Hiroshima Survivor Lobbies for Disarmament

UC Legislative Council Approves Nuclear Oversight Committee

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— Over 60 years ago, Shigecko Sasamori miraculously survived the U.S. atomic bombing of Hiroshima. On Wednesday April 25, she came before a UCSB Associated Student’s Legislative Council meeting to recall the devastating effects that nuclear war on her life, and our world.

Sasamori spoke at the meeting to support a bill initiated by anti-war and nuclear disarmament activists from the campus community, which would create a Student Nuclear Weapons Labs Oversight Committee. Her backing-along with the enthusiasm of a large crowd-resulted in the approval of the bill.

The new committee will monitor and critique programs of UC-managed nuclear weapons compounds, and ensure that they are in compliance with the Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1970.

The presentation at the meeting followed a campus tour that was meant to encourage student awareness of possible UC nuclear production. The tour explored the Reserve Officer Training Offices, the Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies, the Nanotech Center for Defense, and the campus library. The tour and the presentation at the meeting were in response to Legislative Council’s failure to pass the bill last week.

Sasamori was 13-years old at the time of the bombing, and watched as classmates were lost to the explosion and subsequent radiation effects. She stood before the Council and revealed the burn scars along her damaged hands. She expressed to the audience how she wished she was still young, so she could use the energy of youth. However, she said, she is the one with youthful strength. In the past, she has worked to inform the public about the dangers of nuclear war, starring in the acclaimed documentary Shigecko, Go On!

Kristina Kurasz is an Independent intern.

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