I found what he had to say about the bomb and war in general quite interesting, given his unique perspective:
Whether the United States should have used the atomic bomb has been debated endlessly.
"I honestly believe the use of the atomic bomb saved lives in the long run," VanKirk told The Associated Press in a 2005 interview. "There were a lot of lives saved. Most of the lives saved were Japanese."
But VanKirk said the experience of World War II also showed him "that wars don't settle anything."
"And atomic weapons don't settle anything," he said. "I personally think there shouldn't be any atomic bombs in the world - I'd like to see them all abolished.
So far, so good. But VanKirk then added the following, which kinda negates the observations above:
"But if anyone has one," he added, "I want to have one more than my enemy."