Daughter of late nuclear physicist promotes the peaceful spirit of Article 9

by Hiromi Morita, Staff writer

In the aftermath of the atomic bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, nuclear physicist Dr. Kazuharu Kimura took measurements of the radiation levels in these two cities. His daughter, Yuko Kimura, 67, now living in Nara, Japan, has created clear plastic files printed with text, in six languages, from the war-renouncing Article 9 of Japan’s Constitution and decorated with the image of an A-bombed cherry tree. By distributing these files, Ms. Kimura hopes to promote an anti-war spirit.

On the front cover of the file is printed a photo of a wild cherry tree in downtown Hiroshima that managed to survive the bombing and, towards the bottom, the text from Article 9 in Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, French, and Spanish. The back cover is transparent. The size is A4, the conventional paper size in Japan, and 30,000 of these files have been produced for distribution.

The decision to host the G8 Speakers’ Summit in Hiroshima in September inspired Ms. Kimura to create these files. She felt, “This is a good opportunity to spread the peaceful spirit of Article 9. And an everyday item, like a file for papers, would be a useful way to do this.”

Ms. Kimura asked Koji Hosokawa, 80, an A-bomb survivor who provided photographs for the 2008 version of the annual Anti-Nuclear/Anti-War Calendar, to take the photo of the cherry tree. Mr. Hosokawa remarked, “If Article 9 had been in place back then, there would have been no hibakusha (A-bomb survivors). I’m glad I can be of some help.”

Ms. Kimura plans to send the files to her friends in Japan and overseas and give them out in Hiroshima during the Speakers’ Summit. A set of four files is priced at ¥500. For more information, Ms. Kimura can be contacted at this email address: ymkimu@ares.eonet.ne.jp

(Originally published on June 13, 2008)

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