Thursday, August 6, 2015

Seventy years ago

Seventy years ago the first atom bomb to be used in war was dropped on the  city of Hiroshima, the second one, on Nagasaki to follow two three days later. It undoubtedly ushered in a new world politically and militarily and has remained in many people's minds the pre-eminent example of a war crime. In fact, the casualties incurred by the firebombing of Tokyo were higher and when it came to war crimes, there were many competitors for the title of the worst.

The decision to drop the two atom bombs was taken by President Harry S Truman because he  considered, probably rightly, that the this was the only way to bring the war in the Pacific to an end speedily without further very high American and Japanese casualties. That alternative would have probably meant many more British, Australian, Indian and other casualties.


  1. Replies
    1. Sorry, yes, you are right. I shall edit it to show that I have been corrected.

  2. The alternatives to the nuclear attack were invasion (as you say) or what essentially amounts to siege warfare; cut all external air and sea links and continue the conventional bombing campaign. Targeting the internal road and rail links and maybe bomb the food growing areas to starve them to the negotiating table. Both these options would have involved far greater death and suffering on the part of the Japanese than actually happened.