If we keep casting ourselves as the heroes of history, it’ll come back to haunt us

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Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Let me tell you a story. Once upon a time, there was a great nation — a protector of peace and a leader of the free world. This country was in a race against time — against evil, feverish enemies who hoped to enslave the world — and it won. It spent two billion dollars on the greatest achievement of organized science in history, on a marvelous weapon that would save 250,000, maybe even a million American lives.

The weapon was developed safely, dropped on a military base to avoid killing civilians, and was only used at all because the enemy had refused to surrender. It ushered in a new era of understanding nature; it was the foundation to a future source of mankind’s daily energy; it was also, in the words of the president, a “powerful and forceful influence towards the maintenance of world peace.” …


Rahna Reiko Rizzuto

American Book Award-winning & NBCC-shortlisted author of Shadow Child, Hiroshima in the Morning, & Why She Left Us.

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