Monday, August 6, 2007

Hiroshima Remembered

Sixty-two years ago today, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima Japan, the first ever use of such a weapon. The components for the bomb had recently completed a 5,000 mile journey aboard the USS Indianapolis from San Francisco to the island of Tinian in the Pacific Ocean. Unloaded and assembled to form “Little Boy,” the bomb was then loaded aboard the Enola Gay, which dropped it on Hiroshima, killing an estimated 140,000 people. The nuclear Pandora’s Box had been opened forever.

Click below to watch a portion of the BBC’s documentary, “Hiroshima,” which recreates that fateful morning. The clip also includes first-hand accounts from Hibakusha (survivors of the bombing) and the crew of the Enola Gay, as well as the footage of the bombing as seen from the plane.

The BBC has made available a number of other clips from the documentary, including: Truman's Ultimatum, Preparing for Take-Off, The Destroyer of Worlds, Dropping the Bomb, and Chaos & Debris.

Interviews with Hibakusha can be watched here and here. A new HBO documentary, “White Light/Black Rain,” which recounts the stories of the survivors, is set to premiere tonight. The beginning of the film can be viewed here, and a number of other brief clips are also available online, including: Description of the Bomb, Mushroom Cloud and Survivors, Sakue Shimohira, and Hiroshima Maidens.

Interviews with the Enola Gay crew can be seen here, and a clip from the documentary “Atomic Café” that includes an interview with Paul Tibbets, pilot of the Enola Gay, can be seen here.

Newsreel coverage of the bombing at the time can be found here. Described by a disturbingly excited narrator, it includes footage filmed by the Japanese the day after the bombing as well as footage of Hiroshima a year later.

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