Sunday, August 07, 2022

Reflection of Nisei about Hibakusha

My mother,was a toddler in Japan when the abombs we're dropped. Many people don't know that I grew up hearing her stories of Americans testing biological warfare after the war. And then, I grew up as a genXer in the USA, a nisei born to a Japanese foreign national- not American enough for those around me. Not able to relate to me in a personal way.

This morning I read about the aging Hibakusha and Abomb survivor organizations being run by the next generation. And my heart goes out to the Hibakusha whose memory and presence sustained so many Japanese organizations. I myself feeling far distanced from anyone Japanese because of US enforcement of my life- tearing my family apart with their radiation and other experiments on me, my mother, my late brother. I attended a world Hiroshima event online- the only organization site allowed in my algorithm. And I felt, saddened by the presentation in English. It didn't seem apologetic to me. It felt like Japan was saying sorry and peace for Japan's sake. No Japanese music either. I could only think of the Hiroshima Abomb card my US father had given to my mother for her birthday many years ago- I remembered the shock, hurt, and horror on her face. And how he told her she should feel proud to be American. I only hit a sense of betrayal and smoldering rage for Americans, including and especially my own father who had entertained his community by abusing us for so long. I think and wonder, is this psychological torture?? And still wonder where he obtained or who had made the horrific birthday card for her.
Please keep in mind, the USA did damaging debilitating and experimental surgery on my mother- they claimed she had cancer from the abomb- yet my Japanese mother allegedly wasn't Hibakusha despite her generation. And, that I was affected for their biological gene studies here in Pennsylvania.

And I thought about my own situation in the USA, how non-peaceful reality is- compared to the US representative peace organizers.
And I would have much preferred to attend a different event put on by Japanese Hibakusha without the focus on Christian ideology. Not after the life I have lived in the USA where the Japanese stigma has turned into a torture complaint during the period of POTUS Trump's anti-Asian hate rallies.

And I'm sure people will disagree with me.
However, I view the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings as a source of Americans continued justification to torture people of Japanese descent. And In the midst of a couple of American faces, I felt there should be more Americans following them. And there were barely 250 in the Zoom from Japan and other places in the world. I felt betrayed. Especially since there is no tolerance for me setting up my own organization the USA outside of my college and university leadership. 

Maybe it sounds selfish of me, as a nisei- isolated from positive interactions in the US mainland. My hope for Japan, is that the Hibakusha's memory is preserved, intact. That there is some sincerity of accepting Japanese culture, music and prayer by Hibakusha in Japanese and English , even if on a CD or lead by the next generation. 
No matter how these events are run, or who creates an event since the political interpretation is another cult-like psyop to limited groups.

I want to hear the words, prayers, and music of the Hibakusha and their family honored throughout time.