Before the tragedy in Hiroshima, when the atomic bomb explosion in August 6, 1945, swept everything within five hundred kilometers and took thousands of lives, leaving many others to die afterwards, Hiroshima was a bustling castle town. Today, its appearance has changed and the city is bustling again, but once a year the joyful buzz is substituted by grief and sorrow in memory of those, who died during World War II and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Since the tragedy, many books and papers have been written on the subject and many authors have tried to find the answer to the question: "Was the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki really necessary to stop Japan fighting?" The answers are different, since many writers do not want to blame important people involved in the mission, though the only conclusion is that this horrible experience must never happen again.
Today, Hiroshima and Nagasaki are striving for peace. After the bombing, Hiroshima launched a campaign, petitioning the national government for support in "the construction of a city of peace", which has resulted in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial City Reconstruction Law. Hence, several memorial sites have been created in the city.
The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park is a memorial to the people, who died in the atomic bombing; its aim is also to help bring about the ban on nuclear weapons and the realization of the world peace. The Peace Memorial Park includes the Nakajima Island and the strip of land across the Motoyasu River. At one end of the park there is the atomic bomb dome, one of the few buildings that remained standing after the atomic bomb explosion. Not far from the dome there is a statue "Children's Peace Monument", erected in the memory of a twelve year old girl Sadako Sasaki, a survivor of the atomic explosion, who died of the radiation disease. Supposedly, you know her story of one thousand cranes that she wanted to make to extend her life. People bring daily colorful origami cranes to the statue and there are thousands of them nearby.
Probably, people, who visit the Peace Memorial Museum, will remember the Pope John Paul's message at the entrance of the Peace Memorial Museum. His words are inscribed on a large stone
"War is the work of men.
War is a destruction of a human life.
War is death.
To remember the past is to
commit oneself to the future.
To remember Hiroshima is to
abhor the nuclear war,
to remember Hiroshima is to
commit oneself to peace."
The museum contains film clips, photos and narratives of Hiroshima atomic bombing. Silence reigns in the museum, since people are not able to speak in sadness that the sights arouse. It is worth noting that there are expositions in the museum, showing Japan recognizing its role in the war and in the atomic bombing, called "Lessons of History".
It the center of the park there is a pond and a cenotaph of the names of all people, who died due to the exposure to the Atomic bomb. There are hundred and eighty one thousand names, inscribed on the cenotaph and the Flame of Peace is nearby.
There are many more monuments in and around the Hiroshima Peace Memorial park, embodied with a common desire to show the tragedy brought about by nuclear weapons and to realize the eternal world peace.
Visiting the Hiroshima Memorial Park is actually painful and emotionally moving, making everyone speculate on many things, such as war and death that are of no need in our society.