"You think of the lives which would have been lost in an invasion of Japans home islands a staggering number of Americans but millions more of Japanese..."
That about sums it up.The one thing worse than dropping the bomb would have been not dropping it.
Anyone who thinks dropping the bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki were war crimes are fools. While usage of such terrible weapons were horrible they were necessary. The Japanese militarists would have sacrificed untold millions of their own people in furtherance of their war aims. The numbers of US dead would have been equally catastrophic.
wow, i’ve never seen that photo.
The flash was so intense it burned shadows onto the surfaces they fell on.
The hands on clock faces were welded frozen.
Hiroshima, we did it once, we can do it again.
Japan’s Longest Day: there was an actual firefight on the grounds of the Imperial Palance, in an effort to head-off a broadcast of the Emperor’s Voice announcing the end of the war.
Some Japanese planes did attack US ones even after the surrender.
Were it not for the broadcast they SURELY would have fought on. The surrender had much more to do with RUSSIA than the atomic bombs —the Japanese knew the Russians would never agree to permitting the Emperor system to remain in place.
Moral of the story: Don’t start a war with the United States, especially with a surprise attack. My late father was one of the millions of soldiers, sailors and Marines almost certainly saved by those two explosions. He was on Okinawa, ready to take part in the attack on the main islands of Japan. Today, we’d probably apologize to a country that attacked us.
Don’t forget this classic 1980s song
Should be AFGANASTAN 2011!
Hiroshima today - contrast this with most American cities.
I have interviewed dozens of WWII vets who served in the Pacific Theater and each one of them, without fail, has indicated that had the atomic bombs NOT been dropped they would not be there then to talk about their life experiences in the war. They knew the Japanese military and society were capable of tremendous levels of self-sacrifice (i.e sepuku whilst taking out an American GI) for the Emperor. They thanked the Air Force for dropping the bomb and for the Japanese for finally coming to their senses.
The Hiroshima/Nagasaki scene from “Crimson Tide” (Gene Hackman, Denzel Washington, Viggo Mortensen, James Gandolfini, et. al)
I was standing in a line of replacements on Leyte getting battle gear for the invasion of Japan. We had heard bits of info about the big bombs but really were more concerned as to what unit from Okinawa to which we would be assigned. I was about 10th in line when a Lt. came out and told us to go back to the tents becuse the shooting was all over. I can tell that there was very much relief among the G.I.s. With me it was a mixed emotion. I can honestly say an invasion of Japan would have given me a chance to pay back for the death of my brother who was killed on Okinawa and I was very much aware that infantry casualties for an invasion of Japan were expected to be very high. Once the real meaning of the end of shooting was realized apart from the gung ho infantry training attitude the feeling of gratitude for a life certain took over. .