"The fruits of war" is the chilling message accompany the tragic photo of a Japanese boy and his dead brother
Shortly before the papal plane took off for Chile today, a photo was distributed to journalists aboard the plane, at the request of Pope Francis. On the back of the photo is a message in the pope’s handwriting that says simply, “The fruits of war.”
This reproduction of a 1945 photograph shows a Japanese child in Nagasaki, after the atomic bomb was dropped August 9. The boy waits for his turn at a crematorium to leave the body of his dead brother, which is strapped to his back.
The photo was taken by American photographer Joseph O’Donnell. The pope distributed the photo at the Vatican before Christmas.
According to Vatican Insider, the pope told journalists present on the papal flight that he has been “touched” by this photo, found “by chance.” The pope said he wanted to distribute the photo, because “a picture is more moving than a thousand words.” And his fear of a nuclear war is real: “I’m truly afraid,” he said. “We are at the limit; one incident would be enough. The situation must not be precipitated. We must eliminate nuclear weapons.”