First and foremost, thank you to all who have read my past blog posts and my book, “Homey’s Adventures.
As promised, I am writing this book as a sequel to the happy ending of my first book. I decided to share this with you. So, without delay here is the afterword of my third book:
Honor Thy Father is not a novel. In fact, it is only a little more than 15,000 words. The average romance novel is about 60.000 words. My original intention was to supplement my dad’s journal by writing about meeting the descendants of other survivors of the 21st Bomber Group, but my resources and circumstances prevented this. In retrospect, I now believe this was the destiny of this book. This book is about honoring my father and mother and by doing so honoring God who is the father of all of us. This book is not about me.
The book has 21 chapters. My dad was in the 21st Bomber Group. My Dad’s journal includes details of 21 missions. I did not intend this symmetry when I started writing the book. For me, my brother, and my dad, numbers have meaning. 21 is the lucky number for this book and changing it would be unlucky.
I do not really know why my dad’s journal ended at his 21st mission, but my best guess is my mom was about to have a baby and she did not have the time or inclination to add more to it. My mom gave me this journal after my dad’s death in 1984. She never talked to me about it. I now regret not asking her more about it. I suspect that it was something she cherished, and she was the one who hung on to it for all those years. She gave it to me because I was grieving.
She also gave me the flag that covered my dad’s casket. I remember being in her home after the funeral and holding the flag up and showing it to my brother’s twin daughters.
With tears in my eyes, I exclaimed: “Your grandfather was a hero who help defeat an evil Japan.”
I suspect this is when my mother decided to give me her cherished journal. In the first part of this book, I mention that I found a picture of Nagasaki before the atomic bomb. I will always wonder if there were more pictures and journal entries that my mom did not include.
The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a dark time for Japan and the USA. It ended an awful and brutal war with unthinkable brutality. I tried to read a book by Michihiko Hachiya, M. D. entitled “Hiroshima Diary “. The book is a chronicle of the aftermath of the atomic bomb as seen through the eyes of a Doctor of Medicine. I had to put it down after a few pages because the morose descriptions were so depressing. I cannot imagine how awful it must have been.
On July 16th,1945, the first atomic bomb was detonated in New Mexico. When President Harry Truman signed the Potsdam Declaration on July 25th,1945, he knew he could demand unconditional surrender under any terms he wanted. The Potsdam declaration was signed by the USA, Britain, and China. It declared the terms of unconditional surrender by the Japanese
President Theodore Roosevelt ‘s foreign policy in 1901 was: “speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far”. President Harry Truman had the biggest stick ever invented. The USA would have this big stick exclusively until 1949 when the Russians detonated their first atomic bomb. The British would follow with its atomic bomb detonation in 1952. The USA is still the only country to detonate an atomic bomb on a civilian population.
Even though I think President Truman was the worst diplomatic president in all USA history, I will not judge him for using this weapon. I try to leave judgement to God. More civilians died from the B29 bombings before the atomic bomb than died from the atomic bombs. The Japanese High Command showed no signs of wanting to surrender from all these bombings. In fact, they attempted a coup after the Emperor of Japan, Hirohito, decided to agree to unconditional surrender after the atomic bombs were dropped.
The Japanese High Command considered that all B29 crews were war criminals because of the civilians killed. From my father’s journal, I saw no evidence of intentional bombing of civilians. In fact, General Lemay changed B29 bombing tactics to low level bombing to increase the accuracy of bombing military targets.
Out of precaution, I have not given any specific full names in this book because I did not want it to cause any retaliation against the heroes of the B29 crews and their descendants.
My father was a hero, and I do not think he wanted to kill anyone. I do not remember him saying anything bad about the Japanese people. He loved people and people loved him.
End Of Afterword
I encourage anyone who had a parent or grandparent who flew in the B29’s from Tinian Island in 1945 to contact me. Without these heroes protecting our freedoms, we would not be able to celebrate our country’s founding on Independence Day.
“Honor Thy Father.” is finished. But wait! There’s more! I started this blog as a collection of things that I was thinking about during the week and reviews of books and movies. I plan to continue. Who knows, I might be inspired to write another book.
If you do not want to wait that long and you have not read my first book. I encourage you to go to my website, www.homeysadventures.com. You can read the first two chapters for free, and you can also buy it. Or you can buy it from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and many other fine retailers. Just search for it using the words: Homey’s Adventures by Jim Wish.
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I liken myself to the Vienna Violinist described in chapter 5 of Homey’s Adventures Too. I play (write) for your enjoyment and mine. God bless you all.