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Flags of Our Fathers

Flags of Our Fathers

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Flags of Our Fathers is a New York Times bestselling book by James Bradley
James Bradley (author)
James Bradley is an American author, specializing in historical nonfiction chronicling the Pacific theatre of World War II. His father, John Bradley, was one of six men who became famous for being photographed raising the American flag on Mt. Suribachi...

 with Ron Powers
Ron Powers
Ron Powers is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, novelist, and non-fiction writer. His face include White Town Drowsing: Journeys to Hannibal, Dangerous Water: A Biography of the Boy Who Became Mark Twain, and Mark Twain: A Life...

 about the five United States Marines and one United States Navy
United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

 Corpsman who would eventually be made famous by Joe Rosenthal
Joe Rosenthal
Joseph John Rosenthal was an American photographer who received the Pulitzer Prize for his iconic World War II photograph Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima, taken during the Battle of Iwo Jima. His picture became one of the best-known photographs of the war.-Early life:Joseph Rosenthal was born on...

's lauded photograph of the flag raising at Iwo Jima
Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima
Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima is a historic photograph taken on February 23, 1945, by Joe Rosenthal. It depicts five United States Marines and a U.S. Navy corpsman raising the flag of the United States atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima in World War II.The photograph was extremely...

, one of the costliest and most horrifying battles of World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

's Pacific Theater
Pacific Ocean theater of World War II
The Pacific Ocean theatre was one of four major naval theatres of war of World War II, which pitted the forces of Japan against those of the United States, the British Commonwealth, the Netherlands and France....

. The flag raisers included John Bradley
John Bradley (Iwo Jima)
John Henry "Jack" "Doc" Bradley was a United States Navy corpsman during World War II, and one of the six men who took part in raising the Flag on Iwo Jima...

 (a Navy corpsman, and the author's father), Rene Gagnon
Rene Gagnon
Rene Arthur Gagnon was one of the U.S. Marines immortalized by Joe Rosenthal's famous World War II photograph Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima.-Early life:...

, Ira Hayes
Ira Hayes
Ira Hamilton Hayes was a Pima Native American and an American Marine who was one of the six men immortalized in the iconic photograph of the flag raising on Iwo Jima during World War II. Hayes was an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Community in Sacaton, Arizona, and enlisted in the Marine...

, Mike Strank, Harlon Block
Harlon Block
Harlon Henry Block was a United States Marine during World War II. Born in Texas, Block joined the Marine Corps in November 1943 and subsequently saw action during the Battle of Bougainville and the Battle of Iwo Jima where he was killed in action...

, and Franklin Sousley
Franklin Sousley
Franklin Runyon Sousley was one of the six men in the famous photograph of United States Marines raising the flag on Iwo Jima in World War II.-Childhood:...

; the latter three men died later in the battle. Strank refused several promotions during the battle in order to "Bring his boys back to their mothers." Block was a Corporal who reported to Strank, and the rest were privates in the Marines, except for John Bradley, a Navy Corpsman who administered first aid to Easy Company, the company to which all the flag raisers were assigned.

The book, published in May 2000 by Bantam Books
Bantam Books
Bantam Books is an American publishing house owned entirely by Random House, the German media corporation subsidiary of Bertelsmann; it is an imprint of the Random House Publishing Group. It was formed in 1945 by Walter B. Pitkin, Jr., Sidney B. Kramer, and Ian and Betty Ballantine...

, a division of Random House
Random House
Random House, Inc. is the largest general-interest trade book publisher in the world. It has been owned since 1998 by the German private media corporation Bertelsmann and has become the umbrella brand for Bertelsmann book publishing. Random House also has a movie production arm, Random House Films,...

, spent 46 weeks on the New York Times nonfiction bestseller list, spending six weeks at number one. Shortly after the book's publication, Steven Spielberg acquired the option on the film rights for DreamWorks Pictures.

The book follows the lives of the six flag-raisers through their early lives of innocence, military training, fierce combat and afterward, when they were sent on tours to raise money for war bond
War bond
War bonds are debt securities issued by a government for the purpose of financing military operations during times of war. War bonds generate capital for the government and make civilians feel involved in their national militaries...


The film adaptation Flags of Our Fathers
Flags of Our Fathers (film)
is a 2006 American war film directed, co-produced and scored by Clint Eastwood and written by William Broyles, Jr. and Paul Haggis. It is based on the book of the same name written by James Bradley and Ron Powers about the Battle of Iwo Jima, the five Marines and one Navy Corpsman who were involved...

, which opened in the U.S. on October 20, 2006, was directed by Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
Clinton "Clint" Eastwood, Jr. is an American film actor, director, producer, composer and politician. Eastwood first came to prominence as a supporting cast member in the TV series Rawhide...

 and produced by Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg
Steven Allan Spielberg KBE is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, video game designer, and studio entrepreneur. In a career of more than four decades, Spielberg's films have covered many themes and genres. Spielberg's early science-fiction and adventure films were seen as an...

, with a screenplay written by William Broyles, Jr. and Paul Haggis
Paul Haggis
Paul Edward Haggis is a Canadian screenwriter, producer, and director. He spent his early career producing and directing various American and Canadian television network series.-Early life and education:...


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