End the Nuclear Option, Lesson of Hiroshima
The United States dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. This brought World War II to a sudden end. The immense and previously unimaginably destructive power of the atom had been demonstrated. In the following years several governments joined the arms race, while internationally, efforts were focused on constraining the threat of nuclear weapons proliferation. The current legacy of Hiroshima at best is the dismantlement of our main nuclear arsenals and a comprehensive test ban treaty in sight. We, at Georgia WAND, also fought hard for the Isakson vote for reinstatement for the New S.T.A.R.T (STrategic Arms Reduction Treaty), though battle doesn’t stop there. There are many forces in the United States pushing aggressively to move a nuclear agenda forward, including the Heritage Foundation which continues to beat the drum for increased military spending, new nuclear weapons, and the resumption of nuclear weapons testing.
Globalization good or bad, social media, and natural world events continue to bring human borders closer and closer to one another …and more reliant on each other. When our banking systems and economic markets fluctuate together on events happening across seas, when a nuclear power plant explosion in Japan jet streams contamination to the west coast of the United States, when a Icelandic volcano erupts sending billows of black ash into the sky, shutting down international travel for weeks, when human rights violations in Syria are captured on a cell phone and sent around the world in a matter of seconds, we are no longer separate from each other, but inextricably linked.
The United States can no longer think and respond from a single-minded, militaristic, national defense point of view. Together, collectively as neighboring nations, we must take a stand against nuclear warfare. Hiroshima is not an option. Not ever again.
Amanda Hill-Attkisson serves as the Managing Director of Georgia WAND. She is an experienced organizer on environmental justice and women's empowerment issues and a dedicated anti-nuclear and peace activist. She brings a strong technical background to her work, as an electrical engineer who was previously employed by NASA.