Army Bureau of Current Affairs

Wartime pictorial maps one week after A-bombs on Japan

ABCA MAP Review No. 72 From July 30th to August 12th, 1945

DESCRIPTION: Large wartime pictorial poster issued less than one week after the United States used nuclear weapons on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. This issue, with a heavy emphasis on use of maps to communicate the progress of the war, was the first such to be issued by the [British] Army Bureau of Current Affairs (ABCA) after the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9 respectively. The issue was published 3 days before Emperor Hirohito announced the total Japanese surrender on national radio.

The maps reflect the importance of the A-bomb to Allied war efforts and the hastiness with which this publication was revised before publication. No photographs or illustrations are present that show the mushroom cloud or the aftermath of the attacks. The verso contains text that does not reflect the news about the bomb: " … the counter invasion of this island empire [East Indies] has begun."

Printed on both sides:
  • Recto: Headings include "The close of 14 years of Jap aggression" with six inset pictorial maps charting Japanese aggression from 1933 to 1945. Japan's early successes and later defeat are reflected in the image of a sword-bearing Japanese soldier who grows fat with success and then thin with defeat. Also, photographs of the British Cabinet and news from the Potsdam conference.
  • Verso: "Riches of the Southern Seas". Large black and white pictorial map focused on the strategic value of key commodities in the Netherlands East Indies. Map contains pictograms for oil, rubber, rice, tin, and vegetable oils.
ABCA MAP Review No. 72 From July 30th to August 12th, 1945. Drawn and issued by the Army Bureau of Current Affairs. Printed for H.M. Stationery Office by Fosh & Cross Ltd., [1945]

No copies of this issue found online. Scarce.

CREATOR: Army Bureau of Current Affairs




CONDITION: Very good.  Small separation at one fold repaired archivally. Clean, solid. Negligible wear to folds. Flattened.

COLORING: Process color.


SIZE: 40 " x 30 "


PRICE: $475


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