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This Happened

This Happened — August 9: Second Atomic Bomb Is Dropped On Nagasaki


Nagasaki was bombed on this day in 1945, towards the end of World War II.

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Was Nagasaki the first choice for the bombing?

The primary target for the second atomic bomb was the city of Kokura. However, due to poor visibility caused by clouds and smoke from a firebombing raid on another nearby city, the B-29 bomber named Bockscar, which was carrying the bomb "Fat Man," diverted to the secondary target of Nagasaki. The city was chosen as an alternative target because it had not been heavily bombed previously and was considered a valuable industrial and military center.

What was the impact of the atomic bomb on Nagasaki?

The atomic bomb caused immense destruction and loss of life in Nagasaki. The blast killed an estimated 70,000 people, with many more suffering injuries and radiation-related illnesses. The city's infrastructure and buildings were devastated, leaving a lasting impact on the community.

How does the bombing of Nagasaki relate to the bombings of Hiroshima?

The bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima were both conducted by the United States near the end of World War II. Hiroshima was bombed on August 6, 1945, followed by Nagasaki on August 9. These bombings marked the first and only use of nuclear weapons in warfare.

Did the bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima lead to Japan's surrender?

The bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima played a significant role in Japan's surrender. The devastation caused by the atomic bombs, coupled with the Soviet Union's declaration of war on Japan, contributed to the decision by Emperor Hirohito to announce Japan's surrender on August 15, 1945.

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The Underbelly Of The Meditation Boom

For years, mindfulness has been promoted as a near panacea. But just how much does the brain affect the body?

The Underbelly Of The Meditation Boom

The science isn't so clear on meditation.

Caren Chesler

In 2019, Debra Halsch was diagnosed with smoldering multiple myeloma, a rare blood and bone marrow disorder that can develop into a type of blood cancer. Her doctors recommended chemotherapy, she said, but she feared the taxing side effects the drugs might wreak on her body. Instead, the life coach from Piermont, New York tried meditation.

A friend had told Halsch, now 57, about Joe Dispenza, who holds week-long meditation retreats that regularly attract thousands of people and carry a $2,299 price tag. Halsch signed up for one in Cancun, Mexico and soon became a devotee. She now meditates for at least two hours a day and says her health has improved as a result.

Dispenza, a chiropractor who has written various self-help books, has said he believes the mind can heal the body. After all, he says he healed himself back in 1986, when a truck hit him while he was bicycling, breaking six vertebrae. Instead of surgery, Dispenza says he spent hours each day recreating his spine in his mind, visualizing it healthy and healed. After 11 weeks, the story goes, he was back on his feet.

Halsch said she believes she can do the same for her illness. “If our thoughts and emotions can make our bodies sick, they can make us well, too,” she said.

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