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War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Kiyomi Sasaki, 1987

Part of War and Peace in the Nuclear Age.


Kiyomi Sasaki was a survivor of the atomic blast at Hiroshima, Japan on August 6, 1945. In the interview she describes the blast and the aftermath. She says that the blast was not very different from other attacks, and that she did not realize that it was an atomic bomb until much later. She describes a quick flash of light, like a bolt of lightning close by, but does not remember it sounding unusually different. Immediately after the attack she went home to find no house left standing. She then helped her sister find her two children, one of whom died the day after the blast. She describes the hardship and illnesses she and her husband faced after the attack. They are both in the hospital at the time of the interview. She ends by making a plea for peace to all of the countries that are developing and stockpiling nuclear weapons.

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War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
Carter's New World
Program Number



Interview with Kiyomi Sasaki, 1987

Series Description

The first atomic explosion in the New Mexico desert on July 16, 1945, changed the world forever. This series chronicles these changes and the history of a new era. It traces the development of nuclear weapons, the evolution of nuclear strategy, and the politics of a world with the power to destroy itself.

In thirteen one-hour programs that combine historic footage and recent interviews with key American, Soviet, and European participants, the nuclear age unfolds: the origin and evolution of nuclear weapons; the people of the past who have shaped the events of the present; the ideas and issues that political leaders, scientists, and the public at large must confront, and the prospects for the future. Nuclear Age highlights the profound changes in contemporary thinking imposed by the advent of nuclear weapons. Series release date: 1/1989

Program Description

President Carter comes to office determined to reduce the number of nuclear weapons and to improve relations with the Soviet Union. His frustrations are as grand as his intentions.

Carter had hoped the United States and the Soviet Union would reduce their reliance on nuclear weapons. He stopped production of the B-1 bomber. He believed the SALT II negotiations would be a step toward eliminating nuclear weapons. But his intentions were frustrated by Soviet actions and by a lack of consensus among his own advisors, including Chief SALT II negotiator Paul Warnke and national security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski (who was dubious about arms control). Carter balanced Soviet aggression in Africa by improving American relations with China. He withdrew SALT II treaty from Senate consideration but its terms continued to serve as general limits on strategic nuclear force levels for both the United States and the Soviet Union.



Asset Type

Raw video

Media Type


World War II
Hiroshima-shi (Japan) -- History -- Bombardment, 1945
Hiroshima-shi (Japan) -- History -- Bombardment, 1945 -- Personal narratives
United States
Peace movements
Nuclear weapons
Nuclear disarmament
Hiroshima, Japan
Global Affairs
War and Conflict
Sasaki, Kiyomi (Interviewee)
Publication Information
WGBH Educational Foundation
Chicago: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Kiyomi Sasaki, 1987,” 02/26/1987, GBH Archives, accessed December 11, 2023,
MLA: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Kiyomi Sasaki, 1987.” 02/26/1987. GBH Archives. Web. December 11, 2023. <>.
APA: War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Carter's New World; Interview with Kiyomi Sasaki, 1987. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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