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August 12, 2011

Oroville Mercury Register
August 16, 1945
880 Dead, Missing In Cruiser Loss

Guam –(U.P.)- Two tremendous torpedo explosions sank the heavy cruiser Indianapolis July 30 and caused 1190 causalities-every man aboard ship—while she was bound from Guam to Leyte, survivors reported Wednesday. The Navy announced that 880 of the casualties were killed or missing in one of thee worst U. S. naval disasters of war or peacetime history. The other 316 causalities were wounded. The cruiser was sunk shortly after delivering essential atomic bomb material to Guam. Survivors said they watched some 200 of their shipmates perish after five days of helpless threshing in the sea. Many of the men went mad from drinking sea water before the group was sighted by search planes 280 miles north of Peleliu.

Oroville Mercury Register
August 16, 1945
Atomic Bomb Saved Million American Lives: Churchill.
By Phil Ault
London -(U.P)- The atomic bombs that forced Japan to surrender enabled the Allies to call off a gigantic offensive that would have cost 1,000,000 American and 250,000 British lives, Winston Churchill revealed in Commons today. In his first major speech as leader of the opposition, the former prime minister said the offensive was planned at Potsdam and that he and President Truman already had given the order to set in motion what might have proved the bloodiest campaign in history. It was averted only by the atomic bombing and Japan’s sudden and unconditional surrender, he said. “Success beyond all our dreams crowned this somber and magnificent venture of our American Allies.” Churchill said. The Americana and British Joint Chiefs of Staff submitted a master plan for a knockout offensive against the Japanese in Malaya, the Dutch East Indies and Japan itself. That undertaking, Churchill said would have been the greatest military operation in history. The Allied high command ordered it to begin with the full realization that it probably would mean the sacrifice of 1,250,000 American and British lives. It was with that price in blood before them that the Allied leaders made their decision to unchain the devastating power of the atomic bomb against Japan, Churchill declared.

Stu’s Notes: The 66
th anniversary of the Atom Bombs dropped on Japan has come and gone. Aug 6th and 9th, 1945. Hiroshima and Nagasaki, yes close to 200,000 plus Japanese lost their lives’, but we must remember the USA had made plans to invade the Japanese Islands to end the war. Estimates are 200 to 500 thousand young American men would die in this invasion plus all their children to be born, until way into the future. Many people alive today are alive by that bomb, as sad and terrible as it was. Estimates on Japanese killed in an Invasion , would have been in the millions, do doubt, as the Japanese were prepared to fight to the last man, women and child on their beaches and Japan has a lot of beaches. They had prepared well for this fight. Weapons were hidden and ready, I’ve read 5,000 Kamikaze planes were hidden all over the Islands. At the end of WWII in Europe, May 8, 1945, my very good friend Nick Krpan, who fought all the way to the outskirts of Berlin, was told you stay for 6 months, Occupation duty in Germany or you can go to the Japan Invasion. Nick chose occupation duty. Thermalito’s Big Jim Townsend, was on the way to the invasion. My friend, who chooses not to be named, fought in the skies over Europe as a gunner in a B-17, and then he went into an Engineering outfit after the liberation of France and trained in gliders at Camp Chicago, France. At the end of the War in Europe, V-E Day which means Victory over Europe, he was ordered to go on a ship, the SS Baroque, which would sail with his group via India, then to China and prepare for the Invasion of the Japanese Islands and other areas. As they were getting ready to sail the bombs were dropped on Japan and their ship set sail for America. They sailed past the Statue of Liberty, he remembered pretty girls on a tugboat singing popular songs from the early 40’s. Then it landed at Hoboken, New Jersey. For them the war was over. V.J Day, Victory over Japan, August 14, 1945, had come and gone, there were no parades for him. He came home to California with no great fan fare and took up life where he had left off. As you read of some of our losses above the War had to end quick and it did. My friend Rudi Messerschmidt, Prisoner of War of the Japanese, in the Dutch East Indies, probably would not have survived much longer.

There will be a big event out at the Oroville
Airport headed up by Oroville’s Mike Howard, from 8AM to 4PM on Saturday, August 20th. Go in the main gate on Chuck Yeager Way. Along with others previously mentioned, The California National Guard from Mather will bring the Black Hawk Helicopter, Butte County Sheriff’s Helicopter and Air plane. See: AirportDayFlyIn.com.

Happy Birthday Jeff, Shakey’s 4pm Sunday?