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A Day in Tokyo: A 1968 Film Captures a City Reborn 23 Years After Its Destruction. “Bullet trains, high-speed expressways, and color television broadcasts were spreading throughout the land.”

Discussion  1 comment

Tra H

We don't talk about General Curtis LeMay's firebombing campaign against Japan during WW2 enough.

We all know the story about the bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, but in the lead up to dropping the bombs we had a months long campaign of firebombing major and minor Japanese cities. Operation Meetinghouse (mentioned in the Openculture link) was a major raid on Tokyo in March 1945, but it wasn't the only one, and by the end of June we had burned out 51% of Tokyo. Then LeMay switched to start bombing smaller cities. The raids continued even after we dropped the atomic bombs, and LeMay had to be ordered to stop for fear it was undermining the negotiations to end the war.

It's a pretty interesting and is tied into the history of the creation of the US Air Force in general. I first read about it in Gladwell's Bomber Mafia book, and I really recommend it (the audiobook version is amazing).

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