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In History, 08-06

Today, in…

1774, Founder of the Shaker sect, Mother Ann Lee, arrived in New York along with eight followers, including her husband. Among their peculiar beliefs was celibacy. The Thirsty Theologian suspects this may be why there are no Shakers today. They did leave us with some very nice furniture.

1945, an atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. The headlines yesterday and today are full of stories about the “victims of the atomic bomb.” I’m just cold enough to say that they were not victims of the bomb, but of their own government’s arrogance. James Bradley has written a book, entitled Flyboys, that presents the history behind this event.

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. A masterpiece of historical narrative, Flyboys will change forever our understanding of the Pacific war and the very things we fight for.

The focus of the book is on six navy pilots who were shot down and captured at the pacific island of Chichi Jima, but the scope of the book is so much broader. This is a must-read book. You will never think of war in the same way again.

2005-08-06 at 6:00 AM MT | |