Little Boy Made a Big Mess

August 6, 2009

Morning of August 6, 1945

Morning of August 6, 1945


by Karen Topakian

In a strong and clear voice, the habited nun read aloud one of our “Demands to Disarm” to the Livermore Lab Security Force and the Alameda County Sheriffs. I couldn’t tell if they were listening. It’s hard to see their eyes behind their tinted facemask and dark sunglasses.

Nineteen of us, including a woman with a walker and another in a wheel chair, took our places in the road at the West Gate of the Lab risking arrest.

I know that these uniformed men and women standing in formation have no more control over the activities of the Lawrence Livermore Weapons Lab than I do. But they were the public face of the Lab on August 6th.

A high holy day for the nuclear disarmament community.

Sixty-four years ago today, a United States B-29 bomber dropped “Little Boy,” a 9,700-pound uranium bomb, on Hiroshima, Japan at 8:15 a.m. killing as many as 140,000 people. Unleashing the nuclear age.

 And we were there to say we must disarm.

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