The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
John Richard Hersey was an American writer and journalist. He is considered one of the earliest practitioners of the so-called New Journalism, in which storytelling techniques of fiction are adapted to non-fiction reportage. Hersey's account of the aftermath of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, was adjudged the finest piece of American journalism of the 20th century by a 36-member panel associated with New York University's journalism department. Hersey was born in Tientsin, the son of Grace Baird and Roscoe Hersey, Protestant missionaries for the Young Men's Christian Association in Tientsin. Hersey learned to speak Chinese. John Hersey was a descendant of William Hersey of Reading, England. William Hersey was one of the first settlers of Hingham, Massachusetts in 1635. Hersey returned to the United States with his family, he attended public school in Briarcliff Manor, New York, including Briarcliff High School for two years. At Briarcliff, he became his troop's first Eagle Scout, he attended the Hotchkiss School, followed by Yale University, where he was a member of the Skull and Bones Society along with classmates Brendan Gill and Richard A. Moore.
Hersey lettered in football at Yale, was coached by Ducky Pond, Greasy Neale and Gerald Ford and was a teammate of Yale's two Heisman Trophy winners, Larry Kelley and Clint Frank. He subsequently was a graduate student at the University of Cambridge as a Mellon Fellow. After his time at Cambridge, Hersey got a summer job as private secretary and driver for author Sinclair Lewis during 1937. Two years he was transferred to Time's Chongqing bureau. In 1940, William Saroyan lists him among "contributing editors" at Time in the play, Love's Old Sweet Song. During World War II, newsweekly correspondent Hersey covered fighting in Europe as well as Asia, writing articles for Time as well as Life magazine, he accompanied Allied troops on their invasion of Sicily, survived four airplane crashes, was commended by the Secretary of the Navy for his role in helping evacuate wounded soldiers from Guadalcanal. After the war, during the winter of 1945–46, Hersey was in Japan, reporting for The New Yorker on the reconstruction of the devastated country, when he found a document written by a Jesuit missionary who had survived the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
The journalist visited the missionary. At fifteen minutes past eight in the morning on August 6, 1945, Japanese time, at the moment when the atomic bomb flashed above Hiroshima, Miss Toshiko Sasaki, a clerk in the personnel department of the East Asia Tin Works, had just sat down at her place in the plant office and was turning her head to speak to the girl at the next desk. Soon afterward John Hersey began discussions with William Shawn, an editor for The New Yorker, about a lengthy piece about the previous summer's bombing. Hersey proposed a story that would convey the cataclysmic narrative through individuals who survived; the next May, 1946, Hersey traveled to Japan, where he spent three weeks doing research and interviewing survivors. He returned to America during late June and began writing about six Hiroshima survivors: a German Jesuit priest, a widowed seamstress, two doctors, a minister, a young woman who worked in a factory; the result was his most notable work, the 31,000-word article "Hiroshima", published in the August 31, 1946, issue of The New Yorker.
The story dealt with the atomic bomb dropped on that Japanese city on August 6, 1945, its effects on the six Japanese citizens. The article occupied the entire issue of the magazine – something The New Yorker had never done before. Hersey himself decried the New Journalism, which in many ways he had helped create, he would have disagreed with a description of his article on the effects of the atomic bomb as New Journalism. The ascetic Hersey came to feel that some elements of the New Journalism of the 1970s were not rigorous enough about fact and reporting. After publication of Hiroshima, Hersey noted that "the important'flashes' and'bulletins' are forgotten by the time yesterday morning's paper is used to line the trash can; the things we remember are emotions and impressions and illusions and images and characters: the elements of fiction."Shortly before writing Hiroshima, Hersey published his novel Of Men and War, an account of war stories seen through the eyes of soldiers rather than a war correspondent.
One of the stories in Hersey's novel was inspired by President John F. Kennedy and the PT-109. Soon afterward, the former war correspondent began publishing fiction. Hersey's war novel The Wall presented as a rediscovered journal recording the genesis and destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto, the largest of the Jewish ghettos established by Nazi Germany during the Holocaust; the bestselling book won the National Jewish Book Award during the second year of that award's existence. His article about the dullness of grammar school readers in a 1954 issue of Life magazine, "Why Do Students Bog Down on First R? A Local Committee Sheds Light on a National Problem: Reading" was the inspiration for Dr. Seuss's juvenile story The Cat in the Hat. Further criticisms of the school system came with a speculative-fiction novel. Hersey wrote The Algiers Motel Incident, about a racially motivated shooti
Nagasaki is the capital and the largest city of Nagasaki Prefecture on the island of Kyushu in Japan. The city's name, 長崎, means "long cape" in Japanese. Nagasaki became a centre of colonial Portuguese and Dutch influence in the 16th through 19th centuries, the Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region have been recognized and included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Part of Nagasaki was home to a major Imperial Japanese Navy base during the First Sino-Japanese War and Russo-Japanese War. During World War II, the American atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki made Nagasaki the second and, to date, last city in the world to experience a nuclear attack; as of 1 March 2017, the city has an estimated population of 425,723 and a population density of 1,000 people per km2. The total area is 406.35 km2. Nagasaki is a Japanese port city, occupied by the Portuguese in the late 16th century. A small fishing village set in a secluded harbor, Nagasaki had little historical significance until contact with Portuguese explorers in 1543.
An early visitor was Fernão Mendes Pinto, who came from Sagres on a Portuguese ship which landed nearby in Tanegashima. Soon after, Portuguese ships started sailing to Japan as regular trade freighters, thus increasing the contact and trade relations between Japan and the rest of the world, with mainland China, with whom Japan had severed its commercial and political ties due to a number of incidents involving Wokou piracy in the South China Sea, with the Portuguese now serving as intermediaries between the two Asian countries. Despite the mutual advantages derived from these trading contacts, which would soon be acknowledged by all parties involved, the lack of a proper seaport in Kyūshū for the purpose of harboring foreign ships posed a major problem for both merchants and the Kyushu daimyōs who expected to collect great advantages from the trade with the Portuguese. In the meantime, Spanish Jesuit missionary St. Francis Xavier arrived in Kagoshima, South Kyūshū, in 1549, soon initiated a thorough campaign of evangelization throughout Japan, left for China in 1552 and died soon afterwards.
His followers who remained behind converted a number of daimyōs. The most notable among them was Ōmura Sumitada. In 1569, Ōmura granted a permit for the establishment of a port with the purpose of harboring Portuguese ships in Nagasaki, set up in 1571, under the supervision of the Jesuit missionary Gaspar Vilela and Portuguese Captain-Major Tristão Vaz de Veiga, with Ōmura's personal assistance; the little harbor village grew into a diverse port city, Portuguese products imported through Nagasaki were assimilated into popular Japanese culture. Tempura derived from a popular Portuguese recipe known as peixinho-da-horta, takes its name from the Portuguese word,'tempero,' seasoning, refers to the tempora quadragesima, forty days of Lent during which eating meat was for bidden, another example of the enduring effects of this cultural exchange; the Portuguese brought with them many goods from China. Due to the instability during the Sengoku period and Jesuit leader Alexandro Valignano conceived a plan to pass administrative control over to the Society of Jesus rather than see the Catholic city taken over by a non-Catholic daimyō.
Thus, for a brief period after 1580, the city of Nagasaki was a Jesuit colony, under their administrative and military control. It became a refuge for Christians escaping maltreatment in other regions of Japan. In 1587, Toyotomi Hideyoshi's campaign to unify the country arrived in Kyūshū. Concerned with the large Christian influence in southern Japan, as well as the active and what was perceived as the arrogant role the Jesuits were playing in the Japanese political arena, Hideyoshi ordered the expulsion of all missionaries, placed the city under his direct control. However, the expulsion order went unenforced, the fact remained that most of Nagasaki's population remained practicing Catholic. In 1596, the Spanish ship San Felipe was wrecked off the coast of Shikoku, Hideyoshi learned from its pilot that the Spanish Franciscans were the vanguard of an Iberian invasion of Japan. In response, Hideyoshi ordered the crucifixions of twenty-six Catholics in Nagasaki on February 5 of the next year. Portuguese traders were not ostracized, so the city continued to thrive.
In 1602, Augustinian missionaries arrived in Japan, when Tokugawa Ieyasu took power in 1603, Catholicism was still tolerated. Many Catholic daimyōs had been critical allies at the Battle of Sekigahara, the Tokugawa position was not strong enough to move against them. Once Osaka Castle had been taken and Toyotomi Hideyoshi's offspring killed, the Tokugawa dominance was assured. In addition, the Dutch and English presence allowed trade without religious strings attached. Thus, in 1614, Catholicism was banned and all missionaries ordered to leave. Most Catholic daimyo apostatized, forced their subjects to do so, although a few would not renounce the religion and left the country for Macau and Japantowns in Southeast Asia. A brutal campaign of persecution followed, with thousands of converts across Kyūshū and other parts of Japan killed, tortured, or forced to renounce their religion. Catholicism's last gasp as an open religion and the last major military action in Japan until the Meiji Restoration was the Shimabara Rebellion of 1637.
While there is no evidence that Europeans directly incited the rebellion
Skin is the soft outer tissue covering of vertebrates with three main functions: protection and sensation. Other animal coverings, such as the arthropod exoskeleton, have different developmental origin and chemical composition; the adjective cutaneous means "of the skin". In mammals, the skin is an organ of the integumentary system made up of multiple layers of ectodermal tissue, guards the underlying muscles, bones and internal organs. Skin of a different nature exists in amphibians and birds. All mammals have some hair on their skin marine mammals like whales and porpoises which appear to be hairless; the skin is the first line of defense from external factors. For example, the skin plays a key role in protecting the body against pathogens and excessive water loss, its other functions are insulation, temperature regulation and the production of vitamin D folates. Damaged skin may heal by forming scar tissue; this is sometimes depigmented. The thickness of skin varies from location to location on an organism.
In humans for example, the skin located under the eyes and around the eyelids is the thinnest skin in the body at 0.5 mm thick, is one of the first areas to show signs of aging such as "crows feet" and wrinkles. The skin on the palms and the soles of the feet is the thickest skin on the body; the speed and quality of wound healing in skin is promoted by the reception of estrogen. Fur is dense hair. Fur augments the insulation the skin provides but can serve as a secondary sexual characteristic or as camouflage. On some animals, the skin is hard and thick, can be processed to create leather. Reptiles and fish have hard protective scales on their skin for protection, birds have hard feathers, all made of tough β-keratins. Amphibian skin is not a strong barrier regarding the passage of chemicals via skin and is subject to osmosis and diffusive forces. For example, a frog sitting in an anesthetic solution would be sedated as the chemical diffuses through its skin. Amphibian skin plays key roles in everyday survival and their ability to exploit a wide range of habitats and ecological conditions.
Mammalian skin is composed of two primary layers: the epidermis, which provides waterproofing and serves as a barrier to infection. It forms a protective barrier over the body's surface, responsible for keeping water in the body and preventing pathogens from entering, is a stratified squamous epithelium, composed of proliferating basal and differentiated suprabasal keratinocytes. Keratinocytes are the major cells, constituting 95% of the epidermis, while Merkel cells and Langerhans cells are present; the epidermis can be further subdivided into the following strata or layers: Stratum corneum Stratum lucidum Stratum granulosum Stratum spinosum Stratum germinativum Keratinocytes in the stratum basale proliferate through mitosis and the daughter cells move up the strata changing shape and composition as they undergo multiple stages of cell differentiation to become anucleated. During that process, keratinocytes will become organized, forming cellular junctions between each other and secreting keratin proteins and lipids which contribute to the formation of an extracellular matrix and provide mechanical strength to the skin.
Keratinocytes from the stratum corneum are shed from the surface. The epidermis contains no blood vessels, cells in the deepest layers are nourished by diffusion from blood capillaries extending to the upper layers of the dermis; the epidermis and dermis are separated by a thin sheet of fibers called the basement membrane, made through the action of both tissues. The basement membrane controls the traffic of the cells and molecules between the dermis and epidermis but serves, through the binding of a variety of cytokines and growth factors, as a reservoir for their controlled release during physiological remodeling or repair processes; the dermis is the layer of skin beneath the epidermis that consists of connective tissue and cushions the body from stress and strain. The dermis provides tensile strength and elasticity to the skin through an extracellular matrix composed of collagen fibrils and elastic fibers, embedded in hyaluronan and proteoglycans. Skin proteoglycans are varied and have specific locations.
For example, hyaluronan and decorin are present throughout the dermis and epidermis extracellular matrix, whereas biglycan and perlecan are only found in the epidermis. It harbors many mechanoreceptors that provide the sense of touch and heat through nociceptors and thermoreceptors, it contains the hair follicles, sweat glands, sebaceous glands, apocrine glands, lymphatic vessels and blood vessels. The blood vessels in the dermis provide nourishment and waste removal from its own cells as well as for the epidermis; the dermis is connected to the epidermis through a basement membrane and is structurally divided into two areas: a superficial area adjacent to the epidermis, called the papillary region, a deep thicker area known as the reticular region. The papillary region is composed of loose areolar connective tissue; this is named for its fingerlike projections called papillae. The papillae provide the dermis with a "bumpy" surface that interdigitates with the epidermis, strengthening the connection between the tw
Hiroshima is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture and the largest city in the Chūgoku region of western Honshu, the largest island of Japan. Hiroshima gained city status on April 1, 1889. On April 1, 1980, Hiroshima became a designated city; as of August 2016, the city had an estimated population of 1,196,274. The gross domestic product in Greater Hiroshima, Hiroshima Urban Employment Area, was US$61.3 billion as of 2010. Kazumi Matsui has been the city's mayor since April 2011. Hiroshima was the first city targeted by a nuclear weapon, when the United States Army Air Forces dropped an atomic bomb on the city at 8:15 a.m. on August 6, 1945, near the end of World War II. Hiroshima was established on the delta coastline of the Seto Inland Sea in 1589 by powerful warlord Mōri Terumoto. Hiroshima Castle was built, in 1593 Mōri moved in. Terumoto was on the losing side at the Battle of Sekigahara; the winner of the battle, Tokugawa Ieyasu, deprived Mōri Terumoto of most of his fiefs, including Hiroshima and gave Aki Province to Masanori Fukushima, a daimyō who had supported Tokugawa.
From 1619 until 1871, Hiroshima was ruled by the Asano clan. After the Han was abolished in 1871, the city became the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture. Hiroshima became a major urban center during the imperial period, as the Japanese economy shifted from rural to urban industries. During the 1870s, one of the seven government-sponsored English language schools was established in Hiroshima. Ujina Harbor was constructed through the efforts of Hiroshima Governor Sadaaki Senda in the 1880s, allowing Hiroshima to become an important port city; the San'yō Railway was extended to Hiroshima in 1894, a rail line from the main station to the harbor was constructed for military transportation during the First Sino-Japanese War. During that war, the Japanese government moved temporarily to Hiroshima, Emperor Meiji maintained his headquarters at Hiroshima Castle from September 15, 1894, to April 27, 1895; the significance of Hiroshima for the Japanese government can be discerned from the fact that the first round of talks between Chinese and Japanese representatives to end the Sino-Japanese War was held in Hiroshima, from February 1 to February 4, 1895.
New industrial plants, including cotton mills, were established in Hiroshima in the late 19th century. Further industrialization in Hiroshima was stimulated during the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, which required development and production of military supplies; the Hiroshima Prefectural Commercial Exhibition Hall was constructed in 1915 as a center for trade and exhibition of new products. Its name was changed to Hiroshima Prefectural Product Exhibition Hall, again to Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. During World War I, Hiroshima became a focal point of military activity, as the Japanese government entered the war on the Allied side. About 500 German prisoners of war were held in Ninoshima Island in Hiroshima Bay; the growth of Hiroshima as a city continued after the First World War, as the city now attracted the attention of the Catholic Church, on May 4, 1923, an Apostolic Vicar was appointed for that city. During World War II, the Second General Army and Chūgoku Regional Army were headquartered in Hiroshima, the Army Marine Headquarters was located at Ujina port.
The city had large depots of military supplies, was a key center for shipping. The bombing of Tokyo and other cities in Japan during World War II caused widespread destruction and hundreds of thousands of civilian deaths. There were no such air raids on Hiroshima. However, a real threat was recognized. In order to protect against potential firebombings in Hiroshima, school children aged 11–14 years were mobilized to demolish houses and create firebreaks. On Monday, August 6, 1945, at 8:15 a.m. the nuclear weapon "Little Boy" was dropped on Hiroshima from an American Boeing B-29 Superfortress, the Enola Gay, flown by Colonel Paul Tibbets, directly killing an estimated 70,000 people, including 20,000 Japanese combatants and 2,000 Korean slave laborers. By the end of the year and radiation brought the total number of deaths to 90,000–166,000; the population before the bombing was around 340,000 to 350,000. About 70% of the city's buildings were destroyed, another 7% damaged; the public release of film footage of the city following the attack, some of the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission research about the human effects of the attack, were restricted during the occupation of Japan, much of this information was censored until the signing of the Treaty of San Francisco in 1951, restoring control to the Japanese.
As Ian Buruma observed, "News of the terrible consequences of the atom bomb attacks on Japan was deliberately withheld from the Japanese public by US military censors during the Allied occupation—even as they sought to teach the natives the virtues of a free press. Casualty statistics were suppressed. Film shot by Japanese cameramen in Nagasaki after the bombings was confiscated. "Hiroshima", the account written by John Hersey for The New Yorker, had a huge impact in the US, but was banned in Japan. As Dower says:'In the localities themselves, suffering was compounded not by the unprecedented nature of the catastrophe... but by the fact that public struggle with this traumatic experience was not permitted." The US occupation authorities maintained a monopoly on scientific and medical information about the effects of the atomic bomb through the work of the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission, which treated the data gathered in studies of hibakusha as privileged information rather than making the results available for the treatment of victims or providing financial or medical support to aid victims.
The book Hiroshima by
Hiroshima is a book by Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Hersey. It tells the stories of six survivors of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, covering a period of time prior to the bombing and until about 1984, it was published in The New Yorker. Although the story was scheduled to be published over four issues, the entire edition of August 31, 1946, was dedicated to the article; the article and subsequent book are regarded as one of the earliest examples of the New Journalism, in which the story-telling techniques of fiction are adapted to non-fiction reporting. Less than two months after the publication of Hiroshima in The New Yorker, the article was printed as a book by Alfred A. Knopf and has sold over three million copies to date. Hiroshima has been continuously in print since its publication, according to New Yorker essayist Roger Angell, because "ts story became a part of our ceaseless thinking about world wars and nuclear holocaust". Before writing Hiroshima, Hersey had been a war correspondent in the field, writing for Life magazine and The New Yorker.
He followed troops during the invasion of both Italy and Sicily during World War II. In 1944, Hersey began working in the Pacific Theater and followed Lt. John F. Kennedy through the Solomon Islands. Hersey was one of the first Western journalists to view the ruins of Hiroshima after the bombing. Hersey was commissioned by William Shawn of The New Yorker to write a series of articles about the impact of a nuclear explosion by utilizing witness accounts as this subject had been untouched by journalists. Hersey had interviewed many more witnesses, but he focuses his article on only six of the witnesses; the issue of August 31, 1946, arrived in subscribers' mailboxes bearing a light-hearted cover of a summer picnic in a park. There was no hint. Hersey's article began where the magazine's regular "Talk of the Town" column began after the theater listings. At the bottom of the page, the editors appended a short note: "TO OUR READERS; the New Yorker this week devotes its entire editorial space to an article on the complete obliteration of a city by one atomic bomb, what happened to the people of that city.
It does so in the conviction that few of us have yet comprehended the all but incredible destructive power of this weapon, that everyone might well take time to consider the terrible implications of its use. The Editors." One of the few people other than the principal editors of The New Yorker tipped to the forthcoming publication was the magazine's principal writer E. B. White, to whom Harold Ross confided his plans. "Hersey has written thirty thousand words on the bombing of Hiroshima", Ross wrote to White in Maine, "one hell of a story, we are wondering what to do about it... wants to wake people up, says we are the people with a chance to do it, the only people that will do it, if it is done." Containing a detailed description of the bomb's effects, the article was a publishing sensation. In plain prose, Hersey described the horrifying aftermath of the atomic device: people with melted eyeballs, or people vaporized, leaving only their shadows etched onto walls; the New Yorker article Hiroshima was an immediate best seller and was sold out at newsstands within hours.
Many requests for reprints were received by the magazine's offices. The ABC Radio Network preempted regular programming to broadcast readings of the complete text by well-known actors in four half-hour programs. Many radio stations abroad did including the BBC in Britain, where newsprint rationing that continued after the war's end prevented its publication; the Book of the Month Club rushed a copy of the article into book format, which it sent to members as a free selection, saying "We find it hard to conceive of anything being written that could be of more important at this moment to the human race."Published a little more than a year after the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, the American public was shown a different interpretation of the Japanese from what had been described in the media. The Americans could let go of some of the guilt knowing that the Japanese did not blame them for this terrible act of war. After reading Hiroshima, a Manhattan Project scientist wrote that he wept as he remembered how he had celebrated the dropping of the atomic bomb.
Scientists along with the American public felt shame and guilt at the suffering of the people of Hiroshima. As voiced by witnesses in Hiroshima, the people of Hiroshima did not blame the Americans for the infliction but instead their own government. Many Japanese believe that the dropping of the atomic bomb saved Japan and it was thought that the Japanese Government would have destroyed the entire country before losing the war; the 31,000 word article was published the same year by Alfred A. Knopf as a book. Hersey's work is cited as one of the earliest examples of New Journalism in its melding of elements of non-fiction reportage with the pace and devices of the novel. Hersey's plain prose was praised by critics as a model of understated narrative. Hersey gave interviews and abhorred going on anything resembling book tours, as his longtime editor Judith Jones recalled. "If there was a subject calculated to make a writer overwrought and a piece overwritten, it was the bombing of Hiroshima", wrote Hendrik Hertzberg.
A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission or from a combination of fission and fusion reactions. Both bomb types release large quantities of energy from small amounts of matter; the first test of a fission bomb released an amount of energy equal to 20,000 tons of TNT. The first thermonuclear bomb test released energy equal to 10 million tons of TNT. A thermonuclear weapon weighing little more than 2,400 pounds can release energy equal to more than 1.2 million tons of TNT. A nuclear device no larger than traditional bombs can devastate an entire city by blast and radiation. Since they are weapons of mass destruction, the proliferation of nuclear weapons is a focus of international relations policy. Nuclear weapons have been used twice in war, both times by the United States against Japan near the end of World War II. On August 6, 1945, the U. S. Army Air Forces detonated a uranium gun-type fission bomb nicknamed "Little Boy" over the Japanese city of Hiroshima.
S. Army Air Forces detonated a plutonium implosion-type fission bomb nicknamed "Fat Man" over the Japanese city of Nagasaki; these bombings caused injuries that resulted in the deaths of 200,000 civilians and military personnel. The ethics of these bombings and their role in Japan's surrender are subjects of debate. Since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, nuclear weapons have been detonated over two thousand times for testing and demonstration. Only a few nations are suspected of seeking them; the only countries known to have detonated nuclear weapons—and acknowledge possessing them—are the United States, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, China, India and North Korea. Israel is believed to possess nuclear weapons, though, in a policy of deliberate ambiguity, it does not acknowledge having them. Germany, Turkey and the Netherlands are nuclear weapons sharing states. South Africa is the only country to have independently developed and renounced and dismantled its nuclear weapons.
The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons aims to reduce the spread of nuclear weapons, but its effectiveness has been questioned, political tensions remained high in the 1970s and 1980s. Modernisation of weapons continues to this day. There are two basic types of nuclear weapons: those that derive the majority of their energy from nuclear fission reactions alone, those that use fission reactions to begin nuclear fusion reactions that produce a large amount of the total energy output. All existing nuclear weapons derive some of their explosive energy from nuclear fission reactions. Weapons whose explosive output is from fission reactions are referred to as atomic bombs or atom bombs; this has long been noted as something of a misnomer, as their energy comes from the nucleus of the atom, just as it does with fusion weapons. In fission weapons, a mass of fissile material is forced into supercriticality—allowing an exponential growth of nuclear chain reactions—either by shooting one piece of sub-critical material into another or by compression of a sub-critical sphere or cylinder of fissile material using chemically-fueled explosive lenses.
The latter approach, the "implosion" method, is more sophisticated than the former. A major challenge in all nuclear weapon designs is to ensure that a significant fraction of the fuel is consumed before the weapon destroys itself; the amount of energy released by fission bombs can range from the equivalent of just under a ton to upwards of 500,000 tons of TNT. All fission reactions generate the remains of the split atomic nuclei. Many fission products are either radioactive or moderately radioactive, as such, they are a serious form of radioactive contamination. Fission products are the principal radioactive component of nuclear fallout. Another source of radioactivity is the burst of free neutrons produced by the weapon; when they collide with other nuclei in surrounding material, the neutrons transmute those nuclei into other isotopes, altering their stability and making them radioactive. The most used fissile materials for nuclear weapons applications have been uranium-235 and plutonium-239.
Less used has been uranium-233. Neptunium-237 and some isotopes of americium may be usable for nuclear explosives as well, but it is not clear that this has been implemented, their plausible use in nuclear weapons is a matter of dispute; the other basic type of nuclear weapon produces a large proportion of its energy in nuclear fusion reactions. Such fusion weapons are referred to as thermonuclear weapons or more colloquially as hydrogen bombs, as they rely on fusion reactions between isotopes of hydrogen. All such weapons derive a significant portion of their energy from fission reactions used to "trigger" fusion reactions, fusion reactions can themselves trigger additional fission reactions. Only six countries—United States, United Kingdom, China and India—have conducted thermonuclear weapon tests. North Korea claims to have tested a fusion weapon as of January 2016. Thermonuclear weapons a