Blogs > Liberty and Power > Harry Truman's Choice

Aug 16, 2009 11:19 am

Harry Truman's Choice

I hope I won’t be voted off the island by linking to an impassioned defense of Harry Truman’s decision to drop two atomic bombs on Japan in 1945. Historians, have at it.

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gifted assassin - 5/6/2009

Truman or no Truman, the widely-accepted-outside-America fact that nuking 2 Japanese cities was a war crime became obvious long before the 21st century. If you could save lives by nuking civilians to death and generations of deformity, why didn't you end the Cold War that way?

If the US had dropped an atom bomb on a Japanese fleet, that would have been a tactical war victory. Dropping one on hundreds of thousands of people who had little if anything to do with the decision to attack Pearl Harbor, that is most definitely a war crime!

Jane S. Shaw - 5/6/2009

You make a good point. I hadn't thought of this--what would have happened if we didn't require the unconditional surrender of Japan? Perhaps there was a "middle ground." Thanks.

Mark Brady - 5/4/2009

But this guy Bill Whittle should certainly be! His defense may be impassioned but it's unconvincing on its own terms and, like every other defense of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, does not even broach the question of why the U.S. should have sought the unconditional surrender of Japan.