Martin Forum to Feature Exhibit on Hiroshima and Nagasaki Atomic Bombings

Friday, January 9 2009

Jan. 9, 2009 MOSCOW, Idaho – The Martin Institute at the University of Idaho will draw attention to the need for world peace this month with special exhibits from the Hiroshima Peace Project and Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum. In addition, Japanese Consul General Mitsunori Namba will present a Martin Forum at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 27, in the Idaho Commons Whitewater Room. Namba will give a presentation on "Japan's International Cooperation" including the U.S.-Japan relationship. He will elaborate on Japan's international efforts, which include hosting the G8 Summit and the Tokyo International Conference on African Development last year. Namba earned his degree in commercial science from Keio University in Tokyo, Japan. He entered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1972 and since has served in many of Japan’s foreign posts, including cities in the U.S., India and Zimbabwe. He also served in the Permanent Mission of Japan to the U.N. in Geneva, Switzerland. After serving as the senior coordinator for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Developing Economies Division, he became director of the ministry’s Multilateral Cultural Cooperation Division. Prior to assuming his current post as consul general of the Northwest region, Namba served as director of the Overseas Disaster Assistance Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Hiroshima Peace Project will display images exposing the scarring effects of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The exhibit, which will be presented Jan. 12-31 in the Teaching and Learning Center Corridor Gallery, will feature some 30 photographs shot before and after the bombings. The bombs killed as many as 140,000 people in Hiroshima and 80,000 in Nagasaki by the end of 1945, roughly half the deaths occurring on the days of the bombings. Since then, thousands more have died from injuries or illness attributed to radiation poisoning. To date, these are the only attacks with nuclear weapons in the history of warfare. The Hiroshima Peace Project aims to hold similar displays in all 50 states by March 1 of this year; the University of Idaho will be the Idaho partner. "This year, the Martin Institute is addressing war and the scarring impact it has on society," said Bill Smith, director of the Martin Institute. "For those that are unable to remember, or those that don't have that first-hand knowledge, we hope this exhibit will serve as a vivid description about the horror of war, the threat of nuclear weapons and the importance of peace." On Wednesday, Jan. 28, Namba will give a small presentation at 9:15 a.m. to open a small-scale version of the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum in the Idaho Commons Clearwater Room, which will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. The museum's vision came from Neil Shibe, a senior in international studies who studied abroad in Japan and volunteered at the museum in Hiroshima. Similar to the official museum in Japan, the display will feature additional visual artifacts and taped testimony from the survivors. "Those attending the museum will have the opportunity to make origami cranes, which are the international symbol for peace," said Smith. "The cranes will be sent to the museum in Hiroshima for the Children's Peace Monument." All events are free and open to the public. Martin Forums on international topics are part of the educational and outreach missions of the Martin Institute. The institute was founded to advance research and teach about the causes of conflict and peaceful resolution. For additional information, visit
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About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit