Hiroshima Nagasaki by Paul Ham
The real Story of the Atomic Bombings And their Aftermath
Paul Ham is the author of the highly acclaimed "Kokoda and Viet Nam: The Australian War"
. He is the Australia Correspondent for the Sunday Times.
Let me say right away that I approached this book with some trepidation, as it has been surrounded with a certain amount of controversy as a left wing apologists’ view of the Atomic war waged on Japan. That has been voiced on a topic in an Arrse forum in particular .
The story for Mr Ham starts in winter 1945 Yalta where Churchill “lounging about in his greatcoat like a breathless bulldog, radiating delight at the top table , cigar smoke trailing in the direction of his loquacious argument”
and Stalin “small and sharp amid the gathering darkness, in his flashing eyes and faithless smile that seemed to concentrate the air of menace that preceded him like a personal storm” Roosevelt was worrying as to whether or not to inform Stalin about the United states project Manhattan, in the event Both he and Churchill decided to keep him out of the frame perhaps seeing the USSSR as a potential enemy and at the same time trying to get Russia to attack Japan. However this was a moot point as Stalin had a very highly placed spy in the heart of the Manhattan project.
Once the Nazis had been defeated the Allies began to look at the options for pursing the war against the Japanese people. Via Magic, the programme of breaking Japanese codes and ciphers the allies realised the Japanese military were all for fighting to the last man woman and child and that they ran a brutal regime bleeding the civilians of food and materiel’s so that the military could continue in its action. The civil population were kept ignorant of events and the first lone B52 to shed it load caused maximum damage to the unsuspecting populace who were at that time used to hearing only false alarms or drills. By the time 60 of their biggest cities, including Tokyo, were raised to the ground they were defeated and on their knees but still the ruling military elite wanted to fight on to the last.
The Allies were only negotiating under the terms of unconditional surrender President Truman inherited this policy and looked at the various options open, which were of course Invade Japan or Drop an as yet untried Atom bomb on them. After the bombing of Dresden Churchill wrote a memo distancing himself from this type of warfare , Bomber Harris wrote in his memoirs that be believed the bombing of city’s was a wasted effort and took away power and effort that should have been used on military installations and the Nazis would have been defeated earlier. Meanwhile the Japanese were pondering on exactly what unconditional surrender meant as regards to the Emperor. This was the stance played right through the peace negotiations. Also at the same time the Russians were making advances to attack Japan which now the Allies did not want. It was only once Russia started to invade that the Japanese decided to surrender, it wasn’t the dropping of the two atomic bombs per se. In the event I think that the bombings had to happen it was their time in history, but they also serve as a warning to us.
To discover the full story of the Atomic bombings I urge you to read this tremendous book the factual reports from the bombers and the civilians under the cloud will change the way you think of Atomic warfare and remember in the scale of this those bombs were as hand grenades compared to today’s arsenal. This book is a candid non opiniated history of what happened and I give it 4.5 mushrooms as a good report on a great historical event.
sirbhp Hiroshima Nagasaki
: The real Story of the Atomic Bombings And their Aftermath by Paul Ham, published by Doubleday 600 pages, illustrated. ISBN 987-0-857-52105-7. Also on EBook. Click here to buy from Amazon