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Flyboys: A True Story of Courage by James…

Flyboys: A True Story of Courage

by James Bradley

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Reverent account of the fates of several Navy and Marine Corps airmen who fell into enemy hands on the island of Chichi-Jima during the last months of World War Two. The book attempts at times to tell the whole story of the Pacific air war - that's too big a tale for this short book, but it succeeds when relating the personal stories of a few American POW's and their captors. ( )
  5hrdrive | Apr 22, 2016 |
Bradley, the son of one of the soldiers who raised the flag over Iwo Jima, has written a very interesting book about the pilots of WWII. Beginning with the history of Japanese warfare, at one point Teddy Roosevelt declared that the Japanese strike against Russia was 'brilliant', the book moves into the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor and the subsequent US retaliations against Japan. The author personalizes the story for the reader by introducing us to some of the flyboys and we get to know them very well. However, the book does dwell on some terribly gruesome facts about the deaths and subsequent treatment of these flyboys remains. This must have been horrendous for these boys' families to hear. On the whole the book was a fascinating account of what it was like to be a young man, some as young as 17 years old, and be sent off to war as a brave pilot, gunner or bombadier. Quotes and memories from both American and Japanese survivors are plentiful throughout the book. I highly recommend it. ( )
  Ellen_R | Jan 15, 2016 |
Did not read; book club. WW II
  JeanetteSkwor | Oct 15, 2015 |
Really good book, and James Bradley does a good narration job (audiobook). This book tells the story of the WWII aviators in general but, in particular, the story of eight (8? was it 7?) men who flew raids over Tokyo and other areas of Japan. It's not a pleasant tale and the guys that Bradley focuses on don't come back to tell their own tale; rather, this tale is told from declassified info and interviews of the other military that knew the aviators. The Japanese were brutal to captives and they were brutal to the eight men discussed. Don't read this book if you are queasy about torture tactics and/or cannibalism - sadly, the aviators in this story met their fate with an inclusion of both. I don't know how those guys stood up to some of the torture they did - it's soooo hard to read about,and I'm sure it was 1000 times worse to experience it..., ( )
  marshapetry | Sep 30, 2015 |
This is a most amazing, heart-breaking and heartfelt telling of what happened to some of our heroic airmen in the Pacific theater during World War II. I was interested in learning about this part of our U.S. military history because, as a child of Holocaust survivors, I mostly learned about WWII from the point of view of Nazi Europe. This book took me in depth to another, even more horrendous, part of this lengthy world conflict.

The more I read about man's inhumanity to man in this narrative, the more in disbelief I remained, yet the more I realized that the evil inclination is just as present in man as the good inclination. This is also part of the Jewish teaching I was given when growing up.

I was horrified by this book. Yet, I really appreciate the author's even-handedness in presenting both sides of the conflict by the end of the book. It is now with relief that I can wish my son a pleasant trip to Japan this year and look forward to his stories about that country on his return home.

A line from the end of this book read, "Nations tend to see the other side's war atrocities as systemic and indicative of their culture and their own atrocities as justified or the acts of stressed combatants." This statement is pretty telling about war. I hope that the future brings us all towards better understanding of each other's cultures. ( )
  SqueakyChu | Aug 31, 2015 |
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Jimmy Dye, Glenn Frazier, Floyd Hall, Marve Mershon, Warren Earl Vaughn, Dick Woellhof, Grady York, and the Unidentified Airman, and to all Others
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The e-mail was from Iris Chang, author of the groundbreaking bestseller The Rape of Nanking.
Nations tend to see the other side's war atrocities as systemic and indicative of their culture and their own atrocities as justified or the acts of stressed combatants.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316105848, Hardcover)

FLYBOYS is the true story of young American airmen who were shot down over Chichi Jima. Eight of these young men were captured by Japanese troops and taken prisoner. Another was rescued by an American submarine and went on to become president. The reality of what happened to the eight prisoners has remained a secret for almost 60 years. After the war, the American and Japanese governments conspired to cover up the shocking truth. Not even the families of the airmen were informed what had happened to their sons. It has remained a mystery--until now. Critics called James Bradley's last book "the best book on battle ever written." FLYBOYS is even better: more ambitious, more powerful, and more moving. On the island of Chichi Jima those young men would face the ultimate test. Their story--a tale of courage and daring, of war and of death, of men and of hope--will make you proud, and it will break your heart.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:29 -0400)

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"Over the remote Pacific island of Chichi Jimi, nine American flyers - Navy and Marine airmen sent to bomb Japanese communications towers there - were shot down. One of those nine was miraculously rescued by a U.S. Navy submarine. The others were captured by Japanese soldiers on Chichi Jima and held prisoner." "Then they disappeared." "When the war was over, the American government, along with the Japanese, covered up everything that had happened on Chichi Jima. The records of a top-secret military tribunal were sealed, the lives of the eight Flyboys were erased, and the parents, brothers, sisters, and sweethearts they left behind were left to wonder." "Flyboys reveals for the first time ever the extraordinary story of those men. Bradley's quest for the truth took him from dusty attics in American small towns, to untapped government archives containing classified documents, to the heart of Japan, and finally to Chichi Jima itself. What he discovered was a mystery that dated back far before World War II - back 150 years, to America's westward expansion and Japan's first confrontation with the western world." "Flyboys is a story of war and horror but also of friendship and honor. It is about how we die, and how we live - including the tale of the Flyboy who escaped capture, a young Navy pilot named George H. W. Bush, who would one day become president of the United States."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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