World: Fire in the Night

Fire fell on Kagoshima in the night, as suddenly as an earthquake, but with far greater violence. Peacefully, Kagoshima's 200,000 Japanese citizens had gone to bed, leaving the city and naval anchorage brightly lighted. Then, at low level, the B-29s roared in. Two searchlights aimlessly fingered the sky and quickly paled into nothing as almost 1,000 tons of incendiary bombs turned the city into a flaming caldron. There was only one dark spot in the glowing mass: a baseball park.

Within a week, other secondary cities got the same treatment—Shizuoka, Toyohashi, Fukuoka, Kagamigahara. Small...

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