Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Was the American Bombing Campaign in World War II a War Crime?
American Heritage Magazine ^ | April 6, 2006 | Fredric Smoler

Posted on 05/20/2006 8:33:39 PM PDT by tbird5

Deliberately targeting civilians is widely considered terrorism nowadays, but during World War II both the Britain’s Bomber Command and the United States Army Air Force deliberately targeted civilians.

The British philosopher A. C. Grayling, in his new book Among the Dead Cities: The History and Moral Legacy of the WWII Bombing of Civilians in Germany and Japan (Walker, $25.95), points out that the two air forces combined killed perhaps 600,000 German civilians and another 200,000 Japanese. He makes the case that at least by our current standards we were terrorists, and it logically follows that the attacks were war crimes. In an age of political terror, when it is urgent to come up with a persuasive distinction between legitimate and illegitimate violence, it is hard to overstate the importance of the questions Grayling raises.

(Excerpt) Read more at americanheritage.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS: academia; bataandeathmarch; bombingserbcivilians; japaneseatrocities; japanesemanchura; londonblitz; nowewon; raf; rapeofnanking; terrorbombing; tonsonserbia; usaaf; v1buzzbomb; wwii
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-50 ... 101-150151-200201-250 ... 301-321 next last
To: Alberta's Child

Hey, I could use the jet stream to send balloons across the Pacific Ocean, too. What I can't do, however (and I don't understand how anyone in 1945 could have done it), is: 1) ensure that it follows a precise track that takes it directly over the U.S., and 2) runs out of air over the U.S. (as opposed to landing in the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean in Europe, or -- heaven forbid -- floats all the way around the world and lands in Japan).

"From the late fall of 1944 through the early spring of 1945, the Japanese launched more than 9,000 of these "fusen bakudan", or fire balloons, of which 300 were found or observed in the US."

http://www.japan-101.com/history/fire_balloons_or_balloon_bombs.htm

It's like talking to a wall with some people

Again, just because you don't see how it could happen doesn't mean that it didn't happen. You really should at least know a little bit about the ACTUAL history of WWII before making ridiculous statements.

151 posted on 05/20/2006 10:06:27 PM PDT by frankiep (Visualize Whirled Peas)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 140 | View Replies]

To: frankiep
And apparently some posters here think that fighting to make certain that the genocidal regimes that started the war were thrown on the ash heap of history was not necessary.

Ash heap of history?

It's funny you should mention that. I've often said that if my great-grandfather came back today and spent 48 hours getting familiar with what the United States has become, he'd swear that the Nazis had actually won World War II -- or that we'd been invaded by the Soviets soon after the war ended.

152 posted on 05/20/2006 10:07:30 PM PDT by Alberta's Child (Can money pay for all the days I lived awake but half asleep?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 143 | View Replies]

To: frankiep

I do understand your point. You confirmed that Japan didn't launch any of these balloons with the express intent of having them land in San Francisco -- they simply launched them in the hope that some or all of them would land anywhere in the United States.


153 posted on 05/20/2006 10:09:36 PM PDT by Alberta's Child (Can money pay for all the days I lived awake but half asleep?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 151 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
Was the American Bombing Campaign in World War II a War Crime?

No.

The Americans applied the tech they had at the time in the same way the enemy had already begun to do and to a much lesser degree.

When a city got bombed like they did back then it was a serious blow to the morale of the enemy to stay in the war and from the American perspective that is what they were doing and when you see how the Germans did attempt to assassinate Hitler on more than one occasion it can be said the tactic did have the desired effect.

And it was the same deal for Japan, except with the dropping of the atomic bombs you had the extra incentive that Japan was testing chemical and biological weapons on US prisoners of war. They crossed the line and it was a question mark of how far they could develop such dastardly weapons and employ them in mass when we would be forced to invade their home island. That question had to be removed as quickly as possible and was by using science from the lab just like Japan was doing on US prisoners.
154 posted on 05/20/2006 10:11:37 PM PDT by Berlin_Freeper (ETERNAL SHAME on the Treasonous and Immoral Democrats!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ProtectOurFreedom
It was total annihilation that broke the will of the enemy to continue the war, surrender, adopt democracy and join the free nations of the world. Unfortunately, that is not the way wars are fought today and look at what you get -- unending insurgencies.

We killed about 12% of Germany's population and about 2.5% of Japan's population during WWII. I think that was the key - most of the military age people who were raring to fight were killed off. The rest were content to submit to Allied rule after their surrender. But we also lost 400,000 dead. Which is why we were able to take the gloves off. In Iraq, after about 3 years of light-duty guerrilla war, we're up to 2,500 dead. I don't think that's enough to justify flattening Iraqi cities with conventional bombs. But if we had done so, I suspect we'd have a lot less guerrilla activity today.

Note that that this guerrilla war hasn't lasted very long by the standards of these things. One of the more successful campaigns run by the Brits - the Malayan Emergency - lasted a dozen years. And they were up against opposition - a ragtag bunch of self-trained Communist political cadres, really - armed primarily with old equipment looted from post-surrender (WWII) Japanese arsenals, whereas the core of the Iraqi resistance is composed of personnel from a half-million man army funded with billions from decades of oil revenues.
155 posted on 05/20/2006 10:12:13 PM PDT by Zhang Fei
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 97 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child
Actually, I got much of my World War II history on the lap of an old relative who served in the South Pacific.

So did I, both my grandfathers, and 4 uncles. One of my Grandfathers served in both Europe and in the Pacific and was present at D-Day and Iwo Jima on board a Navy Destroyer. The difference between you and me is that it sparked enough curiosity to study the war so that I could put what they told me into context and understand what they felt and why they fought.

156 posted on 05/20/2006 10:12:36 PM PDT by txroadkill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 134 | View Replies]

To: wolficatZ

That last one is going to leave a mark...


157 posted on 05/20/2006 10:12:53 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 150 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child

Right.


158 posted on 05/20/2006 10:13:32 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 153 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child

It's funny you should mention that. I've often said that if my great-grandfather came back today and spent 48 hours getting familiar with what the United States has become, he'd swear that the Nazis had actually won World War II -- or that we'd been invaded by the Soviets soon after the war ended.

Now you are equating the US with the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany? You truly are an idiot of the highest degree. You are a disgrace.

I do understand your point. You confirmed that Japan didn't launch any of these balloons with the express intent of having them land in San Francisco -- they simply launched them in the hope that some or all of them would land anywhere in the United States.

Your relativism is ridiculous. Are you saying that because the fire balloon attacks weren't specifically aimed at San Francisco that they were no big deal? You know what, nevermind. I've had enough of trying to argue with you. You are obviously hopelessly delusional about anything to do with WWII or why the US was justified in actually fighting to win that war. Goodnight, and may God have mercy on you.

159 posted on 05/20/2006 10:15:34 PM PDT by frankiep (Visualize Whirled Peas)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 153 | View Replies]

To: sourcery

BINGO!


160 posted on 05/20/2006 10:18:01 PM PDT by RBroadfoot
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: DB

"Can there really be civilians in all out war?

It is the "civilians" that manufacture the goods that empower the war machine to continue on."

That's Osama's argument as well.


161 posted on 05/20/2006 10:18:47 PM PDT by RBroadfoot
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: IronJack

Heck, our fighter pilots were strafing anything that moved. And to demoralize the German and Japanese public was just why they were doing it.

Like Sherman said..."War is Hell".


162 posted on 05/20/2006 10:19:52 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 53 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child
Actually, I got much of my World War II history on the lap of an old relative who served in the South Pacific.

If the US had not dropped the atomic bombs on Japan, and an invasion of mainland Japan had occurred, you might have gotten your WWII history from somebody else's lap.
163 posted on 05/20/2006 10:22:07 PM PDT by Zhang Fei
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 134 | View Replies]

To: frankiep
"On 10 March 1945, one of the last paper balloons had descended in the vicinity of the Manhattan Project's production site at Hanford, Washington. The balloon landed on a power line that fed electricity to the building containing the reactor producing plutonium for the Nagasaki bomb, and shut the reactor down!"
 
The Fire Balloons

164 posted on 05/20/2006 10:27:46 PM PDT by wolficatZ (Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle -"You'll hang for this!")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 151 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
>>>>The British philosopher A. C. Grayling, in his new book... "Political Correctness Gone Mainstream".
165 posted on 05/20/2006 10:28:55 PM PDT by Reagan Man
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: MeanWestTexan
If I remember what I read about this correctly, Japan actually canceled the bio weapon attacks on the west coast because a high ranking official in their army got nervous about what the US would do in return.
166 posted on 05/20/2006 10:30:34 PM PDT by Madison Moose
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 102 | View Replies]

To: wolficatZ

Apparently actual facts like that aren't enough for some people.


167 posted on 05/20/2006 10:31:33 PM PDT by frankiep (Visualize Whirled Peas)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 164 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child
"I've often said that if my great-grandfather came back today and spent 48 hours getting familiar with what the United States has become, he'd swear that the Nazis had actually won World War II -- or that we'd been invaded by the Soviets soon after the war ended."


US+UK+Australia-canada=Brothers in Arms

Most likely you would be making him sick in his stomach at how impotent and useless Canada had become. It can hardly be said that Canada even has a military. That was the main reason Canada failed to join their Brothers in Arms against the fully documented mass murderer and torturer Saddam Hussein...

National Post
Tuesday, February 24, 2004
Canada's army, navy and air force are facing a funding shortfall of up to half a billion dollars, defence sources told the National Post, and the military is recommending drastic measures to make up the difference, including closing some of the largest bases in the country.

"We will not be able to meet our domestic defence obligations," one naval officer said. Colonel Howard Marsh: "This is a look forward ... at what they need in order to keep the army going," he said. "Nobody has ever seen a bankrupt military in a developed country.... This year I predict we will see that in Canada."

Col. Marsh said the military is saddled with ageing bases and increasingly dilapidated buildings that are fast reaching the point of collapse. "What they've been doing, year in and year out ... is not replace or repair those buildings, or buy new equipment," he said.

"The average age of the equipment in the Canadian Forces is over 20 years and it hasn't been well-maintained."
168 posted on 05/20/2006 10:32:18 PM PDT by Berlin_Freeper (ETERNAL SHAME on the Treasonous and Immoral Democrats!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 153 | View Replies]

To: rlmorel
Heck, our fighter pilots were strafing anything that moved. And to demoralize the German and Japanese public was just why they were doing it.

I have read ever book I can get my hands on about WWII in both the ETO and the Pacific and I have never seen anything that would indicate that any US service men ever intentinaly targeted civilians. I don't believe that any US fighter pilots ever even saw main land Japan unless they were POW's. And in the ETO the fighter pilots had too many military targets, too little fuel, and too little time to ever harass anything that wasn't military. Keep in mind that every time a fighter pilot pulled his trigger, an camera started running. If you know of something different I would sure like to read it.

169 posted on 05/20/2006 10:33:21 PM PDT by txroadkill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 162 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
The reason that wars seem to go on forever nowadays is because we are too civilized. We no longer completely destroy the ability of the enemy to make war. The last war that was ended and resulted in peace was WWII. Everywhere else in the world where those results were prohibited, the wars just go on and on forever. The best example being Israel, and the 1973 Yom Kippur war. Although Israel nearly lost the war in the first 48 hours, with help from the US, they were able to counterattack and drive the Egyptian army back across the Sinai and the Suez Canal, surrounding it, and were about 50 miles from Damascus, Syria. Unfortunately, the UN and Soviet Union stepped in, causing Israel to cease hostilities. Had they been allowed to "finish the job," the middle east would be a far better, and safer place today.

Mark

170 posted on 05/20/2006 10:38:09 PM PDT by MarkL (When Kaylee says "No power in the `verse can stop me," it's cute. When River says it, it's scary!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: tbird5

No one can even begin to discuss this issue intelligently without first taking account of the following facts: all the cities (Warsaw, Rotterdam, London, Conventry and so many others) that Germany and Japan bombed first, the fact that every day the war went on the Axis powers were slaughtering vast numbers of people, the facts of the Holocaust (which was killing thousands of Jews and other targeted peoples every day the war went on), the total "scorched earth" of the Eastern Front in which the Germans annihilated countless cities, towns, and villages, etc. etc.

The Allied Powers were trying to bring the earliest possible end to an aggressive war launched by the Axis powers which was killing TENS OF MILLIONS (final tally was probably 40+ million). Sure, one can argue that bombing of cities is never justified, but if it's EVER justified it certainly was in WWII as the best attempt to defeat the Axis.

btw, there's no certainty at all that the USSR would have stayed in the war without the US and UK attacking Germany all-out from the air, since before June 1944 that was the ONLY serious way they had to reduce the German military power on the Eastern Front. If Stalin had judged that the US and UK were unwilling to do all in their power to defeat Germany then he might well have made a negotiated peace and Nazi rule would have continued all over Europe, the Holocaust would have been carried out to its "final solution" etc.


171 posted on 05/20/2006 10:38:13 PM PDT by Enchante (General Hayden: I've Never Taken a Domestic Flight That Landed in Waziristan!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RBroadfoot

You are giving Osama Bin Laden legitimacy he does not have.

He does NOT officially operate under the auspices of a country.

His scumbag islamofacist thugs do not wear uniforms.

He attacked the USA on its own soil using terrorists in civilian garb.

As I said before, he uses his twisted rationale to justify murder. It is not war. It is murder.


172 posted on 05/20/2006 10:38:45 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 161 | View Replies]

To: Jedi Master Pikachu

Only in revisionist history.

In reality, total war is when you wipe out *everything* associated with your enemy. That includes women, children, the elderly, whoever is in the way or offers resistance to your troops.

The idea is to inflict such horrors on the enemy that they give up rather than watch the things they hold dear be destroyed.

It's not a new idea either. There's examples throughout recorded history. The interesting thing is that it usually *works*, if you inflict the proper amount of devastation.


173 posted on 05/20/2006 10:40:23 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 63 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
The British "philosopher" A. C. Grayling should maybe look up the phrase "tipping point".
174 posted on 05/20/2006 10:41:17 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (ISLAM: The Other Psychosis)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RBroadfoot
It is the "civilians" that manufacture the goods that empower the war machine to continue on." That's Osama's argument as well.

Osama no doubt has three meals a day. So do we. He also puts on his pants one leg at a time. As do we. Just because Osama says something doesn't mean it's wrong.

In my book, civilians are legitimate targets if the other side breaks the rules by targeting our civilians. At the same time, it pays to exercise some prudence. Some cost benefit analysis is justified here.

We are fighting, at best tens of thousands of men in Iraq and Afghanistan. Most of the populations of both countries are friendly, and of the hostiles, only a few tens of thousands are motivated to fight us. There is no point in stirring up a hornet's nest by going after their civilians. This is not an enemy that is killing 300 and crippling hundreds of our men on a daily basis, as occurred during WWII.
175 posted on 05/20/2006 10:43:23 PM PDT by Zhang Fei
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 161 | View Replies]

To: Enchante

Good post. You should read "The Conquerors" by Michael Beschloss. Great inside infomation on how Roosevelt and Truman were thinking all through WWII.


176 posted on 05/20/2006 10:44:00 PM PDT by txroadkill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 171 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child

Actually, that wasn't the case (except in some revisionist minds). It was the specific target of at least four raids that I know of, but they all missed.


177 posted on 05/20/2006 10:44:06 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 74 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
"Was the American Bombing Campaign in World War II a War Crime?"

Nothing in this book about the German Blitzkrieg or the Russian bombardment of Polish cities? Nothing at all about the German bombing of the Vatican and Castle Gandolfo, the Pope's personal residence where 500 Jews being hidden there were killed by Nazi bombs? The fact is that this "author" forgets that the U.S. bombing of Dresden was in response to the Nazi WAR CRIMES and atrocities. This is just another trashy book seeking to defile history by taking facts out of historical context and by judging the events of a particular time period against modern thought.

Now that the Crusades have finally been vindicated as necessary defensive wars, after decades of anti-Christian and anti-Catholic "historians" calling them "Brutal papist wars fought for the purpose of subjugating and converting muslims to Christianity", they have to continue on with their quest of revising history to make evil appear good, and good appear evil. These twisted times we now live in will no doubt be judged by honest historians as the era that sought to murder all truth and that attempted to elevate evil to God's throne. File this book in the maneur heap of dispicable lies and twisted insinuations along with the Davinci Code hogwash.

178 posted on 05/20/2006 10:45:25 PM PDT by TheCrusader
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child
>>The argument that in World War II enemy cities -- at least German ones -- represented legitimate targets because of their industrial capacity falls on its face when you realize the lengths to which the U.S. and Britain went to protect key industrial targets in many of these German cities.

The major plant in Cologne that had been owned by the Ford Motor Company (actually Ford Werke, the German subsidiary of the company), for example, had gone unscathed through so many Allied bombing raids during the war that it became a place of refuge for the city's residents whenever the air raid sirens sounded.<<

I recently saw a history channel show that said that both sides initially refrained from bombing cities but an accidental bombing led to retaliation and more retaliation.
179 posted on 05/20/2006 10:46:06 PM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 74 | View Replies]

To: txroadkill

I really did not make that up. You can see references to it in books written by pilots in the 357th Fighter Group, and 56th Fighter group.

We had carrier pilots strafing and pounding the crap out of Japan near the end of the war, flying fighters.

It wasn't considered a war crime at that point. How could they?


180 posted on 05/20/2006 10:47:24 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 169 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child

The Emperor was actually a young man, not old. His image was actually everywhere in the Japanese empire, and he was revered as a god by the people.

The people had been told to go to war and die for the Emperor, which was entirely reasonable in their point of view - so they would, because they were told that that is what the Emperor wanted. As was common in Japanese society, the Emperors' 'orders' were 'passed on' by his staff and court. At the surrender, the Emperor told his people that they must stop fighting - so they did.

I suggest you study Japanese culture more. Blind obedience to authority is one of their cultural failings.


181 posted on 05/20/2006 10:48:16 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 88 | View Replies]

To: Alberta's Child

Per what the emperor and his surviving advisors had to say after the war, yes! (The non-surviving ones committed seppuku.)


182 posted on 05/20/2006 10:52:27 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 112 | View Replies]

To: rlmorel
Thanks for the references (kind of, now I'll be up all night reading). I may have read that before and just didn't file it as remarkable because in context it probably seemed like the right thing to do.
183 posted on 05/20/2006 10:52:30 PM PDT by txroadkill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 180 | View Replies]

To: tbird5

"Was the American Bombing Campaign in World War II a War Crime?"

Well, General Curtis LeMay, the architect of the strategic bombing campaign in the Pacific theater, was concerned about this question. He once remarked that, if the US were to lose the war, he expected to be tried for war crimes.

The fire-bombing of Tokyo targeted civilians; it was strategic only in the sense that it terrorized civilians. Tokyo's residential sectors were constructed with wood, so LeMay selected incendiary munitions rather than explosives. In the 2-1/2 hours of the March 9, 1945 Tokyo firestorm, the US killed 100,000 Japanese civilians -- mostly women, children, and old folks -- in their homes. This and similar firebombings in Japan are estimated to have "scorched and boiled and baked to death," to use LeMay's words, over a million Japanese civilians.

"There are no innocent civilians, so it doesn't bother me so much to be killing innocent bystanders." - Curtis LeMay on the March 9, 1945 firebombing of Tokyo.

"LeMay said if we lost the war that we would have all been prosecuted as war criminals. And I think he's right. He ... and I'd say I ... were behaving as war criminals." - Robert McNamara

It's not an idle question, nor it is inherently unpatriotic or naive to consider the limits in the application of violence.


184 posted on 05/20/2006 10:52:43 PM PDT by RBroadfoot
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: txroadkill
"I don't believe that any US fighter pilots ever even saw main land Japan unless they were POW's."
 
HooBoy, that's a real humdinger!
 
http://media.putfile.com/P-51-MUSTANGS-OVER-MAINLAND-JAPAN-1945  (courtesy of yours truly)
 
 
 
 

185 posted on 05/20/2006 10:54:00 PM PDT by wolficatZ (Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle -"You'll hang for this!")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 169 | View Replies]

To: tbird5

That scumbag A. C. Grayling was born after the war. The SOB didn't have Nazi bombs raining down on his damned head, easy for him to make judgements.


186 posted on 05/20/2006 10:55:39 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Prophet in the wilderness

that depends on the number of Attorneys per division.


187 posted on 05/20/2006 10:57:21 PM PDT by tcrlaf (Liberalism- What A Pagan Religion......)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

NO, the American bombing campaign in WWII was not a warcrime. Don't forget there was extreme pressure from the media and citizens to get the job done, and our men home asap even then.

In Europe for example the allies were far behind in their timetable, especially after D-Day. The idea was to end the war by the end of 1944 if possible. If it dragged on to long there would be more pressure to not invade Germany with a similar outcome to WWI.

It was Churchill & FDR who demanded unconditional surrender, while many under them (military & some intel) would have preferred a conditional surrender.

It was principally the air bombing campaign that neutralized the German military assets that would have delayed the end of the war for a long time.

As for the British, London was bombed by accident during the Battle of Britain, and Churchill understood the enemy could only be defeated through terror attacks. We would have felt the same if our capitol was attacked.

Conclusion: If the allies had not done precision bombing, and bombing of cities the war would have dragged on to long, and the unconditional surrender would have been abandoned through necessity. Or we might have had to stand up to the Russians in Europe.

At that time air bombing was necessary for total victory.
188 posted on 05/20/2006 10:58:04 PM PDT by vintage patriot (Dan Rather Made Me Do It - Join Free Republic)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 165 | View Replies]

To: tbird5
"He makes the case that at least by our current standards we were terrorists..."

Not so, Mr. Grayling.

Germany announced that they were giving a war and wouldn't we like to come.

We accepted their gracious invitation.

Terrorism is where there is an indiscriminate attack, like what happened at the twin towers or Pearl Harbor. Quite a difference.

189 posted on 05/20/2006 10:59:45 PM PDT by nightdriver
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rlmorel
"That scumbag A. C. Grayling was born after the war. The SOB didn't have Nazi bombs raining down on his damned head, easy for him to make judgements."


If he did then that coward would be blaming Churchill.

Cowards will always turn against those they feel they can directly cause an effect to keep them from having to grab a weapon and defend their country. They never actually blame the enemy because that would mean they would have to fight, so they cause hysterics against their own leaders.

And that is exactly how it is today and always will be when it comes to absolute cowards.
190 posted on 05/20/2006 11:02:31 PM PDT by Berlin_Freeper (ETERNAL SHAME on the Treasonous and Immoral Democrats!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 186 | View Replies]

To: rlmorel

I ain't giving Osama nothin'.


191 posted on 05/20/2006 11:02:32 PM PDT by RBroadfoot
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 172 | View Replies]

To: Thombo2

<< Interesting article.One example:The author states,"Japan surrendered because of the Soviet invasion of Manchuria."???? >>


That did have something to do with the surrender. Even after the second A-bomb, there was still a very strong faction in the Japanese war cabinet that wanted to keep fighting, and they were preparing the people to fight to the death. Most of the people probably would have done so out of loyalty to the emperor, too.

Stalin had promised Truman that the USSR would declare war on Japan three months after the defeat of Germany. The planned date of that declaration was Aug. 15. After the dropping of the first bomb, Stalin moved the declaration date up to Aug. 8, because he didn't want to be left without any "spoils" in Asia after the defeat of Japan.

His first move was to invade Manchuria, and he was planning to launch an invasion in northern Honshu while the US invaded Kyushu.

Faced with the certainty of a two-front invasion, and not wanting to have to deal with the Russians, the emperor overruled the war-hawks in his cabinet and decided to end it. Like the Germans who held out in the hope of surrendering to the Americans, the Japanese did not want to be in the hands of the Russians -- or to have their country partitioned like Germany was.

It is probably true that the only thing that could have ended the Japanese fighting was the word of the emperor himself. He made a radio address to the nation, and without using the word "surrender," he made it clear that he was ordering the military to end the fighting and reach a peace with the United States.

It was the first time most Japanese had ever heard his voice -- and it was a shock. They had been conditioned to see him as a god. After his address, he turned to his wife and asked, "Well, do I look like human?"





192 posted on 05/20/2006 11:03:01 PM PDT by Almagest
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 59 | View Replies]

To: txroadkill

There were some who didn't like doing it and didn't...some who didn't like it, but saw it as necessary, and I am sure, some who liked it very much.

It was accepted. War sure does suck.

I lived in Japan and the Philippines when I was a kid, and in the PI, the war seemed very real (in the sixties). As Boy Scouts, we hiked the path of the Bataan Death March, which has markers.


193 posted on 05/20/2006 11:03:37 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 183 | View Replies]

To: Almagest


Forgot to add:

The leadership in Japan had actually been making overtures to the Soviets after the defeat of Germany. Of course, they did not know that the USSR had promised to come into the Asian war. They actually wanted the Russians to act as mediators between them and the Americans -- seeking better surrender terms. Their one overarching concern was the prerogatives of the emperor.


194 posted on 05/20/2006 11:07:36 PM PDT by Almagest
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 192 | View Replies]

To: RBroadfoot

More importantly, it is the civilians who put tyrants into power. I won't lose a minute of sleep over any German, Japanese, or Italian civilian killed in WWII, nor will I fret over any Iraqi or Afghan civilians killed in OIF/OEF. Tyrants don't come to power without their people allowing it. Forgive me if I agree with Osama, but I wouldn't have seen anything wrong with indiscriminate bombing of any Iraqi city in OIF I, had we not had the intel and capability for precision strikes.


195 posted on 05/20/2006 11:07:59 PM PDT by Axhandle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 161 | View Replies]

To: wolficatZ
Yeah, that was a pretty dumb comment...I was stuck on LaMay and sending the B-52 in low, unarmed and just enough fuel to see the airbase that they were trying to get to before crashing into the ocean. Main Land Japan was a target rich environment for the P-51.
196 posted on 05/20/2006 11:08:06 PM PDT by txroadkill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 185 | View Replies]

To: RBroadfoot

Sorry, perhaps I misinterpreted your statement. It just sounded like Moral Relativism to me. Maybe I missed the context.


197 posted on 05/20/2006 11:08:32 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 191 | View Replies]

To: txroadkill

B-29's


198 posted on 05/20/2006 11:09:10 PM PDT by COEXERJ145 (Real Leaders Base Their Decisions on Their Convictions. Wannabes Base Decisions on the Latest Poll.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 196 | View Replies]

To: nightdriver
I disagree with your labeling the attack on Pearl Harbor a terrorist attack. While it was a sneak attack, it was on a legitimate military target. The only civilians killed were killed by unexploded US anti-aircraft shells.
199 posted on 05/20/2006 11:09:41 PM PDT by Madison Moose
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 189 | View Replies]

To: txroadkill

LOL! Now, I KNOW you meant B-25...:)


200 posted on 05/20/2006 11:09:55 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 196 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-50 ... 101-150151-200201-250 ... 301-321 next last

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.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson