A Japanese artist has distilled the history of nuclear arms into a video that tells us more about the absurdity of atomic warfare in 14 minutes than just about anything not involving Slim Pickens.
Isao Hashimoto’s 1945-1998 plots every nuclear blast during those years on a world map, from the United States’s practice run in New Mexico and the detonation of Little Boy and Fat Man to the Cold War and the nuclear peacocking of Pakistan in the late ’90s. The film covers 2,053 explosions, each marked by a flash of light and a haunting blip. As a piece of historical accounting, it is a superb infographic. As a protest, it is quiet, free of cant, and enormously powerful. Check out the light show here: