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Operation Coronet   >   Books   >   Downfall

   
 

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire


I haven't read this book, but hope to in the future. I did notice it has some very favorable reviews on Amazon.com

The book is about the end of the war in the Pacific. There are of course many controversial issues around this period of history, particularly the use of atomic bombs against Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and I understand this book offers some perspective on why this decision was made, as well as quite a little of information about the Allied plans for (and the planned Japanese defense to) Operation Olympic.


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Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire

By Richard Frank

Random House
Released: 1999-09-28
Hardcover (512 pages)

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire
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"The publication of Richard Frank's long-awaited Downfall is an event of great importance, not only to historians but to the general public. No aspect of World War II is more controversial today than the use of atomic bombs against Japan in 1945. Some have argued that this act was cruel and unnecessary since Japan was on the verge of surrender. But by means of exhaustive      research and the employment of previously neglected and recently declassified sources, Frank proves in this definitive book that neither the Emperor nor the Japa-nese armed forces were anywhere close to surrendering in August 1945.
  
"In a stunning tour de force, Frank re-creates the end of the war, not as it seemed to people writing much later but as it appeared to American and Japanese decision makers at the time. Though the bomb was often seen as the worst possible means of ending the Pacific war, Frank establishes that its use was superior to all existing alternatives, and saved not only Allied lives but Japa-nese lives as well. Masterly in conception, brilliantly    reasoned, superbly researched, Downfall is all but impossible to put down.
    
"Anyone concerned with the moral, military, and political issues surrounding the end of the Pacific war must read this book."          
   --William L. O'Neill, author of A Democracy at War

Downfall opens with a vivid portrayal of the catastrophic fire raid on Tokyo in March 1945--which was to be followed by the utter destruction of almost every major Japanese city--and ends with the anguished vigil of American and Japanese leaders waiting to learn if Japan's armed forces would obey the Emperor's order to surrender.
  
America's use of the atom bomb has generated more heated controversy than any other event of the whole war:

  Did nuclear weapons save the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans poised to invade Japan?
  Did U.S. leaders know that Japan was urgently seeking peace and needed only assurance about the Emperor's safety to end the war swiftly?
  Was the bomb really used to intimidate the Russians?      
  Why wasn't the devastating power of the weapon demonstrated first before being unleashed on a city?

Richard B. Frank has brought to life these critical times, working from primary documents, reports, diaries, and newly declassified records. These pages present the untold story of how American leaders learned in the summer of 1945 that their compromise strategy to end the war by blockade and bombardment, followed by invasion, had been shattered; radio intelligence had unmasked a massive Japanese buildup on Kyushu designed to turn the initial invasion into a bloody shambles. Meanwhile, the text and analysis of diplomatic intercepts depicted sterile prospects for negotiation before a final clash of arms. Here also, for the first time, is a full and balanced account of how Japan's leaders risked annihilation by gambling on a military strategy aimed at securing political bargaining leverage to preserve the old order in Japan.
    
Downfall replaces the myths that now surround the end of the war and the use of the bomb with the stark realities of this great historical controversy.

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire

By Richard B. Frank

Random House Inc
Hardcover

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire
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Very Good!!!! Will be shipped immediately from Alabama except for some unavoidable circumstances! Box 7

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire by Richard Frank (1999-09-28)

By Richard Frank

Random House
Hardcover

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire by Richard Frank (1999-09-28)
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Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire by Richard B. Frank (2001-05-01)

By Richard B. Frank

Penguin Books
Paperback

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire by Richard B. Frank (2001-05-01)
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