On our program for August 7th, we will commemorate US involvement with warfare in the world because it is the anniversary of August 6th and 9th, when the United States detonated two atomic bombs over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, respectively. The aerial bombings together killed over 100,000 and maybe over 200,000 people, most of whom were civilians, and remain the only use of nuclear weapons in an armed conflict.
Kansas City has an integral part of that history. At the time of the development of the nuclear bomb and operations at the Manhattan Project in New Mexico, shown in the film Oppenheimer, the Bannister Plant in Kansas City Missouri employed persons to make trigger parts for nuclear armament and many employees there at that time and in the years following, died from the effects of exposure to radioactive materials.
Peaceworks KC holds an annual event on Memorial Day of each year to commemorate those lost lives and to call for an end to nuclear bombs. The Bannister Plant has been destroyed, however, the National Security Campus, an extension of the Bannister Plant, continues to operate and is one of the largest employers in Kansas City. They are no longer making radioactive trigger parts for nuclear warheads but 80% of the electronic and mechanical parts for US nukes are made or procured there. Year after year, peace activists have walked across the property line at the gate of the National Security Campus to demonstrate opposition to nuclear warfare. We are going to begin the hour with a recording of some of the 13th annual Memorial Day remembrance of those who have died from the making of parts for nuclear weapons in KCMO.
The first speaker is Kimmy Igla, a PeaceWorks KC Board member. She introduced Theodore John, leader of the local Veterans for Peace. Next, Priest gives a spokenword performance. Charles Carney led the crowd through an exercise to build peace. Then Yolanda Huyett Vaughan, a local physician and a member of Physicians for Social Responsibility tells us about the horrors of war.
Breanna Crawford, an Indigenous Cherokee/Dakota (Sioux) and a member of the PeaceWorks Board, called on us to respect what the Earth has given to all of us because we are only visitors here. Ann Sullentrop and Kristin Scheer recounted their lobbying journey to Washington DC on behalf of Nuclear Accountability’s DC Days. Finally, stay tuned to learn of PeaceWorks KC Back from the Brink, a political effort to end nuclear warfare.
For the second part of our hour, Jaws of Justice plays from Atsuki Mori’s presentation at All Souls Unitarian Church that happened on Hiroshima Day “ICAN Dream a World Without Nuclear Weapons”.
As Aug. 6th and 9th are the anniversaries of the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, this morning we look to see the possibilities of a nuclear weapons-free world. Join us as we welcome Atsuki Mori, a nurse from Warrensburg, MO who came to this country in 2001 from Osaka, Japan. On a recent visit to Japan, she was able to meet in Hiroshima with a survivor of the atomic blast whom she had met as a child, a nephew of her grandmother’s former fiancé. The nephew lost the sight in one eye from the Hiroshima blast and is now active in ICAN, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.
On Jaws of Justice, we examine how to find justice in our society. Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.
Please tune in! https://kkfi.org/listen/