64th Anniversary of US Nuclear Terrorism: Hiroshima and Nagasaki

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NDPP
64th Anniversary of US Nuclear Terrorism: Hiroshima and Nagasaki

The 64th Anniversary of USA Terrorism

http://www.countercurrents.org/fleming020809.htm

"this Aug 6th and 9th mark the 64th anniversary of the most brutal act of terrorism upon innocent people, America's Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

FYI, we have had lengthy babble discussions about the events surrouding the US use of nuclear weapons on the civilians and population of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Many authors, including Americans, now agree that the use of the weapons was unnecessary from a military point of view. The aims in using the weapons were more political aims: among which were the announcement of the beginning of the New post-1945 "Cold War", primarily aimed at the Soviet Union; practice with the new weapon (the bombing of Hiroshima was the most studied bombing in history); an attitude of revenge-seeking against the Japanese, racist of course, but with a foundation of outrage against Japanese cruelty towards its victims and prisoners of war; and a general declaration that the new bully in the Pacific was the USA.

These should be distinguished from the usual justifications for the bombings, primarily among which was to "save lives" that would be lost in an invasion of Japan. It's a whopping pile of crap but it still gets re-gurgitated when August rolls around, the bombing which saved lives, etc.  Going by such reasoning, which is false, I can think of an entire country that should fall into the sea.

 

josh

Nice simplifying of a complex issue.  You are underestimating the invasion concern and vastly overplaying the Soviet Union angle.  The brutal battle for Okinawa convinced U.S. planners that an invasion of Japan would be a bloodbath that would have lasted for at least another year.  They certainly had a legitimate point.  And had the U.S. public learned that their government had a weapon that could have ended the war and avoided the loss of tens of thousands of lives, and not used it, there would have been a bloodbath in Washington.

I'm not saying they were necessarily right to drop the bombs, but it's not the slamdunk argument against that you would make it seem.

josh

"the most brutal act of terrorism upon innocent people"

Really? The most?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

The only remaining babble thread about Hiroshima that hasn't been sent down the memory hole:

[url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/rabble-news-features/hiroshima-60-years-late... 60 years later[/url] (2005-2007)

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

josh, the military defeat of the Japanese armies in their strategic rear in Mongolia and on the Asian mainland (Operation August Storm) put the final nail in the coffin of the Japanese miltarist regime. The US was able to bomb at will - and did. Furthermore, the US and Britain, the other two dominant members of the Allies, insisted on Russian/Soviet  entry into the war against Japan long before that entry took place. And even CIA historians acknowledge that the key factors in the decision to bomb were political and not military.

Two acknowledged geniuses - Albert Einstein and Bertrand Russell - appalled at the unnecessary atrocity of the use of nuclear weapons on civilians, made a global appeal to ban this new, horrific weapon ~ 1948. Einstein even felt partly responsible for the atrocity as he was the one who wrote to the US President, then Roosevelt, about the danger of a Nazi nuclear bomb. Their appeal fell on deaf ears.

I do not understand how the obliteration of tens/hundreds of thousands of people in a flash can be justified as "saving lives" except by the most sick and perverted twisting of logic.

josh

The inexorable logic of war:  The Allies insisted on unconditional surrender.  Japan refused to do so.  The lives of U.S. soldiers meant far more than Japanese civilians.

And the U.S. was already firebombing Japanese cities before August 1945.  Killing more than were killed by the droping of the bombs.  As Robert McNamara later said, had they lost they war, they all would have been tried as war criminals.

 

Michelle

It sounds like you've changed your mind in the middle of the thread, josh. :)

I agree with post #3, though.  Comparing tragedies is crude and probably not very useful, but if you're going to do it as a rhetorical device, then you should probably keep in mind that a few hundred thousand is much less than, oh, say, six million, for instance.

josh

No, I haven't changed my mind.  War is hell.

Michelle

Isn't that phrase generally used to excuse war crimes, along with "all's fair in love and war"?

josh

Yes.  I'm not saying whether it was right or wrong.  Just that I understand why it was done. 

Stargazer

Well, I'm sure all those dead kids, dead woman and dead people who had nothing to do with the whole mess are NOT thanking the US government for incinerating them with a deadly bomb.

The Unitied States should be tried fore war crimes in this case. Cowards.

 

This thread is sickening.

And why is everything a one-up? Millions upon millions of people die every day in Africa. It isn't a contest.

Michelle

I agree with you, Stargazer, that it isn't a contest.  But it was the opening post that started the comparisons.  I don't think you have to say it's the worst tragedy ever to get the point across that it was really, really awful.

josh, I think it's generally accepted by everyone (at least everyone progressive) that there are rules of engagement in war.  Killing civilians to save soldiers is a war crime.  I know you're not saying it's okay for the US to kill civilians and you're just trying to tell us what the reasoning was behind the action on the part of the US.  But I think it sounds to people like you're justifying it.

josh

Millions of civilians were killed by bombings in Europe and Asia by all sides during WWII. Everyone could have been tried as war criminals. Use of the atom bomb was just a logical extension of that.  So, other than the instantaneous nature of its destructiveness, I'm not sure why it's singled out.  As I said, the firebombings of other Japanese cities killed more civilians than Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

josh wrote:
As I said, the firebombings of other Japanese cities killed more civilians than Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 

That is in fact false. 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
The hard truth is that the atomic bombings were unnecessary. A million lives were not saved. Indeed, McGeorge Bundy, the man who first popularized this figure, later confessed that he had pulled it out of thin air in order to justify the bombings in a 1947 Harper's magazine essay he had ghostwritten for Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson.

The bomb was dropped, as J. Robert Oppenheimer, scientific director of the Manhattan Project, said in November 1945, on "an essentially defeated enemy." President Truman and his closest advisor, Secretary of State James Byrnes, quite plainly used it primarily to prevent the Soviets from sharing in the occupation of Japan. And they used it on Aug. 6 even though they had agreed among themselves as they returned home from the Potsdam Conference on Aug. 3 that the Japanese were looking for peace.

[url=http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0805-24.htm]Source[/url]

Papal Bull

Not necessarily, a firebombing takes time to turn the city into the hellish cauldron of fire, sometimes days of sustained raids to lay the groundwork for hell. The bombing of tokyo killed 88-97'000 IIRC. Of course, this was all during the raids and the immediate casualties. Hiroshima and Nagasaki's death toll turned grim as the days, months, and years went on.

josh
N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

I'd like to add some specific details about the Allied insistence on the entry of the Soviets into the war on Japan. The first point is that the Soviets expected to be attacked on TWO FRONTS by the capitalist countries (here, I am making no distinction between the capitalist countries among the Allies and those among the Axis) at some point and, therefore, made strenuous efforts to come to some sort of non-aggression agreement on both fronts once it became clear that the leading capitalist countries were more interested in directing the aggressors against them than in stopping aggression. Hence the Soviet-Nazi Non-Aggression Treaty. What is less well known is that the Soviets had a similar treaty with Japan.

The US, in particular, was more interested in seeing war between Japan and the Soviets than in helping the Soviets by opening a second front. The issue was raised by the Soviets as early as July 1941 to no avail. The US, it should be mentioned, WAS willing to provide land lease and assistance in supplies to the Soviets which was not negligible.

It is well known the political motivation behind the ever-repeated delays in opening the second front by the US, Britain, Canada et al. When it became crystal clear that the Soviets could do the job on their own, and that Soviet involvement in the east was important, then the second front was finally opened. None of this should be construed as trivializing the greatest marine invasion/armada in the history of the world on June 6, 1944, or trivializing the soldiers from Canada, the US, Britain and other countries who gave their lives in that noble cause.

Anyway, the Soviet decision to declare war on Japan once the war in Europe was over made bringing the war in Europe to an end more important to the US.  Roosevelt raised the issue as early as the Tehran Conference in 1943. Finally, an agreement was signed on Feb 11 about the conditions of the entry of the Soviets into the war against Japan 2 or 3 months after the end of the war against Germany. I think that they weren't taking any chances of some last minute tricks by the other states even if, at the same time, they placed huge emphasis on the fact of states with different social systems fighting together for common cause. It WAS a big deal.

............................................

 

The bombs were dropped in early August. Apparently, according to those who share the view of "nuclear bombs saving lives", it is just a coincidence that the Japanese surrender happened at the end of Operation August Storm in which so many tens/hundreds of thousands of Japanese troops and equipment were killed or captured, by the first days of September 1945.

I certainly do not dispute the anti-Japanese attitude which had been whipped up during the course of the war, an attitude which found reflection in our own country by the imprisonment in internment/concentration camps of the family of Canadians like Dr David Suzuki, but such frenzied hatred cannot be called a "reason" for using nuclear weapons against the Japanese civilian population. An excuse, at best, and a rather shameful one at that. nuff said.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
My personal opinions on the dropping of the atomic bomb have changed quite significantly. Before this year (2000), I had visited the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, seen the film Black Rain, and read Hiroshima by John Hersey, but I had never thought that seriously about the reasons for dropping the atomic bomb. I had only two strong opinions about the bomb. First, although the atomic bomb has much more strength and deadly effects than conventional bombs and weapons, the atomic bomb has the same basic nature and characteristics as other weapons of war. Therefore, debates over the morality of the dropping the atomic bomb and the waging of war, especially the bombing of civilian targets, seemed equivalent to me. Second, I believed the dropping of the atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki reduced the number of Japanese and American lives that would have been lost had the bomb not been dropped. This seemed obvious to me because of the short span of time between the first atomic bomb on August 6 and Emperor Hirohito's surrender radio broadcast on August 15.

After examining the evidence provided in the readings cited at the end of this essay, I now believe no justification exists for the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. America had already destroyed almost all of the Japanese navy and air force, so Japan could not effectively wage war or even defend itself. After steady American air bombings of Japanese cities in the first half of 1945, Japan was already on the verge of collapse when the bomb hit Hiroshima. Top-level World War II military leaders such as MacArthur and Eisenhower believed the bomb to be totally unnecessary from a military point of view (Takaki 1995, 3-4, 30-31). Even if the Hiroshima bombing could be justified, the Nagasaki bombing has absolutely no justification, since America did not even give Japanese leaders enough time to evaluate the effects of the Hiroshima bombing and to reconsider their decision to not surrender.

[url=http://wgordon.web.wesleyan.edu/papers/hiroshim.htm]Source[/url]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

josh wrote:

"the most brutal act of terrorism upon innocent people"

Really? The most?

Can you name a worse act of terrorism?

Quote:
Terrorism, if it means anything, is a method by which civilians are the targets of violence for the purpose of achieving political goals. Having Imperial Japan surrender, even if a worthy goal, was nevertheless a political one, and the targeting of innocents to achieve that goal was an act of terrorism.

Indeed, it was terrorism on an incredibly large scale. Hundreds of thousands of innocent Japanese were instantaneously wiped off the earth on August 6 and August 9, 1945. Many more died in the following years from the radioactive climate left behind by the bombings. - [url=http://www.qern.org/node/203]Anthony Gregory[/url]

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

That's very good but Gordon doesn't actually mention the huge numbers in the Japanese strategic rear (which is what Manchuria was) that were killed or captured through Operation August Storm in the period leading up to the actual surrender in early September. The Japanese troops overall, and not just those on the home islands, have to be considered here.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

Sidebar: Actually, MS, in point of fact I think the British and American bombing of Dresden (that Vonnegut wrote about) actually killed more people at the time ... over the course of the evening/day. The calculated firestorm, ignited by all the incendiaries,  turned the city into a furnace.

josh

"Can you name a worse act of terrorism?"

 

Uh . . . perhaps the Holocaust, Pol Pot, etc.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

The Holocaust was not an "act". It was a myriad of acts. Pol Pot never killed as many people in one single act as the act of dropping a single bomb on Hiroshima.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki remain the worst acts of terrorism in human history. 

Krago

Stargazer wrote:

And why is everything a one-up? Millions upon millions of people die every day in Africa. It isn't a contest.

 

Actually, approx.  35,000 people die every day in Africa, not 'millions upon millions'.

United Nations Population Division

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

N.Beltov wrote:

Sidebar: Actually, MS, in point of fact I think the British and American bombing of Dresden (that Vonnegut wrote about) actually killed more people at the time ... over the course of the evening/day. The calculated firestorm, ignited by all the incendiaries,  turned the city into a furnace.

While I don't put any store in using body counts as a moral calculus, I will note that [url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/onthefrontline/3123512/Dresde... is some doubt[/url] that the Dresden death toll was as big as formerly thought.

josh

M. Spector wrote:

The Holocaust was not an "act". It was a myriad of acts. Pol Pot never killed as many people in one single act as the act of dropping a single bomb on Hiroshima.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki remain the worst acts of terrorism in human history. 

Whatever.  In my view, the Holocaust was one continuous act.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

If you want to take that view, then I will point out that the United States [url=http://www.countercurrents.org/lucas240407.htm]has been responsible[/url] for the deaths of 20 to 30 million people in wars and conflicts around the world - and that's only since 1945!

NDPP

64 Years Too Late and Not a Moment Too Soon

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175102/frida_barrigan_64_years_too_late_...

Hiroshima Day: Lose the Nuclear Ambivalence

http://embassymag.ca/page/view/regehr-8-5-2009

"And that is why some 250-450 nuclear weapons were deployed with Canadian forces in Canada and Europe when Canada joined the NPT in 1968 as a non-nuclear state pledging never to acquire nuclear weapons. Canada's arsenal was numerically larger than is China's arsenal today, and larger than the combined arsenals of India, Israel, North Korea and Pakistan, the only states not party to the NPT."

al-Qa'bong

Quote:
As Robert McNamara later said, had they lost they war, they all would have been tried as war criminals

 

 

 

Curtis LeMay is usually credited with having made that statement.

 

 

When one is comparing the scales of "acts of terrorism," shouldn't one measure the levels of terror inflicted? The bombings of Dresden, Coventry, and London, for instance, didn't seem to terrorise the victims, but may have increased their resolve. Hiroshima and Nagasaki could be argued to have caused the Japanese leaders to realise that they had no hope of winning the war, but I wouldn't say they were terrorised. The holocaust probably caused a lot of terror among its victims, but what was the political goal of this act?

 

Pound-for-pound, though, the Nakba was a very efficient example of terror, as the massacres of a few hundred Arabs in Palestine in 1948 caused hundreds of thousands of Arabs to flee their homes in terror.

Sven Sven's picture

Stargazer wrote:

The Unitied States should be tried fore war crimes in this case.

In addition to the couple of dozen German military and civilian leaders who were tried for war crimes at Nuremberg, should "Germany" -- as a country -- have also been tried for war crimes?

In the case of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, all of the principal military and civilian leaders responsible for the bombing of Japan are long dead.  How should "the United States" -- as a country -- be punished now for the actions taken 64 years ago by the now-long-dead American leaders?

_______________________________________

Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

One of my favourite Russian commentators, Peter Lavalle of Russia Today,  has lamented what seems to pass for nationalism nowadays.

Peter Lavalle wrote:
It is unfortunate that a new discursive pathology has come into vogue. Many feel that the sole way to prove their historical legitimacy and virtue is by casting themselves in the role of victim. This is history gone wrong. All too often a person's national identity is defined by how someone else wronged him or her.

History and the Politics of Blame.

So, enough already.

Regarding Sven's remarks. The Nuremberg Tribunal established some principles and these principles included outlining how a person might be responsible for the serious crimes that were being considered by the Tribunal. "Germany" was not on trial. FYI, those principles are as follows

 

Principles of the Nuremberg Tribunal, 1950

Quote:
Principle I
Any person who commits an act which constitutes a crime under international law is responsible therefor and liable to punishment.
Principle II
The fact that internal law does not impose a penalty for an act which constitutes a crime under international law does not relieve the person who committed the act from responsibility under international law.
Principle III
The fact that a person who committed an act which constitutes a crime under international law acted as Head of State or responsible Government official does not relieve him from responsibility under international law.
Principle IV
The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him.
Principle V
Any person charged with a crime under international law has the right to a fair trial on the facts and law.
Principle Vl
The crimes hereinafter set out are punishable as crimes under; international law:

1. Crimes against peace:
1. Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances;
2. Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under (i).
2. War crimes:
Violations of the laws or customs of war which include, but are not limited to, murder, ill-treatment or deportation to slave-labor or for any other purpose of civilian population of or in occupied territory, murder or illtreatment of prisoners of war, of persons on the seas, killing of hostages, plunder of public or private property, wanton destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or devastation not justified by military necessity.
3. Crimes against humanity:
Murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation and other inhuman acts done against any civilian population, or persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds, when such acts are done or such persecutions are carried on in execution of or in connection with any crime against peace or any war crime.

Principle VII
Complicity in the commission of a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity as set forth in Principles VI is a crime under international law.

 

What did not happen at the Tribunal was the Soviet wish that those who were responsible for financing the Nazis and ensuring their "success" should also have been put on trial. It would have put very high ranking businessmen in Germany and other countries, such as the USA, in a very bad spot. It never happened.

 

I think that Stargazer's terminology was imprecise, is all.

 

josh

"The holocaust probably caused a lot of terror among its victims, but what was the political goal of this act?"

 

Probably!? Yeah, being taken from your home with all your possessions, herded into a cattle car often for days, being stripped naked, having your head shaved, being worked to death, beaten, raped and murdered might tend to cause a little terror.

 

The political goal? To wipe out an entire religion/people.

Caissa

Mein Kampf clearly outlined political goals. Unfortunate that so few people believd he meant what he wrote.

Sven Sven's picture

N.Beltov wrote:

Regarding Sven's remarks. The Nuremberg Tribunal established some principles and these principles included outlining how a person might be responsible for the serious crimes that were being considered by the Tribunal. "Germany" was not on trial.

* * *

I think that Stargazer's terminology ["The Unitied States should be tried fore war crimes in this case."] was imprecise, is all

Since all of the individuals responsible for the bombing of Japan are long dead and, according to the principles you oulined, a country's citizens are not collectively guilty for its leaders' crimes, then who "should be tried for the war crimes in this case"?

_______________________________________

Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!

Oralloy

NoDifferencePartyPooper wrote:
The 64th Anniversary of USA Terrorism

http://www.countercurrents.org/fleming020809.htm

"this Aug 6th and 9th mark the 64th anniversary of the most brutal act of terrorism upon innocent people, America's Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Terrorism involves covert attackers targeting civilians.

The A-bomb attacks were overt attacks on military targets -- quite different from terrorism.

N.Beltov wrote:
FYI, we have had lengthy babble discussions about the events surrouding the US use of nuclear weapons on the civilians and population of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Surely those discussions took note of the fact that Hiroshima was a major military center containing tens of thousands of Japanese soldiers, and Nagasaki was an industrial center that was producing arms for the Japanese military?

N.Beltov wrote:
Many authors, including Americans, now agree that the use of the weapons was unnecessary from a military point of view. The aims in using the weapons were more political aims: among which were the announcement of the beginning of the New post-1945 "Cold War", primarily aimed at the Soviet Union; practice with the new weapon (the bombing of Hiroshima was the most studied bombing in history); an attitude of revenge-seeking against the Japanese, racist of course, but with a foundation of outrage against Japanese cruelty towards its victims and prisoners of war; and a general declaration that the new bully in the Pacific was the USA.

Actually, historians are all pretty much in agreement that the main reason for dropping the bombs was the desire to make Japan surrender.

I'm not sure if that is a political reason or a military reason, but it was "the" reason.

N.Beltov wrote:
These should be distinguished from the usual justifications for the bombings, primarily among which was to "save lives" that would be lost in an invasion of Japan. It's a whopping pile of crap but it still gets re-gurgitated when August rolls around, the bombing which saved lives, etc.  Going by such reasoning, which is false, I can think of an entire country that should fall into the sea.

There is no need to bring the death toll of an invasion into it.

Japan was refusing to surrender, so we nuked them until they surrendered.  Once they surrendered we stopped nuking them.

N.Beltov wrote:
josh, the military defeat of the Japanese armies in their strategic rear in Mongolia and on the Asian mainland (Operation August Storm) put the final nail in the coffin of the Japanese miltarist regime.

Too bad Japan refused to surrender until after the second A-bomb.....

N.Beltov wrote:
josh, the military defeat of the Japanese armies in their strategic rear in The US was able to bomb at will - and did. Furthermore, the US and Britain, the other two dominant members of the Allies, insisted on Russian/Soviet  entry into the war against Japan long before that entry took place. And even CIA historians acknowledge that the key factors in the decision to bomb were political and not military.

Got any CIA historians who say the reason for the A-bombs was not to make Japan surrender?

Stargazer wrote:
Well, I'm sure all those dead kids, dead woman and dead people who had nothing to do with the whole mess are NOT thanking the US government for incinerating them with a deadly bomb.

The Unitied States should be tried fore war crimes in this case. Cowards.

Japan got away with infinitely worse crimes than were ever inflicted on them.

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
The hard truth is that the atomic bombings were unnecessary. A million lives were not saved. Indeed, McGeorge Bundy, the man who first popularized this figure, later confessed that he had pulled it out of thin air in order to justify the bombings in a 1947 Harper's magazine essay he had ghostwritten for Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson.

The bomb was dropped, as J. Robert Oppenheimer, scientific director of the Manhattan Project, said in November 1945, on "an essentially defeated enemy." President Truman and his closest advisor, Secretary of State James Byrnes, quite plainly used it primarily to prevent the Soviets from sharing in the occupation of Japan. And they used it on Aug. 6 even though they had agreed among themselves as they returned home from the Potsdam Conference on Aug. 3 that the Japanese were looking for peace.

[url=
">http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0805-24.htm]Source[/url]

Actually, the Joint Chiefs of Staff estimated more than a million American casualties from the invasion, including over a quarter million American deaths.

And they used to buy just enough Purple Heart medals for a coming military operation.  They figured they'd need to award half a million Purple Heart medals in the invasion of Japan, so they ordered that many.

They never had to order any Purple Heart medals for the Korean and Vietnam Wars, since the combined casualty toll from those two wars was less than the 500,000 they bought for the invasion of Japan.

"Japan looking for peace" needs to be taken in proper context.  Japan was looking for a lasting ceasefire (like the way the Korean War later ended) and were only going to pursue that after they had already slaughtered untold numbers of Americans on their beaches.

It isn't like they were sending us surrender offers or anything.

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
My personal opinions on the dropping of the atomic bomb have changed quite significantly. Before this year (2000), I had visited the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, seen the film Black Rain, and read Hiroshima by John Hersey, but I had never thought that seriously about the reasons for dropping the atomic bomb. I had only two strong opinions about the bomb. First, although the atomic bomb has much more strength and deadly effects than conventional bombs and weapons, the atomic bomb has the same basic nature and characteristics as other weapons of war. Therefore, debates over the morality of the dropping the atomic bomb and the waging of war, especially the bombing of civilian targets, seemed equivalent to me.

Hard to see how the bombing of a major military center amounts to attacking a civilian target.

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
Second, I believed the dropping of the atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki reduced the number of Japanese and American lives that would have been lost had the bomb not been dropped. This seemed obvious to me because of the short span of time between the first atomic bomb on August 6 and Emperor Hirohito's surrender radio broadcast on August 15.

After examining the evidence provided in the readings cited at the end of this essay, I now believe no justification exists for the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. America had already destroyed almost all of the Japanese navy and air force, so Japan could not effectively wage war or even defend itself.

Destroying the Navy and Air Force does not mean the Japanese Army was unable to fight.

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
After steady American air bombings of Japanese cities in the first half of 1945, Japan was already on the verge of collapse when the bomb hit Hiroshima.

Yet they steadfastly refused to surrender......

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
Top-level World War II military leaders such as MacArthur and Eisenhower believed the bomb to be totally unnecessary from a military point of view (Takaki 1995, 3-4, 30-31).

Ike thought so.  But he couldn't convince anyone that he even knew what he was talking about.

MacArthur's wartime views are being taken out of context a bit.  What he said was that Japan would refuse to surrender even with the A-bomb, and we'd still have to mount a full invasion.

MacArthur did come around to the view that Japan would have surrendered without the bombs or invasion, but only long after the war was over.

M. Spector wrote:
Quote:
Even if the Hiroshima bombing could be justified, the Nagasaki bombing has absolutely no justification, since America did not even give Japanese leaders enough time to evaluate the effects of the Hiroshima bombing and to reconsider their decision to not surrender.
[url=
">http://wgordon.web.wesleyan.edu/papers/hiroshim.htm]Source[/url]

The notion that we would be required to suspend our attacks each time we landed a blow, just in case the enemy might be ready to surrender, is a rather silly one.

But Japan was fully aware that we had destroyed the entire city with a single bomb, and that we had claimed it was an A-bomb, on August 7.

That gave them two days to decide to surrender if they were so inclined.