Skip to comments.How the Atomic Bomb Saved 4,000,000 Lives
Posted on 09/25/2006 1:20:44 PM PDT by pabianice
click here to read article
Me too. My dad was on a ship in the Pacific en route to the Japanese mainland when they dropped it.
No "maybe" about it for me, I would NEVER have been born.
Look at the date. No internet in 1987.
Check out the reference to Field Marshal Terauchi (CinC of the Japanese army group - Southern Group of Armies) in the index of George Feifer's Tennozan: The Battle of Okinawa and the Atomic Bomb. Allied signals intelligence (MAGIC) intercepted and decoded the late July 1945 order from Imperial GHQ to Terauchi to prepare for this.
You are correct. My dad was burned a crash in the CBI Campaign in '43 and was back in the US (as a still certified flyer)after his recovery... He was ready to go at Rough and Ready Island in '45.
"Japan was seeking terms of surrender at the time."
"Debatable. Certainly there were elements in the civilian leadership and diplomatic corps who saw the writing on the wall and wanted to find a way out for Japan, but the military was in control of everything, including all the channels of communication. They (the civilians and diplomats) had made a very tenuous peace overture for the Russians to relay to the Americans, but the Russians basically stalled on them while gearing up for their own invasion of China, Korea, etc., When the Japanese military got wind of it, I believe they arrested the people who had reached out. What few peace signals reached the Americans were so obtusely worded and so buried in a thousand "to the last man, woman and child" messages that they were simply ignored."
The diplomatic efforts to the Russians was transmitted to the Japanese embassy in 'Code Purple,' which the Japanese knew the British and Americans had already cracked. Truman and Churchill already knew what cards Stalin was holding at Potsdam with respect to Japanese peace initiatives.
If the Roosevelt policy of 'unconditional surrender' had left room to ensure the integrity of the Emperor, whom the Japanese considered on the level of a 'god,' the ambiguity concerning the fate of the monarchy would have been resolved. Stimson was aware of this and requested the viability of a 'constitutional monarchy' be included in the demand for surrender, and his request was ignored at the conclusion of the Potsdam Conference. The people, including the military, obeyed the Emperor, and once the Emperor ordered the surrender, the war was over.
That's very insightful and something that most folks overlook. Few historians or anyone else bother to look at the "totality of circumstances". The Japanese could see the darkness all around them. The atomic attacks were likely to show that the possiblity of staving off an invasion was now impossible.
I am willing to bet that the thinking in the upper echelon staff rooms was that if it could do this to a city,"What would these bombs do to a division?"
"On these islands, seaplane bases would be established and radar would be set up to provide advance air warning for the invasion fleet"
My father was a USN Crew Chief for a PBY (Patrol Boat Plane, aka sitting duck.) He had orders to leave for Okinawa in Mid August. The bomb probably saved his life. My thanks to Einstein and Fermi!
Using it today would save even more.
My dad was a pilot in VP-11, also a PBY. (Although they added four .50 caliber in the noseto be fired with the gunner straddling them!)
Yes, but today we don't have leaders in high places of the same caliber as those we had fighting WW2.
Also it's not yet evident to a majority of the people how serious the current war against Islam is.
Did your father see action?
I read a once that there was also a plan to use atomic bombs to blow breeches in the Japanese defenses for Allied troops to pour through into the countryside.
It would have been a tragedy to have our troops march through a radiation zone on their way to battle.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.