Day One: Before Hiroshima and After

Day One: Before Hiroshima and After

As in his earlier recreations, Bay of Pigs & The Passionate War (Spanish Civil War), Wyden relies on novelistic touches drawn from interviews to spice up a story already well known.

Robert Oppenheimer's way with a martini--or of trivial details: does anyone care that the pistol tucked into General Leslie Groves' trousers was a "tiny Colt automatic...a .32 caliber on a .25 caliber frame"?

Take Leo Szilard, the Hungarian scientist who adopted the atomic bomb as a personal crusade in fear of a German military juggernaut.

(The test was kept secret from its president, Robert Hutchins, by physical science dean Arthur Holly Compton for fear that Hutchins would veto it as too dangerous.) Szilard, a delicatessenfare addict, didn't join Oppenheimer's Los Alamos project; but he did manage to keep up a running feud with Groves--in part, over the extravagant remuneration Szilard expected from his reactor patent.

(Groves was trying to get something on Szilard.

He never did.) When Szilard began another crusade, this time to forestall the actual use of the bomb on Japan, he became Groves' principal pain (& a pain to Oppenheimer, who'd come out forcefully in favor of the bomb's immediate use).

About as close as Wyden gets to anything of substance is the thread of lack-of-attention to radiation & its effects.

Read Online Day One: Before Hiroshima and After

J. Robert Oppenheimer, a physicist who was not a very stable person, gathers in Los Alamos, at the direction of the government, a group of Nobel laureates to study nuclear fission and create the weapon to end all weapons. As the first test bomb exploded over the desert at Los Alamos, Oppenheimer uttered his famous words, "Now I am become death, the shatterer of worlds".

Book 21 of Nuclear Studies: After No High Ground, I moved on to a more recent retelling of the events leading up to and directly after Hiroshima.

Really interesting stuff, about the project itself, the scientists and generals running the show and the secrecy behind the project are fascinating to learn about.

The book starts off noting a physicist (the chief scientist on the Tinian forward Air Force base) who had been told that it might take fifty atomic bombs before Japan would be conquered. Some days after the dropping of the atomic bomb Tokyo Rose announced that radiation injuries and illnesses were affecting many of the survivors of Hiroshima. The book says He wanted to adminnister the most horrifying possible psychological blow to shock the Japanese into surrendering and that meant he needed maximum casualties. Tokyo was briefly considered, but it would be having bad weather when the bomb would be ready to be dropped, and a large part of the city had already been destroyed by the firebombing, so it would make it hard to tell just how effectively the atomic bomb was. Kyoto and Hiroshima were the two top targets; Yokohama and Kokura Arsenal were the next level down, and below that was Niigata, which was eventually dropped from the list of possible atomic bomb targets. Some other airmen who had ditched (at some other time; not during the atomic bomb dropping) had been picked up by fishermen who were going to behead them, but they were saved by a Japanese military policeman. 6 p.m. Radio reports Hiroshima was attacked by B-29s dropping incendiary bombs, and damage was being investigated. Aug. 7Th, 1945, 1 a.m. Americans broadcasts that an atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima were picked up. 3:30 p.m. Japanese Imperial HQ says a new type of bomb had been used on Hiroshima the previous day and the matter was still being investigated. The book also talks about how disfigured survivors of the atomic bombing were treated like outcasts by the Japanese themselves.

In 1970, he became a book publisher in New York City and Ridgefield, Connecticut.

  • English

  • History

  • Rating: 4.00
  • Pages: 444
  • Publish Date: January 1st 1985 by Simon & Schuster
  • Isbn10: 0671461427
  • Isbn13: 9780671461423