Other Post My Big Report...The Atom Bomb PART 1


Mi Corporal
MI.Net Member
Sep 7, 2005
Was The Atomic Bomb Necessary?
By Ryan Goodwin

My God, what have we done?" - Robert Lewis, the co-pilot of the Enola Gay, the B-29 that dropped the first atomic bomb.

August 6, 1945-Three B-29 heavy bombers of the United States Army Air Force fly at a high altitude over the quiet town of Hiroshima. In mere seconds this city, the residents, and the surrounding lands will witness an awesome sight like no other in history. Within a week, the town of Nagasaki will fall victim to a similar fate. Now, some 61 years later, controversy over the use of the two atomic bombs, named Little Boy (Dropped on Hiroshima) and Fat Man (Nagasaki), has flared once again. As far back as the day the bomb was conceived by the brilliant mind of Albert Einstein, many top scientist and military advisors tried to find alternatives to using the bomb. In fact, Einstein himself wrote to Franklin D. Roosevelt about his concerns. One proposed alternative came in mid 1944, when the U.S marines captured the island of Iwo Jima for the Army Air Corps (later the Air Force), and constructed an air field to operate B-29 heavy bombers from . From this base, the bombers were sent on 12 hour round trip raids over the Japanese mainland. In November, General Curtis LeMay of the 21st (XXI) Bomber Command devised a strategy to double the effectiveness of the raids by ordering the low level drop of incendiary bombs. These bombs, which caused enormous fires, obliterated the cities of Japan, which were mainly constructed of wood. However, the Japanese military, acting as a government, regarded the bombings as mere annoyances. This led the United States military to plan an invasion of Japan. However, the Japanese had reverted to the “Kamikaze” or Divine wind. This tactic called for a volunteer pilot to fly a suicide mission in a plane full of fuel and explosives, into an enemy ship, causing hundreds or even thousands of deaths. The attacks symbolized Japans determination to never give in. Seeing the effects of Japan’s last resort tactics, President Harry S. Truman declared the bomb necessary and gave the order to drop two bombs on two cities: Hiroshima and Nagasaki. However, the decision was based on a number of wise reasons.

One reason for the bomb being dropped was that it would show Russia that America was indeed a powerful nation. This show of force brought Russia to declare war on Japan, putting even more pressure on the unspeakably chaotic Japanese military. In fact, before Japan had attacked the U.S., the Japanese army had provoked the Russian Republic Independent Eastern army in July of 1938. Japan had in fact had a long history of conflict with Russia. The attack led Joseph Stalin, Russian dictator, to consider formally going to war with Japan. However, the Russian government opted to stay clear of a war with their rivals. Still, the show of victory and courage of U.S. and British military presence in the Pacific began to convince the Russians to consider joining the fight once more. When the two bombs were dropped, Stalin was immediately impressed and joined the allies’ mere days prior to Japan’s surrender. The bomb also showed the soviets, who had been working on their own atom bomb, the weapons destructive power and horrible effect. This caused an ongoing fear of using nuclear weapons that persists today. Ironically, the weapon that was meant to gain an ally created a 50 year panic
The dropping of the atomic bombs will never be resolved.

Those for, talk about the number of our servicemen’s lives that was saved.

Those against, talk about the number of Japanese people that where killed and the after effects that they suffered.

And neither talks about the other side.

The whole incident will never be forgotten but as long as we have learned a lesson from the using such powerful weapons, then all is not in vain.

Actually, some historians now acknowledge that many Japanese lives were ironically saved as the bombs brought hostilities to a close. Had US troops invaded the home islands, it was expected that the Japanese military would have forced the civilian populace to fight and resist the enemy, as they had on Okinawa and Saipan. Historically, the Japanese military has been shown that it was perfectly willing to sacrifice the lives of it's own civilians in order to achieve a marginal or dubious tactical advantage.


Being something of an amature WWII historian, one of the primary reasons Truman chose to use the bomb was to save American lives; both military and civilian. If the U.S. had chosen to invade the Japanese main land, the enemy resistance would have been overwhelming. Every citizen of Japan would have taken up arms and fought the American military tooth and nail, making us pay dearly for every foot of ground we gained. It is estimated that the war would have lasted another 5 years or more.

There is also another reason the bomb was dropped... Japan was working on a bomb of their own. Called a 'Dirty Bomb', it was not an atom splitting device like the ATOMIC BOMB, but a conventional warhead surrounded by radioactive material. It was to be dropped on large metropolitan areas of the Pacific coast of the United States. U.S. Intelligence had uncovered this information just prior to President Truman's decision. While it would not level an entire city, it would give a large portion of the population radiation poisoning; it would contaminate the water supply; it would scatter radioactive material over dozens of miles, causing continuous damage for many years to come.

The weapons that were used against Hiroshima and Nagasaki were without a doubt, the most horrific form of warfare ever unleashed by mankind. But in comparison to the Thermonuclear Warheads of the present, they are relatively weak in terms of destructive power! We can only pray that no mad man ever gets ahold of one, because if one is ever used offensively, the defensive counter-strike could very well induce NUCLEAR WINTER, and turn this lush planet into a lifeless ball of ice.

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