In Alan Taylor’s excellent kick-off to his 20-part series on World War II for The Atlantic’s In Focus blog, he included this striking photo with the caption:

Buddhist priests of the Big Asakusa Temple prepare for the Second Sino-Japanese War as they wear gas masks during training against future aerial attacks in Tokyo, Japan, on May 30, 1936.

You best be checking out the other 44 photos of life before the war on their site.

(via beingvisual)

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