Two days ago in my annual series the highlight was the first nuclear test, at Trinity, on that date 71 years ago. The following day, in Potsdam, Truman met Stalin for the first time, and had a new bounce in his step after receiving word of the positive test. Still, he had to insist that the Soviets keep their promise to enter the war for he knew, as he wrote in his diary, that would mean "fini Japs," even without use of the atomic bomb. As it would turn out, he decided not to wait for that but chose to use the bomb first. As he wrote in his diary on this date he was certain that Japan would would quit when "Manhattan" (his name for the bomb, from the still-secret Manhattan project) appeared in the sky.
Also today Gen. Leslie Groves, who managed the Manhattan effort, sent a long and detailed memo to Secretary of War Stimson on the Trinity test, which included eyewitness accounts by scientists and what would become a decades-long theme: downplaying the negative effects of radiation.
This is a subject
that I have studied and written about in hundreds of articles and three
books (including Atomic Cover-up
and Hollywood Bomb) since the early 1980s with a special emphasis
on the aftermath of the bombings, and the government and media
suppression in the decades after.
Monday, July 18, 2016
Countdown to Hiroshima: X-Minus-19 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