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Story Calendar with Links

Somewhere Among  takes place in Japan 2001. Anniversaries, holidays, solstices, and historical events that Japan and the United States share were woven throughout the story. For verification and further study, I have included links to English sources. Links to other sources are included in each post on this website.

It is important to note that Sea Day and Respect for the Aged Day now fall on the third Monday of July and September respectively. That was not the case in 2001. Also note that moon-viewing is traditionally mid-September but it depends on the year  Check here for the holiday calendar for 2001.

Space/moon data and weather charts for west Tokyo were used as reference for the scenes.

For Japan 2001

Thurs. June 21, 2001 summer equinox                                 

Sun. July 1, 2001 Hawaii raising Ehime Maru, Star Bulletin        

Thurs. July 5, 2001 12 pm Japan; July 4 8pm CA world server time meeting planner

Sat. July 7, 2001 Tanabata, Kids Web Japan  

Thurs. July 12, 2001 textbook issue


Issues: History Books    George Washington University

Japan’s Refusal to Revise Textbooks Angers Neighbors    New York Times

North Korea Fires Missiles Over Japanese Territory New York Times Sept. 1, 1998 

North Korean Missile Flies over Japan into Pacific August 31, 1998

Fri. July 20, 2001 Sea Day (holiday is now on the third Monday of July, see link for 2001)
Sea Day Kids Web Japan
holidays Japan 2001

Sat. July 21, 2001 Japan time
July 20, 1969 Apollo 11 USA time         Smithsonian Air and Space  Museum Apollo 11

July 20, 2001 Ehime Maru mast removed USA time, Honolulu Star article
Honolulu Advertiser July 21, 2001

Mon. August 6, 2001 Hiroshima anniversary Washington Post

Thurs. August 9, 2001 Nagasaki anniversary, Koizumi visits Memorial 

Anglican News Memorial Prayers at Holy Trinity Church  Nagasaki Anniversary

Sat. August 11, 2001 launch of Discovery video NASA Television August 10 US time       
NASA pages

Expedition Three Crew

Russian and American docking 1975

Mon. August 13, 2001 Koizumi visit to Yasukuni Shrine Japan Times

Wed. August 15, 2001 announcement of Japan’s surrender
V-J Day

Sun. August 19, 2001 US Navy meets families of Ehime Maru victims, LA Times

Tues. August 21, 2001 Typhoon Pabuk, LA Times                               

Wed. August 29, 2001 H2A launch,  Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

Space Daily News

CBS News

Friday, August 31, 2001 not mentioned in story, article on the Ehime Maru, Chicago Tribune

Sat., September 1. 2001 full moon                                                                  

Sunday, September 2, 2001 formal surrender not mentioned in story

Sat., September 8, 2001 Peace Treaty signed in SF mentioned on Day and on the stamp

Tuesday, September 11, 2001 typhoon, LA Times                    

USA Today
death toll

Sat., September 15, 2001 Respect for the Aged Day (now the third Monday of September) This holiday has become more like Grandparents Day over the years. But our obaachan always said it was for really old people. View the 2001 calendar

Tues. September 18, 2001 rice monitoring,  Japan Times

Wed. September 19 , 2001 Congress considers Gold Medals                                             Congress considering Gold Medals, CNN

Equinox in September 2001

Sun. September 23, 2001 Sunday equinox O & J going to graveyard
Mon. September 24, 2001 Monday national holiday; ride down by river
Sun Sep 23 2001 Autumn Equinox National holiday
Mon Sep 24 2001 Autumn Equinox observed National holiday

Monday, October 1 – 7  2001 moon-viewing  The date changes every year according to the solar calendar. In 2001 the full moon was October 2. In the paperback edition of Somewhere Among, mochi pounding is not mentioned.  Dango (round balls) made of mochi (glutinous rice) are ubiquitous in our neighborhood during this time for decoration and for eating.                                                                                                                                                              moon phases October 2001

Sunday, October 7, 2001 U.S. invades Afghanistan, World History Project

Sunday, October 14, 2001 Hawaii, LA Times

Tues. October 16, 2001 Galileo passing by Jupiter’s moon, NASA news    

Ehime Maru, Japan Times                                                          

Friday, October 19, 2001 bodies found on Ehime Maru, LA Times

Wed., October 24, 2001 IRA lay down arms yesterday; baby false alarm

Thurs., Nov. 8, 2001 Hawaii time Ehime Maru recovery ends (watching in evening), CNN

Search Ends for Last Ehime Maru Victim,                                                                       

Monday, November 12, 2001 Japan Veterans Day hospital TV
Monday, November 19, 2001 Japan time meteor show

mid-November gingko festival

Friday November 23, 2001 Labor Thanksgiving Japan; Thanksgiving 22 America

Thurs. November 29, 2001 school art exhibition (my children’s actual)

Fri. November 30, 2001 Japan time, George Harrison passed away, NY Times

Thurs., December 7, 2001 Memorial for Pearl Harbor              ,+2001&source=bl&ots=XXyXIejcRc&sig=vYIMDR7tHtSlx2lEnc5HHX5v_ZU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjg3P6fk8vJAhXBKKYKHdG_BisQ6AEIMTAE#v=onepage&q=pearl%20harbor%20memorial%20on%20December%207%2C%202001&f=false

Washington Post article                                                                           

LA Times 60th anniversary                                                                    

Honolulu Advertiser 60th anniversary Pearl Harbor public events

Pearl Harbor Memorial History Net

Sat. December 8, 2001 anniversary of Pearl Harbor (Japan time); Princess going home

photos of Baby Princess                                                                             

CNN Princess going home                                                                                

Tues. December 11, 2001 NY time ceremony on board shuttle
flags for heroes✓&affiliate=nasa&query=flag+for+heroes+and+families+2001


Shuttle, Station Honors September 11 victims

video of commemoration                                                                        


Thurs., December 14, 2001 annular eclipse not seen in Japan

Wed., December 19, 2001 NASA will track Santa

Thurs. December 20, 2001 personal items from Ehime Maru, newspaper article the day after, Japan Times article

Friday, December 21, 2001 snow, Jiichan’s return winter solstice

Monday, December 24, 2001  NASA helps Santa 

Our school did not follow this schedule in Kids Web Japan about final exams and winter break

January 2, 2001 New Year’s calligraphy 2001                                                                          ‘Kakizome’ Practice Perfects New Year’s Calligraphy     The Japan Times  December 28, 2001

School Calligraphy Here and There Japan


Coordinated Universal Time – Current Time                                                                    National Hurricane Center
example:     5:12 AM UTC on Wednesday, September 30 2:12 pm Japan

Sept. 10, 2014 Gold Medals, The Inquirer                                          

The Ehime Maru Memorial Draws Japan Tourists June 27, 2002, Honolulu Advertiser

World Peace Prayer Society                                                    


Feb. 2002 Ehime Maru Victims’ families gather                   

Story Playlist

Many songs influenced the writing of Somewhere Among. I have included links to some of them.

I listened to these four songs almost daily:

two songs, “Inochi no Namae” (the Name of Life lyrics) and “Itsumo nando demo” (lyrics Ghiblink) from Hayao Miyazaki’s movie Spirited AwaySen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi, were played on TV and radio so often after the release of the 2001 movie in Japan,

U2’s “Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of” (2000), was a filler between shows on Japanese cable in the weeks before September 11,

and this solo version of George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”  was quiet, reflective comfort during the months after September 11. The up-tempo version came out in 1968 when I was eleven, the age of the main character, Ema.

Those song titles became poem titles or influenced poems along with two Beatles’ song,  “With a Little Help from My Friends” (1967) and “Let It Be” (1970).

The Beatles’ “Ob-la-di Ob-la-da” (1968) provided the title and structure for the poem about the Sports Day relay in Somewhere Among. The music without lyrics was played for my children’s relay at their elementary school Sports Day every year.

Another Beatles’ song, “Across the Universe” (1970) was not used as a poem title but comes up several times in the text of poems. Other poem titles are from Beatles’ songs

John Lennon’s post-Beatles’ song “Imagine” (1971) sung by Neil Young at the concert “America: A Tribute to Heroes” (US September 21, 2001) provided inspiration for a poem. His “Instant Karma” (1970) provided a fitting title for a poem.

I was thinking of U2’s song, “Peace on Earth” released in 2000 when I titled the poem about the Irish Republican Army laying down their guns in October 2001.

A line from Train’s “Drops of Jupiter”  (2001) became a title for a poem noting a NASA mission and gave the perfect sentiment for Jiichan’s long hospital stay, “a soul vacation.”

Other strong influences were “Ue o muite arukou” (I Look Up as I Walk) (1961 Japan) the song Americans call “Sukiyaki” (1963 United States) sung by Kyu Sakamoto and “Kawa nagare no youni “(Like the Flow of the River) (1989 Japan) sung by Misora Hibari. Both are legendary Japanese singers. These songs always pull my heart strings. I remember listening to Kyu Sakamoto sing “Sukiyaki” in Japanese on the radio in Texas in the 1960s.  NPR All Things Considered aired a piece called “Bittersweet at No.1: How a Japanese Song Topped the Charts in 1963” about the international hit song.

U2’s  “Walk On” (2000) is not mentioned in Somewhere Among, but it was an inspiration and comfort during the days after September 11, 2001 and after March 11, 2011 during our days and months of aftershocks (earthquakes) after the Great Earthquake and Tsunami. U2 performed it on the concert “America: A Tribute to Heroes” via satellite from London, UK. The prelude to the song was from their song “Peace on Earth.” It is interesting to note that the lyrics were changed for the concert. Instead of the original

“I’m sick of hearing again and again that there’s gonna be peace on Earth”

Bono sang

“I’m sick of hearing again and again there’s never gonna be peace on Earth.”

There are many songs that did not make the pages or titles of poems of Somewhere Among. Most were songs I listened to when I was in elementary school in the the 1960s and when I was in high school in the 1970s. The work of Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, and especially Simon and Garfunkel  inspire other stories.

Other inspirations for Somewhere Among:

Peace Train   Cat Stevens/Yusef at Noble Peace Prize Concert 2006

Sound of Silence    Simon & Garfunkel  1963

All You Need is Love   Beatles 1967 (link update needed)

Revolution   Beatles 1968     Played on an old music player called a record player. I was 11, the age of the main character in Somewhere Among, when this song came out. The lyrics are still relevant today for 2016 as are the lyrics of all these songs.

Give Peace a Chance  Lennon 1969

Here Comes the Sun    Beatles 1969 written by George Harrison (the link is George Harrison in the 1970s)

My Sweet Lord   George Harrison 1970

Give Me Love, Give Me Peace on Earth    George Harrison 1973

It Don’t Come Easy    Ringo Starr 1973

Mind Games   John Lennon 1973

What’s so Funny About Peace Love and Understanding?   Brinsley Schwartz 1974

What’s so Funny About Peace Love and Understanding?    Nick Lowe later version

Elvis Costello & The Attractions’ 1979 cover of “What’s so Funny About Peace Love and Understanding” was also popular in the 1980s.

Numbering Dickinson, Knowing Stevenson

Emily Dickinson did not number her poems. She didn’t give them titles.

My college anthology of American literature (1978) presented her work using Thomas H. Johnson’s numbering notations in his 1955 edition, The Poems of Emily Dickinson. He used a J. plus a number.

The Academy of American Poets uses the first line and a number for the Dickinson poem mentioned in Somewhere Among;  “There is a certain slant of light” # 258. The Poetry Foundation uses the first line as a title and (320). Other anthologies use combinations or variations of the title, number and  J. 

Mom and Nana in Somewhere Among had an anthology that used Johnson’s numbering. If you google Emily Dickinson 258 you will find the poem:

There’s a certain Slant of light,
Winter Afternoons -
That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes – 

Heavenly Hurt, it gives us – 
We can find no scar,
But internal difference,
Where the Meanings, are – 

None may teach it – Any – 
‘Tis the Seal Despair – 
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the Air – 

When it comes, the Landscape listens – 
Shadows – hold their breath – 
When it goes, ‘tis like the Distance
On the look of Death –

A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson

There are many wonderful poems included here. “The Happy Thought” is among them.  Like many things written for children at its time (1885) there are thoughts that are not happy at all. I am thinking of the poem lamenting that foreign children including Japanese children were not born in England.

I bought the little 1934 edition (with the 1919 illustrations) in the photo here in Tokyo while I was writing Somewhere Among. I wonder what the previous owner thought of “Foreign Children.” My children’s introduction to Robert Louis Stevenson was “The Happy Thought” in a friend’s gift of Disney’s Somebody Loves You. 

Stevenson’s poems are widely anthologized for children. Six of them appear in one of our favorite anthologies, Talking Like the Rain selected by X.J Kennedy and Dorothy M. Kennedy and illustrated by Jane Dyer.

“I contain multitudes” comes from Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself.”

Bullying and Resolving Conflict


Across the world, days, weeks and months have been set aside to spotlight bullying. Here is what a few countries are doing. Let’s add to the list.

Australia        National Day of Action Against Bullying & Violence

Canada Safe Schools   Pink Shirt Day Canada


UK Anti-Bullying Week resources

UK The Diana Award Stand up to Bullying Campaign video message from Prince William

USA   Blue Shirt Day World Day of Bullying Prevention


Bank Street College of Education  Social & Emotional Learning through Literature

Edutopia Resources to Fight Bullying and harassment at School

Edutopia What Neuroscience Reveals About Bullying By Eucators

Psychology Today article

What You Can Do

What to do when your child is being bullied in Japanese school


The Center of Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at Rutgers University has an extensive list of links to materials for teaching and guiding students in conflict resolution skills. Click here.

Harvard Graduate School of Education         Bullying          Making Caring Common Project

TELL Japan Outreach Anti-Bullying


American Psychological Association

Anti-Bullying Ambassador programme UK  run by The Diana Award

The Bully Project

National Bullying Prevention Center  sites for kids & teens

Seeds of Peace

Stomp Out Bullying


Anti-Bullying Ambassador programme UK    run by The Diana Award     resources

Stop USA

Check here for the post about Peace Education

National Crime Prevention Council  Conflict Management K-5

BySTANDer Revolution

Teaching Tolerance

Voices of Youth   teens


middle grade  9-12

Feathers Jacqueline Woodson

Somewhere Among   Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu

picture books

Be the Change   Bethany Hegedus & Arun Gandhi, ills. Evan Turk  website

Chrysanthemum    Kevin Henkes    Read to me     Pinterest

Enemy Pie     Derek Munson,  ills. Tara Calahan King             Pinterest

Grandfather Gandhi     Bethany Hegedus & Arun Gandhi,    ills. Evan Turk   website

teen 12+

Falling Into the Dragon’s Mouth   Holly Thompson, ills. Matt Huynh

Young Man with a Camera     Emil Sher, photographer David Wyman

International Day of Peace for Peace One Day

International Day of Peace is on September 21. The 2017 theme is Together for Peace, Safety, Respect & Dignity For All.  For information about 2017 events, check here and the UN Peace Day Facebook page.  For more information check the Facebook page for Peace One Day as well as their websites and the other links below.


On September 7, 2001, the United Nations unanimously adopted a fixed date, September 21, for International Day of Peace (originally sponsored by the United Kingdom and Costa Rica for the third Tuesday of the month of September.) The U.N. also defined International Day of Peace as a day of ceasefire and non-violence. These proposals were introduced by U.N. members from Costa Rica and the United Kingdom after two years of international lobbying by Jeremy Gilley, the founder of Peace One Day, and his team.

Four days later, on September 11 International Day of  Peace for 2001, Kofi Annan, the then Secretary-General of the U.N., was scheduled to make the announcement at a press conference at the Peace Bell outside U.N. headquarters. The Peace Bell has been rung every International Day of Peace since 1982. The bell was cast from coins and medals donated by the representatives of U.N. member States and children from over 60 different nations. It was given as a gift by the United Nations Association of Japan in June 1954, and is referred to as “a reminder of the human cost of war.”

The inscription on its side reads: “Long live absolute world peace.”

This stamp of the Japanese Peace Bell, designed by Ole Hamann of Denmark, was issued in 1970 as part of the United Nations Postal Service's Art at the United Nations series. The stamps were printed by the Government Printing Bureau of Tokyo.

This stamp of the Japanese Peace Bell, designed by Ole Hamann of Denmark, was issued in 1970 as part of the United Nations Postal Service’s Art at the United Nations series. The stamps were printed by the Government Printing Bureau of Tokyo.

As the gathering waited for the Secretary-General to arrive, the nearby World Trade Towers were attacked. The bell was not rung that day and the press conference and the announcement of an annual day of international ceasefire did not happen, but International Day of Peace and the mission for Gilley’s Peace One Day has continued, growing year by year.

What can one day of peace do? A ceasefire allows organizations to move supplies and to give vaccines to people in conflict areas. 1.6 million children in Afghanistan were vaccinated against polio after the Taliban and the government agreed to a ceasefire on September 21, 2007.

International Day of Peace encompasses everything from laying down arms to reducing violence in homes, communities and schools. In 1994, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali said at the 40th anniversary of the Peace Bell , “Peace is precious. It is not enough to yearn for peace. Peace requires work — long, hard, difficult work.”

The goal of Peace One Day now is to make 3 billion people aware of the International Day of Peace by 2016.

International Day of Peace

Peace One Day Education Resources

International Day of Peace 2002    21 minute video

The Peace Bell and ringing on the International Day of Peace

After the five -year renovation of the United Nations’ building, the Peace Bell has been relocated to the Japanese Garden at the United Nations.                                  Japan Times May 2015

World Peace Bells 

More than 154 Bells & Gongs for Peace Around the World

book by Margi Preus, ills. by Hideko Takahashi  The Peace Bell

Promoting Peace

Many opportunities for peace and conflict resolution educational programs and activities can be found through the following links:

President John F. Kennedy’s address to the U.N. assembly September 20, 1963

audio from John F. Kennedy Library and Museum

Articles & Papers

Creating Classrooms for Social Justice   Dr. Tabitha Dell’Angelo       Edutopia

The Importance of Thank You Notes   Parents’ Choice

Peace Education in UNICEF Susan Fountain, 1999

Peace News:   Children as Leaders Lessons from Colombia’s Children’s Movement for Peace

The Guardian “Time to Give Peace a Chance in Schools”

Books, Materials, and Ideas

Jane Addams Association Book Awards

The Center of Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at Rutgers University has an extensive list of links to materials for teaching and guiding students in conflict resolution skills. Click here. 

A Curriculum of Peace: Selected Essays                                                                                                 English Journal editor Virginia R. Monseau

Montessori for Everyone   10 Ways to Promote Peace in Your Classroom

Skipping Stones An International Multicultural Magazine

Teach Peace Now   7 Ways to Weave Peace Education into Any Grade Level

Picture Books

Be the Change   Bethany Hegedus & Arun Gandhi, ills. Evan Turk  website

The Peace Bell by Margi Preus, ills. by Hideko Takahashi, Henry Holt and Company (9-12)

The Friendship Doll by Kirby Larson, Delacorte Books (9-12)

Somewhere Among Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu

Games & Activities

Compassion Games Survival of the Kindest

Friends and Neighbors: The Helping Game Parents’ Choice Award

The Helping Sharing and Caring Card Game  Childswork, Childsplay


George Takei’s Take on Hiroshima Preserving History through Youth & Technology 

Organizations & Associations

9-11 Day Tomorrow Together       Day of Service

Association of Childhood Education International  Peace Education

Billion Acts of Peace

Jane Addams Peace Association

Nakashima Foundation for Peace

Nakashima Foundation: Environments for Peace 

PeaceJam     Nobel Peace Prize winners Mentoring Youth  video    2017 Peace Events

Peace Alliance

Peace Boat background        Education for Peace & Sustainability

Peace Literacy

Peace One Day Educational Resources

Peace Works      Peace Education Foundation

Hiroshima Peace Media Center

Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

Quakers in the World   Peace in Education

Quakers in Britain

Seeds of Peace


Teach Peace Now

Voices of Youth   teens


Hiroshima and Peace program for undergraduate, graduate students, and graduates

Learning for Peace UNICEF

Peace Corps


Billion Acts of Peace

Children’s Peace Drawings Contest (sister and friendship cities)

Grandfather Gandhi

Hiroshima Peace Site

International Peace Day 2017    padlet by Margarita Engle & Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Kids Peace Plaza

Kids Peace Station Hiroshima

Peace Corps Kids Association of Library Service to Children


Peace One Day

Peace Padlet    Margarita Engle Amy VanDerwater

Quakers in Britain


Unite4Peace United Nations

UN cyberschoolbus     under construction

Voices of Youth   teens

Japan-U.S. Friendship

GIFTS OF TREES, 1910 – present

You may know the long and interesting history of Japan’s 1912 gift of the Washington, D. C. cherry trees. But did you know that in 1915, three years after the gift of cherry trees, the United States government sent seeds and saplings of dogwood to Japan? Gifts of Friendship (Japan Joint Issue) stamps were issued on April 10, 2015 to commemorate the 1915 gift of dogwoods.

After World War II ended in 1945, cuttings from the cherry trees in Washington, D.C. were sent to Japan to restore the Tokyo collection that had perished during the American bombing attacks during the war. The two countries’ tree giving continues through the United States-Japan Bridging Foundation Friendship Blossoms Initiative.

To read about the history of the National Cherry Blossom Festival check here.

Another photo of autumn dogwood.

Autumn dogwood

Taft’s Gift of Dogwoods to Japan Grew Up in Avon

The last original dogwood and Ambassador Caroline Kennedy

Dogwoods given to Yoyogi Park

Friendship Blossoms – Strengthening Bilateral Ties through Trees


The Immigration Act of 1924 prohibited East Asians from immigrating to the United States increasing tension between the United States and Japan. Sidney Gulick, a founding member of the Committee on World Friendship Among Children, had been a missionary in Japan and wanted to ease the tension. He knew the role of dolls in the Japanese festival and day of dolls.  In 1927, the Committee’s first goodwill project was to send dolls from the United States to children in Japan. They were called “Friendship Dolls” and “American Blue-eyed Dolls.”

Eiichi Shibusawa, a leading Japanese businessman, led the collection effort in Japan to commission the best doll makers in Japan to produce 58 dolls as gifts to the United States. These “Doll Messengers of Friendship” were sent to museums and libraries in 1928.

Passports to Friendship Celebrating 75 Years of U.S.-Japan Friendship Doll Exchange

‘Messengers of Goodwill’: America’s Tokens of Friendship and Power

Professor Explores Role of Friendship Dolls, Gift-Giving in U.S.-Japan Relations

Miss Miyazaki Japanese Friendship Doll    Adam Scher

About Miss Mie

Museum Project for Friendship Dolls    Japan Times article 2006

Miss Japan Friendship Doll at the Smithsonian Institution

The Friendship Doll by Kirby Larson, Delacorte Books

THE GIFT OF THE PEACE BELL, 1954     image0-004

The Peace Bell was donated to the United Nations in 1954 by the United Nations Association of Japan. See the links below and the post International Day of Peace for Peace One Day.

United Nations Peace Bell

There are Peace Bells throughout the world. World Peace Bells


President John F. Kennedy sent a surplus bell to the Japan Evangelical Lutheran Saijo church in Hiroshima.  Read about Ambassador Caroline Kennedy’s 2015 visit here.


Tomodachi Initiative

For more on Japan’s friendship building efforts , see

The Ehime Maru February 2001

On February 9, 2001, The Ehime Maru, a Japanese high school fishery training boat, sank 9 miles off Diamond Head after the submarine USS Greeneville surfaced beneath it. Nine people on The Ehime Maru perished.

In January 2002,  a memorial was built at Kaka’ako Waterfront Park in Honolulu and was unveiled in February 2002.  The memorial stands on a hill overlooking the ocean. It is made of nine granite blocks. Engravings include an outline of ship and a map of the accident site. One of the ship’s two anchors lay next to nine links from the anchor chain to signify the nine lost lives. The names of those who perished are engraved on the stone.

The Japan-America Society of Hawai’i maintain the memorial with the help of volunteers from the community. This photo was taken in 2015.


Construction of Ehime Memorial Underway January 20. 2002

Memorial to Ehime Maru Nine Unveiled Japan Times Feb. 11, 2002

Ehime Maru Memorial Draws Japan Tourists June 27, 2002


Mayors for Peace August 2001

On August 2, 2001, the 5th World Conference of Mayors for Peace opened first in Hiroshima. Events were also held in Nagasaki. Approximately 220 people participated from 63 cities and two non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from 28 foreign countries and from 44 municipalities in Japan. Nine countries participated for the first time, including Pakistan, which conducted a nuclear testing in 1998.
Discussions included what cities and citizens should do to eliminate nuclear weapons. The issue of violence among children was discussed for the first time at the conference. Participants resolved to make the 21st century the ‘century of humanity,’ a century in which “peace is realized not through violence but through reconciliation, cooperation, reason and conscience.”

Mayor Akiba Tadatoshi of Hiroshima City, the chairman of the conference, gave a speech in English at the opening ceremony saying, “The 20th century was an era of war. We hope to make the 21st century a century of peace and humanity. We must not forget that cities are expected to play an important role towards that goal.”

Morishima Michio of London University gave a speech at the opening ceremony in Hiroshima saying, “In the 21st century, we must transcend the interests of ethnic nationalities and act to protect the earth.”

Mayors for Peace Hiroshima-Nagasaki Appeal, August 9, 2001

World Conference of Mayors for Peace to open in Hiroshima, Hiroshima Peace Media,            Chugoku Shimbun Peace News August 3, 2001

World Conference of Mayors for Peace Through Inter-City Solidarity opens in Hiroshima, Chugoku Shimbun Peace News, August 5, 2001

Hiroshima on August 6, 2001

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi of Japan visited the annual Hiroshima Memorial Service for the Dead and the Peace Memorial Ceremony at the Peace Memorial Park in 2001. There was a moment of silence and a release of doves. Hiroshima’s Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba gave a “Peace Declaration,” and children gave a “Commitment to Peace.”

Prime Minister Koizumi stated, “Being the only country ever to have experienced nuclear devastation, Japan observes its Peace Constitution, firmly maintaining the Three Non-Nuclear Principles. Japan is also continuing to appeal to the international community for the abolition of nuclear weapons and realization of a permanent peace so that the horrors of nuclear weapons never be repeated.”


Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba’s Peace Declaration 2001

BBC News photos of Hiroshima August 6, 2001

Hiroshima Memorial Service Washington Post

Japan marks 56th anniversary of Hiroshima USA Today


Hiroshima and Peace program for undergraduate and graduate students


Children’s Peace Monument Tower of a Thousand Cranes

Hiroshima Peace Site   Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum Website

Hiroshima Peace Media Center


Message from Hiroshima Official Trailer narrated by George Takei

George Takei’s Hiroshima part 1

George Takei’s Hiroshima, Japan part 2 George Takei Remembers

George Takei’s Hiroshima, Japan part 3 Reconnecting with Family


The Last Cherry Blossom by Kathleen Burkinshaw, 2016