On August 6, the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. American President Harry S. Truman called for Japan’s surrender 16 hours later, warning them to “expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth”. Japan did not surrender.
Three days later, on August 9, the U.S. dropped a second atomic bomb on the city of Nagasaki. On August 15, six days after the bombing of Nagasaki, Japan announced its surrender to the Allies. On September 2, it signed the instrument of surrender, effectively ending World War II.
Within the first two to four months of the bombings, the acute effects of the atomic bombings killed 90,000–146,000 people in Hiroshima and 39,000–80,000 in Nagasaki; roughly half of the deaths in each city occurred on the first day. During the following months, large numbers died from the effect of burns, radiation sickness, and other injuries, compounded by illness and malnutrition. In both cities, most of the dead were civilians, although Hiroshima had a sizable military garrison.
The bombings’ role in Japan’s surrender and their ethical justification are still debated.
Every year, Hiroshima Day 6 August is remembered in many cities around the world.
Hiroshima Day is often a focus for antiwar and antinuclear discussions and demonstrations.
Hiroshima Day in Coventry
It is commemorated annually in Coventry. The following is a list of events recorded on this website.
06/08/2016 @ 14:00 – 16:00 – Coventry strengthens ties with Japan to remember the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima – service on Saturday 6th August at 2pm in Old Coventry Cathedral and New Coventry Cathedral. On the 2016 anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, The Lord Mayor of Coventry, Cllr Lindsley Harvard and the Rev Kathryn Fleming, Canon of Coventry […]
06/08/2017 @ 18:00 – 19:00 – Please join us at 6pm on Sunday 6th August 2017 for a service of reflection in Coventry Cathedral and the Chapel of Unity, with readings and music for all led by John Witcombe, Dean Coventry Cathedral and with speaker Ruth Longoni, Lord Mayor’s Peace Committee. The Deputy Lord Mayor of Coventry will attend as well […]