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The Bombs of August
Townhall.com ^ | August 23, 2018 | Victor Davis Hanson

Posted on 08/23/2018 7:50:41 AM PDT by Kaslin

On Aug. 6, 1945, the United States dropped a uranium-fueled atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. Three days later, another U.S. Army Air Forces B-29 repeated the attack on Nagasaki, Japan, with an even more powerful plutonium bomb.

Less than a month after the second bombing, Imperial Japan agreed to formally surrender on Sept. 2. That date marked the official end of World War II -- the bloodiest human or natural catastrophe in history, accounting for more than 65 million dead.

Each August, Americans in hindsight ponder the need for, the morality of, and the strategic rationale behind the dropping of the two bombs. Yet President Harry Truman's decision 73 years ago to use the novel, terrifying weapons was not considered particularly controversial, either right before or right after the attacks. Both cities were simply military targets.

Hiroshima was the headquarters of a Japanese army unit, and a key manufacturing center and port. Nagasaki -- a secondary target after clouds and smoke obscured the city of Kokura -- was the site of a huge Mitsubishi munitions plant.

Yet the sheer destructive power of the two bombs -- the 15-kiloton "Little Boy" Hiroshima bomb, and the 21-kiloton "Fat Man" Nagasaki bomb -- ensured catastrophic civilian casualties well beyond soldiers and munitions-plant workers. During the blasts, and long afterward due to radiation showers, perhaps 150,000 Japanese were killed.

Truman wanted to use the bombs to avoid invading the Japanese mainland. The recent battle for Okinawa resulted in an estimated 50,000 American casualties -- the bloodiest of all the American battles of the Pacific War. Truman's military planners warned that invasions of the Japanese mainland to end the war might cost the equivalent of 20 more Okinawa campaigns.

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


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: hiroshima; japan; nagasaki; ww2
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1 posted on 08/23/2018 7:50:41 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: aposiopetic; bestintxas; bitt; Bodega; BroJoeK; carolinablonde; COBOL2Java; DarthVader; Deb; ...

Victor Davis Hanson Column


Please Freepmail me, if you want to be added, or removed from the ping list

2 posted on 08/23/2018 7:51:38 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Tiresome. They started it. Truman and the Americans finished it.


3 posted on 08/23/2018 7:57:47 AM PDT by Silentgypsy ( “If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.”__Scorpion)
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To: Silentgypsy
Tiresome. They started it. Truman and the Americans finished it.

The article is a defense of Truman's decision to drop the bombs.

4 posted on 08/23/2018 8:02:15 AM PDT by Sans-Culotte (Time to get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US!)
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To: Silentgypsy

My father was a WW2 veteran and was a part of the Battle Of the Atlantic but as the war wound down he new his next stop was the Pacific.

In the 8th grade I had to write an essay on whether or not we should have dropped The Bomb, so I asked my Dad what he thought. His response summed it up to me

“Go in the bathroom and look in the mirror and tell me if you like what you see”


5 posted on 08/23/2018 8:04:01 AM PDT by Jimmy The Snake
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To: Kaslin
p11a

Just Operation Olympic would have made D-Day look like a picnic.

6 posted on 08/23/2018 8:12:27 AM PDT by Snickering Hound
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To: Kaslin

I have a picture of the Enola Gay taken by my Uncle who was a 1st Marine Raider when he was on Tinian. I was able to get Tibbets and His Navigator Van Kirk to sign it some years ago. Never figured out how to post it.


7 posted on 08/23/2018 8:13:19 AM PDT by Rappini (Compromise has its place. It's called second.)
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To: Snickering Hound

Not only that, but likely the Soviets would have grabbed at least half of Japan, and likely we would have had a civil war, like Korea.


8 posted on 08/23/2018 8:14:05 AM PDT by dfwgator (Endut! Hoch Hech!)
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To: Snickering Hound

That’s right.

My Dad was sent to Okinawa from the CBI theater of war. He was in the initial occupation of Japan and what the Japanese Army and Air Force had in place was going to make it horrendous.


9 posted on 08/23/2018 8:16:40 AM PDT by laplata (Leftists/Progressives have diseased minds.)
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To: dfwgator

The man downstairs from us had just been drafted and arrived in Europe——he would have been sent to the Pacific.

He was 35 years old and had three children———we were running out of young men.

Thank God for the bombs.

.


10 posted on 08/23/2018 8:17:36 AM PDT by Mears
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To: Silentgypsy

A million American troops’ lives saved and a sudden end to a vicious war.

That’s all I need to understand.


11 posted on 08/23/2018 8:18:39 AM PDT by TADSLOS (1. Don’t Forget Nothing.)
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To: TADSLOS

Those bombs ultimately saved even more Japanese lives than American lives.


12 posted on 08/23/2018 8:19:35 AM PDT by dfwgator (Endut! Hoch Hech!)
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To: dfwgator

Quite true.


13 posted on 08/23/2018 8:21:11 AM PDT by TADSLOS (1. Don’t Forget Nothing.)
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To: Kaslin
And in 2018 we have a new bomb of August


14 posted on 08/23/2018 8:25:20 AM PDT by COBOL2Java (Marxism: Trendy theory, wrong species)
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To: Kaslin

Imho, it would have been dereliction of duty or even treason if Truman didn’t drop the bombs.

5.56mm


15 posted on 08/23/2018 8:27:52 AM PDT by M Kehoe (DRAIN THE SWAMP!)
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To: laplata

My dad was in on the initial occupation too. My husband and I went to a reunion of the 760th FA Btn. There were only 8 guys there. My dad had passed a couple years earlier. The men told us that, for the first three days of the occupation, the Japanese civilians would not leave their homes. They were told that the Americans were going to rape, torture and pillage. Our guys were told they were not to enter homes and not to threaten anybody. When the Japanese figured out they were safe, they actually came out of their homes and some escorted our soldiers to the Japanese military bases. This is what the men told us. Also, they said every man woman and child was prepared to fight - even having sharpened sticks as weapons. It was an interesting and informative reunion where it was a privilege to hear the stories from the men who were there.


16 posted on 08/23/2018 8:34:47 AM PDT by sneakers (It's not the democraTIC party! It's the demoCRAT party!)
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To: sneakers

The Japanese are crazy. When told to fly their planes directly into a battleship it’s obvious one’s conscience is lacking. Anyone can be brought up to act that wy. Look at Hitler’s youth Corps. Same with Ceauchescou(?) inn Romania.


17 posted on 08/23/2018 8:43:27 AM PDT by DIRTYSECRET (urope. Why do they put up with this.)
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To: Snickering Hound

You left a bad link on that map. It connected to Meagain Kelly photos.


18 posted on 08/23/2018 8:47:12 AM PDT by higgmeister ( In the Shadow of The Big Chicken)
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To: DIRTYSECRET

Rape, torture and pillage. The US has so many haters it wouldn’t surprise me that any conquerers would do just that. I wouldn’t want to be a farmer in South Africa right now. A word to the wise: GET THE WOMEN OUT!


19 posted on 08/23/2018 8:47:15 AM PDT by DIRTYSECRET (urope. Why do they put up with this.)
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To: dfwgator

Very true.

I would encourage everyone to purchase and read VDH’s new book “The Second World Wars.” I have not yet finished it (it is huge), but it is a fantastic book that examines the wars from a strategic perspective rather than specific battles. VDH (as usual) makes a convincing argument that there was no real way for the Axis powers to win based on their lack of overall strategic power. It is the best argument for the importance of a strong economy and manufacturing base in regards to national security.

It is horrible to imagine the destruction 10,000 bombers with incendiaries would have wreaked on Japan. On top of that, long-range fighter aircraft would have been in constant daylight ground attack. We would have starved an entire nation with all of the pestilence and disease that would accompany such horror.

He also makes a cogent argument about how different the end result would have looked with expansionist Russia. The Russians were unstoppable on land and they were pushing east so given even two more months the modern map of Asia would look far different thanks to Stalin. There are many considerations that are given little thought in the west to such a situation.

Fascinating book and definitely the best strategic analysis of WWII that I have read with many relevant lessons today.


20 posted on 08/23/2018 8:49:48 AM PDT by volunbeer (Find the truth and accept it - anything else is delusional)
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