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The first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in August 1945. This resulted in the death of 100,000 men, women and children. Many hundreds of thousands more died of their terrible injuries later, or slowly perished from radiation-related sickness.

'There was nothing I could do to help in this hell on earth, so I simply clasped both hands together tightly in front of may face and made my way out of Hiroshima ...'

Flight Navigator Takenhiko Ena, a Kamikaze pilot who returned home through the atom-bombed city after his plane ditched into the sea. [Ham, P, 2011, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, HarperCollins, Sydney]

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  • Hersey, J, 1946, Hiroshima, Penguin Modern Classics, London. John Hersey wrote his book only one year after the bombing of Hiroshima. Told through accounts of six men and women who survived against the odds stacked against them. Forty years later he Hiroshimareturned to Japan to disover how these same six people had struggled with the catastrophe and often with crippling disease. The result is a devasting picture of the long-term affects of one very small bomb. [Book cover]
  • Hersey, J, 1946, Hiroshima, Pengiun Special 1946, London. On the 70th anniversary Penguin reissued this 'this classic piece of journalism ... a defining moment of the nuclear age.'
  • Ham, P, 2011, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, HarperCollins, Sydney. Paul Ham used diaries, contemporary accounts and official papers to give a gripping account of the events that led to the bombing, and the harrowing testimony to their destructive power. Through the eyes of 80 survivors, he reminds us that the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were full of ordinary people - who without warning, became the world's first atomic casualties.
  • Ham, P, ed, Edwards, D, trans., 2013, Yoko's diary: the life of a young girl in Hiroshima during WWII, HarperCollins, Sydney. In her diary, Yoko provides an account of that time - when conditions were so poor that children as young as twelve were forced to work in industry; when fierce battles raged in the Pacific, and children like Yoke believed victory was near.
  • Rummel, J, 1992, Robert Oppenheimer: dark prince, Facts on File, New York. This book chronicles the life and work of the man who spearheaded the Manhattan Project - one of the most controversial scientific enterprises of the 20th century - which led to the development of the atomic bomb.


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