HIROSHIMA – Did you know that when the first atomic bombing in history occurred 70 years ago on Aug. 6 in Hiroshima, in addition to the countless Japanese lives lost, 12 American soldiers also died in the bombing? The names of these 12 are listed at the Memorial Cenotaph in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, along with those of the others who died from the atomic bomb, where the citizens of Hiroshima and Japan pay their respects to the dead. At the nearby Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, photographs of the 12 men are on display.
Aside from citizens of Hiroshima, in both Japan and the United States generally only specialists or researchers will be aware of this fact. At the time, the American government did not want to publicize the fact that American soldiers were killed by an American atomic bomb, so the Japanese government could not announce it either while under the control of the U.S. occupation forces after losing the war.