago, the US representative to the United Nations said: “Negotiations on [the] ‘Convention on Banning Nuclear Weapons’ are unrealistic because of the nuclear threat of North Korea”. Taking the Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea as the reason why the United States does not take part in the UN conference for negotiations on the Convention on banning nuclear weapons, he said: “Is there anyone who believes that North Korea would agree on banning nuclear weapons? It is impossible to say that the people can be protected in the way of disallowing such countries as the United States – trying to defend peace and security – to have nuclear weapons; and then allowing their opponents to have them.”

It is really a shameless and brigandish sophistry; it is a manifestation of the shameless attempt of the United States to cover up its heinous crimes – the country that is the only user of nukes in the world; a country that has invited worldwide nuclear arms race with nuclear threat and blackmail.

Looking back upon the history of nuclear arms development, the United States and other big powers played the leading role in making international conventions on nuclear weapons and signed them (or not, in their interests), for the purpose of keeping non-nuclear states from possessing nukes. The Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea has risen up as a nuclear power in the East to cope with the vicious use of threat of nuclear war, which has lasted tens of years; so it is quite natural for the DPRK not to take part in the UN conference for negotiations on the convention on banning nuclear weapons, which presupposes nuclear renunciation.

The United States is the kingpin of nuclear proliferation, that did not hesitate to impose nuclear calamity upon humanity to realize its ambition for world domination, but trifled international treaties for nuclear disarmament and is conniving at, encouraging and shielding the nuclear arms development of its stooges.

Recently, in the United States (which talked about a ‘nuclear-free world’ more loudly than others) remarks are openly made that the nuclear force of the United States ‘lags behind’ other countries, and nuclear force will be strengthened to keep it in military power. Still advocating ‘peace by strength’, the United States is invariably promoting the modernization of nuclear weapons costing one trillion US dollars (which was accelerated by the former administration) and does not hesitate to maintain that the treaties on nuclear disarmament with other nuclear powers must be abolished.

It is illogical and the acme of shamelessness that such an outrageous nuclear devil slanders the nuclear force of the DPRK – a direct product of [the US’] nuclear blackmail. The United States must clearly know it is an invariable stand of the DPRK that peace and security of the Korean peninsula can be defended only by reliable nuclear deterrence, as long as there exists a nuclear state in hostile relations with the DPRK.

As the nuclear threat and blackmail of the United States and its followers continue, the DPRK will [afford?], expand and strengthen its nuclear force [equal?] to the self-reliant defense capability and pre-emptive striking capacity.

— [Voice of Korea]

6 August 2016: 71st Anniversary of U.S. War Crime – the A-Bombing of Hiroshima, Japan

To commemorate the 71st anniversary of the US war crime of the dropping of the atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, Japan, we present excerpts from the book “Hiroshima Diary” by Dr. Michihiko Hachiya.  On August 6, 1945 Dr. Hachiya was the Director of the Hiroshima Communications Hospital, one of the few facilities that was not completely leveled by the nuclear blast.  At home at the time of the explosion, not far from ground zero, Dr. Hachiya was severely injured.  Unable to work in the days after the attack, he began to keep a diary of the events taking place around him.  These excerpts are personal accounts of witnesses in Hiroshima on August 6th and 7th – eyewitnesses to the immense human toll of the bombing , which we do not see in many photographs.  Photographs of the thousands of dead taken immediately after the blast are kept hidden from the public, though they do exist.  Immediately after the end of WWII, the US Government began a massive propaganda campaign in an attempt to get US citizens comfortable with the idea of surviving as victors in a nuclear war with the USSR and China.  Graphic images of what happens to human beings in a nuclear war were not allowed to be shown; instead, children were taught to “duck and cover” under their flimsy school desks when they saw the flash from a nuclear bomb.  At home, people were encouraged to build air raid shelters and bomb-proof bunkers under their homes, and to keep them stocked with canned goods and water so they could survive the immediate effects of the A-bomb.  But the oral and written histories of Hiroshima and Nagasaki tell a different story: one of unimaginable horror and human suffering that was inescapable for almost everyone within 5 miles of the center of the explosion.  Today’s nuclear weapons are many times more powerful than the bombs dropped on Japan; so these eyewitness accounts give us only a hint of what would happen in a modern nuclear war.  As the capitalist world hurtles toward World War III we offer this brief look at what lies in store for all of us unless we the workers put an end to the capitalist system of exploitation, poverty and war and establish a global coalition of egalitarian socialist workers republics in its place.

The US Government, which launched wars in Korea that killed 3 million, Vietnam (another 3 million); backed dictatorships throughout South and Central America and the Caribbean that slaughtered hundreds of thousands of workers and trade union leaders; organized the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of workers in the Philippines and Indonesia; and has killed over 1 million in Iraq and hundreds of thousands in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya and Syria tries to sell the big lie that ISIL/ISIS are ruthless killers!  The most ruthless mass-murderers on this planet – the US capitalist class and their blood-soaked government – slaughtered more workers in two days in August 1945 than ISIL/ISIS – vicious as they certainly are – has killed in the past two years!  And more often than not, the US political party in power that ends up happily leading workers into a slaughterhouse at the behest of their corporate owners is… the “lesser evil” Democratic Party!

U.S. capitalism must die so the working classes of the U.S. and the world may live!  Workers of the world, unite!

— IWPCHI

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[Excerpts from “Hiroshima Diary – The Journal of a Japanese Physician – August 6-September 30, 1945” by Michihiko Hachiya, M.D., Director, Hiroshima Communications Hospital; Translated and edited by Warner Wells, M.D., University of North Carolina School of Medicine.  University of North Carolina Press, 1955.]

Mushroom cloud rises over Hiroshima, Japan, August 6 1945. Photo taken by Enola Gay tail gunner S/Sgt. George R. (Bob) Caron. Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Mushroom cloud rises over Hiroshima, Japan, August 6 1945. Photo taken by Enola Gay tail gunner S/Sgt. George R. (Bob) Caron. Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Don’t go,” I said. “Please tell us more of what occurred yesterday.”

It was a horrible sight,” said Dr. Tabuchi. “Hundreds of injured people who were trying to escape the hills passed our house. The sight of them was almost unbearable. Their faces and hands were burnt and swollen; and great sheets of skin had peeled away from their tissues to hang down like rags on a scarecrow. They moved like a line of ants. All through the night, they went past our house, but this morning they had stopped. I found them lying on both sides of the road so thick that it was impossible to pass without stepping on them.”

View of Hiroshima A-bomb from Honkawa Elementary School, taken 30 seconds after bombing.

View of Hiroshima A-bomb from Honkawa Elementary School, taken 30 seconds after bombing.

I lay with my eyes shut while Dr. Tabuchi was talking, picturing in my mind the horror he was describing. I neither saw nor heard Mr. Katsutani when he came in. It was not until I heard someone sobbing that my attention was attracted, and I recognized my old friend. I had known Mr. Katsutani for many years and knew him to be an emotional person, but even so, to see him break down made tears come to my eyes. He had come all the way from Jigozen to look for me, and now that he had found me, emotion overcame him.

He turned to Dr. Sasada and said brokenly: “Yesterday, it was impossible to enter Hiroshima, else I would have come. Even today fires are still burning in some places. You should see how the city has changed. When I reached the Misasa Bridge this morning, everything before me was gone, even the castle. These buildings here are the only ones left anywhere around.

Effects of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. View from the top of the Red Cross Hospital looking northwest. Frame buildings recently erected. 1945, US Department of Defense

Effects of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. View from the top of the Red Cross Hospital looking northwest. Frame buildings recently erected. 1945, US Department of Defense

[…]

Mr. Katsutani paused for a moment to catch his breath and went on: “I really walked along the railroad tracks to get here, but even they were littered with electric wires and broken railway cars, and the dead and wounded lay everywhere. When I reached the bridge, I saw a dreadful thing. It was unbelievable. There was a man, stone dead, sitting on his bicycle as it leaned against the bridge railing. It is hard to believe that such a thing could happen!”

He repeated himself two or three times as if to convince himself that what he said was true and then continued: “It seems that most of the dead people were either on the bridge or beneath it. You could tell that many had gone down to the river to get a drink of water and had died where they lay. I saw a few live people still in the water, knocking against the dead as they floated down the river. There must have been hundreds and thousands who fled to the river to escape the fire and then drowned.

The sight of the soldiers, though, was more dreadful than the dead people floating down the river. I came onto I don’t know how many, burned from the hips up; and where the skin had peeled, their flesh was wet and mushy. They must have been wearing their military caps because the black hair on top of their heads was not burned. It made them look like they were wearing black lacquer bowls.

And they had no faces! Their eyes, noses and mouths had been burned away, and it looked like their ears had melted off. It was hard to tell front from back. One soldier, whose features had been destroyed and was left with his white teeth sticking out, asked me for some water, but I didn’t have any. I clasped my hands and prayed for him. He didn’t say anything more. His plea for water must have been his last words. The way they were burned, I wonder if they didn’t have their coats off when the bomb exploded.”

[…]

Somebody asked him what he was doing when the explosion occurred. […]

I was the ranking officer in the local branch of the Ex-officer’s Association, but even I didn’t know what to do because that day the villagers under my command had been sent off to Miyajima [the next village towards Hiroshima from where he was in Jigozen, approximately 10 miles southwest of ground zero – IWPCHI] for labor service. I looked all around to find someone to help me make a rescue squad, but I couldn’t find anybody. While I was still looking for help, wounded people began to stream into the village. I asked them what had happened, but all they could tell me was that Hiroshima had been destroyed and everybody was leaving the city. With that I got on my bicycle and rode as fast as I could towards Itsukaichi. By the time I got there, the road was jammed with people, and so was every path and byway.

Again I tried to find out what had happened, but nobody could give me a clear answer. When I asked people where they had come from, they would point towards Hiroshima and say. ‘This way.’ And when I asked where they were going, they would point toward Miyajima and say, ‘That way.’ Everybody said the same thing.

Hiroshima Street Scene with injured Civilians. Credit: Australian War Memorial, CANBERRA ACT 2601

Hiroshima Street Scene with injured Civilians. Credit: Australian War Memorial, CANBERRA ACT 2601

I saw no badly wounded or burned people around Itsukaichi, but when I reached Kusatsu, nearly everybody was badly hurt. The nearer I got to Hiroshima the more I saw until by the time I had reached Koi [a railroad station on the very western limits of the city] they were all so badly injured, I could not bear to look into their faces. They smelled like burning hair.

The patient's skin is burned in a pattern corresponding to the dark portions of a kimono. Credit: National Archives and Records Administration 519686

“The patient’s skin is burned in a pattern corresponding to the
dark portions of a kimono.”  Credit: U.S. National Archives and Records Administration 519686

[…]

The area around Koi station was not burned, but the station and the houses nearby were badly damaged. Every square inch of the station platform was packed with wounded people. Some were standing; others lying down. They were all pleading for water. Now and then you could hear a child calling for its mother. It was a living hell, I tell you! It was a living hell!

Today it was the same way. […] I left Koi station and went over to the Koi primary school. By then, the school had been turned into an emergency hospital and was already crowded with desperately injured people. Even the playground was packed with the dead and dying. They looked like so many cod fish spread out for drying. What a pitiful sight it was to see them lying there in the hot sun. Even I could tell they were all going to die.”

[…]

Dr. Hanaoka made an appearance. “Let me tell you, if I can, what happened,” he said. “I stopped by the Red Cross Hospital on my way here. It is swamped with patients, and outside the dead and dying are lined up on either side of the street as far east as the Miyuki Bridge.

Between the Red Cross Hospital and the center of the city I saw nothing that wasn’t burned to a crisp. Streetcars were standing at Kawaya-cho and inside were dozens of bodies, blackened beyond recognition. I saw fire reservoirs filled to the brim with dead people who looked as though they had been boiled alive. In one reservoir I saw a man, horribly burned, crouching beside another man who was dead. He was drinking blood-stained water out of the reservoir. Even if I had tried to stop him, it wouldn’t have done any good; he was completely out of his head. In one reservoir there were so many dead people there wasn’t enough room for them to fall over. They must have died sitting in the water.

Even the swimming pool at the Prefectural First Middle School is filled with dead people. They must have suffocated while they sat in the water trying to escape the fire because they didn’t appear to be burned.

Dr. Hanaoka cleared his throat, and after a moment continued: “Dr. Hachiya, that pool wasn’t big enough to accommodate everybody who tried to get in it. You could tell that by looking around the sides. I don’t know how many were caught by death with their heads hanging over the edge. In one pool I saw some people who were still alive, sitting in the water with dead all around them. They were too weak to get out. People were trying to help them, but I am sure they must have died. I apologize for telling you these things, but they are true. I don’t see how anyone got out alive…”

Hiroshima victim photographed 1951

Hiroshima victim photographed 1951

 

 

Greed-based Capitalism Is Destroying the World; Why Workers Socialist Revolution Is Our Only Hope for Survival

Just as it is difficult to get people to read the warning labels on over-the-counter medications – a self-imposed ignorance which leads to the deaths of 100,000 US citizens a year – it’s very difficult to get people to read anything about socialism, which is the cure for the ills of greed-based capitalist society.  Even though the capitalist system is, as you read this, doing all it can to prepare to incinerate the planet in a nuclear World War III, still you refuse to read the warning labels  socialists like us have been writing in opposition to capitalism since 1848.  The capitalist system is killing you slowly now but will – unless you do something about it, sister and brother workers – will be killing you at a much faster rate very, very soon.  We know that you have been “taught” by the capitalist class that socialism is bad for you and greed-based capitalism is the best of all possible worlds.  Please just take a couple of minutes to allow the socialist opposition to make a few observations about the state of the world in 2016 for your consideration.  We’ll try not to bore you to death.  The re-runs of “M.A.S.H.”, “Andy Griffith”, “The Jeffersons” and “Bernie Mac” can wait. (For those of you who think we’re being condescending, watching “The Magnificent Ambersons” or “Do The Right Thing” for the umpteenth time is just as pointless).

Human society has reached that impasse at which we must break from our past and boldly stride forward down a different road if we are to survive the nuclear age. It is probable that all advanced civilizations are faced with the same dilemma: once the civilization is technically capable of harnessing the power of the atom, does it transition to a regime in which that power is put to the service of that civilization or is it used to destroy that civilization? Of course this depends on the political and economic stage reached by a given society at the time during which the power of the atom is harnessed. Tragically for the human race, the capitalist world reached this stage just before the socialist world; the capitalists immediately seized the opportunity to murder 200,000 Japanese workers – largely to intimidate the USSR and prove that the capitalist USA had the Bomb and were crazy enough to use it. A society that achieves this power, if it is an egalitarian society, can make the transition through the nuclear stage of development without destroying itself. A society that is based on selfishness and greed, and divided into constantly warring nation-states has very little likelihood of making a successful transition through the nuclear minefield. In the USA and Europe, the working class has abandoned its historic leadership role that it must take upon itself if the human race is to survive. We are letting people whose love for money over all else has so deranged their minds that they have become utterly irresponsible and pose a threat to the future existence of the human race. Will we allow our human civilization to be sacrificed on the altar of Mammon? Are we that stupid? The selfish greedy capitalists who own and operate the nuclear arsenals of the “Free World(TM)” are the LEAST CAPABLE of leading the human race through this stage of human evolution; they are the MOST LIKELY to plunge this planet into a nuclear war from which human civilization may not survive. We have let the greedheads and militarists call the shots and run the tables for far too long; this is why so much of the wealth of the capitalist world is being spent not on cures for cancer or to end human suffering in the world but to create military arsenals capable of destroying the planet many times over. It is our sincere and deeply-held belief that unless the working class seizes these weapons of mass destruction from the hands of the mass-murdering capitalist classes who have proven time and time again their willingness to use their wealth and military power to plunge the entire planet into barbarism the human race will not survive the challenge it has set for itself in negotiating a safe passage through the nuclear abyss.

Why Socialism?

1) Revolutionary socialism – the most modern and principled variation is the Trotskyism we represent – is a political philosophy that posits that all working women and men all over the world are sisters and brothers and that all workers should unite and fight to overthrow the capitalist system that is organized to systematically rob the working class blind. The capitalists in the USA, whose massive wealth was initially based on the system of slavery and a racist ideology of “white supremacy” that was devised in order to justify the enslavement of people of color ridiculed this fundamental idea of the Marxists as being utopian and not based on what the capitalist called the scientific principles of “Eugenics”. DNA research has proven the Marxists were right; Eugenics now stands as a totally discredited pseudo-science. Still, to this day, the capitalist world is dominated by a tiny class of filthy rich white men who believe that they are racially superior to everyone else on the planet and who believe that they have the “right” to rule the world. What does this mean? It means that the current division of the world into competing nation-states led by “racially superior” minorities (in Europe and the USA, rich white men) is a gross injustice and a fraud being perpetrated against the workers of the world. The racist ideologies that are the fundamental basis of fascism lie in tatters, utterly destroyed by modern genetic science. The workers of the world ARE sisters and brothers, yet are driven by the capitalists of the world to mistrust and hate each other and organized into armies to kill one another. Revolutionary socialism is the ONLY political philosophy that stands unalterable opposed to this state of things – which is why we are proud not only to call ourselves anti-capitalists but revolutionary socialists – Trotskyists.

Socialism is a political philosophy that seeks to create a far more democratic society than is possible or has ever been created under capitalism. Socialism dedicates itself to organizing the global economy for the benefit of the vast majority of the world population: the working class and peasantry. We have as our goals the complete eradication of hunger, homelessness, racism and sexism from the face of the Earth. We seek to create an economy that fully funds human needs, and that GUARANTEED all the fundamental needs of the human race for food, clothing, shelter, education and health care. Capitalism does not and can not provide such a guarantee. Anyone who tells you that capitalism can do this is a liar.

The challenges that face the human race today are enormous and can only be effectively dealt with on a global scale in a spirit of international fraternity and cooperation. The capitalist world, organized as it is into competing capitalist nation-states, infused with nationalism and led in each state by a tiny cabal of ultra-rich greedy individuals is NOT capable of tackling these tremendous challenges to the future survival of the human race. We stand at the juncture of two roads; one leads to a potentially prosperous socialist future in which a unified human race harnesses all its strengths – human and economic – to tackle these issues. The other road is the road of capitalism and after 400 years of evolution of the capitalist system we already know what we can expect if we stay on this road: small wars growing into bigger wars and then World Wars. The next world war could put an end to the existence of human civilization. Either the human race is going to develop an economic basis for an egalitarian socialist future or the promise of humanity will end most likely in a global nuclear conflagration. WE MUST EVOLVE BEYOND CAPITALISM! It is a matter of life and death not just for the human race but also perhaps for the planet itself. Socialism will take the wealth now being squandered on armies and gold-plated toilets for the rich and put it to use increasing the standard of living of all the people in the world, starting by eliminating once and for all hunger in the world and providing decent clothing, housing. education and health care for all the world’s people. Capitalism has had more than 300 years to do this and has failed miserably.

2) Capitalism is inherently undemocratic. Boasting of being more democratic than socialist countries it is in fact not even close to being as egalitarian and democratic as socialist countries of Cuba China, USSR and North Korea and Vietnam. The US capitalist class is only about 3% of the US population but possesses more than half of the national wealth. How can this state of things be called “democratic”? When result of 250 years of capitalist “democracy” in the USA results in 10% of the population owning 75% of the national wealth, obviously this is nothing even CLOSE to being a democracy. The thoroughly fraudulent nature of bourgeois democracy is fully exposed by the enormously unequal distribution of wealth in even the most “”advanced” capitalist nation-states. The capitalists and their apologists never tire of cynically asking the world “why is there so much violence in our society”? Well when they force 75% of the population to fight over a mere 25% of the national wealth, of course there will be violent conflict. Aside from the revolutionary socialists, no political force in the capitalist world – including the fake-socialists of the 2nd International like Bernie Sanders – wants to change the status quo because all of the pro-capitalist politicians and propagandists defending capitalism are profiting from it personally. And a great many of them are envious of the ultra-rich and harbor delirious dreams of some day reaching the top of the capitalist pyramid.

3) Capitalism is killing the planet. The climate crisis facing the world today simply can not be dealt with on a nation-by-nation basis under an economic system that rewards selfishness instead of generosity and international co-operation. The capitalists of the world are all out to rip each other off and to trick their competition into cutting deals that largely benefit only themselves. This kind of vicious “look out for #1” philosophy is what lies behind all the attempts by wealthy people to bastardize scientific research on climate change in order to buy themselves a few more years of stuffing their bank accounts with cash derived from environmentally destructive capitalist enterprises. All these people care about is money; this places the welfare of the entire population of the planet in the hands of a few million greed-infected mentally ill capitalist profiteers.

4) Capitalism is retarding the pace of advancement in science. In seeking always as their primary life-goal to stuff their bank accounts with cash by any means necessary, the capitalists only wish to invest in projects designed to increase their wealth by the largest margin possible. Large-scale scientific projects that seek simply to increase human understanding of the universe are, to the capitalists, a waste of time and money. Therefore incredible amounts of scientific research that would bring about a greater understanding of our place in the Universe are put off while all the capitalists invest trillions of dollars on the “next big profit-making bubble”. Reduplicating efforts to invest in mining in order to profit from the growth of the Chinese economy, the capitalists wasted billions developing environmentally destructive strip-mining operations which then went immediately bankrupt when Chinese economy experienced an entirely predictable periodic correction. Meanwhile scientists seeking funding for important research projects on everything from studying gravitational waves to a cure for cancer must go around hat in hand begging for funds. They are forced to spend almost as much time on seeking funding as they spend actually doing research. This is depriving the human race from the benefits of research that should – and would be under socialism – fully funded by the government.

5) Capitalism is killing people. Hundreds of millions of workers in the capitalist nation-states of our planet are going hungry every day and starving to death because for the capitalists it is just not profitable enough to feed them. Like everything else under capitalism, that which does not make a capitalist richer fast enough is going to not receive investment dollars. In always seeking the greats profit margins possible the capitalist class denies basic human needs to more than one third of the global population. This state of affairs is completely unacceptable to only one political force in the world: the communists. The capitalist class and its acolytes never tire of coming up with all kinds of bullshit reasons why it is just not possible at this time to feed the world. They tell us that eliminating hunger is not possible! That’s a lie. They tell us that ending warfare is not possible; that, too is a lie. The reason warfare exists is as yet another profit-making enterprise for the capitalist class. War is extremely profitable; there is hardly anyone among the stockholding class that doesn’t have at least some kind of investment in an enterprise that manufactures the weapons of war, or which makes its money rebuilding infrastructure destroyed by the endless for-profit wars created by the capitalist class. The capitalists make money destroying people and infrastructure via warfare; and they make money repairing the damage they caused – nice, eh? Yet you, the workers of the world, not only stupidly allow them to force you to provide the finance through your taxes for these profitable wars; you also willingly send your sons and daughters to do the killing and destroying for them. If the capitalist class deserves condemnation for its bloodthirsty ways, can you, who finance their wars and provide the soldiers for the wars be let off the hook for doing so? We think not. Until each and every one of you understands that by supporting the capitalist system as you do, the blood of the millions of workers being butchered and starved by YOUR GOVERNMENTS is on YOUR HANDS TOO! You cannot hide from this fact, sister and brother workers of the US and the NATO countries!

Only by overthrowing the global greed-based individualistic capitalist system and replacing it with a cooperative rationally-planned global egalitarian democratic socialist system can we finally harness the full potential of the human race and tackle the global climate crisis that threatens the future existence of our human family. Trying to deal with global problems in a world made up of competing capitalist nation states constantly trying to rob each other blind is not going to work! Time is not on our side, sisters and brothers! We must immediately start organizing the revolutionary socialist political parties of the working class that are essentially necessary to the successful overthrow of rapacious global capitalism. If we fail to do this, we will be bequeathing our children a future of endless war over everything from water to oil. This hideous capitalist future that rises up like a spectre before us is not a fait accompli. We must make the effort necessary to tear ourselves away from the endless entertainments the capitalist provide us to keep us distracted while they plunder the planet and murder our working-class sisters and brothers all over the globe. WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO WAKE UP AND GET THIS PROJECT GOING? Every day of delay is making the cost of undoing the damage being inflicted by the capitalists that much higher! The Democrats are owned and operated by the capitalists; so are, of course, the Republicans. We need new parties of by and for the working class and we need them now! There are some that are existing and others like ours that aer just getting started. But thanks to the Internet we can get new working-class political parties up and running and financed in just a few months. THE FUTURE IS NOW! THERE IS NO FUTURE FOR THE WORKING CLASS UNDER THE CAPITALIST SYSTEM! CAPITALISM MUST DIE SO THAT THE WORKING CLASS MAY LIVE! WORKERS OF THE WORLD UNITE!

IWPCHI

US Government War Crimes: 70th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Mass-Murders

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of the monstrous war crimes committed by the US capitalist class government against the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we reprint a first-hand account of the bombing of Hiroshima from a victim who lived approximately 1.5 miles from ground zero.

Our eyewitness is a man who was, on August 6 1945, the  Director of the Communications Hospital in Hiroshima.  He and his wife were at home when the Enola Gay dropped its savage payload on the unsuspecting citizens of Hiroshima.  Both he and his wife were badly injured in the explosion.  They immediately headed for the Communications Hospital for treatment and to take care of the thousands of injured people streaming towards that place of mercy.

The book, entitled “Hiroshima Diary” by Michihiko Hachiya, M.D., is possibly the best description of the horrors of the Hiroshima bombing available in print.  The author’s expertise as a physician informs his descriptions of the horrifically injured people he sees day after day as his hospital – one of the few in Hiroshima  to survive the nuclear blast –  becomes the scene of human suffering on a scale and degree never before seen by anyone in the medical profession.  Our first excerpt gives just a glimpse of the horrors that presented themselves in the immediate aftermath of the bombing.  We hope that this introduction to this amazing document will encourage our readers to read the entire book and to dedicate themselves to the overthrow of the capitalist system which created World Wars I and II and which drove the human race into the nuclear slaughterhouse of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. We should also point out that these monstrous war crimes were committed – against the advice of many US military leaders – by the alleged “lesser evil” party then led by Democrat Harry Truman.

IWPCHI

From “Hiroshima Diary” by Michihiko Hachiya, M.D.; Director of Hiroshima Communications Hospital

Copyright 1955 by The University of North Carolina Press

6 August 1945

The hour was early; the morning still, warm, and beautiful.
Shimmering leaves, reflecting sunlight from a cloudless sky, made
a pleasant contrast with shadows in my garden as I gazed absently
through wide-flung doors opening to the south.

Clad in drawers and an undershirt, I was sprawled on the living
room floor exhausted because I had just spent a sleepless night on
duty as an air warden in my hospital.

Suddenly, a strong flash of light startled me — and then another.
So well does one recall little things that I remember vividly how
a stone lantern in the garden became brilliantly lit and I debated
whether this light was caused by a magnesium flare or sparks from
a passing trolley.

Garden shadows disappeared. The view where a moment before
all had been so bright and sunny was now dark and hazy. Through
swirling dust I could barely discern a wooden column that had
supported one corner of my house. It was leaning crazily and the
roof sagged dangerously.

Moving instinctively, I tried to escape, but rubble and fallen
timbers barred the way. By picking my way cautiously I managed
to reach the roka and stepped down into my garden. A profound
weakness overcame me, so I stopped to regain my strength. To my
surprise I discovered that I was completely naked. How odd!
Where were my drawers and undershirt?

What had happened?

All over the right side of my body I was cut and bleeding. A
large splinter was protruding from a mangled wound in my thigh,
and something warm trickled into my mouth. My cheek was torn,
I discovered as I felt it gingerly, with the lower lip laid wide open.
Embedded in my neck was a sizable fragment of glass which I
matter-of-factly dislodged, and with the detachment of one stunned
and shocked I studied it and my blood-stained hand.

Where was my wife?

Suddenly thoroughly alarmed I began to yell for her: “Yaeko-
san! Yaeko-san! Where are you?”
Blood began to spurt. Had my carotid artery been cut? Would
I bleed to death? Frightened and irrational I called out again:
“It’s a five-hundred-ton bomb! Yaeko-san, where are you? A five-
hundred-ton bomb has fallen!”

Yaeko-san, pale and frightened, her clothes torn and blood-
stained, emerged from the ruins of our house holding her elbow.
Seeing her, I was reassured. My own panic assuaged, I tried to
reassure her.

“We’ll be all right,” I exclaimed. “Only let’s get out of here as
fast as we can.”

She nodded and I motioned for her to follow me.

The shortest path to the street lay through the house next door
so through the house we went – running, stumbling, falling and
then running again until in headlong flight we tripped over some-
thing and fell sprawling into the street. Getting to my feet, I
discovered that I had tripped over a man’s head.

“Excuse me! Excuse me, please!” I cried hysterically.

There was no answer. The man was dead. The head had be-
longed to a young officer whose body was crushed beneath a
massive gate.

We stood in the street, uncertain and afraid, until a house across
from us began to sway and then with a rending motion fell
almost at our feet. Our own house began to sway, and in a minute
it, too, collapsed in a cloud of dust. Other buildings caved in or
toppled. Fires sprang up and whipped by a vicious wind began
to spread.

It finally dawned on us that we could not stay there in the street,
so we turned our steps towards the hospital.* Our home was gone;
we were wounded and needed treatment; and after all, it was my
duty to be with my staff. This latter was an irrational thought —
what good could I be to anyone, hurt as I was.

We started out, but after twenty or thirty steps I had to stop.
My breath became short, my heart pounded, and my legs gave way
under me. An overpowering thirst seized me and I begged Yaeko-
san to find me some water. But there was no water to be found.
After a little my strength somewhat returned and we were able
to go on.

* Dr. Hachiya’s home was only a few hundred meters from the hospital.

I was still naked, and although I did not feel the least bit of
shame, I was disturbed to realize that modesty had deserted me.
On rounding a corner we came upon a soldier standing idly in the
street. He had a towel draped across his shoulder, and I asked if he
would give it to me to cover my nakedness. The soldier surren-
dered the towel quite willingly but said not a word. A little later I
lost the towel, and Yaeko-san took off her apron and tied it
around my loins.

[…]

Yaeko-san looked into my face for a moment, and then, without
saying a word, turned away and began running towards the hos-
pital.

[…]

I must have gone out of my head lying there in the road because
the next thing I recall was discovering that the clot on my thigh
had been dislodged and blood was again spurting from the wound.
I pressed my hand to the bleeding area and after a while the bleed-
ing stopped and I felt better.

[…]

I paused to rest. Gradually things around me came into focus.
There were the shadowy forms of people, some of whom looked
like walking ghosts. Others moved as though in pain, like scare-
crows, their arms held out from their bodies with forearms and
hands dangling. These people puzzled me until I suddenly realized
that they had been burned and were holding their arms out to
prevent the painful friction of raw surfaces rubbing together. A
naked woman carrying a naked baby came into view. I averted my
gaze. Perhaps they had been in the bath. But then I saw a naked
man, and it occurred to me that, like myself, some strange thing
had deprived them of their clothes. An old woman lay near me
with an expression of suffering on her face; but she made no sound.
Indeed, one thing was common to everyone I saw — complete
silence.

All who could were moving in the direction of the hospital. I
joined in the dismal pararde when my strength was somewhat
recovered, and at last reached the gates of the Communications
Bureau.

Familiar surroundings, familiar faces. There was Mr. Iguchi
and Mr. Yoshihiro and my old friend, Mr. Sera, the head of the
business office. They hastened to give me a hand, their expressions
of pleasure changing to alarm when they saw that I was hurt. I
was too happy to see them to share their concern.

No time was lost over greetings. They eased me onto a stretcher
and carried me into the Communications Building, ignoring my
protests that I could walk.

[…]

The hospital lay directly opposite with part of the roof and the
third floor sunroom in plain view, and as I looked up, I witnessed
a sight which made me forget my smarting wounds. Smoke was
pouring out of the sunroom windows. The hospital was afire!

[Source: “Hiroshima Diary” by Michihiko Hachiya, M.D., Director of the Communications Hospital in Hiroshima, Japan on 6 August 1945.  Published by University of North Carolina Press, 1955.]

Warmongers of World Capitalism in Hysteria Over Successful N. Korean Satellite Launch

Yesterday, the Stalinist workers state of North Korea successfully launched a rocket that placed a satellite into Earth orbit, setting off a worldwide orgy of condemnation of the so-called “provocative” act.  We say: Congratulations to the North Korean workers on the successful launch of your satellite!  If it helps in any way to defend North Korea from attack by the United States, NATO or the US puppet regime in South Korea, GOOD!

North Korea is not just any country – it is a nation formed in the heat of a decades-long workers struggle to free China and Korean workers from brutal military assault and colonial occupation from first the British, then Japan, then the United States.  The Chinese and Korean workers and peasants heroically fought their capitalist, imperialist oppressors for decades, only succeeding in gaining their independence in 1949 (for China) and 1953 (for what was to become North Korea.  In these vicious wars of liberation, the imperialist powers and their criminal, traitorous lackey governments tortured and slaughtered millions – that is not an exaggeration! – millions of workers and peasants.  In spite of every effort of the US and its allies to crush the Korean workers revolution, the Korean Peoples Army achieved amazing military victories over the puppet “South Korean” military and police forces of the disgusting Syngman Rhee dictatorship – created from whole cloth by the United States and its Office of Strategic Services (the forerunner of the CIA) out of widely despised collaborators of the Japanese occupying forces who brutalized China and Korea from the early 1930s until 1945.   Sadly, massive US military intervention enabled the pathetic remnants of Rhee’s forces to reconquer half of the Korean peninsula, after which they launched murderous reprisals against any Korean worker who ever fought against either the Japanese fascists or who ever participated in the egalitarian local Peoples’ governments that sprang up all over Korea when the Japanese occupation evaporated at the end of WWII.   Using police forces that had collaborated with the hated Japanese military occupiers of Korea, Syngman Rhee’s cops and soldiery rounded up “communists” all over “South Korea” and butchered them by the thousands.   Recently declassified U.S. military accounts of the massacres have proven beyond a doubt that under the U.S. occupation of Korea during and after the Korean War, mass executions were carried out with the full knowledge of the US military in Korea as well as the US civilian government in Washington.  The Korean War is one of the bloodiest chapters in the long, sordid history of the United States, which was born of genocide of the Native American population starting in the 1600s, segued right into the barbarity of the slave trade and then continued to leave a trail of workers blood wherever the US military went, from Mexico in the 1840s to Cuba, the Philippines, Haiti, the USSR, Japan, China, Vietnam, Central and South America and on and on to the present slaughters of civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

And these blood-soaked imperialists are now trying to tell the world that a simple satellite launch by North Korea represents a “provocation”!  Truly, there has never been a regime in world history more depraved, more dedicated to using every dirty trick in the book in order to stuff their pockets with blood-drenched cash than the regime of the United States capitalist class!

The lapdogs of US/NATO imperialism at the UN, of course, hypocritically denounce North Korea for ignoring all the sanctions and UN Security Council resolutions that have been passed over the years in a futile effort to get the North Korean workers state to hand itself over to the tender mercies of US imperialism on a silver platter.   All of the imperialist countries whose governments and ruling classes were responsible for the decades-long rape of China and Korea rail against the North Korean workers state for having the nerve to defend itself against nations that have, historically, raped and pillaged both countries with impunity.  The British Foreign Secretary, William Hague, hypocritically stated that “I deplore the fact that the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] has chosen to prioritise this launch over improving the livelihood of its people.”   The Japanese Foreign Ministry, whose predecessors waged merciless war against the Chinese and Korean working classes, torturing and slaughtering hundreds of thousands said that the launch of the North Korean satellite was something they “cannot tolerate”! And the scum in the Democrat Obama White House, whose predecessors oversaw the butchery of so many North Koreans, and whose puppet dictatorships in the 50s, 60s and 70s turned South Korea into a human rights hell-hole had the balls to say “The international community must work in a concerted fashion to send North Korea a clear message that its violations of UN security council resolutions have consequences”!  Shame is something totally alien to these sick puppies of US imperialism, these depraved lickspittle running dogs of the US capitalist class.  And the workers in the US are supposed to believe that the Democrats are “the lesser of two evils”!

But it was precisely the Democrats who are responsible for the world-historic slaughter that was visited upon the Korean working class for daring to try to build a revolutionary workers government in Korea!  It was pathetic mama’s boy Harry Truman who “stood tall” by unleashing his racist military and OSS against the workers of Asia, desperately butchering millions of workers and peasants in order to “save the world” from the overthrow of the greed-based, blood-soaked capitalist system, which had produced two savage world wars in just a few decades!  The Democratic Party – which in the 1950s was the favored party of the Ku Klux Klan in the Jim Crow south – was responsible for every US war crime from the butchering of civilians in air raids in Nazi Germany to the firebombing of Tokyo that killed hundreds of thousands of civilians, to Hiroshima and Nagasaki; and then on to the horrors of Vietnam under that other great hero of the Democrats, anti-communist cretin John F. Kennedy and his “pet projects” in Vietnam and Cuba!  The apples of the Obama administration have not fallen far from the tree that they grew on!

We say, once again: Congratulations, North Korea on your successful satellite launch!  May you have many more in the future!  You have every right to defend yourselves from those who have tortured and murdered your comrades, brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers in the past, and who threaten to do it again today!  You are right to fight them; your cause is the cause of every working-class and peasant man and woman who truly opposes capitalism and imperialism.

US/UN/NATO:  HANDS OFF NORTH KOREA AND CHINA!

The working class of the world must stand up and defend North Korea and China against any and all attempts by the imperialist, colonialist nations to launch military adventures of any kind against these Stalinist workers states.  However, we know that only workers revolutions here in the US and throughout the capitalist world that abolish the capitalist system and establish egalitarian workers governments in its place will be capable of bringing true world peace from the realm of fantasy into reality.  Anything less than world-wide workers revolution will never achieve world-wide peace.  World peace under capitalism is an impossibility: this greed-based system is, even as we speak, preparing for yet another world war to redivide the globe into new spheres of economic exploitation for the capitalists to plunder.  Either the world’s workers will take the guns and missiles away from the greedheads once and for all, or the capitalists will plunge the planet into a world war that will make all previous wars look like a mere prelude.

Workers of the World, Unite!

IWPCHI

What the Immediate Aftermath of Hiroshima Looked Like

These photographs were taken in Hiroshima immediately after the bomb exploded.  They show what nuclear war looks like from the perspective of the victims.  [Source: WordPress.com, Iconic Photos, “Hiroshima, August 6, 1945”]  It is not necessary to explain these images.  We append a copy of a statement made by the photographer Yoshito Matsushige describing his experiences that day.

The mushroom cloud rising over Hiroshima as seen from below.  Photographer unknown. 6 August 1945.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yoshito Matsushige was a 32 year old cameraman for the Chugoku Newspaper at that time. He was at his home in Midori-cho, 2.7kilometers from the hypocenter when the A-bomb was dropped. He walked around the city right after the bombing and took five photographs which have become important historical documents.

MATSUSHIGE:  “I had finished breakfast and was getting ready to go to the newspaper when it happened. There was a flash from the indoor wires as if lightening had struck. I didn’t hear any sound, how shall I say, the world around me turned bright white. And I was momentarily blinded as if a magnesium light had lit up in front of my eyes. Immediately after that, the blast came. I was bare from the waist up, and the blast was so intense, it felt like hundreds of needles were stabling me all at once. The blast grew large holes in the walls of the first and second floor. I could barely see the room because of all the dirt. I pulled my camera and the clothes issued by the military headquarters out from under the mound of the debris, and I got dressed. I thought I would go to either either the newspaper or to the headquarters. That was about 40 minutes after the blast. Near the Miyuki Bridge, there was a police box. Most of the victims who had gathered there were junior high school girls from the Hiroshima Girls Business School and the Hiroshima Junior High School No.1. they had been mobilized to evacuate buildings and they were outside when the bomb fell. Having been directly exposed to the heat rays, they were covered with blisters, the size of balls, on their backs, their faces, their shoulders and their arms. The blisters were starting to burst open and their skin hung down like rugs. ”

Crowd of junior high school girls, victims of attack on Hiroshima. 6 August 1945.
Photographer: Yoshito Matsushige

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Some of the children even have burns on the soles of their feet. They’d lost their shoes and run barefoot through the burning fire. When I saw this, I thought I would take a picture and I picked up my camera. But I couldn’t push the shutter because the sight was so pathetic. Even though I too was a victim of the same bomb, I only had minor injuries from glass fragments, whereas these people were dying. It was such a cruel sight that I couldn’t bring myself to press the shutter. Perhaps I hesitated there for about 20 minutes, but I finally summoned up the courage to take one picture. Then, I moved 4 or 5 meters forward to take the second picture. Even today, I clearly remember how the view finder was clouded over with my tears. I felt that everyone was looking at me and thinking angrily, ‘He’s taking our picture and will bring us no help at all.’ Still, I had to press the shutter, so I harden my heart and finally I took the second shot.”

Victims of US atomic bomb attack on Hiroshima immediately after the blast. “Most of the victims who had gathered there were junior high school girls from the Hiroshima Girls Business School and the Hiroshima Junior High School No.1.”   August 6, 1945.  Photographer: Yoshito Matsushige.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Those people must have thought me duly cold-hearted. Then, I saw a burnt streetcar which had just turned the corner at Kamiya-cho. There were passengers still in the car. I put my foot onto the steps of the car and I looked inside. There were perhaps 15 or 16 people in front of the car. They laid dead one on top of another. Kamiya-cho was very close to the hypocenter, about 200 meters away. The passengers had stripped them of all their clothes. They say that when you are terrified, you tremble and your hair stands on end. And I felt just this tremble when I saw this scene. I stepped down to take a picture and I put my hand on my camera. But I felt so sorry for these dead and naked people whose photo would be left to posterity that I couldn’t take the shot. Also, in those days we weren’t allowed to publish the photographs of corpses in the newspapers. After that, I walked around, I walked through the section of town which had been hit hardest. I walked for close to three hours. But I couldn’t take even one picture of that central area. There were other cameramen in the army shipping group and also at the newspaper as well. But the fact that not a single one of them was able to take pictures seems to indicate just how brutal the bombing actually was. I don’t pride myself on it, but it’s a small consolation that I was able to take at least five pictures.

Soldier at table with victims of US atomic bombing of Hiroshima, 6 August, 1945.
Photographer: Yoshito Matsushige

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shadow left on steps of bank where victim of US atomic bomb attack on Hiroshima was vaporized. 6 August, 1945
Photographer: Yoshito Matsushige

“During the war, air-raids took place practically every night. And after the war began, there were many foods shortages. Those of us who experienced all these hardships, we hope that such suffering will never be experienced again by our children and our grandchildren. Not only our children and grandchildren, but all future generations should not have to go through this tragedy. That is why I want young people to listen to our testimonies and to choose the right path, the path which leads to peace.”  [Source: AtomicArchive.com, “Testimony of Yoshito Matsushige”]

 

Additional sources:

http://pegasus.phys.saga-u.ac.jp/peace/matsushige.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoshito_Matsushige

 

IWPCHI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vicious Racism of US Capitalist Class Behind Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Korea, Vietnam – and China-bashing

The United States government has long spread the lie that it was a “regrettable necessity” that the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki “had to be dropped” in order to bring WWII to an end.  If it wasn’t for the A-bomb, they lie, the war would have gone on for years, requiring a full-scale ground assault on the Japanese mainland in which too many American lives would have been lost.  Even more obscenely, they spread the disgusting and obvious lie that dropping the A-bombs “saved lives”, when in fact, quite obviously, the opposite is true: almost 300,000 Japanese – the vast majority civilians – were incinerated in these two horrendous war crimes.

CNN, in the only video it seems to have produced in advance of this year’s commemoration of the 67th anniversary of arguably one of the greatest war crimes in history – the atomic bombing of the city of Hiroshima – has the last surviving member of the crew of the Enola Gay, Captain Theodore “Dutch” Van Kirk, repeat these long-discredited lies for the benefit of a new generation of Americans.

“It would have been another… years before the war had have been over.  The point is: We dropped the bombs and saved a lot of lives.  We… and the Japanese… would have had a bloodbath if we had invaded Japan.  And they knew we were coming; they knew where we were gonna land; and they had their guns waiting for us.”  [Source: CNN, “Last Enola Gay member recalls Hiroshima”, 4 August, 2012].

What once was a world-wide day of mourning and remembrance of the atrocities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki has become, in the US, a thinly-veiled racist repudiation of the idea that there ever was an alternative to incinerating over a quarter of a million human beings.  The US news media has apparently tired of covering these particular war crimes; this year it was the so-called “mass murders” in Colorado and Wisconsin that was the wall-to-wall focus of the capitalist press.  The real mass murderers get the alibi that they “had no choice” but to kill 300,000; they walk away scot-free and tell lies about the crimes they committed.  Meanwhile, the Colorado “Batman” killer will have no opportunity to do any such thing, no matter how obviously insane he is.  And the nation hypocritically wrings its hands and wonders aloud where the impulse for “mass murder” comes from!

Completely ignored in the coverage of WWII in the Pacific is the virulent racism that animated the Allied war effort against Japan.  Kirk lies when he claims in his CNN interview that he and the crew of Enola Gay didn’t celebrate when they dropped the bomb on Hiroshima:  “But there was nothing celebratory about it at all… or anything… we’re just dropping another bomb.” That’s baloney.  First lie: he and the entire all-white crew of the Enola Gay knew in advance that what they were dropping on Hiroshima wasn’t “just… another bomb”.  They had been practicing for weeks making a fast getaway in their B-29 from what everyone knew was going to be anything BUT a typical bombing run.  It’s also impossible to believe that these white men from the Jim Crow US who had been immersed in racist anti-Japanese propaganda from the moment they signed up for military service were not themselves racist.  Tibbets, the pilot of the Enola gay, never apologized for his role in the bombing of Hiroshima; “In a 1975 interview he said: ‘I’m proud that I was able to start with nothing, plan it, and have it work as perfectly as it did …. I sleep clearly every night.’  In March 2005, he stated, ‘If you give me the same circumstances, I’d do it again.’ [Source: Wikipedia, “Paul Tibbets” ]   The bombardier on the mission,  Thomas Ferebee, was from North Carolina.   He was quoted in the book “Enola Gay” by Gordon Thomas and Max Morgan Witts as saying, decades after the bombing: “it was a job that had to be done”.    Van Kirk told a reporter in 1975: “Under the same circumstances — and the key words are ‘the same circumstances’ — yes, I would do it again.”  We have no reason to doubt that the majority of the crew of the Enola Gay was as racist as their peers were in the Jim Crow U.S.A. of the 1940s.   Just look at this selection of disgusting racist anti-Japanese propaganda posters put out by the US Government in WWII.This is the kind of sick brainwashing propaganda that every serviceman and woman – and every US citizen – had to endure in the United States during World War Two.  Is it any wonder that the crew of the Enola Gay felt that their war crime was justified “under the circumstances”?

Anti-Asian racism in the US was nothing new; anti-Chinese racism in the “good old days” of the “Golden West” was as common as dirt.  The savagery meted out to Asian immigrant workers in the US in the 1800s is a well-known historical fact.    That it developed from the racism inherent in the white, Anglo-Saxon, protestant capitalist class of the United States – inherited from their ancestors in Great Britain – is something glossed over if the subject is ever even raised in US history books.

Racism has been a part of the makeup of the American character since the Mayflower.   It is inherent in the belief of European Christians that only those who believed in Jesus Christ would go to heaven and that everyone else on the planet was a “heathen” who must either convert or spend eternity in hell.  This arrogant attitude “informed” European contact with people outside of Europe ever since Europeans “rediscovered” the world hundreds of years after the collapse of the Roman Empire.  The different skin colors, cultural practices and strange religious practices were all taken by white Europeans as signs of the inferiority of non-European races that were derived from their Godlessness.  Rather than attempt to understand these strange cultures, the better-armed and warlike Europeans simply took to massacring them, using their supposed God-given martial and racial superiority as an excuse for the murder of tens of millions of “inferior” human beings.

In the US, racism against Native Americans led initially to attempts to enslave these “godless and inferior” people.  When enslaving the aboriginal peoples of the New World proved impractical, and as US agricultural development moved further south into climates too hot and malarial for white workers to survive in, the same concepts of racial and religious superiority were employed to justify the slave trade.  Subsequently, a whole series of fake sciences were developed to “prove” the racial inferiority of the enslaved Africans and allowed the enslavers to sleep better at night.  Before long, American racial ideologies justifying the genocide of Native Americans as well as the brutalities of the slave system had developed to such an extravagant degree that they were extended to cover all non-white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant peoples, from the Chinese  to the Irish.  Thus the white-skinned population of the United States has been propagandized to hate everyone not white and Protestant from the 1600s until today.   Today’s institutionalized racism is more covert and is couched in cautious terminology, like

The haughty and racist attitude of the European nations and the young United States government towards the peoples of Asia were embodied in a series of “Unequal Treaties”  imposed on both China and Japan in the early to mid 1800s.  China was a closed country to foreigners until the British Navy – and British Indian army units – smashed their way into the country on behalf of the  British East India Company   in the First Opium War  in 1839-1842.   The British were “suffering” from a trade imbalance with China and sought to rectify the situation by importing opium from India – where the East India Co. had established a monopoly on the export of the drug – into China, where the drug was unknown.   The importation of opium caused an epidemic of narcotic addiction in China, which the Chinese government tried to suppress by what was perhaps the world’s first “War on Drugs” – they attempted to enact a permanent ban on drug shipments to China.  The British retaliated against this domestic policy of the Chinese by attacking China.  China, completely outgunned by the British had no choice but to negotiate a settlement, and was forced to agree to a series of humiliating treaties, forcing open Chinese ports to British trade.  The United States got into the act in 1844, signing the Treaty of Wanghia, in which the United States exacted a promise from the Chinese government that any Americans caught breaking Chinese laws would be tried by US Consular officials rather than by the local judiciary.  It also provided for the establishment of Christian churches and missionary schools in China – to educate the “heathen” Chinese.

[To Be Continued]

IWPCHI

Remembering US War Crimes – Hiroshima and Nagasaki, August 6 and 9, 1945

Hiroshima before the A-bomb, 1945

As recently as 15 or 20 years ago, it was common in the United States for the national news, both print and broadcast, to take the time to commemorate the mass murders of Japanese civilians committed by the United States in August, 1945 at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  The news annually broadcast an obligatory item including a brief mention of the “regrettable necessity” of dropping the bombs in order to end the war in Japan.  The horrifying video of the bomb exploding, along with a couple of images of shadows on walls and a woman’s back showing the pattern of her dress stenciled onto her skin by the searing heat of the world’s first wartime use of nuclear weapons were always shown to illustrate the terrifying power of nuclear weapons.

Now, it seems that the US government – and the citizenry – have “gotten over” their moral pangs of regret for committing two of the most terrible war crimes in world history: the deliberate annihilation of a quarter of a million people, the vast majority, civilians.  The US news media was largely silent about the commemoration of the 67th anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing yesterday.

On August 5th, CNN posted a video of an interview with “the last surviving crew member” of the Enola Gay, the B-29 that dropped the bomb on Hiroshima.  This is how Hiroshima looks through the twisted lens of the CNN editorial team: “how did the Hiroshima bombing affect the crew members of the plane that dropped the bomb?”

Hiroshima after the A-bomb, August 6, 1945

The video is typical of the current genre of Hiroshima and Nagasaki memorials broadcast in the US the past 20 years or so.  Where once there was an obligatory weak showing of anguish over whether it was acceptable that the US government dropped the bomb on a nation that was so close to surrendering anyway or if it had been a terrible miscalculation.  Many commentators once made the point that if the Hiroshima bombing was a regrettable necessity, certainly there was no excuse for Nagasaki.

Nowadays, however, the memorials revolve around a single, long-disproved myth: that if the A-bombs hadn’t been dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the war would have continued for a long time and the US would have been forced to invade Japan as it had invaded Normandy, taking massive casualties and causing far more than 300,000 deaths.

The myth gets a full retelling by Captain Theodore “Dutch” Van Kirk in the CNN video.  “”It would have been another… years before the war had have been over.  The point is: We dropped the bombs and saved a lot of lives.  We… and the Japanese… would have had a bloodbath if we had invaded Japan.  And they knew we were coming; they knew where we were gonna land; and they had their guns waiting for us.” [Source: CNN, “Crew member who dropped atomic bomb on Hiroshima shares his story”, 5 August, 2012].

Hiroshima radiation burn victim

“Dutch” Van Kirk’s rather strikingly passionless version has all the elements of the original government version.  And like another famous American nicknamed “Dutch”, Van Kirk seems to have forgotten a few details over the years.  He remembers turning “on a westerly heading” as a map shows the Enola Gay’s trajectory heading north-northwest almost all the way from its takeoff on Tinian Island and then turning turning north to north-northeast ;  he also doesn’t emphasize that his plane wasn’t the only B-29 to fly across the Pacific to Hiroshima that day: 2 other bombers had made the same run.  One,“The Great Artiste”, was carrying instruments to measure the effects of the blast; another,Victor 91 carried photographers and scientists who were to document and observe the explosion.  He is also either not a student of history at all or he’s a liar when he revoltingly says that “we dropped the bombs and saved a lot of lives”.

Total destruction in Hiroshima

No, Mr. Van Kirk, you didn’t “save a lot of lives”.  You murdered almost 300,000 people in cold blood – most of them civilians.  And it is quite absurd to state that by killing 300,000 people you “saved lives” that would have been lost if the war had continued.  The US military, racist to the core against Japanese and Chinese people had chosen four targets – all of which were selected due to their large concentrations of industrial workers and civilians.

What every schoolchild and every adult in the United States must know, and what the US Government and the capitalist press will never tell anyone is that the story about the “need” to drop the A-bomb on Japan in 1945 is pure horseshit.  To make that claim back in 1946 perhaps could have been excused due to the massive secrecy surrounding the two attacks; but to tell that story in 2012 when everyone who takes 5 minutes to look into it can quickly find out what a bald-faced lie it is, well that is nothing short of making an attempt to falsify history.

Boy with burned back and legs

The proof that the US did not “need” to drop even one A-bomb on Japan – and that the US Government knew this in July of 1945 –  is manifold, extensive and easy to find on the Internet.  And we will present as much of it as we can right here as part of our commemoration of two of the worst US War Crimes ever: the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The working class of the United States must never forget the fact that the US government – run at the time by the so-called “friend of labor” Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt – did everything it could to whip up extreme racist hatred of the Japanese people during WWII.  From racist children’s cartoons to disgusting propaganda posters; from radio shows to the round-up and imprisonment of over 100,000 US citizens of Japanese descent, racist US policies were imbued throughout the society from bottom to top for the duration of the war and beyond.

Shadows on Bridge in Hiroshima

This systematic dehumanization of the Japanese people paved the way to a whole series of savage war crimes committed by the government of the United States of America in which hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians were wantonly slaughtered in massive firebombings cities known to be composed largely of non-military targets.    All the racist propaganda had one aim: to prepare the workers of the United States to allow the US Government to commit any kind of military atrocity anywhere in the world so that the racist US ruling class could emerge from the smoldering ruins – of other people’s countries – victorious at the end of WWII.

It is the responsibility of those who would lead the long-overdue struggle to overthrow the racist U.S. capitalist class to always remind workers of the long and bloody history of the US bourgeoisie.  From the Salem Witch Trials and murders to the genocide of the Native Americans; from the horrors of the slave trade to the betrayal of Reconstruction and the rise of Jim Crow; from the Ku Klux Klan to the Japanese Internment; from Hiroshima to the Korean and Vietnamese Wars; right on down to today’s anti-Muslim hatred and the continued racist treatment of African-Americans and immigrant workers; racism is like a blood-red thread running through American history.  For people of color, there never were any “good old days” in racist America.  And all that racism leads, inexorably, to savagery like the mass-murders at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

That is why the Independent Workers Party says today: “Workers of the World, Unite!”  We can either fight for a future in which we have a civilized world where all the working people of all lands, ethnicities and creeds can live in harmony and mutual respect and love, or we can have a world like we have had for the past several hundred years: one in which racist hatred has led to barbaric acts being committed again and again against the “enemy of the moment”.   Which future, fellow worker, will you choose to bring into existence for your great-grandchildren to live in?

IWPCHI

[to be continued]