Seventy years ago, the United States dropped the world’s first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, killing an estimated 70,000 people in the highest death toll from a single weapon. Just a few days later, another 40,000 civilians would die in the U.S. bombing of Nagasaki, Japan.
The anniversary comes just as Japan is divided over Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push to pass unpopular legislation to expand the country’s military role internationally, a year after his Cabinet’s decision to loosen Japan’s war-renouncing constitution by adopting a new interpretation of it.
American University professor Peter Kuznick spoke with CCTV America’s Anand Naidoo on the Heat on Thursday and shared some of his thoughts about the dropping of the atomic bomb and the push for re-militarization in Japan.
Kuznick co-authored with Oliver Stone the 10 part Showtime documentary film series and book “The Untold History of the United States” and offers an uncommon view of the atomic bomb and Japan:
1. “The atomic bomb was either militarily unnecessary or morally reprehensible.”
Professor Peter Kuznick says dropping of A-bomb was unnecessaryWhat this American academic has to say about Japan dropping the atomic bomb may surprise. Watch more of Peter Kuznick, director of nuclear studies at American University, tonight on the Heat at 7 p.m. eastern, 7 a.m. Beijing time.
2. “The real target of the bomb was the Soviet Union.”
Peter Kuznick describes the real target of the atomic bombAmerican University professor Peter Kuznick describes what he says was the real target of the atomic bomb in 1945. What he says may surprise you.
3. “The Japanese were initially welcomed as liberators [in Asia] because they were taking over from Western colonialists… but they were so cruel and oppressive in those countries that they were widely hated.”
Peter Kuznick describes Japanese treatment of Asia in World War IIAmerican University professor Peter Kuznick describes Japanese cruelty in Asia in World War II and current opposition in Asia towards Japan’s efforts to remilitarize.
4. “Initially we imposed a very democratic radical reform on Japan… Japan would ban the use of warfare and offensive military forces. Now we’re supporting Abe in remilitarizing Japan… so we’ve had a complete reversal.”
Peter Kuznick says U.S. support of Japanese remilitarization is wrongAmerican University professor Peter Kuznick believes United States should not support Japan in remilitarization efforts.
5. “[Obama] marched against nuclear weapons in Central Park as a Columbia student in 1982… Obama is now calling for the revitalization of America’s nuclear capabilities.”
Pater Kuznick says Obama has retreated on his anti-nuclear stanceAmerican University professor Peter Kuznick says Obama has disappointed the public when it comes to nuclear arms.
6. “Killing innocent women and children is a war crime, threatening all of humanity with extinction… goes far far worse.”