Poll: Was It Wrong To Drop The Atomic Bombs In Japan?

ottenni

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Well i guess we will never know how many civilians would have died or if any at all from the alternative. For all we know the alternative could have ended in the deaths of millions of military personnel and civilians due to continued Japanese defiance and aggression, or perhaps none would have died if Japan has chosen to surrender.

I can understand the thinking of it. I'm sure dragging the war on for another year or more would have been catastrophic to the allies. Especially if things continued as they had for the rest of the war.
 

Baconmonster723

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Haakong said:
Greetz_DK said:
Seeing as how both place are still inhabitable and radioactive i would say, no.
google "hiroshima today", ill wait here with my tea *sip*
It's said that those living in Hiroshima and Nagasaki now have the highest average life expectancy of any cities in the world. Not sure if it's true but it's interesting if it holds a grain of truth.
 

GeekFury

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It was done almost completely just to show of the power of the Atomic Bomb so America could basicly say to places like Russia "Don'ty f**k with us are we will make you into a crater", America had this notion they could kep global peace by fear of the A-Bombs, did'nt really work but now we have Nukes and a sort of enforced peace even with small wars, it's still a 'You fire at us we fire' mentality.
 

riskroWe

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Well in civ4 it saves me from long, drawn-out, expensive, casualty-ridden conflicts so my people stay happy, and the enemy doesn't believe I have nukes until I actually use one, at which point they become more open to negotiation.
 

splatterguy734

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I used to believe it was justified but seeing as how atomic weapons have transformed the world I can't help but feel that it should never have happened.
 

Randomologist

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Were the bombs needed to win the war? I doubt it. However, dropping them saved us a ground invasion; Lots of bloodshed, lots of money and it would have dragged the war on another year or more. Plus, with a thoroughly weakened ground defence, that would also be an invite for the expansionist Russians to jump in. Remember that to die for the Emperor was an honour; and thus we'd have had thousands of suicide bombings, and guerilla warfare; Something that's hard enough to tackle even today.
 

blindthrall

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Regiment said:
I'm not saying we should use nuclear weapons ever again, but if you add up the death toll and compare it to what would have resulted from a drawn-out war with Japan, the bombs probably killed fewer people.
The US projected 400,000 casualties on our side alone. The bombs killed at most 240,000. It may be devil's calculus, but number's don't lie. The Japanese were teaching housewives and schoolchildren to wield bamboo spears to disembowel Americans. This isn't propaganda, the Japanese are the ones saying it. My point is a land invasion would have killed just as many civilians. The firebombing of Tokyo killed more people.

The Japanese civilian government, including the emperor, did want to surrender, but the military was willing to rebel to continue fighting the war, as they didn't think America had another bomb. It didn't help they passed the surrender message through the Russians, who sat on it until the second bomb fell. The Russians would have invaded from the northwest in an occupation, which brings up the possibility of a communist North Japan, leaving China as the only stable Asian power at the time. Korea would have been fucked. Also, the nuke's power, which was demonstrated in Japan, is probably what stopped Stalin from invading western Europe with his massive conscript army that he sure as hell didn't want returning to Russia with stories of how great Europe was. He threw most of the veterans into the gulag. Stalin was getting near the end of his life, and had proven many times he didn't give a shit about wasting human life. But the idea of a nuked Moscow is a pretty strong deterrent.

While the military was itching to use it for the above reasons, it wasn't to test it, we already knew it worked. And the Defense Secretary and Truman gave the matter lots of consideration, Truman afraid of being the president with the highest death toll. The original targets were purely vindictive, picked for the effect their destruction would have on Japanese morale. Kyoto was one. Yeah, I wish we'd had some way of warning the people in those cities beforehand, but it wasn't practical.

I used to think it was the wrong thing to do, but my polisci class had a week-long debate on the pros and cons. Once I knew everything about it, I had to agree with Truman. I have wondered if that's why the Japanese can be so batshit crazy, as they are the only country to ever be nuked.

A world where the nuke had never been invented would be a Communist one. Weigh your options, decide which is worse. I think we got pretty damn lucky, especially considering what happened in Cuba.
Manatee Slayer said:
It just seems strange that everone is saying they would never surrender; they would fight to the last man and they hated Americans and yet shorty after the bombs they sign an unconditional surrender. Quite the jump in opinions.
Nukes can have a drastic influence on opinion.
 

Pigeon_Grenade

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the Japanese had Displayed a Suicidal Enthusiasm for trying to do anything and everything to 'win' and every soldier felt it there duty to die for the Emperor, im sure the American Higher ups felt droping them would save many Soldiers lives instead of trying to land troops and fight for japan
 

DarkLight523

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Manatee Slayer said:
-The Japanese had virtually no Navy or Airforce to speak of.
Not true. The Japanese did have a Navy. The US Navy sank the majority of it after Allied Intelligence cracked their communication codes. Since the Japanese were too proud to admit their codes could be cracked, the location of their fleets were given away to the allied forces.
-The Americans had blockaded Japan, meaning they couldn't get any imported recources, which is nearly everything. lol
The blockade is only regarded that by the Japanese. In reality, the seas were very much open, but the Imperial Navy had a policy that all ships were to broadcast their locations and status to the Imperial Naval Command on a daily basis. So their ships weren't being kept in harbor. They were being destroyed. Also, the intention of this military action was to prevent another Raping of Nanking.
-The japanese were terrified by the thought of the Russians coming, due to the fact they had lost to them before and that they would probably take over the country and install communism.
The more accurate statement is that the Japanese feared failing the Emperor. Had a ground war commenced, a militia of 10 million Japanese civilian men (ranging from 10-60 years of age) would have been forced into service.
-Many high ranking officials were against the attack saying it was unnesisary and that the Japanese were ready to surrender anyway.
Possibly truth, you're using several ambiguous words (many and high ranking) without naming names. George Marshall, General of the Army and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate was the one who informed President Truman of the existence of the A-bomb and advised that it be used.
-Winston Churchill in his book ("The World At War") said that the bombs did not play any part in the defeat of Japan.
True, however, British Fields Marshall Harold Alexander, Bernard Montgomery and British Air Chief Marshall Hugh Dowding held very low opinions of Churchill's military opinions in their memoirs. The fact is that Churchill never served in combat.
-The only reason people think that the bombs won the war in the Pacific is due to American Propagada.
Not true at all. It was made apparent that the United States had the capacity to manufacture multiple A-bombs and with the continued conventional bombings of Tokyo, the Emperor acknowledged that continued attrition would result in the loss of Kokutai in Japan (most accurately translated as the Unifying National Identity of Japan).

My Final Vote: NO
I do find myself torn on this issue. While you have been misinformed: I do agree that there is a fundamental wrongness regarding such a massive loss of life. However, Japanese officers were charged with hundreds of war crimes committed against the Chinese, the Koreans, the Russians, and the Americans. They brutally tortured prisoners of war and were themselves responsible for the deaths of millions, soldiers and civilians alike.

Just remember these three facts:
1. All wars are crimes.

2. Japan started it; America finished it.

3. Right and wrong are inherently subjective. One man's right can be another man's crime. (E.G. Eating Pork... very un-Kosher)
 

klakkat

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Greetz_DK said:
Seeing as how both place are still inhabitable and radioactive i would say, no.
Yeah, no. Radioactivity is limited in extent; a fission bomb like the one they used on Hiroshima and Nagasaki leaves a fair amount of radioactive residue, but the worst of it has a half life of at most 30 years (Cesium 137 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cesium-137). The portions of long-lived radioactive isotopes are relatively low; perhaps 1% of initial radioactive isotopes. With a Hiroshima/Nagasaki scale incident, that leaves a radioactivity only a couple times higher than the background radiation after 60 years. Bear in mind, the state with the highest background radiation in the U.S. (Colorado) also has the LOWEST instance of Cancer (this isn't a direct correlation; more of a "critical zone;" too much or too little radiation increases cancer rates). The residual radiation in Hiroshima/Nagasaki is less than 1/1000 of the radioactive residue of Chernobyl (at the same decay time), the single largest radioactive accident in world history. This comparison was a case study in my radiation safety course.
 

CastIronWin

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the septics were just doing what they thought was necessary, dropping the bombs, in the grand scheme of things, probably was a little OTT. however, if those bombs hadn't been dropped and in its place conventional bombing had occured, casualties on both sides would have been far higher.
 

JJMUG

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Milky_Fresh said:
Stopping them by committing more? Like it or not, outside of the holocaust itself, nuking Japan was the worst atrocity in the war. Those cities weren't filled with soldiers and pyschopaths, they were filled with civilians. Civilians just like those in America or England. Or Russia. Or Germany, or anywhere else in the fucking world. It wasn't right, it wasn't even excusable. It was terrorism. There's a buzzword that might mean a bit more to you.

You have never once looked at history have you. Worst outside of the Holocaust, the Japanese committed atrocities there is more blood on there more blood on there hands then the Nazis.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_war_crimes#International_and_Japanese_law

You still have yet to lay out a plan for not dropping the bombs, a land invasions causing millions of lives on both sides? An invasion where Japanese citizens were told to fight against the us for we are evil incarnate, or commit suicide due to the propaganda? What word would you be using then instead of terrorism, genocide that your buzzword then. Oh hey i know starve them out right? Millions more civilians dead, but hey not atomic bombs dropped. I am glad you believe millions deserved to die, really i am.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Downfall#Assumptions
Look at the scope of Operation Downfall

I want to see you plan, tactician or not present a better alternative.
 

Rooster Cogburn

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I'm an American, and I used to think the common argument defending the first and only deployments of 'the bomb' was a legitimate one. Major-General J.F.C. Fuller's Military History of the Western World (like, ca.1,500BC-WWII) changed my mind. I'm overlooking the the fact that all kinds of large scale bombing was taking place already for the sake of argument and to stay focused on the bombs themselves.

The moment you begin weighing civilian deaths against military expediency, or even other likely civilian deaths, the concept of standards for wartime conduct is reduced to irrelevance. Now it's just a judgment call- an opinion, really. It opens the door for any atrocities to be legitimized simply by claiming some positive may result, however flimsy. Applied often enough, it effectively means all future conflicts will be total war, because both sides will view immediate and unrestricted war on civilians as the best way to end the fight quickly and avoid more bloodshed in the long term.

Any standard for wartime conduct must be objective and strict to remain relevant. In general, it should be more deontological than utilitarian. This is important because it is the nature of people at war that their interests conflict. Utilitarian arguments will invariably justify actions which serve the interests of only one side, however they may be presented. Therefore, Truman was wrong to deploy 'the bomb' because soldiers should not kill noncombatants. Military expediency was not a good reason to disregard this standard. If the Japanese had killed 100,000 Americans to avoid being bombed or invaded, I suspect we would not be so quick to mete out allotments of death. If we can do it to them, surely they would also be justified visiting it back upon us.
 

HellbirdIV

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The bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki showed the entire world the destructive capacity of nuclear weapons and served as the examples that prevented their use in any subsequent conflicts, limiting them to "Abso-fucking-lutely Last Resort"-weapons.

Maybe the act was wrong. The results speak for themselves, however.