The bombing of the Japanese City of Nagasaki with the Fat man plutonium Bomb device on August 9.1945, Caused terrible human devastation and helped end World War II. The explosion immediately killed an estimated 80,000 people, tens of thousands more would later die of radiation exposure. The suffering goes beyond the survivors. The International Red Cross has identified further humanitarian consequences of a nuclear explosion.

The risk of accidental or international use of nuclear weapons remain significant. As we commemorate the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, let’s remember what a nuclear bomb can do and pledge to work together to make sure no other towns suffer the same pain and devastation. News of Hiroshima destruction was only slowly understood in Tokyo. Still, the impact was devastating, particularly because people had heard the all-clear after an earlier aircraft raid warning, and had left their shelters. Everything within a mile of ground zero was annihilated. Fourteen thousand homes burst into flames. People close to the blast were vaporized; those unlucky enough to be just outside that radius received horrific burns and, there and further out radiation poisoning that would eventually kill them. From the 1950s the power of the atom was harnessed increasingly for peaceful uses, notably electricity generation and medicine. Nowhere is the transition from weapons of destruction to power for good better displayed than Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan which have come to depend substantially on electricity from nuclear energy.

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