An Open Letter to the People of Japan

August 9th, 2023 - by From Concerned Peace and Civil Society Organizations of the US

An Open Letter to the People of Japan
From Concerned Peace and Civil Society Organizations of the US

(August 6, 2023) — In observance of the 78th Anniversary of the Atomic Bombings of Japan:

We, the undersigned, representing a coalition of concerned peace and civil society organizations in the United States, are advocating for the elimination of nuclear weapons globally. We join to express our sincere regrets and apologies for our nation’s atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Although our government has not apologized officially for this horror, we would like to extend our deepest condolences to the atomic bomb survivors (hibakusha), descendants of hibakusha, as well as all those impacted by the US nuclear testing in the Pacific, who have endured great mental and physical hardships for decades. May you and the generations behind you continue to heal, speak truth to power and walk towards justice. We will always walk beside you.

We also send our solidarity to those affected by the ongoing Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant disaster. We are inspired by the courageous Fukushima youth plaintiffs of the 311 Children’s Thyroid Cancer Trial who sued the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) to hold it accountable for the youth’s pediatric thyroid cancer, which is one of the known adverse effects of radiation exposure.

The use of nuclear technology — whether military or civilian — comes with enormous risks and incalculable consequences; it undermines democracy, it is not economically viable or sustainable, and it is not a solution to the climate crisis. Effective global nuclear disarmament will not be possible as long as we continue to allow the commercial use of plutonium and highly enriched uranium.

We call for Japan and TEPCO to halt their proposed plan to dump more than 1.3 million metric tons of radioactive wastewater for three decades or more from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi into the Pacific Ocean.

We request that Japan explore alternative safer options, such as long-term storage at or near the site, to protect the environment and to minimize the health impacts on people and all living things.

We must not forget that Pacific Islands nations are facing devastating impacts of climate crisis, and that they have still been living with the threats of remaining contamination exposure, decimated environments, and generational trauma from nuclear testing conducted by nuclear-armed states, such as the United States.

We regret that President Biden’s visit in Hiroshima during the G7 Summit was extremely disrespectful to hibakusha and their supporters. It was unacceptable that President Biden brought the nuclear football to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, that he used Hiroshima to strengthen military alliance with the US allies, that he met Prime Minister Kishida to share the view that extended deterrence — including the US nuclear umbrella — and strengthening Japan’s defense capabilities are essential, and he promised President Zelensky additional military aid while they were in Hiroshima.

Instead, Biden could have utilized the Summit to negotiate roadmaps to end ongoing wars and to eliminate nuclear weapons from this planet.

To achieve peace in the northeast Asia region, we call on Japan to join us in supporting the peace process on the Korean Peninsula. Here in the United States, the Peace on the Korean Peninsula Act has been reintroduced by Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA). The bill supports the commitments made at Panmunjom in April of 2018 by the leaders of the Korean Peninsula and calls for the US Secretary of State to pursue urgent diplomatic engagement with the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in pursuit of a binding peace agreement constituting a formal end to the Korean War.

In 2021, the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) entered into force. Although the Treaty does not legally bind the US because our government has neither signed nor ratified it, all nuclear weapons, including the US stockpile, have been declared unlawful by the international community.

We call upon Japan to relinquish the so-called “nuclear umbrella” of the United States by swiftly signing and ratifying the TPNW. We are concerned that many of the non-nuclear weapon states, such as Japan, believe that regional security is enhanced by the nuclear weapons of the United States, although the “nuclear umbrella” did not prevent war in Europe as certain nuclear weapon states had claimed.

Indeed, the war in Ukraine has exposed the risks of the entire nuclear enterprise. We deplore Japan’s strengthening of military alliances with the United States and their allies. Establishing a NATO office in Tokyo will not make the region safer, as the world has become more dangerous under such military alliance and nuclear deterrence policy that escalated tensions.

Under the TPNW, relying on the nuclear umbrella of the nuclear-armed states is a form of conspiracy to engage in unlawful activities under international law, because the TPNW not only prohibits nations from developing, producing, stockpiling, or threatening to use nuclear weapons, but also it prohibits nations from encouraging or inducing anyone to engage in any of these activities.

We will continue to demand that the government of the US sign and ratify the TPNW, and embark on a multilateral dialogue with all nuclear-armed states to eliminate all nuclear weapons on this planet. We look forward to continuing our collaboration to achieve a nuclear-free world where, as the preamble of your constitution states, “all peoples of the world have the right to live in peace, free from fear and want.”







Black Rain (1989)
The aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing, based on Masuji Ibuse’s novel directed by Shohei Imamura.

Hiroshima (1951)
Directed by Hideo Sekigawa, “Hiroshima” delivers a realistic retelling of the day the Hiroshima bomb dropped.

Children of Hiroshima (1952)
Four years after the destruction of her hometown, Takako faces the bomb’s after-effects as she travels visits some survivors.

Endorsed by:
US Organizations
(representing in total of more than 391,600 members and supporters):

Veterans for Peace — NYC Chapter 34

Manhattan Project for a Nuclear-Free World

Action Corps

Baltimore Nonviolence Center

Ben Salmon for Sainthood

Brooklyn For Peace

Broome County Peace Action

Campaign for Peace, Disarmament & Common Security

Coalition Against Nukes


Environmentalists Against War

Erwin Citizens Awareness Network (ECAN)

Genesee Valley Citizens for Peace

Granny Peace Brigade, NYC

Heiwa Peace and Reconciliation Foundation of New York

Judson Memorial Church

Long Island Alliance For Peaceful Alternatives

Memory Productions

Monterey Peace and Justice Center

New Hampshire Peace Action

New York Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons

New York Catholic Worker

No Nukes Action

North Country Peace Group

No War Westchester

Nuclear Energy Information Service (NEIS)

Nuclear Hotseat Podcast/Broadcast

Nuclear Watch South


NYC Metro Raging Grannies

NY Committees of Correspondence for Democracy & Socialism

NYC War Resisters League

Office of Peace, Justice, and Ecological Integrity/Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth

Pax Christi New York State

Peace Action Manhattan

Peace Action New York State

Peace Action of Staten Island

Peace Boat US

Peace Resource Center at Wilmington College

Physicians for Social Responsibility- NY

Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice

Raging Grannies and their Daughters of New York Cities

Rise and Resist

Rising Together

San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace

South Country Peace Group, Inc.

Stand with Okinawa NY

The Ribbon International

United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC)

Uptown Progressive Action

Veterans for Peace the Hector Black Chapter

WESPAC Foundation, Inc. World BEYOND War, US Chapters

World Can’t Wait

Youth Arts New York/Hibakusha Stories

Contact info:

Veterans For Peace — NYC Chapter 34

8062 214th Street

Queens Village, NY 11427