Author James Bradley told a riveting story this morning on Imus in the Morning. His book, "Flyboys", is about the eight American airmen who ended up as Japanese prisoners in 1945 on the island of Chichi Jima, the next island over from Iwo Jima. [See Amazon reviews here.] They were held there for two weeks until their Japanese captors beheaded the eight Americans.
But, there could have been a ninth. The Japanese soldiers watched from the mountain as an American pilot parachuted into the ocean off shore. They merely had to wait until his oarless raft drifted ashore so they could capture him. But, an American submarine surfaced and took the pilot, George Herbert Walker Bush, on board.
James Bradley wrote a book titled "Flags of Our Fathers" about the soldiers, including his father, who fought the battle and eventually raised the flag on the island of Iwo Jima. [See Amazon editorial reviews here]. After the book was published Bradley received a phone call from a man who had been an ensign in 1946 and had witnessed the war crime trials of the Japanese soldiers who had executed the eight Americans. The proceedings were classified until recently, and the former ensign, who became a lawyer, sought out the documents related to that trial. And he shared them with James Bradley who shares them with us. It was a fascinating story.