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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:24 PM   #41

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The use of the nuclear bomb, twice, could only be seen as a crime as it went against the most basic of military laws, you do not target women and children. The display of the A-Bombs power was critical to the ending of the war, but then the question is how could it be accomplished without the death of innocent people? A display off the coast or in a harbor may have accomplished the goal.
Both cities were military targets. Strategic bombing by all sides had frequently hit civilians, the Blitz being a prime example.

I have no reason to believe a demonstration would have worked. Do you have sources that say otherwise? Remember that Anami wasn't convinced by the first bomb, so a demonstration outside Japan would have had even less effect.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:25 PM   #42

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And Really? A display? A display of force when you only have two of them and that it may take a while to get the next set of bombs out? Whatchagonnado? Call them up collect and say, "Hey, take a look at the ocean."
The Allies expected to have another bomb ready within two weeks, and three more by the end of September.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:27 PM   #43

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Both cities were military targets. Strategic bombing by all sides had frequently hit civilians, the Blitz being a prime example.

I have no reason to believe a demonstration would have worked. Do you have sources that say otherwise? Remember that Anami wasn't convinced by the first bomb, so a demonstration outside Japan would have had even less effect.
There's no reason to believe a demonstration within Japan followed by a major target wouldn't have had the same effect either. At the very least, perhaps 80,000 lives could have been spared.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:27 PM   #44

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The Allies expected to have another bomb ready within two weeks, and three more by the end of September.
One could say that two weeks was two weeks too many. The Soviets were gaining in the north. They took islands just miles from Japan. Are you going to pussyfoot around trying to put someone in checkmate or are you going to end this damn war and checkmate him?
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:29 PM   #45

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There's no reason to believe a demonstration within Japan followed by a major target wouldn't have had the same effect either. At the very least, perhaps 80,000 lives could have been spared.
80,000 lives. We had no clue about the affects of radiation. Tens of thousands of people would have died from it and someone like you today would be clamoring about the injustice of why we dropped the bomb at the edge of the ocean.

Why even drop the bomb at all?

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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:30 PM   #46

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One could say that two weeks was two weeks too many. The Soviets were gaining in the north. They took islands just miles from Japan. Are you going to pussyfoot around trying to put someone in checkmate or are you going to end this damn war and checkmate him?
One could say that. Then again, maybe one might say that it wasn't. Maybe, just maybe, Japanese lives could just possibly be as valuable to their owners as American ones.

Regardless of which, the Allies clearly did not "only" have those two bombs available in the very short term, as you implied.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:33 PM   #47

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80,000 lives. We had no clue about the affects of radiation. Tens of thousands of people would have died from it and someone like you today would be clamoring about the injustice of why we dropped the bomb at the edge of the ocean.

Why even drop the bomb at all?

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Oh, you mean as opposed to the tens of thousands who died from the actual blast in addition to the tens of thousands who died from the effects of radiation?

And if the Germans had dropped an atomic bomb, maybe today someone like you would be clamouring about the injustice of it all.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:33 PM   #48
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I'm giving a talk on this next month and I'm hoping some of you will bring up objections to the proposal so I can see if I have my ducks in a row. So, here goes.

The atomic bombs, both of them, were needed to help end WWII for the following reasons.

1. Japan was in the grip of a military-led of ultra-nationalists who wanted to lead the country into the same gotterdammerungHitler led German to.

2. Both bombs were needed as one bomb would have been believed to be a "one off" that couldn't be repeated.

3. The end of the war needed to be hastened by all means available to end the loss of life on both sides.
We have already been here ... like myriad times .
IMHO you are choosing the bad words.

A nice tautology: war is war; it has never been expected to be "legitimate"; the only goal is winning; period.

It would be the acme of absurdity to pretend that any contender may be worried by the "loss of life" of the enemy (naturally except for increasing it); pretending that the nuking of hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians was justified for the protection of Japanese lives couldn't be any more nonsensical & hypocritical.

"Needed"? (Especially Nagasaki) Maybe; but for what exactly?

Far as I can tell, the purported figures of millions of US casualties for the invasion of Japan were simply absurd fantastic exaggerations, that BTW were simply not required; Japan was already almost defeated; there's hardly any question about it. But "almost defeated" is still definitively not the same as "defeated".

Even nowadays several historumites (in one of my previous threads) explicitly & unequivocally stated that any single American life saved would have been in their humble opinion enough to justify any number of nuked Japanese civilians of any age & genre.

Another nice tautology; war has always been an extremely ugly business.
Arguably, killing two or three hundred thousand civilians with just two nukes was far more fast & impressive but not particularly crueler than killing them with any other bombs or weapons.

During WW2 and analogous to any other contender, the US simply ought to get the best possible weapons (including the nuke) previous to anyone else; once you get such an expensive weapon as the A-bomb, you ought to use it; easy as that.

On the allied side, Mr Churchill was particularly eager to use the American A-bomb ASAP.
There is hardly any doubt that any other contender of this war, from Herr Hitler to Hirohito, from Uncle Joe to De Gaulle, would have used the bomb for their own obvious goals have any of them had the chance.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:37 PM   #49

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Regardless of which, the Allies clearly did not "only" have those two bombs available in the very short term, as you implied.
True, true. You can have that. But you cannot guarantee dropping bombs on the edge of the coast would save lives. If you did it once. What if they are unimpressed. A big flash of light. Its a fake. Little do they realize, it just killed 20,000 people within the next few years because of the radiation.

Ok. So, it didn't phase them. Let's do it again. Get a little closer this time. We drop a second bomb. Killing 30,000 people. The Japanese say who knows, may be they say, "Wow. Big bomb in the ocean. Didn't hurt any of us. Flash of light, mushroom cloud. Why are they hitting the ocean?"

Two weeks later, Japanese say, "See. Nothing happens. It was a fake. They were trying to scare us.". What do you do then?

Drop a bomb on a city, killing the 80,000 people (not including the 50,000 you already infected with radiation)? Or do you drop one in the ocean? Oh, by the way, the Soviets are continuously pushing south.

Your Move.

My suggestion.

Go for Checkmate.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 04:42 PM   #50

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True, true. You can have that. But you cannot guarantee dropping bombs on the edge of the coast would save lives. If you did it once. What if they are unimpressed. A big flash of light. Its a fake. Little do they realize, it just killed 20,000 people within the next few years because of the radiation.

Ok. So, it didn't phase them. Let's do it again. Get a little closer this time. We drop a second bomb. Killing 30,000 people. The Japanese say who knows, may be they say, "Wow. Big bomb in the ocean. Didn't hurt any of us. Flash of light, mushroom cloud. Why are they hitting the ocean?"

Two weeks later, Japanese say, "See. Nothing happens. It was a fake. They were trying to scare us.". What do you do then?

Drop a bomb on a city, killing the 80,000 people (not including the 50,000 you already infected with radiation)? Or do you drop one in the ocean? Oh, by the way, the Soviets are continuously pushing south.

Your Move.

My suggestion.

Go for Checkmate.

Actually, it wasn't my suggestion that it was dropped off the coast. My suggestion, if the bombs were to be used at all, would be to drop it somewhere inland that was sparsely populated, so they could have the chance to inspect what it was capable of. And then drop it on a city if that had no effect.

At the very worst, it could have spared 80,000 lives in one of the targets.
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