Los Alamos  and  Manhattan

  A picturesque Ranch School campus and its surrounding acreage was the site chosen for a secret project during WW II.  It is in a “Secret City”, 33 miles nw of Santa Fe along the perimeter of todays Los Alamos National Laboratory, but back then it was wilderness.

     Soon after WW II began, Professor Albert Einstein send a letter to President. Franklin D Roosevelt.  The letter warned FDR of the discovery of nuclear fission and warned that Nazi Germany might develop atomic bombs.  It was feared that nuclear fusion would lead to the development of a weapon that would allow Germany to win the war.

He urged the United States to start its own nuclear program.   This is the letter Einstein sent, actually written by Szilard and signed by  Einstein.  It spurred the Allies into action.

     In August of 1942, the whole works was called the Manhattan Project, named after the first HQ of the gathering organization.  The Army Corps of engineer’s oversaw the project. 

     On Dec.2jj 1942, as related in vol 2 of A Toast For You and Me, America’s Participation, Sacrifice and Victory, Prof Enrico Fermi produced the first chain reaction that can create a huge explosion.  A cittical mass of uranium or plutonium would produce the chain reaction  that if controlled would produce energy but if uncontrolled creates the very prowerful explosion.  Gen. Groves chose J. Robert Oppenheimer, the nation’s leading theoretical physicist to lead the project.

In the early part of the war, Gen. Leslie Groves and physicist Robert Oppenheimer decided the research and development of the atomic bomb needed to be consolidated in a single laboratory where upon scientists could work together in secret.  Oppenheimer suggested the geographical area of present day township Los Alamos.  Virtually isolated, it was sufficiently close to an available workforce and trans[portation infrastructure; Oppenheimer loved northern New Mexico and it was ideal for Project Y (the code name.)  Los Alamos provides a majestic landscape and an isolated mesa, and access to it is difficult.

By mid-WW II, you had over 130,000 scientists, engineers, technicians and other workers.  Outside Los Alamos, there existed other secret sites which produced the materials necessary for an atomic bomb.  Fissionable material was needed, known as Plutonium-239, the fissionable isotope of plutonium.

 

book A Toast For You And Me, America’s Participation, Sacrifice and Victory

    Japan had not lost a war in 2,600 years, and the tide of war was still victorious. 

     The  WW II-era Manhattan Project and the former boys prep school built by Ashley Pond, a former Teddy Roosevelt Rough Rider, but who had died in 193.2    It is hard to believe this was to solve the war.  All photos in color taken by the author, Robert Valentine.  

    Japan had not lost a war in 2,600 years, and the tide of war was still victorious. 

    Americans are too soft and diverse, so thought the Imperial Japanese.  Japan had amassed over 180,000 prisoners, and the Empire was still intact.  Although Midway was a turning point, nobody knew it thenand most of Japan's people were never publicly told about it in 1942and America's war plants were thousands of miles away and it seemed at the end of the other side of the world.

    Japan had not lost a war in 2,600 years, and the tide of war was still victorious. 

    Americans are too soft and diverse, so thought the Imperial Japanese.  Japan had amassed over 180,000 prisoners, and the Empire was still intact.  Although Midway was a turning point, nobody knew it thenand most of Japan's people were never publicly told about it in 1942and America's war plants were thousands of miles away and it seemed at the end of the other side of the world.

    Japan had not lost a war in 2,600 years, and the tide of war was still victorious. 

    Americans are too soft and diverse, so thought the Imperial Japanese.  Japan had amassed over 180,000 prisoners, and the Empire was still intact.  Although Midway was a turning point, nobody knew it thenand most of Japan's people were never publicly told about it in 1942and America's war plants were thousands of miles away and it seemed at the end of the other side of the world.

   What's the deal on Guadalcanal?

   Primary intelligence in July picked up Japanese activity on Guadalcanal, and double-checked by Australian reports, it was true that an airbase was being constructed on the island.  It meant it could expose Australia and New Zealandour Allies to more danger and darkness.  (Australia had already been bombed as described in vol 2.)  The time lag between the Fall of Bataan and Corregidor was just about 3 months when some action was seen in world history, on August 7, 1942.

  The story of Guadalcanal is herewith presented in PDF as a special section taken from the actual book A Toast For You And Me, America’s Participation, Sacrifice and Victory vol 2 augmented by a few videos helping to tell the actual story.   In the first year of war for America, you will experience what happened in both the Philippines and when and what  U.S. Marines encountered in the cockatoo-tarantula jungles of Guadalcanal.  True account of the dark gloomy days of 1942 when Japan had not let a war in 2,600 years.  The participation began with the U.S. 1st Marine Division, who landed with hand-drawn sketches based on air reconnaissance for maps.  They were wearing the new-style helmet, and within 48 hours of the initial amphibious invasion were left alone to fiercely engage the foe.  A foe led by officers of the Bushida code and sheer arrogance that they were invincible. A Toast For You And Me, America’s Participation, Sacrifice and Victory vol 2 indeed covers the Solomons campaign. The book, a Finalist in the History United States category of the National Best Books 2009 Awards, is 296 pages.   We begin with something remarkable I found on the internet, a drone shot over present-day Guadalcanal.   Mat McLachlan took the aerial with his drone and published it in March of 2017.