Japanese FU-GO Balloon Bombs in Michigan


Michigan Aviation Archeology
On November 4th, 1944 a United States Navy patrol craft spotted something odd floating on the sea 66 miles southwest of San Pedro, California. When the object was hauled on board, it was found to be a rubberized-silk balloon.

The Japanese called the balloon weapons Fu-Go (“Fu” being the first character of the Japanese word for balloon). They were assembled by hand, usually by schoolgirls, constructed of mulberry paper, glued together with potato flour and filled with hydrogen. The thirty-three foot diameter balloons carried an aluminum ring (about three feet across) suspended from the balloon with nineteen shroud lines. On board the ring was a control and ballast system consisting of thirty-two, 7-10 pound sandbags and the bomb load. The typical maximum loading was one fifteen kilogram high explosive bomb or one twelve kilogram incendiary along with four five-kilogram incendiary bombs.

Amazon 2015 Pilots Now Online – Including Point of Honor

Posted by Kevin Mulcahy Jr.

The latest batch of Amazon pilots debuted today, including Point of Honor from Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Randall Wallace (Braveheart). General Hospital and True Blood alum Nathan Parsons stars in Point of Honor, which takes place at the start of the Civil War.

A Virginia family, led by their West Point bred son, John Rhodes (Parsons), makes the controversial decision to defend the South while freeing all of their slaves. At battle against his northern brethren and his best friend and brother-in-law Robert Sumner (played by Christopher O’Shea, Baby Daddy), John leaves his three strong-willed sisters at home to run the plantation that is now without a free labor source. The choice to protect the life they have always known and defend the moral high ground will pit the family against one another and test their strength, courage and love.

An hour-long drama shot entirely on-location in historic Virginia, Point of Honor also stars Annabelle Stephenson (Revenge) as Kate Rhodes, Riley Voelkel (The Newsroom) as Lorelei Rhodes, Hanna Mangan Lawrence (Old School) as Estella Rhodes, Patrick Heusinger (Revolution) as Colonel Palmer Kane, Luke Benward (Ravenswood) as Garland Rhodes, Adrienne Warren (Black Box) as Abby, Lucien Laviscount (Waterloo Road) as Elijah, and James Harvey Ward (Low Winter Sun) as Cutler. The pilot is directed by Randall Wallace (Braveheart), written by Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Wallace, and Executive Produced by Cuse, Wallace and Barry Jossen (Sex and the City). Point of Honor is being co-produced with ABC Signature Studios.

Once again, customers will be invited to watch and provide feedback on the shows they want to see turned into full series. The pilots can be viewed on Fire TV, Fire tablets, and Fire phone, and with the Amazon Instant Video app available for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Roku, Xbox, PlayStation, Wii, as well as hundreds of other connected devices such as smart TVs—or customers can visit Amazon.com/AIV to watch online.

If you want to see Point of Honor picked up as a full series, be sure to watch at Amazon.com/pilotseason.

Even Bank Robbers Decide What Tie To Wear: The Essence Of Elmore Leonard


The Stacks
Alex Belth
Hard to imagine having a cooler job than the one Gregg Sutter had for more than 30 years, when he served as the late Elmore Leonard’s researcher. Sutter is the editor of the Library of America’s Elmore Leonard anthology, which will be released in three volumes, the first of which was published a few weeks ago (volume two comes next year, volume three in 2016). The first volume features Leonard’s early Detroit crime novels—Fifty-Two Pick Up, Swag, Unknown Man No. 89, and The Switch. I recently had the chance to talk to Sutter about the great Dutch Leonard. Dig in.

Read the interview.

Elmore Leonard Four Novels of the 1970s Fifty-Two Pickup • Swag • Unknown Man No. 89 • The Switch


Blending gritty toughness and unpredictable violence with wild humor and an uncanny ear for the rhythms of ordinary speech, Elmore Leonard (1925–2013) was the most widely and enthusiastically admired crime novelist of his time. His genius for scene and dialogue led Time magazine to describe him as “a Dickens of Detroit,” and Newsweek called him “the best American writer of crime alive, possibly the best we’ve ever had.” Now The Library of America inaugurates a three-volume edition of Leonard’s greatest work, prepared in consultation with the author shortly before his death and edited by his long-time researcher Gregg Sutter.

– See more here.