All SPICE Multimedia

U.S. POWs and the A-Bomb

On August 6, 1945, the world changed forever when the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. Within a year of the bombing, approximately 140,000 people died as a result. It is a little-known fact, however, that 12 American prisoners of war (POWs) were among the casualties, and that the people of Hiroshima buried them with honor.

Japanese director Sachiko Kato and Hiroshima Television Corporation tell this story through the documentary film, U.S. POWs and the A-Bomb. The film features Shigeaki Mori, a Japanese atomic bomb survivor from Hiroshima who spent four decades searching for the identities of the 12 American POWs who were killed in the bombing. Through reaching out to their families, Mori helped them put closure on their tragedies. U.S. POWs and the A-Bomb is also a tale of reconciliation between the former enemies of World War II—the United States and Japan—as it follows Mr. Mori accompanying U.S. POW family members visiting Hiroshima, and also Ms. Kato visiting family members of the U.S. POWs in the United States.

Through an exploration of empathy, this film and accompanying teacher’s guide not only educate viewers about the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and its enduring legacy, but also help emphasize the dangers of nuclear war and how our shared humanity can transcend borders. This teacher’s guide featuring Mori’s mission of empathy should be used to supplement other materials pertaining to the atomic bombings.

View the film at