Skip to comments.August 6th, 1945 ; Atomic bomb is dropped on Hiroshima
Posted on 08/06/2006 6:59:07 AM PDT by AirBorn
1945: US drops atomic bomb on Hiroshima
The first atomic bomb has been dropped by a United States aircraft on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. President Harry S Truman, announcing the news from the cruiser, Augusta, in the mid-Atlantic, said the device contained the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT and was more than 2,000 times more powerful than the largest bomb used to date.
An accurate assessment of the damage caused has so far been impossible due to a huge cloud of impenetrable dust covering the target. Hiroshima is one of the chief supply depots for the Japanese army.
The bomb was dropped from an American B-29 Superfortress, known as Enola Gay, at 0815 local time. The plane's crew say they saw a column of smoke rising and intense fires springing up.
We found the Japanese in our locality were not eager to befriend us - after all, they had not long ago had the most fearful weapon of all time dropped on their doorstep
People's War memories »
The President said the atomic bomb heralded the "harnessing of the basic power of the universe". It also marked a victory over the Germans in the race to be first to develop a weapon using atomic energy.
President Truman went on to warn the Japanese the Allies would completely destroy their capacity to make war.
The Potsdam declaration issued 10 days ago, which called for the unconditional surrender of Japan, was a last chance for the country to avoid utter destruction, the President said.
"If they do not now accept our terms they may expect a rain of ruin from the air the like of which has never been seen on Earth. Behind this air attack will follow by sea and land forces in such number and power as they have not yet seen, but with fighting skill of which they are already aware."
The British Prime Minister Clement Attlee, who has replaced Winston Churchill at Number 10, read out a statement prepared by his predecessor to MPs in the Commons.
It said the atomic project had such great potential the government felt it was right to pursue the research and to pool information with atomic scientists in the US.
As Britain was considered within easy reach of Germany and its bombers, the decision was made to set up the bomb-making plants in the US.
The statement continued: "By God's mercy, Britain and American science outpaced all German efforts. These were on a considerable scale, but far behind. The possession of these powers by the Germans at any time might have altered the result of the war."
Mr Churchill's statement said considerable efforts had been made to disrupt German progress - including attacks on plants making constituent parts of the bomb.
He ended: "We must indeed pray that these awful agencies will be made to conduce peace among the nations and that instead of wreaking measureless havoc upon the entire globe they become a perennial fountain of world prosperity."
Far reaching Political and Socio ramifications will continue debates on the Great power of new Atomic weapons--the debate on a world with total destructive power- for ages to come.
On this day I think every American should reflect back again to give a silent prayer for : ---all those who bravely served in our Military,and Present, ---for the then leadership that was wise enough to decide to use this new weapon, ---and for ther fact that it was a Democratic-Based Nation such as AMERICA FIRST that was able to develope and have use of this devestating destructive power in order to halt the aggression of such Nations as Japan- and to also set the stage for America's FUTURE protection against the very next Big Threat against the Whole World Again some short few years later; the Spread of COMMUNISM and Communist Russia's plans for world domination too.
America has almost always been at the forefront of such technological advances and Thanks be to God that it was us ; a Country Founded on Religion and Religious Freedom, Individual Rights and the beliefs in the Principles of ; Life, Liberty and pursuit of Personal Happiness set in a Democratic Belief System.
Thank God for Our Brave U.S. Military and all who have served this Country Bravely through-out our History- and our Past Presidents such as Ronald Reagan and Present President George Bush for seeing the wisdom that it is only the Threat of Force AND Force that keeps a Free Nation Free.
And Thank God that at this present dangerous time in the Worlds' History- that the likes of John "U.N." Kerry, Hillary clinton, John Muthra, Howard Dean and the rest are no-where NEAR any such power that lies in the White House and the Presidency.
If only Harry Truman was in charge today...
He made the announcement from a SHIP? Did the press have a hayday (heyday?) with it, back then? ;-P
It was the afternoon of August 5, 1945. To a group of six hundred army officers assigned to the Hiroshima garrison, Professor Yoshitaka Mimura of Hiroshima Bunri University, a theoretical physicist, was explaining the scientific possibilities of new weapons which might reverse the tide of war. Japan had little Navy or Air Force left. Within months a massive invasion of the home islands seemed likely. Could you tell us, sir, a young lieutenant colonel asked, what an atomic bomb is? Is there any possibility that the bomb will be deployed by the end of this war?
Mimura chalked a rough sketch on the blackboard to illustrate the [nuclear] reactions required. Scientists at Tokyo University, he explained, have theoretically penetrated the secrets of nuclear fission. If they could apply their theories practically, an atomic bomb could be smaller than a piece of caramel candy, but, if exploded five hundred meters above a populated city, it could destroy 200,000 lives.
When can we have that bomb? Well, it is difficult to say, Mimura answered, knowing nothing of any Japanese enterprise to apply fission theory to bomb-making. But I can tell you this much: not before the end of this war.
And using the bomb saved hundreds of thousands of American and Japanese lives by overwhelming the Japanese and destroying their will to fight along with killing about 100,000 Japanese (Nagasaki bomb did about the same).
Roll another one.
There is a lesson here.
Same here, liege. My father would have been part of an invasion force instead of an occupation force. I visited Hiroshima last year. I was rather surprised that the museum there gave a relatively objective account of the dropping of the bomb, and did not neglect to point out that it was the result of Japanese initiation of the war. I think that represents a change from what used to be there. Also, the actual site over which the bomb was dropped is not part of the museum or surrounding "peace park," but rather is on an obscure, hard-to-find side street, in front of a restaurant, with only a small marker to signify it. No, the restaurant did not have an A-Bomb theme or otherwise try to cash in on its unique location.
My dad survived a crash landing in the CBI theater but was ready to be called back. The jumping off point was Rough and Ready Island, Stockton, California.
Unit 731 - Research and Bump List. Gets Disturbing, Read at Your Own Risk
Time to start a tradition of setting off fireworks on Aug. 6.
"Return of the Enola Gay"
Paul W. Tibbets
Published and distributed by Mid Coast Marketing,
1620 E. Broad St Columbus, Ohio, 43203.
A point that is often brushed aside by the "Japan was ready to surrender without the Atom Bomb being used" crowd.
It took a second hit before they were willing to surrender.
It was not the destruction that caused it. The firebombing of Tokyo caused far more destruction then then the two bombs. It was that we caused so much destruction with so little effort.
The firebombing was carried out by thousands of planes and required hundreds of thousands of people working together to pull off.
But the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima required no such effort. One plane,The Enola Gay, one crew of twelve, one bomb, Little Boy.
Being able to do so much with so little brought home to Japan that when you ran the numbers there was no way to win, no way to wear down your enemy with losses of men and equipment. No way to win.
And the Japanese still didn't surrender.
A point that is often brushed aside by the "Japan was ready to surrender without the Atom Bomb being used" crowd.<<
Lost in the "NO NUKES" crowd was the Japanese involvement in bio warfare in China.
>>Biological Weapons Program
Between 1932 and 1945 Japan experiments included testing biological weapons on humans, and attacked 11 Chinese cities with biological weapons. The Japanese, as the US learned at the end of World War II, had been making significant progress learning about traditional biological warfare agents like botulism and anthrax.
The US Army sent several investigators to Japan after the war to interrogate captured Japanese scientists. Leading the team was Dr. Norbert Fell and Lt. Col. Arvo Thompson. Working with Gen. Douglas MacArthur's intelligence team at Supreme Commander Allied Powers (SCAP), Dr. Fell and Thompson learned the full extent of the Japanese program headed by Lt. Gen. Shiro Ishii.
From 1938-1945 Ishii carried on experiments against POW's, including US forces at the Mukden POW Camp in northeast China. He directed Unit 731, the secret Japanese unit engaged in human experimentation. Ishii was initially given command of the "Togo Unit" of 300 men, which rapidly grew and acquired additional "cover" identities. The first major BW facility was built at Beiyinhe, some 70km outside Harbin, known locally as the "Zhong Ma Prison Camp. Open air testing on prisoners was conducted at the the officially named "Water Purification Unit 731" at Pingfan near Harbin, a remote, desolate area on the Manchurian Peninsula. Pingfan's 6 square kilometers housed more than 150 buildings, including administrative buildings, laboratories, workers dormitories, and barracks. By 1945, the Japanese program had stockpiled 400 kilograms of anthrax to be used in a specially designed fragmentation bomb. Studies continued there until 1945, when the Unit 731 complex was leveled by burning it. <<
Japan needed a severe wake up call. They killed millions of Chinese people.
****The firebombing was carried out by thousands of planes ...
But the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima required no such effort. One plane,The Enola Gay, one crew of twelve, one bomb, Little Boy.***
And this is the REAL reason liberals and handwringers bewail the A-bomb. No one cries about the firebombing of Tokyo because many planes carrying many bombs were used whereas Hiroshima had one plane carrying one bomb.
Kind of like the bewailment of the current Isralei response to Hezbullah.
But it is also true that even in a fanatical society you will find very few that are true fanatics. Even if the coup had momentary success they would have been quickly overthrown. The human instinct is to live, not die.
I shudder to think of what they might have achieved if we had delayed another six months. They were so very close. The only thing lacking was a delivery system. And a epidemic unleashed at that point would have hurt the US but it would have devastated Europe and Asia.
Thank God for the bomb.
Harry Truman is highly overrated.Now if we could only get Teddy Roosevelt in charge somehow---
While we were impressed with ourselves at the time, we probably wouldn't say that exactly that way now. The hydrogen bomb was still a few years away.
This is a good day! All kinds of Leftist morons will spout off about how evil we were and the great thing is they NEVER actually understand the situation at the time. The number of people we killed that day was less than the number of people starving to death each week because there was a war going on. With any luck, their argument will be slayed by facts and they will move on to explain how we started WW2 with a Japanese oil embargo and we knew Pearl Harbor was coming. I can play with some people for hours with this game.
Common reaction at the time: Wow! One bomb did all that!
If the coup had been successful they would have been over thrown when the third or fourth bomb had landed. Remember that only half of the die hards that made up the war council were willing to fight to the death. Their base of support was very small indeed. It would have delayed the outcome but probably by no more then a few weeks at most.
In that case you're father and his buds owe my cousin a beer. Oppenheimer gave him sole responsibility for one component of the bomb [detonators]. My cousin was twenty one years old at the time.
Another event that happen on this date.First use of the electric chair in the United States (1890)
The image can be viewed on its Wikipedia page.
Thank you President Truman, you saved the lives of 2 of my uncles along with hundreds of thousands of other brave men.
Not exactly true. We had four of them. One was Trinity, one was Little Boy, one was Fat Man and the fourth was unused.
After that we had no more sitting in storage but making more was quite possible.
The "Euro-Weenies"(etcetera,ad nauseum)of today would characterize this as a"Disprortionate Response"!In their eyes,we should have waited for Germany and Japan to acquire nukes so they could hit us back????
The man who was to become my father had(finally)been drafted in March,1945.His designation was I.R(infantry replacement).He was(because of the atom bombs)able to marry the young woman who would become my mother at Camp Croft,Spartanburg,S.C.on Oct. 10th,1945!
Would he be on his way to(or from)Potsdam?