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Up To Date

Encore Broadcast: Former Hiroshima Mayor & Harry Truman's Grandson On Nuclear Disarmament

You’d have a hard time finding someone who feels more strongly about nuclear disarmament than the former mayor of Hiroshima, Japan.

On Monday's encore broadcast of Up to Date, Steve Kraske discusses nuclear disarmament with Tadatoshi Akiba and Harry Truman's grandson, Clifton Truman Daniel. Also part of the conversation are Akiba's term as president of Mayors for Peace and Daniel's anti-nuclear stance and recent reconciliation trip to Japan.

In the late 1960s, a young Japanese mathematician came to the United States for doctoral work at MIT, the same place where 30 years previously, MIT professors were part of the Manhattan Project that created the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Tadatoshi Akiba joined the anti-nuclear movement, and years later back in his country, started a travel grant program that connected international journalists with survivors who told their stories in the hopes that no one ever again would suffer the same fate.

Dr. Akiba went on to serve three consecutive terms as mayor of  Hiroshima and was in Kansas City in October to receive the Community of Christ's Peace Award

For 60 years the city of Hiroshima has been warning the world about nuclear weapons, but with the election of Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba, Hiroshima finally became a player on the international stage. Having graduated from both Tokyo University and MIT in Boston, and having lived nearly 20 years in the U.S., Akiba is a rarity among Japanese politicians: bilingual, and thoroughly cosmopolitan. Equally rare are his commitments to peace, the abolition of nuclear weapons, environmental protection, and open, transparent, democratic government.    Mayor Akiba has also devoted a great deal of energy to modernizing government and using information technology to expedite a broad range of procedures. As a result, the city of Hiroshima is among the most advanced local governments in Japan.   Mayor Akiba has been working hard to help Hiroshima live up to its image as the International Peace Culture City. Akiba, a former university professor, is working hard to get Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Study courses established in colleges and universities around the world. Clifton Truman Daniel is the oldest grandson of former US President Harry S. Truman and son of the late E. Clifton Daniel Jr., former managing editor of the New York Times, and best-selling mystery writer Margaret Truman.   He has worked as a feature writer and editor for the Morning Star and Sunday Star-News in Wilmington, North Carolina.   Mr. Daniel is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Harry S. Truman Library Institute in Independence, Missouri, a frequent speaker and fundraiser, and the author of the 1995 book, Growing Up With My Grandfather: Memories of Harry S. Truman.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
Stephen Steigman is director of Classical KC. You can email him at Stephen.Steigman@classicalkc.org.