News On this day in 1945

  • Thread starter Adam
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15
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Actually on the 6th and 9th, but...

http://www.dannen.com/decision/

According to Admiral William D. Leahy, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and President Truman's Chief of Staff: "The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons... In being the first to use it [the atomic bomb], we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages."

"Japan was at that very moment seeking some way to surrender with a minimum loss of 'face'... It wasn't necessary to hit them with that awful thing." (General Dwight David Eisenhower Commander in Chief of Allied Forces in Europe).

"It would be a mistake to suppose that the fate of Japan was settled by the atomic bomb. Her defeat was certain before the first bomb fell." (UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill.)

"Certainly prior to 31 December 1945... Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated." (US Strategic Bombing Survey, 1946.)

"General Curtis LeMay: 'The war would have been over in two weeks without the Russians entering and without the atomic bomb.'

Field Marshal Montgomery ( Commander of all UK Forces in Europe) wrote in his History of Warfare: It was unnecessary to drop the two atom bombs on Japan in August 1945, and I cannot think it was right to do so .... the dropping of the bombs was a major political blunder and is a prime example of the declining standards of the conduct of modern war.

Truman's Chief of Staff, Admiral Leahy, wrote: It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons ... In being the first to use it, we adopted an ethical standard common to the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make war in this fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children.

"The dropping of the first atomic bomb was also an act of pure terrorism. It fulfilled no military purpose of any kind. Belatedly it has been disclosed that seven months before it was dropped, in January 1945, President Roosevelt received via General MacArthur's headquarters an offer by the Japanese Government to surrender on terms virtually identical to those accepted by the United States after the dropping of the bomb: in July 1945, as we now know, Roosevelt's successor, President Truman, discussed with Stalin at Bebelsberg the Japanese offer to surrender....The Japanese people were to be enlisted as human guinea-pigs for a scientific experiment."
- F.J.P Veale, Advance To Barbarism: The Development Of Total Warfare From Serajevo To Hiroshima (California: Institute for Historical Review, 1979), pp.352-53.
 

steppenwolf

thankyou, we need to remember
 
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The two biggest terrorist events this planet has ever seen, and only one person here gave a damn. Interesting.
 
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actually recent studies show that johnson used the bomb almsot solely to scare the russians...
 

russ_watters

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Originally posted by Adam
The two biggest terrorist events this planet has ever seen, and only one person here gave a damn. Interesting.
Actually, more were killed in the firebombings of Tokyo and Dresden.

To me there isn't much difference between a couple of big bombs and a lot of little bombs - the purpose and effects are roughly the same. Both are to be avoided in the future if possible.
 

schwarzchildradius

Mattius, I think you've got the wrong president, wrong decade. Twas Harry S. Truman sent the bomb. As I've heard, there was indeed a final ultimatum to the Japanese, which they did not heed. Use of the bomb was motivated in part by fear of the Japanese - their fanatical devotion to their emperor, and technological prowess. The nation would have been bombed to smitherines before the populace would give up the emperor.
Lots of dough was spent on the top secret Manhattan project, and a concentration of scientific expertise unmatched in history until then. The nation wouldn't have developed the bomb if there was doubt it would've been needed at least as a deterrant. This is a cold analysis though and a deterrant effect could've been reached with a demonstration of the weapon on a non-civilian target.
 
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The two biggest terrorist events this planet has ever seen, and only one person here gave a damn. Interesting.

It was the wrong thing to do but first, what would your country have done at that time? First you dont know and second they didnt have that technology and third you weren't leading the fight against the japanese. And terrorist attack? ha. Wrong thing to do, yes terrorist attack no. Terrorist attacks are World Trade Center type things: un provoked attacks on civilians etc. And funny you say

only one person here gave a damn. Interesting

If you care so much why was it not you to post this topic?
 
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Originally posted by Shadow
It was the wrong thing to do but first, what would your country have done at that time? First you dont know and second they didnt have that technology and third you weren't leading the fight against the japanese. And terrorist attack? ha. Wrong thing to do, yes terrorist attack no. Terrorist attacks are World Trade Center type things: un provoked attacks on civilians etc. And funny you say
1) Um... Read some history. Australia was in there against the Japanese.

2) A terrorist attack, to me, is an attack against a clearly civilian target. As you so eloquently put it: "un provoked attacks on civilians etc". That's what happened in 1945.

3) Please read the material I supplied in the opening post of this thread.

Originally posted by Shadow

If you care so much why was it not you to post this topic?
Look again. It was me.
 

steppenwolf

haha! you tell em! why do americains think they are always the only people fighting a war? japanese submarines and bombers made it to our cities and killed our people! but we recognise these actions were orchestrated by a government and not a population of innocent civilians.

why is it that instead of recognising the mistakes of the past on such a sad anniversary some people choose to continue the fight, hence learning nothing from these mistakes.
 
732
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Let's not turn this into a finger pointing session.

Those bombs never should have been dropped. One of Einstien's greatest regrets was sending that letter to Roosevelt urging him to pursue development of the weapons to compete with Germany.

One thing I never understood- why did it take two nukes? They should have capitulated after just one bomb. Two was completely unecessary.

It's not that I didn't care, but the post heading was obscure.
 

Zero

Originally posted by Zantra


One thing I never understood- why did it take two nukes? They should have capitulated after just one bomb. Two was completely unecessary.

Pure psychology, I think. America only had the two bombs, I think, and certainly couldn't pump out many. Using both of them gave the impression that the first one wasn't a fluke, and America could do it again and again, every few days.
 

steppenwolf

Originally posted by Zantra

One thing I never understood- why did it take two nukes? They should have capitulated after just one bomb.
funny thing was they had pretty much completely capitulated before the first bomb was dropped!

ha...ha
 

russ_watters

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Originally posted by steppenwolf
funny thing was they had pretty much completely capitulated before the first bomb was dropped!
Pretty much? All it takes is two little magic words and they didn't say them. So the second one was dropped.
 
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What else where the Americans to do? If they ahd invaded Japan then the amount of casualties to ALL concerned would have been huge. The Americans had to pursue the developement of the Atom Bomb, if they hadnt and the Germans had managed to create an Atom bomb then they would have almost certainly won the war. And the Germans where very close to having a missile that could have reached America so dont think you where out of reach.
 

BoulderHead

IMHO...

Well, I'm sure there were many, many, things to consider prior to dropping these new (at that time) bombs. You may not agree with what I’m going to say, but it is nevertheless my own opinion that all other considerations were secondary to providing the world with an invaluable lesson; to demonstrate precisely where man’s destructive warring nature, coupled with an ever increasing degree of technological prowess, could take him.

Yes, I really think it was meant as a lesson, or do you think my religion is showing?
 

russ_watters

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Deterrence of the Soviets may have played a part, but I don't think it was the overriding factor. I think we proved our military prowess without it.
 

schwarzchildradius

It does seem excessive when you think about Truman trying to impress Stalin, yet Stalin already knew all about it by spies at Los Alamos.
 
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I think showing off also played a big part, ive got a bigger gun than you was what was being shown there. It was also a quick and easy way to end a war.
 
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a couple people here need to learn history, granted, the dropping of the atomic bomb was a horrible decision which was mearly part of a horrible war, let me state some facts.

1. Almost all analysts state that a land invasion and conventional bombing of Japan would have killed hundreds of thousands more civilians then the atomic bombs did. Remember the Dresden firebombing killed far more than both atomic bombs did combined.

2. Japan was not about to capitulate, there was a japanese study published a couple weeks ago, there was an article in the local paper, I'm still trying to find the study and I'll post it if I do, anyway, a study by japanese researchers found that even after the second atomic bomb, the military leaders of japan still opposed surrender. the thing that lead to the surrender of Japan was not the bombing of nagasaki, but instead, an american fighter pilot who was shot down sometime in Aug. of '45 who knew nothing about the atomic bomb project, but after being tortured told the japanese that america was planning to blow up every japanese city within the next week. And even after that, many military leaders still resisted the idea of surrender

3. Just some more emphasis on japan not being ready to surrender, on remote islands, the U.S army was still fighting with Japanese soldiers as late as 1958, who were down in foxholes and refused to surrender.

4. I believe nuclear war currently would be the most horrible fate, and nuclear weapons should be dismantled now, but at the time when only one nation had them, and that nation had very little knowledge about how powerful nuclear weapons could become, a decision to at that time either kill maybe 500,000 people or 250,000 people, the atomic weapon was the better idea at the time.
 

schwarzchildradius

The Japanese were on the verge of surrender, Little Boy and Fat Man cost 75,000 and 30,000 ... 105,000 lives roughly, and it put us at odds with the Russians when our intelligence was not that good, launching the Cold War. Fear (and morbid curiosity?) motivated us to use them on cities, I bet Roosevelt wouldn't have.
 
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a couple people here need to learn history, granted, the dropping of the atomic bomb was a horrible decision which was mearly part of a horrible war, let me state some facts.
Supporting evidence for your "facts"?

1. Almost all analysts state that a land invasion and conventional bombing of Japan would have killed hundreds of thousands more civilians then the atomic bombs did. Remember the Dresden firebombing killed far more than both atomic bombs did combined.
Bollocks. Show us these analyses. I have shown what the military leaders of the time thought. Either they knew what they were talking about, or you (who were not there and have provided no supporting evidence for your claims) are somehow more knowledgable than they were.

2. Japan was not about to capitulate, there was a japanese study published a couple weeks ago, there was an article in the local paper, I'm still trying to find the study and I'll post it if I do, anyway, a study by japanese researchers found that even after the second atomic bomb, the military leaders of japan still opposed surrender. the thing that lead to the surrender of Japan was not the bombing of nagasaki, but instead, an american fighter pilot who was shot down sometime in Aug. of '45 who knew nothing about the atomic bomb project, but after being tortured told the japanese that america was planning to blow up every japanese city within the next week. And even after that, many military leaders still resisted the idea of surrender
Bollocks. Show us these analyses. I have shown what the military leaders of the time thought. Either they knew what they were talking about, or you (who were not there and have provided no supporting evidence for your claims) are somehow more knowledgable than they were.

3. Just some more emphasis on japan not being ready to surrender, on remote islands, the U.S army was still fighting with Japanese soldiers as late as 1958, who were down in foxholes and refused to surrender.
Yes, word travelled slowly, or not at all, to some pockets. This has nothing whatsoever to do with Japan or their surrender or the nukes.

4. I believe nuclear war currently would be the most horrible fate, and nuclear weapons should be dismantled now, but at the time when only one nation had them, and that nation had very little knowledge about how powerful nuclear weapons could become, a decision to at that time either kill maybe 500,000 people or 250,000 people, the atomic weapon was the better idea at the time.
Bollocks. Show us these analyses. I have shown what the military leaders of the time thought. Either they knew what they were talking about, or you (who were not there and have provided no supporting evidence for your claims) are somehow more knowledgable than they were.
 
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I really think copying the same sentence to answer three different arguments is very convincing, but if you really need me to get more evidence, here it is:

1. From The Wall Street Journal -

Marshall also knew from the Magic decrypts that the Japanese home islands were to be defended from invasion and occupation by 2.3 million troops, another four million Army and Navy employees and a newly created armed militia numbering 25 million. These defenders were sworn to fight to the death, which so many Japanese troops had done in battles throughout the Pacific.

Suddenly, and only after being advised about the buildup of Japanese forces and fortifications by Magic intelligence, MacArthur medical staff revised its pre-invasion needs for hospital beds upwards by 300%. MacArthur's chief surgeon, Brig. Gen. Guy Denit, estimated that a 120-day campaign to invade and occupy only the island of Kyushu would result in 395,000 casualties. – (note, that’s only American Casualties)

Yet the evidence is crystal clear. The use of nuclear weapons to end World War II quickly and decisively averted the death or maiming of hundreds of thousands American soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen. It also saved the lives of some 400,000 Allied prisoners of war and civilian detainees in Japanese hands, all of whom were to be executed in the event of an American invasion of Japan. Above all, it saved untold hundreds of thousands more Japanese-perhaps millions-from becoming casualties

note those paragraphs are not in that order in the paper, I just pulled the most important parts out, there was no change in meaning or anything if you flip them around, if you question that, read the paper.

2. Encyclopedia Britannica - http://216.239.39.104/search?q=cache:5q-9UVxzlkYJ:www.britannica.com/normandy/articles/atomic_decision.html+day+the+Voice+of+the+Sacred+Crane--the+emperor's+command--summoned+the+Cabinet+&hl=en&ie=UTF-8

On August 9 the second atomic bomb fell on Nagasaki, killing 39,000 people. On that day the Voice of the Sacred Crane--the emperor's command--summoned the Cabinet to an audience. Hirohito expressed his wish that Japan accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration on the sole condition that the emperor remain sovereign. To continue the war, he said, would be suicidal. And then, perhaps realizing the irony of that remark, he turned to the military men and noted that their performance had fallen rather short of their promises. Even at that late date some fanatical officers attempted a coup on the palace grounds rather than submit.

3. I'm just attempting to make a statement, that no matter what we did, the Japanese would continue to fight, we had signed pamphletes we brought in past Japanese fighters, we did everything to convince these soldiers that their government had surrendered and even 13 years later, some would still fight out to the death, that mentality, which was also present on the mainland, would make it extreamely costly to fight Japan in a conventional battle.

4. The first stuff answers this, but you can also look at this, also from the Encyclopedia Britannica Article

Three means suggested themselves: invasion, inducement, and shock. The first would involve a lengthy, brutal campaign in which, it was estimated, hundreds of thousands of American and perhaps 2,000,000 Japanese lives would be lost. Yet the Joint Chiefs had no choice but to prepare for this eventuality, and by May 25 they had instructed MacArthur to plan Operation "Olympic," an invasion of Kyushu, for November 1.
 
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russ_watters

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I agree completely with Lyuokdea. I'd let it go because as with religion, this is one of those issues that some people feel so passionate about there is little room for rational arguement. For some reason, the entire attitude of the Japanese up to that point in time is overlooked by those who would like to show we didn't need to drop the bomb.

In addition, the body count of the two bombings likely puts them out of the top ten in deadliest events of the war. Rationally, people should be more upset about the fire-bombing of Dresden, but they are not. But like most everything having to do with atomic energy (including peaceful use), irrational fear wins out over rational analysis.

Adam, your quotes are nice, but they are not necessarily representative. Noteably absent are most of the very people who would know the Japanese disposition: the commanders of the forces in the Pacific. Certainly someone who experienced Japansese soldiers fighting to the death or civilians comitting suicide en masse to avoid capture would have a different perspective.

Also, those quotes are not to be found at the provided link. Perhaps its through another link from that link, but I'm not going to go looking from it.

In any case, the link you provided focused almost entirely on the objections of scientists and said very little about the realities of the war.
 
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Lyuokdea

I really think copying the same sentence to answer three different arguments is very convincing, but if you really need me to get more evidence, here it is:
Your previous assertions were so generic and baseless that a single sentence sufficed for all of them.

On August 9 the second atomic bomb fell on Nagasaki, killing 39,000 people. On that day the Voice of the Sacred Crane--the emperor's command--summoned the Cabinet to an audience. Hirohito expressed his wish that Japan accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration on the sole condition that the emperor remain sovereign. To continue the war, he said, would be suicidal. And then, perhaps realizing the irony of that remark, he turned to the military men and noted that their performance had fallen rather short of their promises. Even at that late date some fanatical officers attempted a coup on the palace grounds rather than submit.
http://www.uic.com.au/nip29.htm
http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/abomb/mp10.htm [Broken]

General resources:

http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/poets/g_l/levine/bombing.htm
http://www.lclark.edu/~history/HIROSHIMA/directory.html [Broken]
http://www.doug-long.com/
http://www.doug-long.com/hiroshim.htm
http://www.doug-long.com/anami.htm
http://www.doug-long.com/kido.htm
http://www.doug-long.com/togo.htm
http://www.dannen.com/szilard.html
http://www.lclark.edu/~history/HIROSHIMA/dirc-hist.html#historical [Broken]
http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/abomb/mpmenu.htm [Broken]

Please read what these important figures of the time said about it all: http://www.doug-long.com/quotes.htm
 
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your missing the point, your having an emotional response to the idea of nuclear weapons and believe that their use is always immoral, in this time of nuclear showdowns where weapons are pointed everywhere that is probably correct, but none of your sources offer any credible evidence that less people would have died in a ground invasion of Japan, so my point still stands that the atomic bombing of Japan saved japanese civilian lives in the end.

Now, weigh the detrimental effects both physical and psychological of the use of nuclear weapons against the death of millions of people and I will take the detrimental effects to save millions of lives any day.

most of the websites mearly talk about the devastation that came from hiroshima and how it completely destroyed the town, but let me fill you in. Devastation is a major part of any war mearly look at the firebombing of dresden, where 225,000 died, or 25,000 more people than Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined.

during the fightings on the islands near japan, may-june 1945, 250,000 japanese non-combatants were killed, these are on the smaller islands, you can imagine what the civilian death toll would be if we attacked the main land, where 25 million japanese soldiers were ready.

overall 2 million japanese civilians were killed by western powers, only 10% during the atomic bombings, the war could have gone in even more populated areas for more than another year if the battle was waged conventionally

if there were 25 million japanese defenders on the island, it makes sense that if the u.s. did not use nuclear weapons, the firebombing of almost all of japan would be the only answer, 130,000 died in tokyo in May 1945, the carpet bombing itself would have killed many more than the nuclear alternative.

if you give me any credible evidence that a convetional attack would have saved more lives than a nuclear attack then this is worth a continuing debate, but, otherwise you are simply weighing millions of lives against "the evils of nuclear weapons" where any rational person would choose to save lives
 

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