Saturday, August 07, 2004

A Message of Peace from Kenyans to the People of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

We send Salaams of Amani to everyone reading this.

Salaam is a greeting which means “peace”.

And Amani also means “peace”.

This is a pacific message to a pacific people found in the middle of Asia-Pacific.

We are talking about and to the Japanese people.

Two cities in this ancient culture have come to symbolize the humankind’s aspirations for world peace.

And there is no bigger day than today, August 6 on the international peace calendar.

Let us first introduce the two cities.

Here is one view of Hiroshima:

And here is a second one:

Here is one look at Nagasaki:

And this is a second image:

Do you know the story of the Little Boy and the Fat Man?

It is NOT a funny story.

Here they are:

Little Boy is the name of the very first atomic bomb ever dropped on a human population.

And Fat Man seen below:

Was the name of the second.

Do you know anything about Enola Gay?

It is the name of an American military plane:

This is the story of Enola Gay and her infamous pilot:

click here

At 8:16 am, August 6, 1945, Enola Gay started on its return journey

After unleashing Little Boy on the unsuspecting people of Hiroshima.

This is what she left behind:

click here

Three days later it was the turn of the people of Nagasaki to welcome the Fat Man.

This is what he left behind:

click here

You can read more about the so called Manhattan Project here:

click here

If you click on the many images found in the link below, you will see how visual artists have preserved the memory of the Japanese holocaust:

click here

Do you know what happens when an atomic bomb is dropped on a human population?

Apart from the obvious immediate impact of hundreds of thousands of human lives lost and hundreds of buildings pulverized there are other, for example, health effects.

Click here to read more about the early effect of radiation:

click here

Today, Friday, August 06, 2004, the people of Hiroshima issued the following Peace Declaration:

click here

A couple months ago, the Mayor of Hiroshima sent the following protest letter to President George W Bush of the United States:

click here

And it is just one of many protest letters:

click here

Kids in Hiroshima have built a “Peace Station”:

click here

And find out more about the planned Peace Boulevard:

click here

Do you know this man?

He is called Dr Hukwe Zawose and he is considered Tanzania’s foremost traditional musician. Find out more about him by clicking on the link below:

click here

Listen to his peace song, “Sisitizo la Amani” that he dedicated to the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki:

click here to listen to “Sisitizo la Amani”

Which helps to introduce our own humble poetic gift to the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It is a piece on peace composed by Onyango Oloo on August 6, 2004:

six decades short
by one year
have elapsed
since a terrible surrender
was bombed out of the japanese
enola gay
more than
two hundred
and fifty thousand
children, men and women
who had no quarrel
with their american people
fifty nine years
have gone by
since that terrible
crime against humanity
the criminals
still walk free
flying over
other skies
their packets
of mass destruction
on other invaded,
subjugated and subhumanized people

six decades short
of a solitary year
enola gay
is fifty nine years old today
august 6th, 1945
was the unwanted birthday of
the japanese holocaust
hiroshima and nagasaki
is where
the tragic remembrance parties
are being held
a somber memorial with
no piñatas, no balloons, no cakes
only candles, paintings and songs
to recall that
morbid murderous mushroom
that announced
the arrival of the ultimate
suicide weapon
that could erase
every last one of us
on this blue marble
to eternal extinction
should a crazy
seven star general
in an imperialist uniform
gleefully decide
to take the bush doctrine
to its next logical step
and push
that dreaded button

thermonuclear meltdown
of the human race,
its achievements and conquests
is what we contemplate every year
as the pentagon
and their haliburton like corporate buddies
push for
the next smart bomb
the next computer guided missile
the next gizmo fitted killer helicopter

means peace in kiswahili
as it does
in arabic
and a host of other tongues
as we fight for peace
we marvel
at the obscenity
of the war criminals
who invade
entire countries
in order to impose
their own militarized version of peace

like the peace
currently prevailing
in kabul and kandahar
a peace that
is guaranteed by
women hating mullahs
who are clones of the taliban
but wear different head gear
like the peace
in falluja and nassiriya
the peace in
the west bank and nablus
the peace in darfur

how can we
achieve world peace
when war criminals
like kissinger
are given the nobel prize
and sent
on peacemaking missions
how can we achieve peace when
cynical thugs like ariel sharon
bomb to smithereens palestinian homes
and blame the victims for grenades
and missiles unloaded on them
how can we achieve world peace
when mass killers
like blair and bush
are seen by their supporters
for having made
the world safer for
democracy and progress
after demolishing
the seven thousand year
legacy of iraq’s contribution
to world civilization

on this friday in august
our thoughts
are with the japanese
in hiroshima and nagasaki
on this sixth day of august
our thoughts
are with the survivors
and descendants
of the japanese holocaust

what happened
to the war criminals
who dropped the atomic bomb
on gap toothed s
chool children and
dozing grandmothers
what happened
to the killers
of factory workers
and the murderers
of shop keepers

amani duniani
is what we say
peace in the world
is what we mean
amani duniani
is what we want
world peace
is what we are fighting for

to the japanese
we say
stand by you
in fighting for peace
in keeping alive
the memory of
hiroshima and nagasaki
to residents of
hiroshima and nagasaki
we say
we are with you in spirit
because we know that
mombasa, kisumu,
nakuru, lunga lunga
busia, kakamega,
embu and other places
in our country kenya
could be
future hiroshimas
and potential nagasakis
and that is why
we kenyans
join the japanese
in fighting for peace in the world
amani duniani
amani duniani
tupiganie amani dunia

let us fight
for peace in the world
even if it means
picking up arms
to fight the war
that will end
all wars….

onyango oloo

5:00 pm est
friday, august 06, 2004

1 comment:

Ms. Omoro said...

Great history and a beautiful poem.

I hope that the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki well as they still try to move on past what happened to them not long ago.

I pray for world peace, even though it requires only simple things to be done, yet others don't wish to take the first steps towards that.