First into Nagasaki

  • by George Weller
  • Narrated by Stefan Rudnicki
  • 11 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

On September 6, 1945, less than a month after the atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, George Weller, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter, became the first free Westerner to enter the devastated city. Going into the hospitals and consulting the doctors of the bomb's victims, Weller was the first to document its unprecedented long-range medical effects. He also became the first to enter the nearby Allied POW camps, which rivaled those of the Nazis for cruelty and bested them for death count. Among these prisoners' untold stories was that of their voyage to imprisonment in Japan on "hellships" that transported them so inhumanely that one third died in transit. Heavily censored by General MacArthur, most of these dispatches were never published and believed lost - until now. This historic body of work is a stirring reminder of the courage of rogue reporting that ferrets out the truth.

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What the Critics Say

"Weller's dispatches from Nagasaki are riveting, even at this late date...a welcome addition to the historical record." (Publishers Weekly)
"As the number of nations capable of producing nuclear weapons appears to be growing, this gruesome glimpse at the results of nuclear war is timely and important." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

First Into Nagasaki

As Walter Cronkite says in the introduction, "This is an important book".

There are many strong images about the Atomic Bombing of Nagasaki that have been promoted for the last sixty-two years that are significantly changed by this monumental history. The effect of "Bomb" was, in fact, much different than I was taught as an average American born in 1948. The dis-information purpetrated by General MacArthur and the Truman Administration is important for everyone to understand.

The Bomb was much less powerful and all devastating than portrayed and the effect of gamma radiation was much more than the U. S. Government wanted people to know about for fear of being tried for crimes against humanity.

The story of the terrible war crimes in the Japanese Prisoner of War camps is something Americans need to know about.

I highly recommend this book. It should be required reading in all High Schools.
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- Harold

60 years late-but still timely

This book is derived from the lost carbon copies of dispatches that General MacArthur's censors destroyed. Pulitzer Prize winning newsman George Weller spend his life frustrated at the loss of his incredible, first person, observations of Nagasaki within five weeks of the detonation.
His son located the lost carbons after his father's death in 2003. His compilation and commentary document the origins of our government's massive censorship of the press in peacetime.
Newsman Weller was reporting from post-surrender Japan. The official basis for WWII military censorship was to protect our troops, their positions, their defenses and plans of attack. Once the war was over and the occupation of Japan began, the rationale for censorship ceased - but the censors never stopped. The lies of our government are now laid bare.
This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to step back into 1944-45 and live among the troops, Japanese citizens post nuclear attack & surrender, and experience the ghastly treatment of POW's by the Japanese. It is reportage as it should be today. A must buy!


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- George

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-21-2006
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.