So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
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03-01-2017, 06:37 AM
So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
I'm reading Bill O'Reily's "Killing the Rising Sun".... It's about the use of nuclear weapons in WWII Japan. Pretty good book, with remarkably a minimal of editorializing - on what is a profoundly debatable subject.


Question being -- if you were Truman -- would you have used the nukes on Japan??

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It's surprising the number of American generals that were against the use of nukes -- but kind of an eye-opener as to why they didn't want them used.
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I guess I'm reminded of something I've seen in real life --- in high school of all places...... two guys went to beat up this new kid - and this new kid tore them a new asshole. It's the one and only time in my life I've seen somebody get a roundhouse kick to the face. The new kid was pretty good at karate......... The funny part -- he got a reputation of being "a dirty fighter" because he used his feet....... Really??? 2 on 1 is fair???? Oooookaaayyy......


War shouldn't be fought - expecting rules to be followed. "The other guy" is ALWAYS going to try to develop new stuff that's better at killing your guys. If you're not willing to accept that reality -- don't be starting wars.

I would have nuked Japan.

I don't think as McArthur did, that the Japanese were close to surrendering. I think the Japanese would have gone Jonestown, before surrendering. Hirohito had a little too much Jim Jones in him.....

As bad as it was, I think the shock of the bombings brought the Japanese people to reality - and made them realize they could lose..... The nukes probably saved lives....

.......................................

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03-01-2017, 06:40 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
One has to consider that if they weren't used so early in their development we'd be lobbing them at each other now. So there it is. Confused

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03-01-2017, 07:00 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
It began as a race to develop it first, before the germans.

They spent billions on the Manhattan Project, they employed hundreds of thousands of people to get to drop them first.

How else would they better understand, and study the damage it would do, than by dropping it.

If it was me, I would of dropped the first nuke in Japan on the countryside, a shot across the bow as it were, to warn the Japanese. If they didnt take heed, it would of been with regret, that I then drop the second one on Hiroshima.

The Japanese were finished anyway.

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03-01-2017, 07:28 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
Important point about the use of atomic bombs in 1945: We had almost zero information about "fall-out". The bombs were considered to be BIG explosives. The radiation aspect was nearly understood. We have pictures of Col. Groves and Oppenheimer standing at Ground Zero of the Trinity blast two days after that detonation. Gen. Marshall was to be given control of nine atomic bombs for the Operation Downfall invasions, three to be used on Kyushu and six for the Kanto Plain/Tokyo invasion. The plans were to drop the bombs on Schwerpunkt and march the troops through 30 minutes later.

And if anyone gets started on "hapless non-military targets" please note that one of the bombs went off directly over ~5,000 troops lined up for morning inspection. Both cities were the military headquarters for their prefects, so the CCC removal was important. There were also military industries in both cities. The special torpedoes that were used at Pearl Harbor were designed and built at Nagasaki.

The documents at the Truman online library are available for anyone who wants to follows the development of our nuclear strategy during the war.
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03-01-2017, 07:33 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
(03-01-2017 07:00 AM)bemore Wrote:  It began as a race to develop it first, before the germans.

They spent billions on the Manhattan Project, they employed hundreds of thousands of people to get to drop them first.

How else would they better understand, and study the damage it would do, than by dropping it.
The study of the results of an atomic blast was a bit of a side show compared to knocking the enemy out of the war.
Quote:If it was me, I would of dropped the first nuke in Japan on the countryside, a shot across the bow as it were, to warn the Japanese. If they didnt take heed, it would of been with regret, that I then drop the second one on Hiroshima.
Killing trees and grass wouldn't have impressed the Japanese militarists. Gen. Anami, War Minister at the time, was calling for the people to "chew grass and eat dirt" and demanded "100,000,000 dead to save the Empire!" As there were less than 70,000,000 Japanese on the Home Islands I guess the Allies were expected to make up the difference? We know that the ~160,00 Allied POWs would have been the first to go in that invasion. Anami had ordered that all of them, military, civilian, men, women, and children, were to be shot when the first Allied boot touched Kyushu.

Quote:The Japanese were finished anyway.
Japan's Longest Day documents the fierce battle between the hard-core militarist and the "enough already!" factions. People died for their beliefs in that fight.
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03-01-2017, 07:54 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
I think there's more to it than saving 100's of thousands (if not millions) of troops lives. Though I do see that as a factor.
You have to remember that the Soviets at this point were pretty keen to attack Japan if I remember correctly. Or at least Manchuria and probably Japan later by extension.
The allies had already lost half of Germany to the Soviets. And while the Soviets weren't exactly enemies with the Allies during the war the Allies and Soviets weren't exactly buddy buddy either as evident by the whole Cold War thing that followed WW2.

So certainly a big part of using the bombs was as a flashy demonstration not only to the Japanese but also to the Soviets.
Who knows what could have happened if the Soviets had nukes and the Allies didn't. Would they have stopped at Berlin?? I dunno, but if I remember correctly that was a fear the Allies had at the time. Maybe Truman didn't want to leave it to chance and find out and so the bombs acted as a deterrent.

If the bombs did in fact deter the Soviets as well as force the Japanese to surrender unconditionally, then they were very much worth it and saved 10's of millions of lives.

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03-01-2017, 08:07 AM
RE: So You've Got This Nuclear Bomb...............
(03-01-2017 07:54 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  I think there's more to it than saving 100's of thousands (if not millions) of troops lives. Though I do see that as a factor.
You have to remember that the Soviets at this point were pretty keen to attack Japan if I remember correctly. Or at least Manchuria and probably Japan later by extension.
In July of 1945 MacArthur sent two letters* to General Marshall demanding that more be done to get the Soviets to invade Hokkaido to draw troops away from Kyushu when we launched that invasion. When Truman left Potsdam he wrote his wife and said that he had accomplished his prime mission at that conference, to get the Great Stalin to keep his promise to declare war on Japan 90 days after the Germans were defeated. So the idea that we dropped the bombs to end the war before the Soviets got into it sound a little flat.


*These letters, for some odd reason, weren't mentioned in The American Caesar. Drinking Beverage
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