the recent Atomic Cover-Up on the U.S. suppression of film for decades and another on a Hollywood film) since the early 1980s with a special emphasis on the aftermath of the bombings, and the government and media reactions in the decades after.
On July 29, 1945:
—Truman wrote letter to wife Bess from Potsdam on deals there (but
does not mention A-bomb discussions with Soviets): “I like Stalin. He is
straightforward, knows what he wants and will compromise when he can’t
get it. His Foreign Minister isn’t so forthright.“ Truman casually
informed Stalin about the atomic bomb but no one is quite certain that
the latter understood.
—Japanese sub sinks the U.S.S. Indianapolis,
killing over 800 American seamen. If it had happened three days
earlier, the atomic bomb the ship was carrying to Tinian would have
never made it.
—A Newsweek story observes: “As Allied air and sea attacks
hammered the stricken homeland, Japan’s leaders assessed the war
situation and found it bordering on the disastrous…. As usual, the
nation’s propaganda media spewed out brave double-talk of hope and
defiance.” But it adds: “Behind the curtain, Japan had put forward at
least one definite offer. Fearing the results of Russian participation
in the war, Tokyo transmitted to Generalissimo Stalin the broad terms
on which it professed willingness to settle all scores.”
—Assembling of the first atomic bomb continued at Tinian. It would
likely be ready on August 1 and the first use would be dictated by the
weather. The second bomb—the plutonium device—was still back in the States.
The target list, with Hiroshima as #1, remained in place, although it
was being studied for the presence of POW camps holding Americans in the
—Secretary of War Stimson began work on the statement on the first
use of the bomb that President Truman would record or release in a few
days, claiming we merely hit a "military base," assuming the bomb worked.
Friday, July 29, 2016
Countdown to Hiroshima: X-Minus 8 Days
is author of a dozen books (click on covers at right), including the new "THE TUNNELS: Escapes Under the Berlin Wall and the Historic Films the JFK White House Tried to Kill." He was the longtime editor of Editor & Publisher. Email: email@example.com. Twitter: @GregMitch