Skip to comments.Obama insensitive to mark Hiroshima anniversary
Posted on 08/11/2010 7:19:41 AM PDT by nuconvert
WASHINGTON: Some 25 years ago I was asked to speak at a ceremony marking the 40th anniversary of the death of the famous war correspondent, Ernie Pyle, who had been killed by a Japanese sniper on a small island off Okinawa in the last days of World War II. The memorial was held in the Punch Bowl, the national military cemetery overlooking Honolulu.
It was a mid-morning affair that attracted more than a thousand spectators, most of them veterans of the bloody campaigns in the Pacific from Guadalcanal to Iwo Jima and Okinawa ― all of them "Ernie's boys.'' In the mist and sunshine of a glorious Hawaii morning with the weathered faces of America's best generation surrounding me in campaign hats and medals, it was one of the most humbling experiences I have ever had.
I recalled that day and the memories of loved ones lost during that bleak time of my boyhood as I read that Barack Obama had deployed the American ambassador to Japan as an official delegate to the 65th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, a decision that at best can only be described as insensitive to the feelings of millions of Americans who still remember vividly the pain and anguish caused by the Japanese Empire in World War II.
How surprising that Obama, who grew up not far from the sacred ground of Pearl Harbor and the cemetery where the victims of Japanese treachery lie, would become the first American chief executive to do so since the conflict in the Pacific ended in August of 1945 with the only two atomic detonations in anger in history.
(Excerpt) Read more at koreatimes.co.kr ...
I am not 2nd guessing history and I’ve heard all the arguments for and reasons why we dropped the bomb. Yet, even so, I think of the children happily playing in the streets, the moms reading books to thier children, and all those kinds of things as a bomb comes falling down from the sky. Rather than fight army to army, we chose to drop hellacious bombs on civilians, it just doesn’t sit well with me, and I hope it never happens again. I’m proud to be an American and greatful to the Good Lord that I was born here, and my children, nonetheless, when I think of those bombs, I think of those things.
While hear what you are saying, we are losing/have lost the idea of what war is. There are no civilians in war.
I believe this is why such things as the Flight 93 Memorial and Ground Zero mosque are not splitting hairs when discussing conquest. The objective IS conquest, not fighting army to army.
We are and have been in G-war for a long time. There are no lines, even if some people wear skirts.
There are millions of AMERICAN kids who would never enjoy the love of a grandfather.
We finished it. (And saved countless lives in the process.)
We need to finish the mess with the muslims now.
I think we need to look back at what would have happened if we hadn’t used the bomb. President Truman had the X Plan. This plan, if used, would have totally wiped out the Japanese Nation. Millions of people would have died in Japan. Americans, at that time, had had enough of the Japanese war machine and they knew that they would have never quit fighting. The X Plan was designed to wipe the Japanese off the face of the earth. None of it is good, just as war is hell I guess.
Pal? It was world war. Their leaders were continuing to fight . Even after the first bomb, they refused to quit.
The lobbing of those bombs is what brought peace and closure to that war.
Since then we rebuilt their economy and have been paid back many fold in goods , services and friendship.
Its too bad that Obama chooses to go on to frustrate/ destroy yet another American relationship with its allies. For him? Its all about dhiminishing and marginalizing America. Shame on him, shame on us for allowing it.
Well my friend, I tend to differ with you on this idea. You just totally justified Jihad and terrorism in my mind, we don’t have to argue on this however. My thoughts on the bomb are my thoughts, they are true to my heart, the fact that we dropped the bombs on civilians bothers me, and for those reasons I previously stated, what else can I say? I am not down on America, just stating what probably many others must feel as well (but for the right reasons).
Yep, like I said, heard all that 1,000 times before ...
Hiroshima was a major port, army facility and storage area (but not a fortress itself), and was one of the few Japanese cities not burned out by firestorms - Several of which killed more of your “peaceful” civilians than either of the two A-bombs did. ALL Japanese “civilians” at that time were in the war effort building arms and support hardware in in-home machine shops and assembly areas. Few factories were in place as in the US.
WITHOUT the A-bombs to convince the Emporor to demand the general end the war, an estimated 3-5 million Japanese “civilians” would have killed themselves in kamikaze-style suicide (armed mass charges) attacks during the invasion the next months by the US and Soviet armies.
Your attitude doesn’t reflect the facts.
Ditto that, not with a Muzie president who should go first.
In WWII Germans bombed civilian targets and allies replied in kind. Likewise, we regularly bombed civilian targets in Japan. More Japanese civilians dies from conventional bombs that the nuclear bombs.
Now if we have a bomb that accidentally kills a dozen or so civilians, it makes the front page of the newspapers (at least it did when Bush was president).
Of course, our enemy regularly kills civilians and there is little outcry from anyone.
Goodle Operation Downfall, the umbrealla plan for Operations Coronet and Olympic. These spell out in detail the U.S. Order of Battle and what the human cost would’ve been had we opted for the invasion of the Home Islands rather than use the atom bomb. HST did the right thing.
Make that “Google.”
We have reached a point in modern history when our own citizens would rather sacrifice the life of their neighbor, coworker, or the father and mother of their children's friends instead of the murdering enemy.
I never said we did the wrong thing, I said it bothers me, that’s it, what’s the big deal, can I not have those feelings about dropping bombs on families and children, and if I didn’t have those feelings would I even be human? Sheeze you guys are touchy, you’re not telling me anything I didn’t already know about the war, I even said that in my first reply to this thread, yet here come all the historians to convince me my feelings are wrong.
Those bombs saved the lives of 5 to 10 million Japanese.
Creating peace with Japan while leaving the military in control would’ve cost the lives of many more Japanese, Koreans, Chinese and others.
Your OUT of your freaken mind!!
Hieroshima was chosen because it was a military target, not to incinerate civilians.
We killed MORE civilians in the fire-bombing of Dresden, and THAT was not a civilian target.
After the suicidal attacks and losses on Okinawa and Iwo Jima, the U.S. RIGHTLY decided that a landing of military forces in Japan would have incurred unacceptable casualties in the lives of American boys - TOO MANY of whom had ALREADY died to kill the racist bastards who ran the Japanese Empire. It would ALSO have incurred HIGHER civilian losses in Japan - NOT THAT IS THE SLIGHTEST CONCERN TO ME.
ADDITIONALLY, even AFTER the bombing of Nagasaki, the Japanese Imperial Command was STILL bent on fighting. We had a THIRD nuclear bomb on the way. Only AFTER massive conventional bombing of Tokyo did they FINALLY decide to surrender.
BY THE WAY, the Germans were WORKING on a nuclear bomb before we defeated them. THEY would have had NO scruples about bombing New York with it.
Your misplaced social concerns are the DIRECT result of cultural equivalence and the failure to assess WHY we fighting the Japs.
Ask the people of Korea and citizens of China, and the survivors of Nanking, Bataan and other victims of Imperial Japanese Racism what THEY would have thought about agonizing over dropping the bomb on these bastards.
WE WERE RIGHT - VERY RIGHT and the JAPS were WRONG - VERY WRONG!!!
You ARE second-guessing history!If you had taken the requisite amount of time to study the War in The Pacific,you wouldn’t make such foolishly quaint references such as”children playing in the streets”etc.,etc.,The Japanese believed in TOTAL WAR.Those children would been armed to the teeth(as would every other japanese)had we chosen to invade.It was estimated that we might very well have suffered a million casualties(dead and wounded),and the japanese millions more!!!
Sure. We'll allow you to be swayed by "feelings" detached from reason and reality.
But is that a good thing...?
the Japanese had no such reservations about their killing of civilians during their brutal butchery throughg China prior to our entry. Sure Fat Man and Little Boy took out many civilians in a single blast but tha Japanese probably killed just as many during their tour of China.
Personally, I had nothing to do with World War Two but I admire and applaud Harry Truman for doing what he did. He looked at the alternatives and didn’t like them. The shortest way to win the war was to send the Enola Gay and Bock’s Car to do what they had to do. Well done President Truman, 65 years on.
My Dad was on Okinawa awaiting the invasion of Japan. So, pardon me if I take your statement above and have the luxury of being able to remember those things for myself.
It is good to think about such things. Only thing I would add is that in 1945 the line between military and civilian in Japan was impossible to discern.
Regarding jihadis, there is no point in taking a moral stance when dealing with an existential threat that rejects our notions of morality.
Regarding activities of WW2: WWI was waged exclusively against enemy troops. Germany was back for a re-match within 20 years. WW2 brought the war to the ENTIRE populace: the wealthy, the poor, the women, the children. We convinced the entire population that going to war against us was a terrible idea, and we haven't heard a peep out of Germany OR Japan in several generations.
The best way to pacify a country is to have it be the case that when a man speaks approvingly of war, his women scream at him in rage and terror.
Going back to the Global Jihad, they can send suicide bombers against us forever, as long as their money people keep financing the jihad. If you want to stop the jihad, it's necessary to go against the people who finance it, and the clerics that preach for it.
WWII was total war. At least as many people - including “children happily playing in the streets, the moms reading books to thier children, and all those kinds of things” - were killed during the firebombing of Dresden and Tokyo.
War is H#ll
If the A-bombs hadn’t been used, even more of those people - FAR more - would have suffered and died just as horribly.
My Dad was on Okinawa awaiting the invasion of Japan. So, pardon me if I take your statement above and have the luxury of being able to remember those things for myself.
Not only did your father sacrifice but your entire family did as well. It is so easy for others to dismiss your feelings. I sincerely appreciate my wonderful country and if it were not for your father and all of the other heroes of that time I would not be a free man.
God Bless and Thank You
Perhaps you should think of the young men that had been plucked off the streets of the United States to fight in far away lands who would never get the chance to father young children or to return to the wife and children they had.
I’m rather certain they would have rather been watching their children play in the streets at home, rather than suffer the brutality and indignity of having their body parts strewn across the ground of some South Pacific atol.
We can all think of an idyllic setting with a nuke going off overhead, and mourn the loss of life. We can also face what happened knowing that other life was preserved by this act.
How many U. S. citizens are alive today because their dads returned home to father them? How many of their offspring are out there?
I’d venture to say we’re talking about tens of millions of people in all. Focus on them. Focus on them playing in the front yard, or carrying on their activities in idyllic settings.
And mourn for the tens of millions who do not play in these idyllic settings, because an empire decided to conquer other nations, and be as brutal as it could be in the process.
Cry for our own tens of millions who do not exist, before you cry for their hundreds of thousands who ceased to exist.
“I am not 2nd guessing history and Ive heard all the arguments for and reasons why we dropped the bomb. Yet, even so, I think of the children happily playing in the streets, the moms reading books to thier children, and all those kinds of things as a bomb comes falling down from the sky. Rather than fight army to army, we chose to drop hellacious bombs on civilians, it just doesnt sit well with me, and I hope it never happens again. Im proud to be an American and greatful to the Good Lord that I was born here, and my children, nonetheless, when I think of those bombs, I think of those things.”
It’s okay to feel that way, any life lost in war is a tragedy. But remember, too, our citizens, military and civilian, who were bombed and killed one sunny morning in Pearl Harbor, when no state of war existed. We had to drop those bombs, because hundreds of thousands of more lives would be lost trying to invade the island of the nation that would never surrender. It was probably one of the hardest decisions to make, to drop those bombs, in the history of the world.
I was behind a car yesterday with the “survivor of Pearl Harbor” plate on it. Ask them, if we did the right thing. Ask them if your feelings are okay - and I think you’ll find that they agree with you, but also know from being there, why we had to do it.
It’s something that will never reconcile itself for anyone. We didn’t start the war, but we HAD to end it, to stop the killing of millions of our people, and theirs.
The Purple Hearts we award today were made for the anticipated casualties of Operation Coronet. The Japanese killed 14 million people. That society of Paper Houses also put daggers in the hands of eight year old boys.
Japan was a Warrior nation!
All parties understood actions taken and the consequences of those actions.
No argument here, Scythian, my FRiend. I just have a different view of what war is. I don’t make a distinction that includes ‘total’ war. I also don’t think war has any subsets, e.g., Viet Nam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc., whether they’re declared by Congress or not. The compartmentalized thinking of politicians and ‘rules of war’ or ‘rules of engagement’ concepts don’t work for me, either. At all.
And yes. War is freaking ugly. The Japanese, IIRC, have a saying that business is war. Interesting thought there.
I have thought we have been actively engaged in Holy War with Muslims since 1979 at least. I hardened my conclusions after 9/11. From a certain perspective, it is all inclusive, yes.
While croos teaching in high school ( I normally taught engineering tech, but for a day I taught a history class on the technology we use today that started development in WW2)
When we got to nuclear energy, Hiroshima and Nagasaki came up, as the normal teacher of that class had taught that already. I aske the class if they had covered the Rape of nanking and the japanese occupation of china... Of course not. We got online, and covered the 1 million plus deaths around nanking, and the rape of all females 8 -80 in the province. I then asked them what they deemed worse, 1 million dead over 4 months, or 200,00 dead in an instant. They all agreed the rape of nanking was worse. I then asked if you were the president faced with lsing 1 million US soldiers and 10 million japanese, which would you choose, the bomb or the invasion... 100% went for the bomb. At the end of the day they wondered why their textbooks didn’t cover the subject the way I had... go figure
A lot of discussion on this topic in a thread from yesterday — Commemorating a Major U.S. War Crime — http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2568320/posts
Its fine with me.
I love American troops (and want them to come home safe...) and their families far more than I care for enemy civilians. I think about all the children who grew up with their fathers, all the wives and girlfriends welcoming their men home, and I think - “Good call, Harry.”
We did the same to Dresden and Tokyo, only without Nuclear weapons. Those “Moms” worked in factories building weapons that killed Americans. Those “children” could have become soldiers who killed Americans. The soldiers who were killing Americans were children of those “Moms”. Those civilians allowed their country to be taken over by madmen and those madmen survived only as long as the public allowed them to. They brought that on themselves, but don’t worry, we are in the process of doing the same thing right now.
Your desire to see Americans suffer will soon be quenched. We are electing madmen and encouraging them to destroy our country. When the end comes, and it will be awful, people, supposedly innocent people will suffer and die, and it will be our own fault. We will have no one to blame but ourselves. Trust me no German or Japanese person will feel one bit sorry for us.
The bombs were good. I like my japanese hifi and plasma tvs made by hard working conquered japanese people. So less of them died and we got Sony. Win win.
And we got some good baseball players, too.
We should be careful when we view the culture of Imperial Japan from the perspective of Western Liberalism. Every person; young, old, women, disabled, had military duties. The society was completely militarized. The invasion would have encountered fanatical resistance everywhere, from 'civilians' armed with bows and arrows, explosives, zip guns, and what have you. As was demonstrated during the campaign, the closer we got to the home islands, the fiercer and more horrible the fighting became. If Okinawa/Iwo Jima are used as an indicator, then we could expect that nothing short of complete annihilation of everything- people, property, the land itself- would suffice. This would probably mean the end of Japan as a nation and as a people. And at the cost of at least hundreds of thousands of American casualties, likely including my dad. The Fat Man called it off at the last minute, and I thank God for that.
Gotta deal with the Kenyan issue first, otherwise the Islamic Final Solution will not end in our favor.
The concept of war crimes did not exist until after the Nuremberg AND Tokyo war crime tribunals that followed the end of World War II. Yes, there was a war crime tribunal in Tokyo May 1946 - November 1948.
At the “International Military Tribunal for the Far East” (the official title), over 5,700 Japanese leaders , military and civilian, were charged with various types of war crimes.
Among the charges were POW mistreatment including execution, forced prostitution (”comfort women”) and biological warfare experimentation on prisoners including POWs.
The push for making war “more humane” has been around for about 150 years. The push for punishing war crimes has been around for half that. Both are good ideas. But good ideas can not hide the basic truth - war is about killing people and breaking things on a large scale.
Once the dogs of war have been unleashed and the cry of havoc has been yelled the options are limited to a short bloody war or a long bloody war. The Bard knew this how many centuries ago?
Yes indeedy!! seriously tho the japanese nation is way better off b/c of how history played out...they were under the control of despotic.rulers that didnt give a rats ass about the citizens. On hiroshima day the japs should thank the USA for setting them free. That’s the truth and the stupid teachers are full of it today.
While croos teaching in high school
.... Wow, Waverunner, you’re awesome! good job... small skirmishes to win a larger war...
Dittos to everything you said...my Dad was awaiting the invasion as well, his duty station being aboard a medium-sized landing craft full of Marines. Neither you nor I would have the luxury of sitting around second guessing Harry Truman because we would, more than likely, not exist at all.
200 years from now, I want their children's children's children
to cower and cringe in fear whenever they hear the sounds of jet engines overhead
because their legends tell of fire from the sky.
I want them to hide in dark caves and holes in the earth,
shivering with terror whenever they hear the roar of diesel engines
because the tales of their ancestors talk about metal monsters
crawling over the earth, spitting death and destruction.
I want their mothers to be able to admonish them with
"If you don't behave, the Pale Destroyers will come for you",
and that will be enough to reduce them to quivering obedience.
I want the annihilation to be so complete that their mythology
will tell them of the day of judgment when the stern gods from across the sea
.. the powerful 'Mericans .. destroyed their forefathers' wickedness.
(Original created by BlueLancer ... 13 September 2001)
“I think of the children happily playing in the streets, the moms reading books to thier children...”
Military training was an important part of Japanese school cirriculum. Every student received military training from a very young age.
*Yet, even so, I think of the children happily playing in the streets, the moms reading books to thier children, and all those kinds of things as a bomb comes falling down from the sky.*
In Japan in 1945? They were too busy training to be suicide commandos for the Emperor. All 100 million of them were suspected to die for their living deity. Do some reading before you overdose on sentimentality.