Tuesday, August 4, 2009

In Honor of Nagasaki and Hiroshima

On August 6, 1945, the US military dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, over 192,000 people died. Three days later, on August 9, the US dropped a second atomic bomb, this time on Nagasaki, over 74,000 people died. On August 15, Japan's Emperor Hirohito surrendered and WWII was over.

Perhaps the most powerful film commemorating these events is not a film at all but a feature length cartoon entitled Barefoot Gen, created by Japan's award winning manga artist Keiji Nakazawa. Born in Hiroshima in 1939, Nakazawa was one of only two in his family to survive the 1945 bombing. He was seven years old at the time. In Barefoot Gen, he tells his story as only an eyewitness can. This is not a cartoon for children. Barefoot Gen is a powerful and personal statement about the human cost of atomic warfare. It contains strong images and adult themes. We recommend it highly.

For other Historybusters' recommendations for Nagasaki and Hiroshima, click here. Members will also find a wealth of information in their members' center. Simply visit the WWII area of the center and scroll down to The Bomb.

As always, Happy Historybusting...

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