The unstable configuration of interests that led Japan to create her ""East Asia Co-Prosperity League"" by military force included the Army, the Navy, the Emperor, and the civilian establishment. Their conflicts were paralleled by the frenzied activity preceding the decision to sue for peace four years later. As in the 30's, assassination, conspiracy and fear became instruments of persuasion, On August 6th the U.S. dropped an atom bomb on Hiroshima and three days later a more powerful weapon devastated Nagasaki. But Japan did not offer to surrender until August 14th and formal terms were not agreed upon until September 2nd aboard the Missouri. Some knew that further struggle was hopeless; there were also the Hotspur believers in the Yamato spirit of no surrender, who had gathered around General Korechika Anami to plot the destruction of the propeace faction in the Supreme Council for Direction of the War. The story is told almost moment by moment in this brilliant, exceedingly well-written book.