CND mark 70th an­niver­sary of atomic bomb­ings

Rutherglen Reformer - - NEWS - Jonathan Ged­des

Ruther­glen mem­bers of the Cam­paign For Nu­clear Dis­ar­ma­ment gath­ered re­cently to mark the 70th an­niver­sary of the atomic bomb­ings of Hiroshima and Na­gasaki.

The som­bre oc­ca­sion saw the group lay flow­ers at the peace tree on Ruther­glen Main Street.

Around 40 peo­ple were in at­ten­dance, in­clud­ing Mar­garet Ferrier MP.

There was mu­sic on the day too, while lo­cal res­i­dent Kimeko Young also at­tended.

She was a young girl liv­ing in the neigh­bour­ing city of Okayama when Hiroshima was dev­as­tated.

CND’s Su­san Martin said: “There was be­tween 30 and 40 peo­ple there which was quite a good turnout. My friend Kimeko was there, she made the pa­per cranes and hung them on the tree. It’s known in Ja­pan as a sign of good health and good luck.

“We had two mu­si­cians there, play­ing the guitar and the flute - they sang a cou­ple of songs about Hiroshima and Na­gasaki, and they also sang We Shall Over­come at the end of the cer­e­mony.”

The group also looked to the fu­ture, and Su­san be­lieves that Scot­land can lead the way in abol­ish­ing nu­clear weapons.

She said: “The Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter re­cently asked not just to re­mem­ber Hiroshima and Na­gasaki, but also for all coun­tries to work to­wards nu­clear dis­ar­ma­ment, so that’s what we will work to­wards - we want Scot­land to be the first coun­try to go down in history as do­ing away with nu­clear weapons.

“It’s the only safe way. At the peace tree we read out some of the ac­counts of what peo­ple suf­fered, and it was re­ally hor­ren­dous what they went through. Now we have them on the Clyde, and some­times go­ing through Ruther­glen.

“Hiroshima might be at the other end of the world, but nu­clear weapons are a prob­lem on our doorstep.”

David McCler­mont of the Ruther­glen Scot­tish So­cial­ist Party added: “I’d like to thank Su­san Martin and CND for or­gan­is­ing this event.

“Nu­clear weapons have no place in a civilised world, events like this keep alive the true hor­ror they rep­re­sent and help en­sure they stay silent un­til we can rid the world of them.”

The drop­ping of the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima killed 100,000 peo­ple in­stantly and com­pletely de­stroyed the city.

Many thou­sands more were killed by ra­di­a­tion sick­ness and from wounds that would not heal.

In the af­ter­math, ra­dioac­tive black rain fell on the city.

A sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tion oc­curred in Na­gasaki only three days later, this time with 40,000 deaths.

The peace tree was planted in Ruther­glen in 1987.


Kimeko Young on the day

Cer­e­mony There was a good turnout at the peace tree

Speaker Mar­garet Ferrier spoke at the cer­e­mony

On Song There was mu­sic on the day

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