「Seventy-one years ago,on a bright…」
On every continent the history of civilization is filled with war, whether driven by scarcity of grain or hunger for gold, compelled by nationalist fervor or religious zeal. Empires have risen and fallen, peoples have been subjugated and liberated, and at each juncture innocents have suffered -- a countless toll, their names forgotten by time.
The World War that reached its brutal end in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was fought among the wealthiest and most powerful of nations. Their civilizations had given the world great cities and magnificent art. Their thinkers had advanced ideas of justice and harmony and truth, and yet the war grew out of the same base instinct for domination or conquest that had caused conflicts among the simplest tribes, an old pattern amplified by new capabilities and without new constraints.
In the span of a few years some 60 million people would die: men, women, children -- no different than us, shot, beaten, marched, bombed, jailed, starved, gassed to death.
There are many sites around the world that chronicle this war -- memorials that tell stories of courage and heroism, graves and empty camps that echo of unspeakable depravity.