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Letters to the Editor

Nuclear threat

July 30, 2012

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To the editor:

Aug. 6 will be the 67th anniversary of the nuclear attack on Hiroshima, Japan. As it has done for many years, the Lawrence Coalition for Peace and Justice will sponsor a memorial vigil at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 6 at Ninth and Massachusetts streets to remember the many who died at Hiroshima but also to remind us all that nuclear weapons remain a serious threat to world safety. Despite the occasional disarmament treaties, Russia and the U.S. still maintain huge and very expensive arsenals of nuclear warheads and bombs. This malevolent technology has spread to other countries, Pakistan being the most worrisome, and various nuclear materials left over from the Cold War remain unaccounted for or in questionable security. Our nuclear weapons certainly are no defense against terrorists.

Incidentally, the white and black rocket-like object on display at Centennial Park for many years is the shell of a Polaris missile. This was a submarine-launched missile carrying nuclear warheads with a power up to 80 times that of the Hiroshima bomb. Our Polaris missile easily could have destroyed any major city in the world and killed millions of its residents. It is ironic that we went to Iraq in a futile search for weapons of mass destruction but could find them right here in our town. The next time you see our missile, think of obliterated cities, vaporized humans, burned and irradiated children.

Comments

Bob Harvey 1 year, 8 months ago

KSlib, wouldn't it be wonderful if we could all live in a world of children holding hands singing "I want to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony"? Sadly that is not the case, regardless of how much we would like it to be.

War, sadly, is sometimes the answer. At times one must stand up to the bullies and despots. Freedom is something pretty spectacular, however so many take it for granted. An expression I most like is, "For those that fought for it freedom has a flavor the protected can never know."

Regret war and condemn it all you like because it is horrible. No one in the right mind enjoys going to war. But thankfully some are willing to protect those left behind.

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Liberty275 1 year, 8 months ago

My Father served in the Pacific in WW2. Without the Japanese surrender following the demonstration of what they had coming, he may very well had died.

Hold hands, sing songs and vigil all you want. It's a free country.

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jman785 1 year, 8 months ago

When I see the polaris shell I think of BBQ chicken... Yummers!!!!

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Rex Hargis 1 year, 8 months ago

Roe-the middle name of Harry S Truman is "S" not "S.". It stood for nothing- "S" was his middle name.

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KansasLiberal 1 year, 8 months ago

If some other country would use nuclear weapons against their enemy, would Americans call THAT a war crime?

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tbaker 1 year, 8 months ago

In the summer of 1945, GEN George C. Marshall briefed President Truman on the casualty estimates for the invasion of mainland Japan set for November of 1946. The Joint Chiefs of Staff were not in agreement. Estimates ranged from 200,000 to 500,000. Marshall told the President that he believed 1 million was a more accurate estimate with at least the same number of dead and wounded Japanese.

Casualties (dead and wounded) from the two atomic bombs were ~150,000 at Hiroshima ~75,000 at Nagasaki.

Do the math.

The next time I see our missile, I will commemorate all the American and Japanese lives that were saved by nuclear weapons.

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Cait McKnelly 1 year, 8 months ago

When I see the Polaris shell I think of the "duck and cover" (and kiss your butt goodbye) exercises I went through in grade school. What a memory with which to grow up.

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Gotland 1 year, 8 months ago

We also hear very little of the genocide committed against ethnic Germans in eastern and central Europe after the war.

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Flap Doodle 1 year, 8 months ago

In the 20th Century many, many more people died under Communist regimes than were killed by atomic bombs.

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weiser 1 year, 8 months ago

We should have made Japan our 51st State. Unprovoked attack on a sunday morning....nice!

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RoeDapple 1 year, 8 months ago

The Japanese were developing their own versions of atomic weapons during World War 2 and would have used them on us if possible. There's even some evidence they detonated a small nuclear weapon just days before bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Let 'em whine, our President Harry S. Truman (D) saved countless American lives by beating them to the punch .

Truman was a failure as a businessman and as a farmer. He was voted best dressed congressman though. And his secretary of state won the Nobel Peace Prize.

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BigAl 1 year, 8 months ago

When is the Lawrence Coalition for Peace's vigil for the victims of the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor?

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Flap Doodle 1 year, 8 months ago

When is the Lawrence Coalition for Peace's vigil for the victims of the massacre in the Katyn Forest?

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TheYetiSpeaks 1 year, 8 months ago

When is the Lawrence Coalition for Peace's vigil for the victims of the firebombings of Tokyo and Dresden?

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grammaddy 1 year, 8 months ago

Thinking about allthose "Civil Defense drills" in grade school.Hidingunder our desks would save us, huh?

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MattressMan 1 year, 8 months ago

Next time I "see our missle" I'm going to think back to my childhood and remember going to that park with my brothers, cousins and grandparents. I'll think about climbing on the plane that used to be there and pretending to blow away the commies. Or lainching that missle to destroy some target hundreds if not thousands of miles away.

Thanks Joe for bringing back such wonderful memories, those were the days.

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down_there 1 year, 8 months ago

Wonder how many surviving Pearl Harbor husbands and wives, sons, daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren read your stuff Joe and fume.

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Ron Holzwarth 1 year, 8 months ago

"Our Polaris missile easily could have destroyed any major city in the world and killed millions of its residents."

There is a major problem with the claim made above. The guidance systems that were used at that time were only gyroscopes. After takeoff, there was no external guidance at all. The chances of actually hitting the city that the missile was targeted at were approximately the same as you will find in any casino in the world.

The populations of both the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A. were deceived to the point of believing that the missiles would actually hit the intended target.

Now there are very accurate guidance systems, but that old Polaris missile would be very much like a Ford Model T trying to keep up with traffic on an interstate highway.

But the threat still remains, and it appears to me that the only solution in sight is the arrival of the Mashiach, the second coming of Jesus Christ, or the return of the 12th Imam.

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skinny 1 year, 8 months ago

Here come all the bleeding heart liberals!! If it wasn’t for those nuclear war heads you all wouldn't be sitting in your easy chairs writing crap about how horrible they are!! I‘d be willing to bet you had no family members in World War II! If you did did you ever stop to think the dropping oof those bombs saved their lifes.

I am so glad the majority rules here in the United States!

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Abdu Omar 1 year, 8 months ago

It makes me sad to think that the USA is the only country to use nuclear weapons against another country. The destruction is so horrid that one wonders how this can be done to fellow human beings. But it was. This should never happen again by any country for any reason.

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Mike Gerhardt 1 year, 8 months ago

I'll think of the deterrent they represent that makes it possibly for hand-wringers like you to demonstrate.

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