Skip to comments.Globe Columnist: Shamed by Hiroshima, America Was Awaiting 9/11 Payback
Posted on 08/07/2006 6:22:41 AM PDT by governsleastgovernsbest
by Mark Finkelstein
August 7, 2006 - 09:10
Because of shame over their sins of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Americans were actually awaiting payback along the lines of 9/11. You say you were unaware of any such feelings? That's only because your feeling was 'subliminal.' Your shame was 'unconscious.' Well, that, or the fact that you just don't have the same exquisitely refined sensibilities of Boston Globe columnist James Carroll.
Here's how Carroll spelled it out in his column, The Nagasaki Principle:
"Thus, what I am calling the Nagasaki principle consists in momentum, which obfuscates responsibility before the fact, and denial, which prevents a necessary moral reckoning afterward.
"This may seem like airy theorizing, but the psychologically unfinished business of the Nuclear Age, dating to the day after Hiroshima, defined the American response to the trauma of Sept. 11, 2001. The nation had lived for two generations with the subliminal but powerfully felt dread of a coming nuclear war.
"Unconsciously ashamed of our own action in using the bomb, we were waiting for pay-back, and on that beautiful morning it seemed to come. The smoke rising up from the twin towers hit us like a mushroom cloud, and we instantly dubbed the ruined site as Ground Zero, when, as historian John Dower observes, the only true Ground Zeros are the two in Japan."
Reading Carroll's bio, one senses it is the author, rather than Americans in general, who have 'subiminal,' 'unconscious' issues to resolve:
"James P. Carroll is best known for his work, An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War That Came Between Us (1996), about the conflict between his father and himself over America's role in the Vietnam War. His father was General Joseph Carroll, the director of the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency during most of the war in Southeast Asia.
"James Carroll, spent a year in the ROTC program at Georgetown University and was honored as ROTC Cadet of the year in 1961. The following year Carroll decided to become a priest, entering the novitiate of the Paulist Fathers. In early 1969, he was ordained in New York by Terrence Cardinal Cooke, the U.S. military vicar. At the speech he gave at his first mass, the next day, he quoted a biblical passage from the prophet Ezekiel, referring to death and bones "burned by time and by desert wind, by the sun," and he added, "and by napalm." The addition of those words would cause an unresolved rift between him and his father."
Could Carroll's column be a classic bit of projection of his own Oedipal issues?
""Thus, what I am calling the Nagasaki principle consists in momentum, which obfuscates responsibility before the fact, and denial, which prevents a necessary moral reckoning afterward."
I'd feel guiltier if I could figure out what this meant.
He sees poetic beauty in the attacks of 9/11.
I can say that Mr. Carroll's column sounds like one of the most idiotic I've ever known to issue from an American news outlet. Given the competition, that's impressive.
Oh, for crying loud. Not this crap again.
The atom bombs dropped on Japan saved the lives of at least 500,000 American servicemen and several million (yes, several MILLION) Japanese, most of them civilians.
Yeah, that about covers it.... : )
These people are generally the ones you find in East Village bookstores, with their Che T-shirts on, reeking of B.O. (especially the unshaved female types), smoking pipes, in their Birkenstocks, and reading boring, socialist tomes one after the other. No real word releveance to anyone here reading this thread this morning.
My dad was Army Air Corps, back from overseas at the time but waiting to be sent out again if it hadn't been for Hiroshima and the Japanese surrender.
I once asked him his opinion on Truman's decision to use the atomic bomb. He said, "If word got out that he had a weapon that could have ended the war and chose not to use it, someone would have killed him."
like I said, here comes the usual "It's August on FR" endless commentaries on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I'll wager it will continue at least for 300 posts.
Having the bomb in 1945, and not using it, would have been an act of insanity.
What an epitomy of a USEFUL IDIOT.
Sorry Mark, I just couldn't read passed this point. The disconnect between reality and fantasy for the left is painful to digest sometimes.
"Reading Carroll's bio, one senses it is the author, rather than Americans in general, who have 'subiminal,' 'unconscious' issues to resolve."
I'd say Finkelstein has put his finger on it...
It would have been immoral and unconcionable to allow the Japanese to continue their fanatical war any longer. They had slaughtered far too many people and had a fight to the death mindset not unlike the moslem world today. The war would have been prolonged and many more including my father would have potentially been killed. Guilt! You've got to be kidding me. The Japanese reaped only a small part of what should have come to them for their deeds. I have never had any feelings of guilt over what we did to end their suicidal war mentality.
Obviously, we should have waited until Japan got the bomb (they were close). Then, after they nuked San Francisco and Los Angeles, we would have been justified in using our bomb on them. That would have been a proportional response.
I had heard some Japanese say "well, now they know the feeling", but that is about as far as it went and I never knew anyone per say who glorified over the 9-11, but only wished the US the best.
That Finkelstein is a freakin' genius, I tell ya!
PS: Governs = Finkelstein!
My father was on Leyte in 1945 working as an NCO in a motor pool (he was a skilled mechanic). He'd already been told that with the expected casualty rates from an invasion of the Japanese home islands, he could expect to be yanked out of his mechanic job, handed an M1, and sent to Japan as an infantryman--where his chances of survival were marginal.
So all I have to say is, God bless the Manhattan Project.