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Playlist: Hiroshima & Nagasaki

Compiled By: PRX Editors

Curated Playlist

The atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima (August 6) and Nagasaki (August 9) in 1945.

Below are picks chosen by PRX editorial staff. You can see all potential pieces for Hiroshima and Nagasaki by using our search.

Hour (49:00-1:00:00)

High Art out of Desperate Times

From AARP Radio | Part of the Prime Time Radio series | 59:54

The second half of this piece covers Dr. Benard Lown, most noted for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize for co-founding the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War.

Mike_ptr_thumb_small One of the most daring experiments by the US government occurred during the 1930's, according to author Susan Quinn, that?s when FDR and other idealists approved - furiously improvised programs to get the unemployed back to work. In her book, Furious Improvisation: How the WPA and a Cast of Thousands Made High Art Out of Desperate Times - she brings to life the politics and the idealism behind this effort. Dr. Benard Lown is most noted for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize for co-founding the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, which brought together over 150,000 doctors to help prevent nuclear proliferation. He is also, one of the founders of Physician for Social Responsibility and the innovator behind the defibrillator. He recaps his remarkable life in his memoir: A Doctor's Journey to End Nuclear Madness.

What good are these things for?: The pragmatic push to eliminate nuclear weapons

From A World of Possibilities | 55:00

Many former hawks are now drafting a plan for the phased, decades-long elimination of nuclear weapons, while U.S. relations with Russia, China, and Iran continue to sour. These countervailing trends could adversely affect new opportunities for nuclear disarmament.

Trident_small Many former hawks are now drafting a plan for the phased, decades-long elimination of nuclear weapons, while U.S. relations with Russia, China, and Iran continue to sour. These countervailing trends could adversely affect new opportunities for nuclear disarmament. This program assesses these new opportunities and the best ways of overcoming the obstacles to exploiting them.


Half-Hour (24:00-30:00)

RN Documentary : Building the Bomb

From Radio Netherlands Worldwide | Part of the RN Documentaries series | 29:30

Joseph Rotblat explains how he came to work on the first atomic bomb.

10914879_small The detonation of the first atomic bomb on August 6th 1945 marked the start of a deadly new race for military supremacy. The blast in Hiroshima, Japan was the largest the world had ever seen and was trumpeted as a victory of ingenuity – indeed some of the world’s greatest scientists worked on it. One of them was Joseph Rotblat - a man who has spent the last 50 years trying to prevent the use of the weapon he helped create.

Imperial Ambitions

From Voices of Our World | 27:59

Leading nuclear specialist and peace campaigner Joseph Gerson talks about how the United States has used nuclear weapons to bolster its imperial ambitions and to preserve its global empire.

Josephgerson_small Part One: Imperial Ambitions Since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan, each and every U.S. president has threatened nuclear war at some point during their presidency. Join us as we speak with leading nuclear specialist and peace campaigner Joseph Gerson about how the United States has used nuclear weapons to bolster its imperial ambitions --- and how the United States uses them today to preserve its global empire. That's today on Voices of Our World. Part Two: Imperial Ambitions (II) In a speech delivered at world conference against atomic & hydrogen bombs in Hiroshima & Nagasaki, Japan on august 3, 2007, Joseph Gerson said the following: "my argument is not that U.S. use and threatened use of nuclear weapons have always succeeded. Instead, successive U.S. presidents, their most senior advisers, and many in the pentagon have believed that U.S. use of nuclear weapons has achieved U.S. goals in the past. Furthermore, these presidents have repeatedly replicated this ostensibly successful model. In fact, the U.S. commitment to nuclear dominance and its practice of threatening nuclear attacks have, in fact, been counterproductive, increasing the dangers of nuclear war in yet another way: spurring nuclear weapons proliferation. No nation will long tolerate what it experiences as an unjust imbalance of power. It was primarily for this reason that the Soviet Union and China, North Korea, and quite probably Iran opted for nuclear weapons." We now continue our interview with leading nuclear specialist and peace campaigner Joseph Gerson about his newest book Empire and the Bomb.

Peace Talks Radio: Peace Elders Part 2 / Dr. Bernard Lown (29:00)

From Good Radio Shows, Inc. | Part of the Peace Talks Radio: Weekly Half Hour Episodes series | 28:59

A conversation with 1985 Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Bernard Lown about his book "Prescription For Survival: A Doctor’s Journey to End Nuclear Madness."

Dr

Today on Peace Talks Radio, part two in the series called "Peace Elders"- spotlighting citizens, all well into their eighties, who continue to place peace work at the center of their lives.   This time, a man who, at 87, wrote a book called Prescription for Survival recounting this path to a Nobel Peace Prize in 1985.  Bernard Lown is a doctor who is known as the original developer of the cardiac difibrilator around 1960.   Lown also became deeply involved in the drive to reduce nuclear weapon arsenals, forming Physicians for Social Responsibility and the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. 

This can be paired with another half hour episode that also utilizes the "Peace Elder" theme featuring Juanita Nelson and Ruth Imber.  http://www.prx.org/pieces/33384-peace-talks-radio-peace-elders-part-1-juanita-n

There is also a one hour version that combines both segments: http://www.prx.org/pieces/33380-peace-talks-radio-peace-elders-59-00-54-00

The Nuclear Disarmament Question: A Conversation With Dr. Zia Mian (Peace Talks Radio Series)

From Good Radio Shows, Inc. | Part of the Peace Talks Radio: Weekly Half Hour Episodes series | 29:06

Host Carol Boss talks with Princeton University's Dr. Zia Mian about the history of the development and proliferation of nuclear weapons, recent trends in both the spread of weapons technology, and on the disarmament front.

Ziamian3_small When the power of the atomic bomb was unleashed by the United States at the end of World War 2 in 1945, a new challenge to the hope for world peace was unleashed with it. Even while the bombs were being created, and certainly afterwards, this central question has been debated - "How can we prevent their use?" Many have wondered "How can we eliminate them entirely?" insisting that world peace can't be achieved without complete abolition of the weapons. To others, the existence of nuclear weapons has mostly meant security. They believe the deterrent power of these arsenals actually helps keep the peace. It also seems that many hearts and minds live somewhere between the need for some deterrent arsenal and the need to eliminate the world's nuclear stockpiles. On this edition of Peace Talks, host Carol Boss talks with Dr. Zia Mian, a research staff member and lecturer in the Woodrow Wilson School for Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. His research seeks to provide the technical basis for policy initiatives in nuclear arms control, disarmament and nonproliferation - particularly in South Asia. With Dr. Mian, we hear about the history of the development and proliferation of such weapons, learn about recent trends in both the spread of weapons technology, and on the disarmament front - and work through some of the core issues in the debate.

COLD WAR COMRADES

From Voices of Our World | 28:00

Dr. Bernard Lown and his nuclear war prevention crusade: in 1981 Dr. Bernard Lown and his Russian friend Dr. Yevgeni Chazov co-founded International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War.

Default-piece-image-0 Part One COLD WAR COMRADES: At the height of the Cold War the prominent American cardiologist who had already invented the direct current defibrillator, saving untold millions of lives worldwide, fortuitously met a Soviet fellow cardiologist and together they embarked on a path to save more lives than they ever could as doctors. In 1981 Dr. Bernard Lown and his Russian friend Dr. Yevgeni Chazov co-founded International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. Within a few years the organization was 150,000 doctors and scientists stronger and in 1985 Doctors Lown and Chazov shared the Nobel Peace Prize. Dr. Bernard Lown is our guest today. Part Two NO NUKES DOCS!: World War II took the entire planet, not just the United States and Japan, into the nuclear age. Knowing that there was no turning back and before there was an International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, scientists and doctors came together to publish The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. From the beginning, the publication included an ominous logo, the Doomsday Clock, meant to warn us all how close at any given time in our shared history, humans were taking the world to proximity with nuclear Armageddon. At the height of the arms race in 1953 the clocks hands were set at 2 minutes to midnight, the closest moment yet to a nuclear holocaust. When the U.S. and the Soviet Union signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in 19991, the clock?s hands were reset at the furthest from midnight ever, 11:43. We return now to Dr. Lown and his life-long quest for an end to the nuclear threat.


Segments (9:00-23:59)

Nuclear Plowshares

From Gabriel Spitzer | 14:33

Here is the story of a government program that used nukes to excavate a deep-water harbor in Alaska; and how a small group of Eskimos turned back the feds, secured their own land and changed the global environmental movement.

Default-piece-image-1 The story of a government program to use nukes to excavate a deep-water harbor in Alaska. And how a small group of Eskimos turned back the feds, secured their own land and changed the global environmental movement. Host lede: After the destruction in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, many Americans began having second thoughts about the atomic bomb. In response, scientists and public officials set about putting a happy face on nuclear technology, promising that the atom would do more than just win wars, it would improve people?s lives. But they didn?t always tell the whole story, as one group of Alaskans found out. Reporter Gabriel Spitzer has more on the U-S plan to turn its swords into plowshares.


Drop-Ins (2:00-4:59)

This I Believe - Harry Truman

From This I Believe | Part of the Edward R. Murrow's This I Believe series | 04:22

Harry S. Truman was the 33rd President of the United States, serving from 1945 to 1953. Born and raised in Missouri, Truman was a farmer, businessman, World War I veteran and U.S. Senator. As President, his order to drop atomic bombs on Japan helped end World War II.

479pxharrytruman_small Harry S. Truman was the 33rd President of the United States, serving from 1945 to 1953. Born and raised in Missouri, Truman was a farmer, businessman, World War I veteran and U. S. Senator. As President, his order to drop atomic bombs on Japan helped end World War II. TRANSCRIPT: I believe in a moral code based on the Ten Commandments found in the 20th chapter of Exodus, and in the fifth, sixth and seventh chapters of the Gospel according to St. Matthew, which is the Sermon on the Mount. I believe a man ought to live by those precepts, which, if followed, will enable a man to do right. I don?t know whether I have or not, but I have tried. I believe that the fundamental basis for a happy life with family and friends is to treat others as you would like to be treated, speak truthfully, act honorably and keep commitments to the letter. In public life I have always believed that right will prevail. It has been my policy to obtain the facts ? all the facts possible ? then to make the decision in the public interest and to carry it out. If the facts justify the decision at the time it is made, it will always be right. A public man should not worry constantly about the verdict of history or what future generations will say about him. He must live in the present; make his decisions for the right on the facts as he sees them and history will take care of itself. I believe a public man must know the history and background of his state and his nation to enable him to come more nearly to a proper decision in the public interest. In my opinion, a man in public life must think always of the public welfare. He must be careful not to mix his private and personal interests with his public actions. The ethics of a public man must be unimpeachable. He must learn to reject unwise or imprudent requests from friends and associates without losing their friendship or loyalty. I believe that our Bill of Rights must be implemented in fact; that it is the duty of every government ? state, local or federal ? to preserve the rights of the individual. I believe that a civil rights program, as we must practice it today, involves not so much the protection of the people against the government, but the protection of the people by the government. And for this reason we must make the federal government a friendly, vigilant defender of the rights and equalities of all Americans; and that every man should be free to live his life as he wishes. He should be limited only by his responsibility to his fellow man. I believe that we should remove the last barriers which stand between millions of our people and their birthright. There can be no justifiable reason for discrimination because of ancestry, or religion, or race, or color. I believe that to inspire the people of the world whose freedom is in jeopardy, and to restore hope to those who have already lost their civil liberties, we must correct the remaining imperfections in our own democracy. We know the way ? we only need the will.


Interstitials (Under 2:00)

Nuclear Security

From Woodrow Wilson Center | Part of the Lee H. Hamilton Commentaries series | 01:41

Securing nuclear weapons should be the paramount concern of U.S. foreign policy, says former Congressman Lee Hamilton. No threat risks graver repercussions that the detonation of a nuclear weapon on U. S. soil.

Lhc_prx_pic_small Securing nuclear weapons should be the paramount concern of U.S. foreign policy, says former Congressman Lee Hamilton. No threat risks graver repercussions that the detonation of a nuclear weapon on U. S. soil.