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Bookshelf: The story of the Tinian battle in words and images

By Pacific Island Times News Staff

At 02.45 hours on the morning of Aug. 6, 1945, a Boeing B-29 Superfortress, named after the pilot’s mother, Enola Gay, lifted off from a tiny island deep in the Pacific Ocean on one of the most important missions in human history. The B-29 carried just one bomb; the target was Hiroshima.  

The cattle of Tinian is narrated through photos in the book by John Grehan and Alexander Nicoll, which was released in December 2023.

The dropping of the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, and of a second nuclear device on Nagasaki three days later, is known throughout the world.

But what is often forgotten is that these missions were only possible following the savage battles to seize the Northern Mariana Islands – which, crucially, were within the B-29’s operational range of Japan.

In “The Battle of Tinian: The Capture of the Atomic Bomb Island, July-August 1944 (Images of War),” Grehan and Nicoll recount the historical events that occurred on Tinian from its capture to the defeat of Hirohito’s Imperial Japan.

The book describes how the sparsely populated island was turned into the biggest air base in the world. With six runways, four of which were built for the huge Superfortresses, it was from there that the atomic destruction of Japan began.

The story of that battle is told here, in the words and images of the men who took part in that memorable, and ultimately epoch-changing, campaign. 

“The Battle of Tinian: The Capture of the Atomic Bomb Island, July-August 1944 (Images of War): is available on Amazon.

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