There have been many debates on whether or not the united states were justified on dropping the Atomic Bomb on Japan; was it absolutely necessary to take lives of thousands of people, or was this just an easy way out of the war? In this paper I will cover the following reasonings on why I do not think the dropping of the atomic bomb was justified. The first reason I will be using to defend my argument is that Japan had no allies. Next, I will discuss how many lives were lost because of this tragic decision and lastly, I will discuss how I feel it was an irrational decision on the US governments part.
Had Japan had other allies helping them in this war I could possibly see this bombing being justified but they were fighting this war alone. It is also said that Japan was on the verge of surrendering. According to The Decision To Use The Atomic Bomb it is stated that The justification for using the atomic bomb was that it had ended the war, or at least ended it sooner and thereby saved countless American and Japanese lives. But had it? Had not Japan already been defeated and was she not already on the verge of surrender(Louis Morton, pg. 334)
I could see the reasoning on wanting to end the war to save American lives; but to say it was to save Japanese lives as well is ridiculous in my opinion. I strongly feel if they had knowledge that Japan was on the verge of surrendering, they could have avoided loss of Japanese lives by allowing them to surrender. This does not mean that no more American lives would be lost because that is never guaranteed, but thousands of lives that were lost could have been avoided had they given Japan a little more time to surrender. I feel the United States was proud of what they created and just wanted to make an example out of Japan so that in the future any time the United States went to war with another country that country would think twice before crossing the United States because they would know what the US was capable of.
Numerous lives were taken as well as injured by the A-bomb dropped on Japan. According to an online article on UCLA www.aasc.ucla.edu titled Hiroshima and Nagasaki Death Toll. It is not unlikely that the estimates of killed and wounded in Hiroshima (150,000) and Nagasaki (75,000) are over conservative. Many of the bodies injured by the blast were scattered what is said to be considerable distances. Not only were soldiers fighting with Japan died from this nuclear bomb died but this atomic bomb also claimed the lives of many innocent men, women and children. It is said in an article in the Atomic Heritage Foundation website that The bomb was known as “Little Boy”, a uranium gun-type bomb that exploded with about thirteen kilotons of force. At the time of the bombing, Hiroshima was home to 280,000-290,000 civilians as well as 43,000 soldiers. Between 90,000 and 166,000 people are believed to have died from the bomb in the four-month period following the explosion.
The U.S. Department of Energy has estimated that after five years there were perhaps 200,000 or more fatalities as a result of the bombing, while the city of Hiroshima has estimated that 237,000 people were killed directly or indirectly by the bomb’s effects, including burns, radiation sickness, and cancer.( Curtis LeMay, Paul Tibbets). This is an extreme amount of deaths for innocent civilians. For someone who is willing to fight for their country or who has been drafted to do the task of fighting in a war this would be no issue. However, I don’t feel like innocent people should die because of a current war the country they reside in is in the middle of war. In my opinion this could be viewed as a terrorist attack. In which the people from that country have nothing to do with what is going on but because they are citizens of that country they lose their right to live because their government is at war. Sadly, an example of this is the attack of 9/11, those people shouldn’t have died they were innocent in all of it. Our government could have possibly avoided the situation had our president during that time, George Bush, payed more attention to the threats being made by Osama Bin Laden and his people. I know when a country is at war with another country it is inevitable for lives to be lost even those of innocent people; however, there are instances when lives lost could be minimized. The amount of lives that were lost because of the dropping of the atomic bomb is absolutely horrible.
I think many people could agree with me when I say this was a situation that could have been avoided and it was extremely irresponsible of our government to drop these atomic bombs. As previously mentioned, there were many lives lost and that blood is on our hands as Americans. In The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb It is also mentioned that During the early days of the project one scientist recalled we spent little time thinking about the possible effects of the bomb we were trying to make (Louis Morton, Pg.335) If that isn’t doesn’t seems irresponsible to our government, we should rethink our leaders and what they represent. This atomic weapon was never entered into deliberations of strategic planners It was said Admiral Williams Leahy. The best kept secret of the entire war and only a handful of the top civilian and military officials in Washington knew about the bomb (Louis Morton Pg. 335). If the government can keep something like that from its people are, they really for the people. I guess one could argue that they government was thinking about the best interest of our Country, but there was probably a better method they could have taken for this situation. I understand why a secret like this needs to be kept silent because of all the chaos it would cause because different people have different opinions so I can understand that. I just strongly feel more thought could have gone into this decision prior to the action being taken.
In this paper I have given three reasons why I feel the United States was not justified in their decision on the dropping of the atomic bomb. Japan was fighting this battle on their own with no help from any other country, they couldn’t rely on someone to come to their aid an assist them with the task. There were way too many lives taken in this process including woman, children, elderly. Lastly it was extremely irresponsible of our government to drop a nuclear bomb of this sort when there were other choices to be made. I love the country I live in and I am proud to be an American. I have a very high level of respect for out military. The choices our government made before my time is something that cannot be changed. Those choices have also allowed us to become the great country we are today. Regardless of the race wars that are going on and all of the problems in today’s society this country definitely comes together when it is most needed. I love this country and what we stand for even if I don’t always agree with our politics and what our president is and isn’t doing. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.
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