Enemy in the Mirror

  Excerpts from the book: Once the shoji screen was closed, Kiyoshi said in a low voice, “It’s about the piece I submitted to the Chūō Kōron.” Fumiko took a deep breath. The Chūō Kōron was one of the few literary magazines that still dared to publish articles hinting...

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Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor

  Press this link for more photos published by Alex Q. Arbuckle that are rare and interesting from the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor December 7....

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You and the Atomic Bomb

Just months after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, George Orwell published an essay entitled You and the Atomic Bomb in the London Tribune. The first one to use the term "cold war," Orwell outlines in the prophetic excerpt below a rationale that would...

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Tokyo Trials

The International Military Tribunal for the Far East (IMTFE) conducted the Tokyo War Crimes Trials from May 1946 to November 1948. 28 Imperial Japanese military and government leaders were charged with Class A war crimes  - participating in a joint conspiracy to start...

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Burmese Harp / Grave of the Fireflies

Adapted from the novel by Michio Takeyama, this 1956 film directed by Ichikawa Kon, involves a company of Japanese Imperial Army troops who finally surrender in the last desperate stages of the Burma campaign. When their company commander begins to lead them in songs...

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A-Bomb Morality

Albert Einstein and Leó Szilárd The concept of a nuclear chain reaction reportedly came to the physicist Leó Szilárd as an epiphany while waiting to cross a London street in 1933. “...It suddenly occurred to me that if we could find an element which is split by...

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Japan Surrenders

After the bombing of Hiroshima, some members of Japan’s supreme war council favored acceptance of the Potsdam Declaration, but the majority resisted unconditional surrender. Things grew worse when the USSR declared war against Japan. Then, a second atomic bomb was...

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Nagasaki

President Harry Truman approved but did not specify the dates for use of atomic bombs.The Target Committee identified the targets and determined the best opportunities for attack based on logistics and weather. After the bombing of Hiroshima produced no Japanese...

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Operation August Storm 1945

On August 8, 1945, after refusing to mediate a Japanese surrender with the United States and its allies, the USSR declared war on Japan. On August 9, 1945, Russian troops invaded the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo in Operation August Storm. On August 14, 1945 a...

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Hiroshima

In April-July 1945 Japanese forces inflicted Allied casualties totaling nearly half those suffered in three full years of war in the Pacific.  In late July, Japan’s militarist government rejected the Potsdam Declaration demanding unconditional surrender or total...

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USS Indianapolis

Unfortunately, this clunky film doesn't do justice to the fate of the USS Indianapolis crewmen and or its scapegoated captain. On July 30, 1945 the USS Indianapolis, after delivering A-Bomb components to Tinian Island for the atomic bomb used against Hiroshima, was...

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Final Strikes on Japan

Instead of battleships, fleet carriers became the primary striking force of the U.S. Navy in late 1944. The Fast Carrier Task Force operated in Pacific waters from January 1944 until the end of WWII in August 1945. After the conquest of Okinawa, the next invasion was...

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B-25 Strikes Empire State

A U.S. Army Air Force  B-25 Mitchell bomber crashed into the Empire State Building on Saturday July 28, 1945.  Fourteen people were killed. Flying from New Bedford, Massachusetts, to LaGuardia Airport in New York City, with two pilots and a passenger aboard, the B-25...

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Operation Downfall Japan

  Operation Downfall, the proposed Allied plan for the invasion of Japan, would have been the largest amphibious operation in history. It was planned in two phases on the few beaches that were adequate for a massive landing force: Operation Olympic, to be launched...

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Okinawa Falls

For the Japanese, Okinawa was the last stepping stone before the invasion of the main islands of the Empire of Japan. The ferocious Battle of Okinawa  lasted 82 days. Many analysts believe that Japanese military leaders, realizing the war was lost, hoped to inflict...

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Japanese Hospital Ship Sunk

    In April 1945, the Awa Maru was a Japanese ocean liner requisitioned by the Imperial Japanese navy, sailing under the protection of the Red Cross with 2004 passengers and crew. After delivering Red Cross supplies to Singapore, the Awa Maru took on stranded...

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Bomb Kills Oregon Picnickers

Radiolab  just broadcast an excellent, detailed account of the Japanese balloon bomb incident at Bly, Oregon LISTEN: http://www.radiolab.org/story/war-our-shore/     My history-inspired novel Enemy in the Mirror: Love and Fury in the Pacific War includes a...

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My Japan

This propaganda film was produced by the U.S. Treasury Department in 1945 in an effort to promote War Bond sales. My Japan might be described as a heavy-handed attempt to elicit angry responses from American citizens regarding Japan's audacity as well as contempt for...

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Kamikaze

With the inevitable loss of the war apparent, Imperial Japan dispatched young kamikaze (神風 = divine wind) pilots of the 205th Air Group on suicidal missions against the American ships in the Pacific, especially at Okinawa. Although damage to the American fleet at...

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Yamato Sunk

In April 1945, the Japanese battleship Yamato, the pride of the Imperial Japanese Navy and heaviest battleship in the world, was dispatched from Japan with nine other warships on a suicide mission against Allied forces attacking Okinawa. Before reaching Okinawa, the...

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Okinawa

        The Battle of Okinawa (April 1-June 22,1945) was the last and largest of the Pacific War. Intending to establish bases for the invasion of mainland Japan, 287,000 troops of the U.S. 10th Army attacked 130,000 soldiers of the Imperial Japanese 32nd Army on...

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Ernie Pyle Killed

Before he became a WWII correspondent, Indianan Ernie Pyle wrote a popular syndicated column for the Scripps-Howard newspapers about the lives and hopes of typical American citizens in the 1930s. In 1942, Pyle went overseas as a war correspondent where he covered the...

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B-29s Blast Japan

  First deployed in 1944, the B-29 was a new generation bomber that carried more bombs, and flew higher, faster and farther than any other WWII bomber. It also introduced remote controlled turrets for defense and pressurized crew compartments that allowed them to...

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Firebombing Tokyo

On March 9, 1945, with the code name “Operation Meetinghouse,” 334 B-29 bombers under the command of Colonel Curtis LeMay, took off from USAAF bases in the Mariana Islands. Shortly after midnight on March 10, the B-29s flew over densely-populated areas of Tokyo at the...

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Iwo Jima

  Iwo Jima is a rocky island in the volcano islands archipelago of Japan,~760 miles south of Tokyo. It is only 5 miles long and from 800 yards to 2.5 miles wide. Located mid-way between the Marianas and the Japanese mainland, Iwo Jima provided a base for Japanese...

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