Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire

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9780141001463: Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire

In a riveting narrative that includes information from newly declassified documents, acclaimed historian Richard B. Frank gives a scrupulously detailed explanation of the critical months leading up to the dropping of the atomic bomb. Frank explains how American leaders learned in the summer of 1945 that their alternate strategy to end the war by invasion had been shattered by the massive Japanese buildup on Kyushu, and that intercepted diplomatic documents also revealed the dismal prospects of negotiation. Here also, for the first time, is a comprehensive account of how Japan's leaders were willing to risk complete annihilation to preserve the nation's existing order. Frank's comprehensive account demolishes long-standing myths with the stark realities of this great historical controversy.

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Review:

Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire is an impeccably written analysis of the last months of the Pacific War and the unfolding of the American air campaign over Japan. The story opens with a searing description of the fire-bombing of Tokyo in March 1945, which caused more deaths than the atom bomb in Hiroshima. Within five months, Japan's economy was collapsing and the country faced catastrophic starvation. Richard B. Frank coolly analyzes different scenarios for ending the war (Russia waited in the wings). Frank concludes that the emperor and the Japanese military were far from ready to surrender, and that the decision to use the atom bomb probably saved millions of lives, not only Allied but Japanese and other Asian lives, also--perhaps a hundred thousand Chinese were dying each month under Japanese occupation. The effects of the bomb worked on many levels, even lending faces to the Japanese militarists, who could convince themselves that they were defeated not by a lack of spiritual power but by superior science. Densely documented, intelligently argued, Downfall recreates the end of the war from the viewpoints of the principals, giving the book an unusual immediacy. A highly valuable insight into the disintegration of the Japanese Empire, one of the most dramatic episodes of World War II. --John Stevenson

From the Inside Flap:

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 replacesthe myths that now surround the end of the war and the use of the bomb with the stark realities of this great historical controversy.

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Descrizione libro Penguin Putnam Inc, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Reissue. Language: English . Brand New Book. In a riveting narrative that includes information from newly declassified documents, acclaimed historian Richard B. Frank gives a scrupulously detailed explanation of the critical months leading up to the dropping of the atomic bomb. Frank explains how American leaders learned in the summer of 1945 that their alternate strategy to end the war by invasion had been shattered by the massive Japanese buildup on Kyushu, and that intercepted diplomatic documents also revealed the dismal prospects of negotiation. Here also, for the first time, is a comprehensive account of how Japan s leaders were willing to risk complete annihilation to preserve the nation s existing order. Frank s comprehensive account demolishes long-standing myths with the stark realities of this great historical controversy. Codice libro della libreria AAS9780141001463

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Descrizione libro Penguin Putnam Inc, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Reissue. Language: English . Brand New Book. In a riveting narrative that includes information from newly declassified documents, acclaimed historian Richard B. Frank gives a scrupulously detailed explanation of the critical months leading up to the dropping of the atomic bomb. Frank explains how American leaders learned in the summer of 1945 that their alternate strategy to end the war by invasion had been shattered by the massive Japanese buildup on Kyushu, and that intercepted diplomatic documents also revealed the dismal prospects of negotiation. Here also, for the first time, is a comprehensive account of how Japan s leaders were willing to risk complete annihilation to preserve the nation s existing order. Frank s comprehensive account demolishes long-standing myths with the stark realities of this great historical controversy. Codice libro della libreria AAS9780141001463

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Descrizione libro Penguin Putnam Inc, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Reissue. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. In a riveting narrative that includes information from newly declassified documents, acclaimed historian Richard B. Frank gives a scrupulously detailed explanation of the critical months leading up to the dropping of the atomic bomb. Frank explains how American leaders learned in the summer of 1945 that their alternate strategy to end the war by invasion had been shattered by the massive Japanese buildup on Kyushu, and that intercepted diplomatic documents also revealed the dismal prospects of negotiation. Here also, for the first time, is a comprehensive account of how Japan s leaders were willing to risk complete annihilation to preserve the nation s existing order. Frank s comprehensive account demolishes long-standing myths with the stark realities of this great historical controversy. Codice libro della libreria BTE9780141001463

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