Audiobooks The Bomb –

As A World War II Combat Soldier, Howard Zinn Took Part In The Aerial Bombing Of Royan, France Two Decades Later, He Was Invited To Visit Hiroshima And Meet Survivors Of The Atomic Attack In This Short And Powerful Book, Zinn Offers His Deep Personal Reflections And Political Analysis Of These Events, Their Consequences, And The Profound Influence They Had In Transforming Him From An Order Taking Combat Soldier To One Of Our Greatest Anti Authoritarian, Antiwar Historians This Book Was Finalized Just Prior To Zinn S Passing In January , And Is Published On The Sixty Fifth Anniversary Of The Bombing Of Hiroshima

10 thoughts on “The Bomb

  1. says:

    My grandfather worked on the Manhattan Project.He had lost a lot of cartilage in his knees playing football in college we re talking leatherheads hereiron man football and was, therefore, unable to fight in WWII He managed to get a government job as a pipefitter down in Oak Ridge, TN and was told he was helping the war effort He had never heard of Oak Ridge no one did it was a secret location then, not on any maps , but he moved my grandmother and two of my uncles down there and began working They lived in silver government trailers, like everyone else, that my grandmother described as being horrible tin cans and had community washing areas for both clothes and selves The rations were extremely tight and in order to go into Knoxville for supplies, one had to go through a series of checkpoints with armed guards.My grandfather didn t know what he was building He knew it was big He knew it was important But, he wasn t a scientist, just a laborer, so he was kept in the dark The government made the announcement to the people at Oak Ridge about what had been built the night before they told the rest of the world.I don t think my grandfather ever forgave himself He had repeatedly said that he never would have participated in the building of the bomb, had he known what he was building I think that was the point.I ve seen my grandparents memory box from those days I ve looked at their ID badges and ration books I ve read some of their letters and heard their stories However, nothing can really prepare you for the horrors and I mean, horrors of the bomb dropping Howard Zinn, a former bombardier, really serves it up to you on a skewer of stomach turning nastiness.Some of the images relayed in The Bomb feel seared into my brain I doubt I ll ever be able to hear the words Hiroshima or Nagasaki without those images springing to mind, cold chills running up and down my spine, and a lump forming in my throat These crimes against humanity make me weep, nay, sob For such a small book of essays, it packs a wallop of emotion.I ll never be the same First Reads Win

  2. says:

    Back when I dreamed of going to law school, entering the world of politics, and becoming the first woman President of the U.S., I was among the horde of protestors in Washington for the November 1969 march against the Vietnam War I was a college freshman at a university in D.C When I returned to my dorm, a friend told me, Your grandmother called you d better call her right away She sounded frantic So I called and listened to this panic stricken voice saying, Thank G d you re all right I heard the hippies broke through the doors to your dorm Then she heard me say, Grandma, nothing has happened to the doors, and I M one of those hippies I think the line was a conversation stopper Spring came the protests hadn t gotten us out of Vietnam, of course The U.S invaded Cambodia, and after protesting students at Kent State were shot dead by Ohio National Guardsmen, I was back in the protesting business I was attending a different college I really couldn t stand being at a school where just about everybody envisioned a future that the Clintons wound up living Instead of hitching a ride to Constitution Avenue, I got on a D.C bound bus with other protestors, and five hours later we were running around the House and Senate Office Buildings in an attempt to make our voices heard.Now that I ve established my credentials as a bona fide peacenik, I feel that I can offer comments about THE BOMB In anticipation of the sixty fifth anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Howard Zinn and Greg Ruggiero developed plans to create a book that would include Zinn s out of print HIROSHIMA BREAKING THE SILENCE, his essay that dealt with the U.S s April 1945 napalm bombing of Royan, France, and a new piece to introduce the book Zinn completed the introduction not long before he died The book actually opens with Ruggiero s short contribution and although I respect Zinn s work and embrace most of his beliefs, Ruggiero s Acts of Rebellion, Large and Small does not let us forget that both Zinn and his collaborator consider the use of nuclear weapons unjustifiable in EVERY situation, however atrocious 14 Yes, our government has often used force when it had other options has killed and injured on a larger scale than was necessary to accomplish its objectives has engaged in wars based on greed, politics, revenge, etc That we are not always the good guys does not mean that perpetrators of greater evils should be allowed to rule the planet.And have we hidden, for long periods, facts that citizens should have been made aware of YES Are Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the list of subjects about which the U.S has lied and concealed information Of course Would I rather provide the poor with basic necessities than spend money on ways to wage war Guess So then should we, 24 7, just sing, All we are saying is give peace a chance, in a world with a past whose major players include Attila the Hun, Torquemada, Russian czars, Joseph Stalin, Idi Amin, and on and on I know I left a few big ones off the list you re right I really should mention Adolph Hitler Zinn, when you call for resisting a false crusade or refusing one or another expedition in a true one , refusing to be transfixed by the actions of other people 87 , I m with you But the last time I watched or read the news, the lion and the lamb weren t sharing a bed and space for their sleep apnea equipment Until that day, promising that we re never going to use weapons of mass destruction won t mean the end of The Bomb Place your bets Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong II or Kim Jon Un , Osama Company, some new bully on the block Note My copy was a first reads giveaway.

  3. says:

    Though the great American historian Howard Zinn is no longer with us, his memory lives on with this excellent personal essay on the subject of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki His book is a shining example of the Constitutionally protected ability to question what we have been told, and should be required reading for all patriotic Americans Black Heart Magazine It s my favorite He wrote the book to remind himself and to remind us that anybody can throw the wrench in the machinery, and we often should Bill Moyer This is in all likelihood the final original book by long time VFP member and WWII vet Zinn It has a publication date of August 2010 to mark the 65th anniversary of America s two atomic bombings of Japan The much loved, greatly admired Zinn died in January, 2010 at 88, just a month after completing this volume Will Shapira, Veterans for Peace Part history, part memoir, part sermon, The Bomb is meant to wake up citizens, to rouse them to reject the abstractions of duty and obedience and to refuse to heed the call of war Jonah Raskin, The Rag Blog Occasioned by the 65th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, Zinn s final work completed just before his death in January 2010 , combines a discussion of the horrors of atomic warfare with a glimpse at the carnage in Royan, which included the deaths of over 1,000 civilians in one of the first uses of napalm Zinn s call to reject disproportionate violence in war remains unalloyed and relevant to today s conflicts Brendan Driscoll, Booklist The late Howard Zinn s new book The Bomb is a brilliant little dissection of some of the central myths of our militarized society David Swanson, LA Progressive The path that Howard Zinn walked from bombardier to activist gives hope that each of us can move from clinical detachment to ardent commitment, from violence to nonviolence Frida Berrigan, WIN Magazine Zinn s last book is a modest appeal to humanity War is miserable, and we have to stop it Micah Uetricht, In These Times Throughout his academic career, his popular writings and work as an activist Zinn consistently, and often successfully, threw a wrench in the works of the US war machine He may be gone, but through his powerful and passionate body of work of which The Bomb is an excellent introduction thousands of others will be educated and inspired to work for a humane and peaceful world Ian Sinclair, Morning Star Zinn, the people s historian, leaves us with words that bring together thought, action, and passion His experience during World War II left him unpersuaded by the arguments of military necessity and the appeals to nationalism We must refuse to be transfixed by the actions of other people, the truths of other times, he writes in The Bomb This means acting on what we feel and think, here, now, for human flesh and sense, against the abstractions of duty and obedience Marcus Raskin, Foreign Policy in Focus A bomb is highly impersonal The dropper can kill hundreds, and never see any of them The Bomb is the memoir of Howard Zinn, a bomber in World War II who dropped bombs along the French countryside while campaigning against Germany After learning of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Zinn now speaks out against the use of bombs and what it can do to warfare Thoughtful and full of stories of an old soldier who regrets what he has done, The Bomb is a fine posthumous release that shares much of the lost wisdom of World War II James A Cox, The Midwest Book Review

  4. says:

    The Bomb is a combination of older essays written by Howard Zinn which looks at the morality of the mass aerial bombings of civilian dense targets Zinn was himself a bombardier during World War Two and spent most of his Post War life as a strong anti war voice, both a historian and activist Inside this brief book he cites as his main examples for the bloody futility of aerial bombing as being the destruction of Hiroshima and the pointless devastation of the French City of Royan both in 1945.Zinn confronts the confused logic that a great many hold dear which states that nationality or birth determines whether one is guilty in war And thus a credible target to be executed, so long as it is done under certain conditions Those conditions being for example the bombing of a city which will kill thousands instantly in such a frightening manner, this is some how considered just whereas the specific gassing of other citizens is unjust Or that bayoneting a baby is immoral whereas dropping napalm on many children from high above is a necessity of warfare Ultimately however it is the victor who determines what is right and wrong as those vanquished are condemned to history, to stand judgement for all the ills of conflict Zinn however uses quotations from both those critical of such conduct as well as the condemning sociopathic boasts from those in favour of such brutality Zinn in his brief book condemns all the war makers, both victor and vanquished as both are responsible for the deaths of millions Yet, the victors never face justice for their conduct and instead glorify it Zinn puts on paper in so many words a sincere and eye witness condemnation his experiences from when he served in the USAAC 8th Air Force based in the UK during the War of the bombings of citizens Whether this happens to be with a fleet of bombers, a single nuclear device or as has been used in recent times with an apparent smart weapon system He questions and blasts those who so would elect to indiscriminately destroy property and life, simply because it is deemed important to the war effort.The legitimacy of just how effective such aerial bombings are as far as strategic effectiveness goes is also addressed The strategic validity of such mass murder is often the sole crux to the mass killersbombers arguments The calculations made by politicians and military strategists to justify the destruction of so much private property and savage slaughter of millions is sinister and yet despite the claims empirically it is flawed Did murdering millions of civilians in East Asia during both the Korean and Vietnam wars bring victory to the allies Has the constant bombardment with cruise missiles, aircraft and drones stabilised the Middle East and defeated the insurgencies Will it ever Or is it simply the mechanical genocide of other human beings done with gloves on and from a far Zinn s book asks such questions in so few pages because of this it is a very quick read Too quick in fact as you wish to read of what Zinn has to say Not because he lacks depth in his argument, but because he is a talented writer and man who gets to the point with polite savagery And because unfortunately this is a subject of tremendous magnitude and consequence, it is one that should be simply seen as right and wrong Yet, many are educated to know better, to know that murdering innocent civilians is allowable so long as we do it Zinn disagrees So should all of us I suggest this book to be read for any one who considers themselves and intelligent person I say this because obedient considerations on such historical events are so well entrenched with many And thoughts on such events as the bombings of Hamburg, Dresden or Nagasaki by the good guys are of paramount importance for individuals to consider.Many grow up with the assumption that the Hun or Jap were no good killers, who deserved a fiery death and it is precisely because of this crude out look that we now find ourselves fighting in so many unwinnable conflicts against concepts or caricatures All the while real human beings die and suffer If you hold a simplistic absolute world view that goodies and baddies are simply black and white, a view so determined by what National Government is in control, then you are ultimately on a path to condoning the death of so many innocents past, present and yet to be born A good an honest read.86 %

  5. says:

    Comprised of two previously published essays on the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the French village of Royan at the end of World War Two plus a new Introduction by the author Both attacks were justified and defended as necessary in bringing the wars with Germany and Japan to an end Yet, as Zinn and others have shown, not everyone was in agreement with that More likely the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were done to show the Soviets that we had the ultimate weapon On the incendiary carpet bombing of the little village of Royan Zinn writes that The evidence seems overwhelming that factors of pride, military ambition, glory and honor were powerful motives in producing an unnecessary military operation that, like the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, because of the lack of viable military targets, were carried out against civilian populations to make a point Resist us and you shall die.In Humanity a Moral History of the Twentieth Century Yale University Press, September 1, 2001 , British ethicist Jonathan Glover writes about the moral slide in reference to the decision during World War One to block aid shipments to the German people that caused thousands to die of starvation From there it was a simple matter to push the envelope a little further and allow the bombing of civilians as a means of crushing an enemy s spirit and defeating him Civilians, in other words, were now players in a military drama Once frightened non combatants, they were now an element military strategic planning, bargaining chips in an endgame that they was chosen for them by people they did not even know.What Glover did in his masterwork, Howard Zinn did years earlier in his essay on the bombing of Hiroshima The strategic argument that there was no military necessity to use the bomb, is not enough We need to confront the moral issue directly faced with the horrors visited on hundreds of thousands of human beings by the massive bombings of modern warfare, can any military strategic political necessity justify that emphasis added It is a question that each of us needs to ask and answer for ourselves.In the Introduction, written in late 2009, Zinn brings the discussion into the present What you see over and over again in the news reports is the words suspected terrorist or suspected al Qaeda meaning that intelligence is not sure whom we are bombing, that we are willing to justify the killing of a suspect in Iraq or Afghanistan or Pakistan, something we would not accept from a police operation in New York or San Francisco emphasis added This suggests, to our shame, that the lives of people other than Americans are of lesser importance page 19.

  6. says:

    More and in our time, the mass production of massive evil requires an enormously complicated division of labor No one is positively responsible for the horror that ensues But everyone is negatively responsible, because anyone can can throw a wrench into the machineryIt is the immediate victims or tomorrow s who have the greatest need, and the fewest wrenches They must use their bodies which may explain why rebellion is a rare phenomenon This may suggest to those of us who have a bit than our bare hands, and at least a small interest in stopping the machine, that we may play a peculiar role in breaking the social stalemate.

  7. says:

    There are historians that are contented to tell history as accurate as they can assimilate it and others that want to disrupt it, dig in it, turn it upside down, and make it tell us what to do and what not to do if we are to avoid repeating the past mistakes and suffering the its perils Howard Zinn belongs to the second group, and he does what he does brilliantly.I have enjoyed this book immensely, first because I read it immediately after finishing Hersey s Hiroshima which Zinn quotes several times in this one and, second, because it is not only a critical look at the use of the nuclear bomb which Zinn argues both that it wasn t needed strategically and is never needed morally, but also a look at his own time as a bombardier on a B 17 flying fortress during the Second World War He was part of the bombing of Royan near Bordeaux in the last few weeks of the war in Europe.Royan was another senseless and unnecessary aerial blanket bombing using another new weapon of WWII, this time napalm which was directed at a stubborn German garrison but ended up hitting the city for the second time in so many months The bombing was shrugged by the military as a necessary evil, but that is hard to sell when scrutinised.The two events examined and contrasted by Zinn put a clear view on our collective responsibility towards stopping collective evils of war He acknowledges that while we might not have a positive guilt of conducting the crimes, we do have a negative guilt of not stopping them according to our means and ability Throwing a wrench in the machine Zinn openly asks all of us to conduct acts of rebellion, and he argues it with a level minded insight that is eye opening.

  8. says:

    Written from a man we all know, a bombardier himself in WWII, and in my opinion one of the greatest people of our time.If you can read this book without crying, or at the very minimum without being profoundly moved if not totally disgusted YOU HAVE NO HUMANITY.Zinn s thorough research and countless testimonies of people, and administrators in our government show Truman and Churchill to be the depraved monsters they were He also shows how deception and racism conditioned the minds of Americans to accept what they were told about the bomb Is not the fact that our president identified as a Baptist Christian with knowledge that Japanese capitulation would have happened without invasion, or the bombings, massacre innocent women and children just to make a point proof that nothing short of revolution will bring a needed change to our country and the world Isn t it time we took his words to heart and brought about change for all of humanity Shouldn t we dispose of these weapons of terrorism once and for all Lets create a system where it is impossible for government to do this in our name.Google image search for Hiroshima and Nagasaki August 1945

  9. says:

    A great book and a concise review of the context in which the unnecessary bombings of Hiroshima, Nagasaki occurred As usual it comes down to hubris, ego, revenge, sadism etc When everyone is just following orders things can, and often do, go terribly wrong And then you remember that those little bombs were nothing compared to what we have stockpiled all over the place today.

  10. says:

    war bad