@79 days until Hiroshima Summit: Presidents of country that dropped A-bombs

by Hiromi Morita, Staff Writer

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, located in the city’s Naka Ward, is visited not only by tourists but also by leaders and politicians from countries around the world, including those from nuclear weapon states. From the United States, the country that dropped the atomic bombs, Richard Nixon visited in before assuming the presidency April 1964, and after leaving office, Jimmy Carter visited in May 1984 and offered flowers at the Cenotaph for the A-bomb Victims.

In May 2016, Barack Obama became the first incumbent president to visit and learn one aspect of the reality of the atomic bombing. He toured the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, offered a silent prayer at the Cenotaph for the A-bomb Victims, and gave a speech in front of A-bomb survivors. He stayed for only 52 minutes. There was no mention of responsibility for the A-bombings or an apology. Even after Mr. Obama’s visit to Hiroshima, the U.S. continues to modernize and miniaturize its nuclear weapons. What will President Joe Biden perceive and what words will he say in the A-bombed city?

(Originally published on March 1, 2023)