Author chronicles Tinian's key role in WWII - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Author chronicles Tinian's key role in WWII

Posted: May 14, 2018 3:22 PM Updated:

It changed the course of history: the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. It led to the end of World War II, and saved many, many more lives than were taken says author Don Farrell, who has released a fascinating new book that chronicles the real story behind Tinian's key role in the top secret operation.

Farrell's new book is entitled "Tinian and the Bomb." It's the culmination of years of research which began in 1998. A librarian friend of his told him about a once top secret file he could access in the national archives in Washington, DC. He went and was given access to several boxes of old documents, of which he said, "And I just went whoa."

It was the original correspondence from the directors of the Manhattan Project, the program to develop America's first nuclear bombs, and the los Alamos laboratory where they were being tested.

"And overseeing all of that were phenomenal, hugely expensive projects employing over 125,000 Americans who had no idea what they were working on. But, it was the work that happened on Tinian that brought it to fruition," he added.

The letters were for a team of about 50 hand-picked scientists and expert technicians who were sent to a tiny, remote Western Pacific island. Farrell says it sets the record straight for where the bombs were assembled, saying, "I could sit down and read the story of how America's atomic bomb project was created on the island of Tinian. And they shipped enough parts there to create fifty bombs, it wasn't just two." He added, "Because many of the parts were arriving that had never been tested. They came right from the factories in the united states. And they needed to be tested. So Tinian was a testing facility as well as a proving ground, and then the launchpad."

There is no disputing the carnage wrought by the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, dropped in 1945 by warplanes that launched from Tinian's North Field, but for Farrell, who explained, "This was done to get the war over with. To stop the killing. To establish an independent democratic unified nation of Japan that would become our ally in the western pacific to balance the power of the soviet union and China."

Book signing events are scheduled for Wednesday at UOG's Liberal Arts lecture Hall and on Friday at the War in the Pacific National Park Visitor Center.

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