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Hiroshima is a very beautiful city, with multiple rivers running through it down to the Inland Sea. So even when you know what’s coming, it is something of a shock to stroll down to the riverbank and see the A-Bomb dome, preserved exactly as it looked in the aftermath of the bombing on August 6th, 1945.

In the neighbouring Peace Park is the Children’s Peace Monument, inspired by a young girl, Sadako Sasaki, who died of leukaemia 10 years after the blast.

Also in the park is the Peace Bell, and a Cenotaph with an eternal flame.

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum is very impressive – extensive exhibits on Hiroshima before the war, the development of the bomb, the Allied rationale for dropping the bomb (including discussion of Japanese preparations for homeland defence), the selection of Hiroshima as the target, and pictures and dioramas of the destruction. Most of all, the museum is about the human toll of a nuclear weapon launched on a densely inhabited city.

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