Secret Weapons & WW2 - Japan in the Shadow of Big Science



Secret Weapons & WW2 - Japan in the Shadow of Big Science
The atomic bomb. Rocket-propelled bombs. Jet propulsion. Radar. By failing to develop effective programs for such 'secret weapons,' Japan increased the probability that it could not triumph over its more advanced enemies. While previous writers have focused primarily on strategic, military, and intelligence factors, Walter Grunden underscores the dramatic scientific and technological disparities that left Japan vulnerable and ultimately led to its defeat in World War II.
Grunden's fascinating analysis of this fundamental flaw in the Japanese war effort seamlessly weaves together science, technology, and military history to provide an entirely unique look at a crucial but understudied aspect of World War II. Comparing the science and weapons programs of all the major combatants, he demonstrates that Japan's failure was nearly inevitable, given its paucity of strategic resources, an inadequate industrial base, the absence of effective centralized management to coordinate research, military hostility toward civilian scientists, and bitter inter-service rivalries. In the end, Japan could not overcome these obstacles and thus failed to make the transition to the kind of 'Big Science' it needed to ward off its enemies and dominate the Far East.

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