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To: eyedigress
It was revealed this evening that Jon thought the first one should have been dropped near the shore, to show its power.

Would it surprise the idiot if he learned that this possibility was given careful consideration -- then rejected for very good reason.

It was proposed that an uninhabited island near the Japanese coast be the initial target. The Japanese government would be notified and asked to send observers to the demonstration. Presumably, they would be stunned at the power of the weapon and recommend the government sue for peace.

But there were problems. First and foremost, there were only three devices -- one uranium-based ("Little Boy") and two plutonium ("Fat Man"). It would be at least six months before another could be assembled.

While everybody was confident the relatively simple uranium device would perform as planned, the more complicated plutonium device was a bit of a mystery -- how well would it work, if at all.

Obviously, the plutonium device couldn't be used for a demonstration. It might not work. And, if "Little Boy" was used for the demonstration, we wouldn't know whether what we still held in reserve would work.

This led to the Alamogordo test at Trinity Site -- where one of the plutonium devices was detonated. Successfully.

But now there were only two weapons. If one was used in a demonstration, there would be only one left. And, if the Japanese didn't respond to the demonstration, the one remaining bomb would be the only chance to end the war. What if the plane carrying it was shot down? Or it was dropped...and the Japanese still didn't respond.

As we now know, one wasn't enough. It took two.

And anybody who believes Harry Truman is a war criminal should be forced to repeat the Bataan Death March.

Stewart is an idiot.

28 posted on 04/30/2009 9:17:32 PM PDT by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance on Parade)
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To: okie01

Thank you for that concise representation of the time. A study of history appreciated by me and hopefully all at FR. :^)


30 posted on 04/30/2009 9:21:46 PM PDT by eyedigress
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To: okie01

“As we now know, one wasn’t enough. It took two.”

Someone tell Jon that we didn’t have any spares to waste in the harbor...and replacements were hard to come by.


33 posted on 04/30/2009 9:31:40 PM PDT by ltc8k6
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To: okie01; eyedigress

Yes, as eyedigress pointed out that was a very concise and complete picture of what was happening at the time, and contains much information that I did not know.


34 posted on 04/30/2009 9:32:05 PM PDT by ResponseAbility (Government tends to never fix the problems it creates in the first place)
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To: okie01; eyedigress

Yes, as eyedigress pointed out that was a very concise and complete picture of what was happening at the time, and contains much information that I did not know.


35 posted on 04/30/2009 9:32:30 PM PDT by ResponseAbility (Government tends to never fix the problems it creates in the first place)
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To: okie01; eyedigress; ResponseAbility; Free ThinkerNY; Oldexpat; Trod Upon
Originally posted by okie01:

"But there were problems. First and foremost, there were only three devices -- one uranium-based ("Little Boy") and two plutonium ("Fat Man"). It would be at least six months before another could be assembled."


Originally posted by Oldexpat:

"We had only two bombs and the next one was a long way off."


Originally posted by ResponseAbility:

..."The US only had two atom bombs at the time. The first one was dropped on Hiroshima, and the Japanese Emperor still commanded the Japanese forces continue to fight. Then we dropped our last atom bomb on Nagasaki. "


Have to disagree a bit with our FR posters, there was a little known third atomic bomb ready to go in August 1945. First as to the contention that after the US dropped the second atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan that the US would not have another atomic bomb ready until the end of the year... The TRUTH is that there was a third atomic bomb being readied for a combat drop. Most people that read the common WWII histories do not believe this is the case, however the standard history about 'only two' U.S. atomic bombs in 1945 is just factually incorrect.

The United States actually had three Atomic weapons ready for use near the end of WWII, two of which were dropped on Japan, the third was being readied for a mission by Col. Tibbets' unit - the 509th Composite Group, when Japan surrendered. The USA had two "Fat Man" plutonium Atomic weapons in its inventory at the end of calendar year 1945.

In an August 2002 interview with Studs Terkel published in the British Guardian newspaper, Paul Tibbetts recalled something similar: "Unknown to anybody else--I knew it, but nobody else knew--there was a third one. See, the first bomb went off and they didn't hear anything out of the Japanese for two or three days. The second bomb was dropped and again they were silent for another couple of days. Then I got a phone call from General Curtis LeMay. He said, 'You got another one of those damn things?' I said, 'Yessir.' He said, 'Where is it?' I said, 'Over in Utah.' He said, 'Get it out here. You and your crew are going to fly it.' I said, 'Yessir.' I sent word back and the crew loaded it on an airplane and we headed back to bring it right on out to Trinian and when they got it to California debarkation point, the war was over."

Source: Warbird Forum: The third bomb

Now about those future bombs to be added to the U.S. nuclear weapon inventory...

There WAS a multi-site production line set up to generate plutonium cores for the "Fat Man" model of the US nuclear stockpile. The US had not just invested 2 billion (1943) dollars just to make five atomic bombs in 1945, a production line was built... The only reason that the US did not go into wartime production mode on the 'Fat Man' plutonium cores is that the war ENDED. The "Little Boy" uranium gun-type atomic weapon first dropped on Hiroshima was a one-off model, never produced again. All of the other US atomic weapons were of the plutonium-implosion "Fat Man" model. So the first bomb was tested in the US during July 1945. Two more atomic weapons were dropped on Japan in August 1945. One more atomic bomb was being readied for Tokyo for late August 1945; it was never delivered. The fifth bomb was completed in November, 1945. At the end of calendar year 1945 the US had two "Fat Man" type nuclear weapons in its inventory out of the five produced in 1945, however if Japan had not surrendered the nuclear 'production line' was designed to produce 7 plutonium cored nuclear weapons per month. More than enough to take care of the Nazis and/or the Japs if WWII had lasted into 1946.

"A third bomb was being shipped from New Mexico, target Tokyo, when the war ended. Production was geared to seven per month with an expectation that 50 bombs would be required to assure that an invasion would not be required. Release of radiation from the untested Hiroshima bomb, designed as the original gun-type and made of uranium, was a surprise. The radiation range was expected to be within the blast radius, that is, a lethal dose of radiation would only kill those already dead from concussion. The Alamogordo bomb test and later production were of the more complicated plutonium, yet cleaner, implosion device."

Source: WW2 Pacific: Little Known Facts: Atomic Bomb -- Allies

The United States did feel the need to build more nuclear weapons in the immediate aftermath of WWII, since the demobilization of the 12.34 million Armed Forces of WWII had made the post-war US nuclear monopoly the first-line of defense for the United States and its interests. The expense of the $2 Billion Manhattan Project was amortized over the following production of US nuclear weapons from 1945 onwards.

Here are some numbers on the US atomic weapon stockpile from WWII onwards...

U.S. Nuclear Weapon Inventory


Year US Nukes
1945 5
1946 11
1947 32
1948 110
1949 235
1950 370
1951 640
1952 1,000
1960 18,000


Source: Power Point Presentation USC Berkeley - History - 105, Dr. McCray "Early Nuclear Strategy" Slide #9. looks like this PPT link has disappeared...
Source: Complete List of All U.S. Nuclear Weapons The NuclearWeaponsArchive.org


dvwjr

39 posted on 04/30/2009 9:38:50 PM PDT by dvwjr
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