Scott Horton Interviews Anthony Weller

Scott Horton, August 11, 2010

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Anthony Weller, editor of First Into Nagasaki: The Censored Eyewitness Dispatches on Post-Atomic Japan and Its Prisoners of War, discusses his father’s (George Weller) WWII reporting for the Chicago Daily News, George’s defiance of Gen. MacArthur’s travel restrictions in post-war southern Japan, firsthand accounts of radiation poisoning (Disease X) in Nagasaki, the severe mistreatment of prisoners in Japanese POW camps and how military censorship and George’s haphazard record-keeping kept the Nagasaki dispatches unpublished for 60 years.

MP3 here. (20:58)

Anthony Weller is a writer (novelist, poet, and journalist) and a musician (jazz & classical guitarist, composer). He is the author and editor of several books, including Days and Nights on the Grand Trunk Road and The Siege of Salt Cove: A Novel.

Weller edited and wrote a long essay for First into Nagasaki: The Censored Eyewitness Dispatches on Post-Atomic Japan and Its Prisoners of War. This was the reporting by George Weller, utterly blocked at the time [September 1945] and thought lost to history until Anthony found copies among his late father’s papers. Acclaimed by historians worldwide, it was named by Kirkus one of the best books of the year. In 2009 Anthony edited an enormous follow-up compilation for Crown of his father’s finest 1941-45 reporting, Weller’s War: A Legendary Correspondent’s Saga of World War II on Five Continents.

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