Should The Atomic Bomb Have Been Dropped On Japan Essay

  • Lesser of two evils.

    The Japanese predicted twenty million clandestine deaths defending the home islands. The more revised US estimates predicted up to four million Allied casualties with one million dead. Not to mention the 1.6million Soviet troops who had just entered the theatre of conflict and who were ruthless in their warfighting and had a tendency to die in their thousands themselves.
    In comparison, the atomic bombs killed between 150,000-250,000 depending on the source. Can you really say that they were unnecessary when looking at these statistics? They unquestionably saved MILLIONS and MILLIONS of lives.
    Sure, it could be said that the use of atomic weapons created a nuclear precedent that led to the Cold War, but the Soviets themselves were developing atomic weapons anyway as Soviet spies had gained access to the Manhattan Project and implemented an atomic weapons program in Russia.
    Other historians have said that the US dropped them simply to show their might and assert their authority. This is absolute rubbish, the US homefront was relatively unscathed and industry was booming with exports and war manufacturing. The US was in pole position to dominate the post-war world with or without the atomic bomb.
    Furthermore, cases have been made for using the bombs over non-populated areas, but where's the guarantee that Japan would have heeded this warning? They outright rejected the threat of annihilation promised in the Potsdam declaration and despite some cities suffering up to 97% damage as a result of area bombing and firebombing, Japan still refused to surrender.
    Elsewhere, historians believed that a continued naval blockade along with conventional bombing would have eventually brought Japan to her knees, however, the US nor the allies for that matter had any intention of allowing a war that had raged for six years to rumble on any further when the means to end it swiftly were readily available. Anyway, with the Soviets invading on the other side, allied lives would still have been lost in their droves, not to mention the lives of the fanatical defenders. It wasn't just the Japanese army that was defending the islands, but a 'civilian militia' that numbered in the millions, all of whom were expected to fight until the last bullet.
    I see these comments about 'de-classified documents estimating 40,000-60,000 deaths' and can't help but laugh at your naivety. On Iwo Jima alone there were almost 50,000 combined casualties, and while it was soverign territory, the home islands of Japan would prove a different battle.
    The terrain of Japan made a land invasion highly predictable to the defenders and the planned guerilla style resistance would have created a battle of attrition. The death toll would have been millions, WITHOUT QUESTION.
    I am a former member of the British military and a third-year American History student, I know what I'm talking about. I challenge any of you to come up with a more thoroughly researched argument.

  • Yes i do think we should have drop the bomb

    I think we should have dropped the bomb on Japan they deserved it. Remember at Pearl Harbor, they bombed us. The war would keep going until they were tired of fighting or until they didn't have any more men to fight with or even if they didn't have any more equipment to fight with. I think you should agree with me.

  • Yes, we should have!

    We dropped the bomb because the Japanese were ruthless jerks who dropped bombs on us first. They destroyed our ships making it to where we couldn't ship as much and defend ourselves. They tore apart Pearl Harbor so much that they could have invaded there and took over and they were sad they didn't. It was only fair that we bomb them in return. It may have killed hundreds but they killed our people, too!

  • Yes they should have

    Yes we should have because they had plenty of opportunities to surrender and they didn't. We told them if they didn't surrender, there would be utter mass destruction put upon them. They chose to ignore it and brush it off. If we had invaded, then probably 1/4th of Japan's population would have been killed. Yes, it was terrible that so many people died, but in the end, it was what the U.S. Thought was necessary. Japan still didn't surrender after the first bomb was dropped, only after the second one was dropped, the emperor of Japan stepped in and gave the final decision of surrendering.

  • The atomic bomb was the best choice.

    If the atomic bomb didn't happen a lot of people would have died for no reason. The Japanese only kept fighting because there leader was making them. All the had to do was just kick him out or something. They started the war so they deserve to bombed. It saved millions of people lives.

  • Of course they should have.

    Think of it, they killed about 15000 people, but if they didn't do it, who knows what could of happened! The war have gone on and on and billions of people could have died! Yes, they could have just stopped at Hiroshima, but still! They killed thousands to save millions.

  • The U.S had to drop the bomb

    The dropping of those two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was very bad. However, a land invasion would have costed an excess of one million American lives. The Japanese of the 1940's would have fought to the last inch of that island, and the body count would have been astronomically higher if the bombs weren't dropped.

  • WHY NOT DROP

    What if that was your Family member, Friend, Lover.
    What if that was you fighting in the war. Would you want to get killed, So all people who said we shouldnt have dropped the bomb i think you need Think agian because without that bomb we would have lost more than we killed so think about that maybe just maybe you will change you mind.

  • Quick ending to the war.

    The us wanted to end the war quickly without costing the lives of more soldiers. So the president agreed to drop the bombs. It made the Japanese surrender because they knew that if they continued the war they could not win. The atomic bomb's destructive power would have defeated them anyways.

  • Not good at tittles :)

    A lot of the arguments I am seeing on the opposing side talks about how lots of innocent people would have been spared if the bombs were not dropped but in reality that would not have been the case.
    If the US would have continued fighting without the dropping of the bomb it would have ended in the invasion of the Japanese home islands since a larger majority of Japanese people did not believe in surrender because of their Samurai code. If the US had decided to go ahead with an invasion it would have resulted in a lot more deaths since the Japanese were teaching children to run into large groups of US soldiers and under tanks and then trigger the explosives, School children were also told to attack them with sharpened wooden sticks. These sort of tactics would probably have had a lot of physiological affects on a lot of people. On top of that once the Nazis had been defeated the Soviet Union had set up a lot of puppet governments in European countries that the Nazis had previously been in control of. If the US were to do a conventional invasion the Soviet Union would probably have done the same thing, with this happening to the Japanese Home Islands a lot of other countries may have also turned against the Japanese (mainly the Pacific ocean countries).
    In conclusion the US was also looking for a fast way out of the war that would have resulted in the last amount of US citizen deaths. The US also gave Japan a chance to surrender before they dropped the 1st bomb but the Japanese government did not understand the power of this weapon since nothing like this has never been seen before. In response to people who say the the bomb was dropped without warning and that their was no reason to do so, the bombing of pearl harbour procured without warning or a solid reason.

    Sorry If I missed anything important or if some of my arguments are not 100% accurate, most of my sources are from western documentaries which can be a little 1 sided.
    (also to lazy to fix any Grammar issues cause I was in class while typing this and that is now over :) )

  • Essay on the dropping of Atomic bomb on Japan. On August 6, 1945, a B-29 bomber named Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb, on Hiroshima, Japan. Hiroshima had been almost eradicated with an estimated 70 – 80 thousand people killed.

    Three days later, a second, more powerful bomb was dropped on the Japanese city of Nagasaki, killing over 100,000 people. Since Japan was economically and militarily devastated by the late summer of 1945, the use of the atomic bombs on Japan was unnecessary and unwarranted in bringing about a conclusion to the war in the Pacific. By the end of the war, the U.S. forces had pushed the Japanese far back into their country, leaving them no access to any resources. Japanese cities and factories were being endlessly bombarded by American bombers.

    The Pacific Fleet had driven the Imperial Navy from the ocean and planes of the fast carrier forces were striking Japanese naval bases in the Inland Sea. Clearly, Japan was a defeated nation. The decision to use the atomic bomb was validated by the U.S., who said that the force was necessary to end the war, which, in turn, would save lives of both American and Japanese soldiers. However, many believe that since Japan was already of the verge of surrender when the bombs were dropped, this argument cannot be morally validated. If Japan was almost beaten by August 1945, many say that the reason the U.S. dropped the bomb was simply to test it on living humans. Aside from the ground test in the New Mexico desert, no one knew what destruction atomic weapons were capable of.

    Image Source: japan.escubes.com

    Throughout the war, the city of Hiroshima had been left virtually untouched by U.S. attacks. It is inferable, then, that the United States government hoped to see the full effect of nuclear power by detonating the atomic bomb on this locality, as they could be sure that any damage was from the atomic bomb alone. A similar reasoning could be applied to the usage of the second bomb, fat man, which was dropped on Nagasaki three days later. One could wonder if the motive behind this second attack was similar to the first; the only difference being that the bomb to be tested this time was considerably more powerful.

    The final say on whether or not to drop die bomb came from President Harry Truman, who consulted with a special Committee known as the Interim Committee. This organization was made up of Secretary Stimson as chairman; President Truman’s personal representative, James F. Byrnes; the Under Secretary of the Navy, William L. Clayton; and the Assistant Secretary of State as well as many others. The work of the Interim Committee was to discuss the uses of the bomb and whether or not it would be wise to use nuclear force against Japan in combat. On July 1, 1945, the committee submitted a report to President Truman stating that: a) the bomb should be used against Japan as soon as possible, b) it should be used against a military target surrounded by other buildings; c) it should be used without prior warning of the nature of the weapon.

    The Interim Committee decided against warning the Japanese about the atomic bomb because they claimed that they weren’t sure if it would detonate. Not one of the Chiefs nor the Secretary thought well of a bomb warning, an effective argument being that no one could be certain, in spite of the assurances of the scientists, that the ‘thing would go off.’ This was refuted by many as being quite ignorant. For example, the atomic bomb was tested in Trinity Site, New Mexico, USA. It was viewed by the media, U.S. government officials and the military. Viewing the destruction firsthand should have convinced the United States that nuclear power was a real and tangible danger. They should have been quite sure at this point that the bomb would, indeed, detonate. The US wanted a quick and effective way to end the war.

    However, there were many other possible alternatives to dropping the bomb that should have been considered. Truman wanted an ‘unconditional surrender’ from Japan, but his offer to them threatened the position of their Emperor. The Japanese were unwilling to accept this as a condition to their surrender, as the Emperor in Japanese culture was considered to be godlike. Obviously, they were therefore unwilling to accept unconditional surrender. To compromise, the US could have assured Japan the retention of the status of the Emperor in the terms of surrender. Japan would have ended the war themselves, without the U.S. ever having been used nuclear force. The United States also could have threatened Japan with a Russian invasion.

    The Japanese were counting on Russia to help them make peace with the U.S. without unconditionally surrendering, which they believed would result in the loss of their Emperor. If the U.S. had have convinced Japan that Russia would use force, the Japanese may have felt that it was necessary to give up, as at the time Russia was the only nation with whom Japan maintained a neutrality contract. Finally, the United States could have warned the Japanese about nuclear power as a final resort. Surely the Japanese had known about the astronomical and devastating effects before the bombs were dropped, they would have seriously considered surrendering, no matter what the cost to their culture.

    Because the United States chose not to thoroughly consider all of their options in forcing Japan to surrender and end the war, the decision to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki was impulsive and rash. Had they considered all of the alternatives, and had only used the atomic bomb as a last resort, many lives could have been saved. It was completely hypocritical of the Americans to say that they wanted to save lives, when, instead they destroyed them.

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