The Atomic Bomb Suppressed: American Censorship in Occupied Japan

The Atomic Bomb Suppressed: American Censorship in Occupied Japan

The Atomic Bomb Suppressed: American Censorship in Occupied Japan

The Atomic Bomb Suppressed: American Censorship in Occupied Japan

Synopsis

Swedish journalist and author Braw draws on declassified documents and interviews in Japan and the US to reveal how the US occupation authorities established elaborate systems of censorship and disinformation among the Japanese press, scientists, and even novelists and poets, about the bombing of Hi

Excerpt

In the Summer of 1945, its World War II triumph capped by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the United States set out to remake a defeated Japan in its own self-image as a free, democratic, and capitalist society. The occupation has been widely regarded as a rare success in the annals of war and peaceful transition: in just six years, the United States planted the seeds of a lasting democratic polity, assisted a ravaged economy to rapid recovery, paving the way for its subsequent emergence as an economic superpower, and restored Japanese sovereignty.

In this carefully researched and nuanced work, Monica Braw draws on declassified U.S. archives and on interviews with atomic victims and Japanese authorities to raise troubling questions about censorship and free speech, about atomic diplomacy, and about U.S. occupation policy, questions that prompt us to rethink central presuppositions of the postwar global order.

At the very moment that the United States was destroying the apparatus of censorship and repression of the Japanese imperial state, dismantling the giant zaibatsu firms that it pinpointed as the economic roots of fascism, and proclaiming its commitment to democratic and constitutional rule, the occupation authorities, under the direction of General Douglas MacArthur, implemented secret mechanisms of censorship. U.S. censors set out to mold Japanese public opinion, to shield the United States from public criticism, and to preserve a U.S. monopoly on information pertaining to the effects of the atomic bomb on its victims.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.