Barack Obama will go down in history as the first in many ways. The first black President of the United States, the first President to visit Cuba after the revolution, the first presidential candidate to bet on the social network. But he did not become President, who says sorry first for the innumerable sufferings which the United States brought countries and peoples around the world.
Now the main theme in the American media is the upcoming visit of Barack Obama to Hiroshima is also the first in history. Previously there has been John Kerry, who said that “I will never forget what he saw,” and in 2008 the site of the first nuclear bombing was visited by the speaker of the house of representatives Nancy Pelosi. The American and Japanese journalists and politicians discuss not so much the fact of the visit, but is it worth it to consider an apology for the bombing on 6 and 9 August 1945, the total number of victims of that, including deaths from radiation sickness and other effects of a nuclear attack amounted to almost 300,000 people.
“I know that people will consider the visit as an excuse, but it’s wrong”
Despite the fact that the Second world war became the bloodiest in human history, until 6 August it was conducted solely conventional weapons. Chemical weapons, with rare exceptions, have not been applied, despite the fact that the means of delivery in the decades since the First world war, was improved considerably. None of the parties even on the verge of a military collapse had not used the weapon of mass destruction, knowing full well that opponents will do the same – and there can be no winners. In addition, the same chemical weapons were not only contrary to basic notions of humanism, but also the Nazi concept of “Lebensraum” – scorched by the chemistry of the earth cannot be treated as such.
The US’s attack on Hiroshima and Nagasaki completely overturned established by the time the rules of warfare. Nuclear weapons made the losses among civilians are not “collateral”, and the main damage caused to countries in armed conflict. In fact, it was the completion of the transition from the “classical” wars were mainly between soldiers, total war, total destruction of the population, for the transformation of the territory of the enemy in unfit accommodation.
After we dropped the bomb instantly killed nearly 100 thousand people. In the photo a few survivors walk past the remaining buildings two days after bambikill point of view of Washington on the events so far is the thesis that the bombings were necessary, as they hastened Japan’s surrender and allowed to avoid unnecessary casualties among the allies, including the USSR, and among the Japanese. An alternative view is that after the entry into war of the Soviet Union, the United States feared that in Asia, as in Europe, with Moscow have excessive, in their view, “sharing”. Initially it was planned that Japan would be occupied on the model of Germany – different countries with the creation of occupation zones. But in the end, the Soviet Union was satisfied with the return of Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands, and the occupation of Japan, the United States spent alone. Some believe that it is still ongoing.
Actually, that’s why the authors of leading publications such as The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, discuss how would the American President and bombing the place to visit, and not apologize in this case. “What can Mr. Obama say in Hiroshima?” – asks the NYT in an editorial. And says that perhaps he chose this place to announce new initiatives on disarmament and a complete moratorium on nuclear testing. Apologies about the authors clarify that the Japanese themselves officially, they do not require, and therefore do not need to apologize.
The second article in the NYT on this topic entitled “Obama’s Visit awakens the ghosts of Hiroshima”. Author David Sanger examines in detail both popular point of view on the bombing – and that it was necessary, and that it was senseless cruelty. Sam Sanger, of course, believes that Japan deserved the bombing of his aggression towards other countries, the Nanjing massacre and other violations of the rules of war.
Most importantly, what Sanger writes, – those who remember Hiroshima, there is less and less, as other witnesses of the Second world. A dispute as to whether the use of the bomb justified moves more and more into theoretical form. And to apologize becomes as if no one died.
In turn, the WSJ focuses on the fact that “survivors of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki welcomed Obama’s visit”, since I hope that he will listen to their story, and the visit will help to stop the spread of nuclear weapons. This is one of the survivors, 81-year-old of Yoshihiro Haruta says that “it would be nice to hear an apology, but doesn’t look like it will happen.”
Even South Korean politics, still don’t forgive Japan’s 35-year occupation (an apology for her, by the way, also was not sympathetic to Obama’s visit, agreeing with the thesis that it is committed to nuclear disarmament.
Of course, nuclear disarmament – something important and necessary. Accumulated arsenals are still there for repeated assured destruction of the entire population of the Earth. To make statements on nuclear disarmament in the place where a nuclear weapon was first applied, is logical and reasonable. But to do it, not admitting his guilt for the fact that the atomic demon was ever released in our world, at least unconvincing, as high – disrespectful to the memory of the victims.
The US never apologized to foreign countries for the captured Mexican lands, not for the nuclear bombing of Japan, nor for the chemical bombing of Vietnam, nor for the downed Iranian plane with 290 passengers on Board. I apologize for not Panama, Grenada, Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya. They only apologize to their fellow citizens: for many years of segregation and slavery before blacks, for the deportation – before the descendants of Japanese migrants. For the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani – before Hawaiians, “for numerous cases of violence, abuse and neglect” – before the Indians. However, each time the apology emphasizes that it is not a legal admission of guilt – in order to avoid paying compensation. Just a “goodwill gesture”.
In relation to foreign countries the US is not even ready for such a gesture. America doesn’t apologize – the rule change which Barack Obama can not. His most likely successors also believe in American exceptionalism, albeit in different ways: Clinton believes that America is sinless must carry through the world the light of democracy and the tramp – what a sinless America needs to think more about themselves and not about the allies-the freeloaders. Space for no excuse in the program of any of the major candidates.
Therefore Obama’s visit to Hiroshima would be his last opportunity to do something “first” that will further help him to make more money on the lecture – traditional fishery retired American presidents.