Dropping the atomic bomb.


Christ dude, throw me a paragraph break. Or something. I started getting a headache partway through and had to stop. 1 thing I did note was about casualty figures. They include both wounded and dead. So saving 500,000 casualties is not the same as saving 500,000 lives. I forget the normal percentage, but there are usually much more wounded than dead. Casualties include both wounded and dead because it makes little difference from a military perspective. Actually a wounded enemy is better for you. Neither is going to be shooting back at you. It takes more enemy resources to care for the wounded than for the dead. I will try to finish your post tomorrow. It is too late right now. I thank anyone who read this for reading my post. Sorry, it is late and sometimes my sense of humor gets warped by lack of sleep. :slight_smile: Peace.

If we did not use the “Bomb” we were prepared to go right on firebombing Japanese cities into ashes. These killed more directly than did the A bombs. In the end, the dropping of the Bomb saved JAPANESE lives, a lot of them, prob millions and millions. Unless, you believe somehow that dying to aa A-Bomb is somehow worse than dying in a firebombing, and not only worse, but more than 10 times worse.

It was an unfortunate decision. I believe, tho, that the LIMITED use of the Bomb, and the fact that the world recoiled in horror, stopped more widespread use, in say, the
Korean war. (Mac Arthur, that egotisical idiot <and I got that from no less source than my Dad, who served in HQ, Pacific> actually wanted to use Nukes on the Chinese!) If we had not learned our lesson in horror in Hiroshima, we prob would have let him. Imagine dozens of nukes going off in China & Korea!

Everyone pretty much covered my viewpoint on this but they forgot to mention this tid-bit.


Both from “The American Pagaent”(10th edition) by Thomas A. Bailey and David M. Kennedy.

Au revoir.

Err “Military-base city” my bad.

Another point you may want to consider.

Even after the Japanese did surrender, a contingant of their armed forces broke away and attempted to overthrow the government. They intended to assume power and continue the war.

On the point about the Russians declaring war on Japan, I believe that was mostly due to the fact that doing so after Germany was defeated was something they agreed to do at Yalta. Once the bomb was dropped, they figured they might as well comply, as the war wasn’t going to last much longer, and they were getting eastern Europe in the deal.

“It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.” - Adam Smith

KarmaComa, were these actions necessary for the Japanese?

Ballon Bombs: What are they?

Japanese Ballon Bombs

Daniel, I’m afraid you’re going to have to spell out your argument more clearly. Are you suggesting that if the other side uses terrorist tactics, that justifies our use of terrorist tactics? Would Japanese actions in Nanking have justified wholesale rape and slaughter by the U.S. had the invasion occurred? Since the Japanese carried out chemical weapons trials on prisoners, should we have done the same?

I fall generally among the people who think that using nukes was a difficult decision that was pushed along by attitudes and experience of the war at that time. Having moved into the debatable position of Total War, the A-bomb becomes just a bigger faster explosion.

However, I don’t understand how the “other guy’s” failings justify our actions.


OK. Maybe I should have directed my comment at Conner who made the comment that

The entirty of the Japanese Islands were a war zone. We were bombing them night and day. If the Islands of Japan were not a warzone, then the continental United States was not one either.

I find it strange that people think that the Japanese people caught up in the bombing of these cities were inocent. The were no more innocent than Rosie the Rivitor here in the states.

Maybe I should ask you, tomndebb, if a family member of yours had been a victim of the Japanese, how would you feel. And before you parot an answer about forgiving and forgetting, close your eyes and imagine your child, a parent, or a spouse being brutally butchered.

The truth of the matter is that the bombs saved more lives than it would have cost had they not been used. The idea that the first American soldier that set foot on Nippon would have been greeted by a white flag carrying Jap is pure fancy.

By the way, the United States did use a lot of the chemical and biological warfare data that the Japanese had gathered during their war with the Chinese. We used more information from the Japanese ‘experiments’ than from the German ‘experiments.’

There was and is no moral high groud.

Apologies again. By copying that text hastily I wound up wiping out the paragraph breaks. I know the difference between casualties and killed, 2Sense, and I should have been more clear.

My main points are:

  1. Critics of the bombings have taken them out of the context of WWII and placed them into the context that developed later where we all felt threatedend by nuclear annihilation.

  2. A preponderance of factors suggesting many different scenarios, most of which appeared worse to Truman, led to his descision. Claims that more Japanese were killed than Americans were saved, or that Japan would have surrendered soon anyway ignores too many things.

Since I have never developed a really strong emotional investment regarding the decision to use the Bomb, my feelings there are pretty much irrevelant. I only pointed out that your stand-alone links did not present much of an argument per se. Your follow-up reference to Conner’s comment was quite adequate to explain your post.


There was going to be an invasion if Japan didn’t surrender first–it was politically inevitable at the time. Harry Truman had an obligation to use whatever means he could to reduce American casualties–not total casualties, AMERICAN casualties–regardless of how many Japanese were killed or wounded in the process. That’s total war–anyone who doesn’t like the results should probably refrain from starting one.