We’ve had three letters to the editor published in the past six weeks in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and the Washington Post.

Matter of Perspective
The New York Times
May 31, 2016

As an American who has visited Hiroshima and Nagasaki on many occasions, I believe there is a fundamental difference in the way Americans and Japanese view the bomb. The American perspective is from above the bomb and its symbol, the mushroom cloud. The Japanese perspective is from beneath the bomb.

The view from above the bomb leads to reliance on nuclear weapons and ultimately to an evolutionary dead-end for our species, while the view from beneath the bomb engages our moral decency and leads to abolishing these devices of mass annihilation and preserving the planet for future generations.

David Krieger, Santa Barbara, Calif.

The writer is the president of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.

It Isn’t Enough for Obama to Talk About Nuclear Proliferation at Hiroshima
Los Angeles Times
May 13, 2016

Last year, my organization brought Setsuko Thurlow, a survivor of the U.S. atomic bombing of Hiroshima, to Santa Barbara to honor her for her lifetime of advocacy for the abolition of nuclear weapons. Thurlow and so many other survivors have dedicated their lives to abolishing nuclear weapons so nobody will again suffer as they did.

This is the real lesson of Hiroshima. For the White House to propose a modest speech about the importance of nuclear nonproliferation during the first visit to that city by a sitting president is cowardly and misses the point completely. (“Obama will be first U.S. president to visit Hiroshima — but he’ll make no apologies,” May 10)

Yes, it is important that no additional nations acquire nuclear weapons. But the story of human suffering that Hiroshima tells makes it clear that the 15,000-plus nuclear weapons in the arsenals of a handful of countries must be abolished with urgency.

There exists an international legal obligation to pursue — and bring to a conclusion — negotiations on nuclear disarmament. President Obama should dedicate the final months of his presidency to fulfilling this long-delayed obligation. That would be a legacy worth creating.

Rick Wayman, Santa Barbara

The writer is director of programs for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.

The Meaning of Hiroshima, 70 Years Later
Washington Post
April 19, 2016

Regarding the April 16 editorial “The lessons and legacy of Hiroshima”:

The leaders of every nation possessing nuclear weapons should be required to visit Hiroshima. This, of course, includes President Obama and whoever is elected as his successor in November. Abstract theories of national security and nuclear deterrence have been stubbornly followed for more than 70 years while willfully turning a blind eye to the very real catastrophic human consequences of nuclear weapons.

The Post’s call for further reductions in nuclear arsenals is important, but quantitative reductions lose their meaning when the remaining hundreds or thousands of nuclear weapons are made more “usable” and equipped with new military capabilities.

The United States is in the midst of a $1 trillion, 30-year program to modernize all aspects of its nuclear arsenal: the warheads, delivery systems, production facilities and command-and-control system. The other eight nuclear-armed nations are also engaged in modernization efforts. A visit to Hiroshima would underline the moral and humanitarian imperatives to abolish nuclear weapons. This, taken together with the existing legal obligations to pursue in good faith — and bring to a conclusion — negotiations on nuclear disarmament, makes it clear that continuing with business as usual is unacceptable.

Rick Wayman, Santa Barbara
The writer is director of programs for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.