Saturday, December 05, 2009

"Hell to Pay" - the shattering vindication of Truman's decision to use the atomic bomb

Review of the book Hell to Pay - "the shattering vindication of Truman's decision to use the atomic bomb". The article is interesting, and I'm sure the book would be too, if I had time to read it (right now I just don't). But it is a little ironic to me--although there are more details, this sounds like all the same arguments that have always convinced me that the atomic bombing was unquestionably the right decision, most humane of awful alternatives, for Japan as much as for the United States:
  • Estimated 1 million American casualties
  • Many, many millions more Japaneses casualties
  • Japanese civilians pressed into service and otherwise used for war aims
  • A general willingness of the Japanese military leadership to suffer a glorious, heroic final defeat, rather than surrender
  • The disastrous potential of an incomplete defeat
It is scary to think that these lessons are so soon forgotten, in the United States, and in Japan.

1 comment:

  1. I cry bullshit. If the Japanese knew the US had such a bomb and were prepared to use it, they may have been willing to surrender. It would, at least, have been worth a try. And dropping the second bomb on Nagasaki was totally unnecessary and overkill. The US is not as great as you think.