IT was 67 years ago this week when the first uranium bomb was exploded above Hiroshima with the force of 15,000 tons of TNT.
Tens of thousands were killed by the blast and fireball that engulfed the city. A similar number died of radiation sickness and injuries in the days and months that followed. In total, 140,000 died by the end of 1945. Three days later, Nagasaki was destroyed by a plutonium bomb.
At that time, Japan was already devastated, and seeking to surrender.
Today in Scotland we have more than 200 atom bombs stored at Coulport, each of which is eight times more powerful than the bomb which destroyed Hiroshima. This is the biggest arsenal of nuclear missiles in Europe. As a weapon of mass destruction, Trident is incapable of being used in conformity with the laws of war, which demand respect for the principle of civilian immunity. It is therefore criminal and illegal.
How did we come to this terrible situation? We in Scotland are trapped as victims of the past.
It is precisely because we, as a society, have never acknowledged and repented of Hiroshima – the greatest single-act war crime in history – that we are prepared to repeat it, and unimaginably worse, with Trident. Our only hope lies in a radical change of heart.
Our nuclear mindset is quintessentially British. Trident is the ultimate symbol of Britishness, our sacrosanct national fetish. We have Trident because we are British; it really is as simple as that.
Independence is the only way to escape from this nightmare, to free ourselves and our English friends form the insane delusions of nuclear idolatry.
2 Hyndland Avenue,
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