Children of War, Voices for Peace: Japanese and American Perspectives Exhibit
This exhibition complements the Balloon Museum's ongoing display of Fugos balloon bombs deployed by the Japanese during World War II as part of their war effort. The exhibition highlights the story of Reiko Okada, a young Japanese school girl, who secretly built balloon bombs. As an adult, after learning her childhood actions led to killings on soil, she recounts her experience through stirring text and illustrations to make a fervent wish for peace.
The schoolgirls – who specialized in making the balloon envelopes – knew that they were helping their country’s war effort, but were unaware that they were creating weapons of destruction. Japanese author Reiko Okada wrote the book from a child’s perspective—but as an adult writing after learning that she contributed to producing bombs that did kill children and adults in the United States. The book is dedicated to peace and prayer for all the lives lost through the atrocities of war.