editorial | cherry trees
Blossoms stronger than bombs
This month marks the 100th anniversary of Japan’s gift of thousands of blossoming cherry trees to the United States, a botanical delight that has come to symbolize the friendship between the two countries. But amid all the joy, it is worth remembering that this festival didn’t start so auspiciously. The first trees, which arrived in 1910, were so pest-ridden that President Taft ordered them burned. Even the gift itself was a harbinger of some of history’s most terrible battles.