Your questions answered:
Obviously, I know that much of Europe was devastated by bombs during the Second World War.
However, I’ve always been intrigued to know if the United States suffered from a Japanese bombing campaign? – E.
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, on December 7, 1941, “a date which will live in infamy” as President Roosevelt called it, took place on Hawaii, almost 2,500 miles from the US mainland.
As the US was so far from Japan, only one man ever managed to bomb the USA, Nobuo Fujita.
He was a pilot in the Imperial Japanese Navy and, on September 9, 1942, flew a floatplane from the longrange submarine aircraft carrier I-25.
His mission was to drop incendiary bombs, to start massive forest fires in the Pacific Northwest near the city of Brookings, Oregon. The objective was to draw the US military’s resources away from the Pacific Theatre.
Fujita completed his mission, however, the ordnance only started a few fires, which forest rangers quickly extinguished.
Twenty years later, Fujita was invited to Brookings by the local community and he gave them his family’s 400-year-old katana, a sword, as a mark of friendship.
He later said he intended to use it to commit harakiri, ritual suicide, if he received a hostile reception.
Thankfully, the people of Brookings welcomed him and he went on to return several times, setting up an exchange programme for Japanese and American students.
He died in 2005 and some of his ashes were scattered in Brookings, the town he once bombed.
During the war, my brother was co-driver in a Churchill tank. His wireless operator was Willie Paton, who went on to play for Rangers. Can you tell me more about him? – M.
Willie was part of the Rangers team of the late 1940s who became known as the Iron Curtain, thanks to their solid defence.
He won two league titles, a Scottish Cup and a Scottish League cup at Ibrox before moving on to Ayr United and retiring from football in 1962. There’s a big drugs trial going on in America just now where a man, known as “El Chapo” is accused of being leader of a drugs cartel. But what does El Chapo mean? – R.
Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman is on trial in New York, accused of a number of crimes, including money laundering and murder conspiracy.
Guzman is only 5ft 6ins, and his nickname means “Shorty”.
Nobuo Fujita presents his ceremonial katana to the mayor of Brookings
Footballer Willie Paton