Hiroshima survivor speaks up against nuclear weapons

"This catastrophic situation was caused only by one bomb. And today, we have about 14,000 of them." Setsuko Thurlow survived the Hiroshima bombing. Now, she wants a world free of nuclear weapons.

Hiroshima survivor and Nobel Peace Prize winner shares her story

140,000 lives lost

On August 6, 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan by the United States in an effort to get Japanese Supreme Military Leader Hideki Tojo to surrender in World War II. Named “Little Boy,” the atomic bomb destroyed the entire city and wiped out over 40% of the population of 340,000 civilians. Survivor Setsuko Thurlow was only thirteen years old when she had to survive one of the deadliest attacks Japan has ever faced. She was working in the army headquarters with a student program when the bomb hit.

“When I regained consciousness in the total darkness and the silence, I found myself pinned under the rubble. I couldn't move my body. I knew I was facing death. And I started hearing my schoolmates asking for help from their mothers and from God. Then suddenly, somebody from behind shook my left shoulder and said, ‘Don't give up, don't give up. Keep moving. Keep shaking. Keep kicking. I'm trying to free you. You see the sunray coming through that opening? Crawl toward it.’ And that's what I did,” Setsuko Thurlow describes to Brut.

*Thurlow’s efforts to prevent atomic warfare

Thurlow lost eight members of her family and considers herself lucky since both she and her parents survived, although her father would die from radiation 9 years after the attack. Shortly after his death, she emigrated to the United States to study sociology at Lynchburg College in Virginia. Today, she is a founding member of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN). Created in 2007, this coalition was implemented to back the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons proposed in the United Nations. In 2017, ICAN was the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for its involvement with the treaty. With about 14,000 atomic bombs in 9 countries, Thurlow works tirelessly to make sure none of them are ever used again.


03/05/2020 3:01 PM
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  • Yadav K.
    03/20/2020 07:54

    It is a really hearth broken in that time before I born While I am in Hiroshima 1997 I love jpn n people

  • Geronimo N.
    03/19/2020 20:14

    If the americans able to make that very destructive and deadly weapon before HOW MUCH CAN THEY HAVE NOW?

  • Dalia A.
    03/18/2020 21:06

    Now we are going to die by the biological weapons which i personally belive this is american what they have done

  • Pape M.
    03/17/2020 22:41


  • M B.
    03/17/2020 17:04

    No doubt USA has killed so many innocents

  • Leila G.
    03/16/2020 23:05

    Unfortunately she can't do anything, because she is not fight human being llike her but monsters.

  • Liao J.
    03/16/2020 18:26

    Japanese were fanatics evil people in the past, they were worst than Nazi. Today's Japanese are different people. So if America didn't bombed them, the whole Japanese nation would commit suicide.

  • Mohammed S.
    03/14/2020 18:00

    I am sorry ,a very bad history.

  • Ronke O.
    03/13/2020 17:46

    It is well

  • Maduok W.
    03/12/2020 00:07

    Great story!

  • Robert H.
    03/11/2020 10:03

    Funny how people from Dresden could say and have said the same

  • Mannan M.
    03/10/2020 13:54


  • Ericprice B.
    03/10/2020 09:47

    A very bad memory situation ! I don't understand if now US still being given a pardon

  • Yasir Z.
    03/09/2020 05:19

  • Frank C.
    03/09/2020 03:04

    Well as bad as it was had the Japanese not attacked us that would have never happened. Had America not done this you all might not even be here right now.

  • Rukshana A.
    03/08/2020 16:23

    Oh god have Mercy on us no more war please

  • Biran L.
    03/08/2020 15:45

    Great survival story!

  • Steve H.
    03/08/2020 12:03

    I'm sad to say that weapons regulation, and treaties signed is a noble cause to fight for. But like in the U.S. right now, to which I am a citizen, there is a battle to control the guns by way of law. It is a futile fight really. You can regulate anything, but it only applies to the legally abiding citizens. The criminal people in this world are just that, criminal, and they don't care about treaties, or regulations. They are going to do what they do, because they are criminals. On a another note, my Grandfather was on a hospital ship in WWII and was in Japan just hours after the atomic bomb was dropped. He died before I ever got the chance to know him, but he was a Good fearing man, as were many before that day. But I believe that day shifted the fear of men, to fear men over God. The likes of which still plagues this planet today in many aspects, and that my friends is the truly sad part.

  • Irena K.
    03/07/2020 20:57

    Innosent people get killed , those who are guilty of war crimes , do not get punished

  • Kasara J.
    03/07/2020 09:20

    Evil chains and Evil that Men do....