The last military officer to command an atomic mission, Major General Charles W. Sweeney has the unique distinction of having been an integral part of both the Hiroshima and the Nagasaki bombing runs. Now updated with a new epilogue from the co-author, his book is an extraordinary chronicle of the months of careful planning and training; the setbacks, secrecy, and snafus; and the nerve-shattering final seconds and the astonishing aftermath of what is arguably the most significant single event in modern history: the employment of an atomic weapon during wartime.
SubtitleAn Eyewitness Account of America's Last Atomic Mission
AuthorBy Maj. Gen. Charles W. Sweeney, USAF, By James A. Antonucci, By Marion K. Antonucci
Published4 September 2018
Dimensions5.50 x 8.25in.
Illustrations8pp b/w photo insert.
About the author
Major General Charles W. Sweeney, USAF entered military service on April 28, 1941 as an Army Air Corps aviation cadet. He was awarded the Silver Star for piloting the atomic bomb drop on Nagasaki and retired from the military in 1976 with the rank of major general. General Sweeney died in 2004. James A. Antonucci practices law in the Boston area and is a former assistant district attorney for Suffolk County, Massachusetts. Marion K. Antonucci was a schoolteacher and speechwriter for Massachusetts governor Michael Dukakis, and served as assistant to Boston University president John R. Silber. Marion died in 2005 and is survived by her husband James.
"Maj. Gen. Charles W. Sweeney is a revisionist historian's nightmare—a clear-eyed, thoughtful witness who remembers exactly what he did and why. Reading War's End: An Eyewitness Account of America's Last Atomic Mission, it becomes difficult if not impossible to ascribe other motives to the men who bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as so many latter-day interpreters have sought to do. There is no arguing with his somber, compelling story.
But this is also an account of the daily life of the men and women who fought World War II, written with such detail, sweep, and compassion that it might have been a novel, not an autobiography.
Charles Sweeney is the best kind of warrior, motivated by real patriotism. For setting straight a difficult record, his book is invaluable. For commemorating a generation of heroes, his book is unforgettable."
—Dan Rather, former news anchor for CBS Evening News and author of Rather Outspoken
"Major General Sweeney's personal account of this historic event that ended World War II is revealed in a way that makes you feel like you are in the plan alongside the crew as they undertake their hazardous, breathtaking mission. A must read for any student of WWII."—Senator John McCain
"At a time when all too many revisionist want to re-write the history of World War II and the decision to use nuclear weapons to end it, General Sweeney has gives us the first person account of those momentous events. As the only pilot who participated in both Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Chuck Sweeney vividly portrays the dawning of the nuclear age and explains why it was necessary. "—former Vice President Dick Cheney
BR> "Compelling . . . an exciting tale. . . . Every American who harbors guilt about our use of atomic bombs will find peace of mind after reading Gen. Sweeney's gripping story."—James A. Lovell, Gemini 7 and 12, Apollo 8 and 13
"A candid account, as authentic as it is arresting, providing the ultimate insider's tale of this fateful mission."—James MacGregor Burns, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award for Roosevelt: The Soldier of Freedom "A gripping account of one of history's greatest events by the only person present at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Sweeney is straight-forward and convincing in answering a question no one asked in 1945 by very much on peoples' minds half a centry later: Was it necessary to use the bombs? ...Recommend without reservation."—Stephen Ambrose, bestselling author and historian