Glendale "Bugler" - World War II

The beginning of the end of World War II ...

On August 6, 1945 at 7:09 AM Japanese time, an air-raid warning sounded in Hiroshima. People took little notice, since this was the time when an American weather plane routinely flew over the city. Just 22 minutes later came the all-clear. Suddenly, at 8:16 that morning, the age of atomic warfare began when the B-29 Superfortess -- named Enola Gay after the mother of the pilot -- dropped the innocuously named "Little Boy" bomb. The ground temperature immmediately beneath the explosion was later estimated to be at least 9000°F. Thousands of people were vaporized within an instant. Office blocks, factories, and homes were flattened, and thousands more were buried under blazing rubble. Charcoal cooking stoves fueled fires that raged through the city, blown by a fierce whirlwind. Many who sought refuge in the river were drowned as powerful winds whipped up high waves. Soon, large black raindrops -- moisture from the vast mushroom-shaped cloud -- carried deadly, silent radiation that would claim many more victims. Still the Japanese did not surrender. So, on August 9th, another bomb -- this one named Fat Man -- was dropped on the major military port and shipbuilding center of Nagasaki.

The message that a new dimension in devastation had arrived was not lost on Japan's rulers. As it happened, both bombs were part of a gigantic bluff. By implication, Japan faced the choice of capitulation or annihilation. Yet, the U.S. had no more atomic bombs immediately available. Fortunately, for both Japan and the Allies the bluff worked, and surrender negotiations began within hours of the Nagasaki explosion.

Sixteen million men and women served in our nation's armed forces during World War II. Some of their stories are told in the new book, Theaters of War: We Remember, edited by Wendy Lazar, President of Glendale. In their honor, proceeds from the book will be donated to The National World War II Memorial in Washington, DC. The American Battle Monuments Commission, which is responsible for the design and creation of The Memorial, has endorsed the project from its inception. Former Senator Bob Dole, National Chairman of The Memorial, has written an introduction for the book. Theaters of War: We Remember will be available in October. It can be ordered on the Glendale website at www.ParadeStore.com.

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Webmaster Note: Glendale put out a great internet newsletter, The Bugler. It provided interesting tips, historical information and veterans stories. We have been granted permission to reprint them here. If you are interested in other items from them or wish to visit their site, they can be found at www.paradestore.com.