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BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary

freda underhill 03 Aug 05 - 07:00 PM
freda underhill 03 Aug 05 - 07:43 PM
Azizi 03 Aug 05 - 09:30 PM
Azizi 03 Aug 05 - 09:32 PM
number 6 04 Aug 05 - 12:13 AM
DougR 04 Aug 05 - 12:58 AM
Bev and Jerry 04 Aug 05 - 01:14 AM
robomatic 04 Aug 05 - 01:55 AM
Piers 04 Aug 05 - 05:00 AM
mooman 04 Aug 05 - 05:15 AM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 05:50 AM
Shakey 04 Aug 05 - 06:31 AM
mooman 04 Aug 05 - 06:36 AM
Shakey 04 Aug 05 - 06:54 AM
GUEST,Guy Who Thinks 04 Aug 05 - 08:15 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 08:45 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 08:56 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 09:01 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 09:07 AM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 09:10 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 09:28 AM
jets 04 Aug 05 - 09:33 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 04 Aug 05 - 09:35 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 09:37 AM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 09:39 AM
freda underhill 04 Aug 05 - 09:44 AM
robomatic 04 Aug 05 - 10:57 AM
dianavan 04 Aug 05 - 12:25 PM
DougR 04 Aug 05 - 01:45 PM
GUEST,Robert Price 04 Aug 05 - 01:51 PM
mooman 04 Aug 05 - 01:55 PM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 02:00 PM
mooman 04 Aug 05 - 02:27 PM
mooman 04 Aug 05 - 02:29 PM
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dianavan 04 Aug 05 - 04:26 PM
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Shanghaiceltic 04 Aug 05 - 05:23 PM
Peace 04 Aug 05 - 06:10 PM
Peace 04 Aug 05 - 06:11 PM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 06:15 PM
GUEST 04 Aug 05 - 06:22 PM
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Peace 04 Aug 05 - 06:48 PM
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number 6 04 Aug 05 - 09:13 PM
robomatic 04 Aug 05 - 10:14 PM
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Dave (the ancient mariner) 06 Aug 05 - 02:52 PM
Raedwulf 06 Aug 05 - 03:17 PM
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McGrath of Harlow 06 Aug 05 - 08:25 PM
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Dave (the ancient mariner) 07 Aug 05 - 05:59 AM
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McGrath of Harlow 07 Aug 05 - 06:45 AM
Tam the man 07 Aug 05 - 06:47 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 07 Aug 05 - 06:53 AM
GUEST,Halyburton 07 Aug 05 - 10:56 AM
GUEST,G 07 Aug 05 - 11:44 AM
artbrooks 07 Aug 05 - 07:47 PM
dianavan 08 Aug 05 - 12:41 AM
GUEST 08 Aug 05 - 06:34 AM
GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser) 08 Aug 05 - 07:14 AM
McGrath of Harlow 08 Aug 05 - 09:24 AM
GUEST,G 08 Aug 05 - 10:07 AM
GUEST,Not that guest, nor that one either 08 Aug 05 - 12:25 PM
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Bunnahabhain 08 Aug 05 - 02:17 PM
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robomatic 08 Aug 05 - 04:33 PM
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freda underhill 09 Aug 05 - 06:55 AM
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Peace 09 Aug 05 - 03:50 PM
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freda underhill 10 Aug 05 - 05:04 AM
mooman 10 Aug 05 - 05:06 AM
freda underhill 10 Aug 05 - 05:09 AM
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Subject: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 03 Aug 05 - 07:00 PM

Sixty years ago, on August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, incinerating 140,000 men, women and children. On August 9, a second American atomic bomb destroyed 74,000 men, women and children in Nagasaki. The bombs were dropped to test the effects of a nuclear device on a city and to intimidate the former Soviet Union. They were NOT dropped to end World War 2. This was an act of unbelievable barbarity.

ABOLISH ALL NUCLEAR WEAPONS

On the 60th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the people of the world are calling with renewed determination for the abolition of all nuclear weapons. The US, France, Britain, Russia, China, Israel, Pakistan and India together still have more than 28,000 nuclear weapons. The Bush administration is not cutting its nuclear weapons. Instead it has developed more
sophisticated and powerful bombs and is now developing mini-nukes, bunker busters and nuclear weapons for space.

The threat of nuclear annihilation has been revived by George W Bush.

The US has shown it will inflict "pre-emptive" attacks and "preventive" wars on any state that threatens its interests, creating fear and insecurity, replacing the rule of international law with the law of the jungle, and fuelling the arms race. The US also claims the right to attack any country from space. The Bush administration has brutally and illegally invaded and occupied Afghanistan and Iraq and continues to threaten Iran, North Korea, Syria and Cuba.

The Howard Government has given unconditional moral, political and practical support to all the recent US aggressive actions. This must stop!

TROOPS HOME FROM IRAQ NOW
US foreign policy has left many thousands dead, thousands more with broken bodies, and destabilised the Middle East.

Civilians and soldiers suffer the appalling effects of depleted uranium weapons, cluster bombs and land mines, and the destruction of water supply, sewerage and power.

The Australian Government has spent over $1.25 billion since 2003 on the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq. This has brought Iraq neither peace, freedom nor democracy. It has made Australia and the world less secure.

THE COST OF WAR

The Howard Government's military budget has escalated to over $60 million a day. This steals resources from health, education, job creation, the environment, and services for the poor and disadvantaged. An extra $700 million — less than two weeks military spending — spent on public hospitals each year would overcome their critical problems.

from Hiroshima, sixty years on


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 03 Aug 05 - 07:43 PM

On Saturday it will be 60 years since the bomb went off.

I'm interested in hearing people's memories and thoughts about Hiroshima. For me, my parents were in Japan after the war. My father was part of the allied occupying forces there. My mother joined him, and they went to Hiroshima to see the devastation there, when she was pregnant with my older sister.

I grew up in a house full of beautiful Japanese art works, it was only when I was older that I realised what had happened there.

Years later, I illustrated a book which included interviews with women from around the world. The author was a man called Floating Eaglefeather, a native american storyteller. One of the interviews was with a Japanese woman telling her story about her experiences there. Somewhere, at the bottom of a cupboard, I have that book and will post some of her story when i find it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Azizi
Date: 03 Aug 05 - 09:30 PM

Freda, I hate to read and think about horrible things. And Hiroshima one of the most horrible things that ever happened in this world.
I have forced myself to read about this unspeakable act because it was the least I could do as a thinking, breathing, caring American.

If the USA as a nation has not apologized for dropping the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we should have.

It's the very least we can do.

Please post stories from the book that you illustrated.
I will be prepared to cry.


Azizi


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Azizi
Date: 03 Aug 05 - 09:32 PM

I'm sorry-let me correct this sentence because I think it is important to do so:

.. Hiroshima is one of the most horrible things that ever happened in this world.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: number 6
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 12:13 AM

Azizi .... Hiroshima is one of the many horrible things man has ever done in this world ... Hiroshima should have been the last of all horrific acts upon humanity ... it should have been the last.

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: DougR
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 12:58 AM

True, Freda (and we have been over this territory many times before) and Harry S. Truman save coutless American and Japanize lives by authorizing the dropping of the bomb. Jeeze, get real you folks! Were you even ALIVE when the bomb was dropped, Freda? Did you run the risk of your Father dying in an invasion of Japan?

The dropping of those bombs, as horrible as it was to the Japanese citizens who suffered because of it, was one of the great decisions of World WarII.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 01:14 AM

We hate to do this, Doug, but we're afraid we'll have to mostly agree with you here.

We recently interviewed a man (since deceased) who was in the U.S. Coast Guard during WWII. He was with McArthur in the Philipines for which he got a bronze star. In 1945 he was moved to the Aleutian Islands, a staging area for the invasion of Japan. He said the military estimated there would be 300,000 American casualties in this invasion. His commanding officer ordered everyone to write at least one letter home and not to expect to survive the invasion.

Then, the bomb was dropped and Japan surrendered without an invasion. It was a horrible thing to do but the alternative was even worse.

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 01:55 AM

It ended the war.

It demonstrated in no uncertain terms that waging the kind of war that Japan had waged on China, on England, on the United States, on Burma, on Indonesia, in the Phillipines and Southeast Asia, was to be a thing of the past.

It ended the worship of the Emperor of Japan as a god.
It ended the military domination of the government of Japan.

It forestalled further Soviet penetration into Japan.

It spared the lives of millions of American soldiers who would have been in on the invastion of the home island.

It spared the lives of millions of Japanese soldiers and citizens who would have been inducted into the Japanese defense of the home island.

The atomic bomb was the equivalent of two thousand-plane raids. Conventional attacks were in the ballpark of this amount of carnage as the firebombing of Tokyo will testify.

The use was of the atomic bomb was discussed and debated from the scientific community to the top levels of the government of the US.

The fact that we debate the issues to this day is a credit to the willingness of the participants to live by, review, and listen to the judgement of others after the fact.

Many of us who are the children of vets regard our existence as an outcome of the use of the two atomic bombs.

The use of the bomb as a weapon was justifiable.
The damage of the bomb was terrible.
It should be reviewed, it should be discussed, and the lessons we learn should be up for review as long as humans think of making war.

The United States owes no apology regarding the use of atomic weapons.

Remember, it took more than one. (We had three).

It ended the war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Piers
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 05:00 AM

To attempt to justify the US attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki you must have totally lost the plot. The kind of delusions that suggest the insanity of war can be countered with war of yet even more insane proportions must be a symptom of some serious pathology.

I understand that we are exposed to incessant propaganda telling us we are in some way on the same side as those who start wars. But surely the actual experience of seeing friends and relatives sent to war and seeing people just like you fighting and dying on the other 'side' negates that. Along with the fact that whoever 'wins' the war the majority of society are in the same position they were when they started.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 05:15 AM

I have posted on this topic many times before and am not going to go over all the same arguments again, and quite agree with Piers and Freda above.

To call the instant incineration and radioactive poisoning of well over 200,000 civilians anything but utterly barbaric portrays a lack of reason and, as Piers says, a symptom of some serious pathology.

I'm sorry if this offends some but I have to say it.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 05:50 AM


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Shakey
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:31 AM

I refer you to the post by robomatic and point out that the Japanese were warned of the attack but chose to continue fighting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:36 AM

And I refer you to the numerous posts in earlier threads on this unfortunate subject that analyse the situation, including the status of the Japanese civilian population and military, and of the Allied position, in far greater detail.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Shakey
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:54 AM

My in-laws told me that Japan would never have surrendered without the Atomic bomb. What would they know? They were there. My father-in-law worked in the shipyards in Hiroshima, and traded days off with a co-worker or he surely would have died. As it was, they were gathering firewood, quite close to the explosion. I believe they lived near the next train stop from Hiroshima station (toward Tokyo) at that time. This is something like 5 minutes away by train. My sister-in-law, who would have been around 3 or 4 at the time, was knocked down by the blast. They found and cared for a badly burned young boy, who later died from his injuries. In my in-law�s opinion, the quick end to the war was the better outcome. The critics have a long way to go to convince me otherwise.

See here


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Guy Who Thinks
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 08:15 AM

Barbaric in its results? Yes. An understandable decision at the time? Yes. Something to avoid in the future? Absolutely. I won't rehash what I've said elsewhere except to say again when it appeared that surrender was imminent, Japanese Army officers actually tried to overthrow the government in order to keep the war going.

People unfamiliar with the code of bushido, the recognition of the emperor as an infallible god, and the belief that mass death is preferable to national humilition cannot understand the cultural frame of mind that dominated Japan 60 years ago, no matter what reservations individual Japanese may have had.

War is indeed Hell, and in ways that most people do not even imagine. One hellish aspect is that, when the stakes are high enough, nations will use whatever means they have to win. That includes atom bombs, the disproportionate answer to kamikazes, nerve gas and germ warfare (both of which the Japanese had used in China and would have used again). At war in Hell, you fight fire with fire.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 08:45 AM

60 years on, there are still preople who think they can slaughter people as a matter of public policy.

the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague, was set up in 2002 to investigate and prosecute people for genocide and war crimes. When the Court was established seven countries voted against it. They included China, Israel, the United States, and Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

Only three years after the ICC came into being, it is already subject to the same kind of national pressures which have stopped the UN dealing effectively with crimes against humanity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 08:56 AM

General Dwight D. Eisenhower advised the Secretary of War, Henry L. Stimson, in July of 1945 that the Japanese were already essentially defeated, and therefore use of the bombs was unnecessary.

The highest-ranking officer in the Pacific Theater, General Douglas MacArthur, was not consulted beforehand, but said afterward that there was no military justification for the bombings.

The same opinion was expressed by Fleet Admiral William Leahy (the Chief of Staff to the President), General Carl Spaatz (commander of the U.S. Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific), and Brigadier General Carter Clarke (the military intelligence officer who prepared intercepted Japanese cables for U.S. officials); Major General Curtis LeMay ; and Admiral Ernest King, U.S. Chief of Naval Operations, and Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet.

Eisenhower wrote in his memoir The White House Years, "in 1945 Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. ..I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment, was I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives"

MacArthur believed the dropping of the bombs to be "completely unnecessary from a military point of view."

The United States Strategic Bombing Survey, after interviewing hundreds of Japanese civilian and military leaders after Japan surrendered, reported:
"Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war, and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated."


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:01 AM

Japanese sources have stated that the atomic bombings themselves weren't the principal reason for capitulation. Instead, they contend, it was not the American atomic attacks on August 6 and August 9, but the swift and devastating Soviet victories on the mainland in the week following Stalin's August 8 declaration of war that forced the Japanese message of surrender on August 15, 1945. Certainly the fact of both enemies weighed into the decision, but it was more the fear of Soviet occupation that hastened imperialistic Japan's acceptance of defeat.

"No evidence has ever been uncovered that leaflets warning of atomic attack were dropped on Hiroshima. Indeed, the decision of the Interim Committee was that we could not give the Japanese any warning."

However, after the Hiroshima bombing, Truman announced "If they do not now accept our terms, they may expect a rain of ruin from the air the likes of which has never been seen on this earth." On August 8, 1945 leaflets were dropped and warnings were given to Japan by Radio Saipan. (The area of Nagasaki did not receive warning leaflets until August 10, though the leaflet campaign covering the whole country was over a month into its operations.) On August 9, 1945 at 11:02 (Nagasaki time) Fat Man exploded at 1950 feet near the perimeter of the city, exploding directly over the Mitsubishi Steel and Arms Works with a yield of 19-23 kt.

The decision to bomb Nagasaki only a few days after Hiroshima raises separate issues. Some people hold that most of the arguments for the use of the atomic bomb do not justify dropping the second one on Nagasaki. In his semi-autobiographical novel Timequake, Kurt Vonnegut said that while the Hiroshima bomb may have saved the lives of his friends in the U.S. armed forces, Nagasaki still proved that the United States was capable of senseless cruelty.

Sources for this and the previous post: Eisenhower, Dwight D. The White House Years: Mandate for Change, 1953-56. Garden City: Doubleday.

James, D. Clayton. The Years of MacArthur, 1941-1945, vol. II. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

United States Strategic Bombing Survey. Japan?s Struggle to End the War. Washington: Government Printing Office.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:07 AM

Hiroshima bomb may have carried hidden agenda
21 July 2005 NewScientist.com news service

The US decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 was meant to kick-start the Cold War rather than end the Second World War, according to two nuclear historians who say they have new evidence backing the controversial theory. Causing a fission reaction in several kilograms of uranium and plutonium and killing over 200,000 people 60 years ago was done more to impress the Soviet Union than to cow Japan, they say. And the US President who took the decision, Harry Truman, was culpable, they add.

"He knew he was beginning the process of annihilation of the species," says Peter Kuznick, director of the Nuclear Studies Institute at American University in Washington DC, US. "It was not just a war crime; it was a crime against humanity." New studies of the US, Japanese and Soviet diplomatic archives suggest that Truman's main motive was to limit Soviet expansion in Asia, Kuznick claims. Japan surrendered because the Soviet Union began an invasion a few days after the Hiroshima bombing, not because of the atomic bombs themselves, he says.

According to an account by Walter Brown, assistant to then-US secretary of state James Byrnes, Truman agreed at a meeting three days before the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima that Japan was "looking for peace". Truman was told by his army generals, Douglas Macarthur and Dwight Eisenhower, and his naval chief of staff, William Leahy, that there was no military need to use the bomb.

"Impressing Russia was more important than ending the war in Japan," says Selden. Truman was also worried that he would be accused of wasting money on the Manhattan Project to build the first nuclear bombs, if the bomb was not used, he adds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:10 AM

I think the #2 comment at the end of Shakeys 'source' speaks volumes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:28 AM

I go with General Dwight D. Eisenhower and General Douglas MacArthur, as quoted above, who were against the dropping of the bomb.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: jets
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:33 AM

As I have said before,I was on a ship heading for Italy to load tanks and heavy weapons for the invasion of Japan; when the Bombs were dropped. Need you ask how I felt.
The enemy was defeted but not willing to live in defeat Thus the bomb.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:35 AM

A friend of mine overheard a middle aged woman say "they would not have attacked Pearl Harbour if we hadnt dropped the bomb on them first" I worry about our future when history is corrupted by hearsay. The bomb was dropped to end the War not for the reasons Freda says; any attempt to change that fact just belies history and documented fact.

Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:37 AM

Repeat:

The following senior US military leaders at that time were opposed to the dropping of the bomb, and stated that there was no military justification for it:

General Douglas MacArthur, Fleet Admiral William Leahy (the Chief of Staff to the President), General Carl Spaatz (commander of the U.S. Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific), and Brigadier General Carter Clarke (the military intelligence officer who prepared intercepted Japanese cables for U.S. officials); Major General Curtis LeMay ; and Admiral Ernest King, U.S. Chief of Naval Operations, and Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:39 AM

The #2 comment I refer to no doubt illustrates the possibility of many not being here without the bomb. Your father was in the military and you had not been born..................

The scope of this type of warfare was no doubt beyond the comprehension of 'old war horses' like Eisenhower and MacArthur.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:44 AM

speculation, opinion, evidence. hot air, a huge blast of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 10:57 AM

Freda:

All the people you are choosing as authorities:

Had no idea what the atomic bomb was.
Were not directly involved in the decision making including the facts behind the decision making. In particular, Eisenhour was fighting the war in Europe and no way knew the whole story on the Pacific. MacArthur was later to recommend the use of the bomb to win the Korean War.

I find your references to these folk and the others in your repeated post to be suspicious, unless you can cite sources.

As for a lot of the other responses, equating violence with violence, let's back up to whether or not you think Hitler deserved to be defeated with violence, whether occupied France deserved to be invaded at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives. It had a working government at the time, after all, (several of them!)

The original post confused its casualty figures by citing the ultimate death count with the immediate casualties of the blast. I was astonished to see that the original post was a quotation of a hysterical poster from Australia. The Japanese had as their stated objective the colonization of Australia, and they tried.

The damage of the atomic bombs to the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was indeed terrible, but it was on the same scale as the damage to Tokyo from massive fire bombing raids wrought by an extremely 'advanced' and large bomber, the B-29, which was developed from a project almost as expensive as The Manhattan Project. These planes were pulverizing Japan and Japan had essentially no defenses. They had run out of the fuel supplies necessary to export their own violence. Their airforce was gone, their navy defeated, but their ability to assume defensive positions that could only be assailed at great cost was demonstrated all through the war, and there was no evidence that the home island would be any different.

As for the motivation of the US re: Russia, I refer you again to records of the decision making within the US that indicate the dropping of the bomb on Japan to end the war was gone into at many levels, and not everyone agreed. That's to be expected in a Democratic government.

There are a lot of good books on this subject. It's a worthwhile subject because it's one of the most important events of the Twentieth Century, if not the most important (the entire Nuclear story). It gave us the world we live in today.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: dianavan
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 12:25 PM

Why Hiroshima? Why a civilian population? Why a second bomb on Nagasaki?

Any way you look at it, it was an atrocity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: DougR
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 01:45 PM

Geeze, Piers, Mooman, you don't come across as pathological to me. Just naive.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Robert Price
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 01:51 PM

robomatic i completely agree. Of course the bomb was a tragedy, but as a Non-American, i don't feel America owes any apology. War, unfortunately, and a lot of 'pacifists' on here don't get, is muddy, violant, and barbaric at times.

That bomb brought a long war to a quick close. It ENDED WAR.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 01:55 PM

That opinion is your perogative DougR.

I have, however, taken the trouble to read extensively on the topic. Perhaps they also were just naive authors. I also have spoken to a number of British navy personnel who were involved in the Pacific theatre (including my own father when he was still alive). But obviously the wrong ones.

Mea culpa.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 02:00 PM

How about the fact that Freda is here.

Sacrifice a few to save many?

The civilation of this Planet has been doing this since the
beginning. Hitler, The Russian Gulag, Cambodia (Pol Pot era), etc. millions killed with far less reason. We possibly had a better reason
for the attacks on Japan.

Why are there such rabid attempts to denigrate the USA
in past years? This Country is far from perfect but does not the record of others. Africa is a present example.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 02:27 PM

P.S.

Fact:   200 000+ perfectly innocent civilians were instantly killed or suffered subsequent slow death by radiation.

Untested supposition:   That this saved the lives of 100 000s of thousand Allied forces and Japanese forces and civilians.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 02:29 PM

...that should have read 100s of thousands

Sorry.

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Sorcha
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 03:58 PM

OK....I am not real sure where I stand on this. My dad was on the first ship in to Yokahama harbour after the bomb....he said they might have surrendered but never lived that way because of bushido.....

He also said that McArthur was a swell headed asshole.....
If we wanted to impress Moscow, why wasn't Patton allowed to go there?

Do you really think the kamikaze attacks would have stopped w/o the Bomb? (real question...not rhetorical)

Dad is dead now so I can't ask him....


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: dianavan
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 04:26 PM

"War, unfortunately, and a lot of 'pacifists' on here don't get, is muddy, violant, and barbaric at times."

Thats why pacifists oppose war. We 'get it' but we do not think that war is the answer to the problem. Violence begets violence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 04:27 PM

mooman, what is YOUR point?

How many were killed by the Japanese Empire prior to the dropping of the A-bomb? How many countries had Japan invaded? How many additional Bataan death marches would it have taken to possibly alter your outlook?

robomatic does an excellent job of making the situation understandable. But, perhaps, not to those to have a deep resentment for the US, be they citizen or not.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Shanghaiceltic
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 05:23 PM

When I lived in Japan I made a visit to Hiroshima. The thing that sticks in my mind is not the horrific waxworks but the smaller items in the exhibition, the watch that stopped at the time oif the detonation, the twisted childs tricycle and other personel affects.

On the day I visited, which was during 'Golden Week' a week long holdiday in May there were many school parties. Several approached us and asked us our nationality. British I replied. They then asked what we thought about the bomb drop?

I had to agree it was a devastating demonstration of power, but when I asked these same students about the history of the Pacific War and why such a bomb was used they had no reply. Their school history books then and today do not cover the reasons or the actions of the Japanese forces in Asia or the war crimes committed against the Chinese, Thais, Phillipinos, Koreans.

This very fact still causes hatred of the Japanese in the region.

So while I agree that the bomb drop was an awfull thing the Japanese politicians should use the 6th August as a day of mourning not just for the Japanese who lost their lives but also to offer some kind of honour to those they tortured and pillaged and killed in their campaigns.

I am not anti-Japanese but I find the ambivalence to the suffering they caused at odds with the way the whole thing is turned into a guilt trip against those that fought them.

If you think that there are no right wingers left in Japan who want a return to Imperialism then go to the Yasukuni Shrine a week before the 6th August and witness the gathering of them. This group of people are still in denial and they include many of the Japanese Diet's politicians.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:10 PM

The first nuclear war in history started on on August 6, 1945 and ended three days later at Nagasaki. If we have learned nothing else, please let it be that we do not want another nuclear war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:11 PM

I think the official surrender was about a week later.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:15 PM


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:22 PM

We did not have a nuclear war in 1945. We simply put a quick end to the 2nd World War that had already cost hundreds of thousands of lives and had the potential of taking upwards of another million lives.

No more war would be great, but our civilization has never realized this possibility.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:38 PM

It was indeed a nuclear war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 06:48 PM

The Second World War cost the lives of more than 55,000,000 people.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 07:07 PM

One of the prominent critics of the bombings was Albert Einstein. Leo Szilard, a scientist who played a major role in the development of the atomic bomb, argued "If the Germans had dropped atomic bombs on cities instead of us, we would have defined the dropping of atomic bombs on cities as a war crime, and we would have sentenced the Germans who were guilty of this crime to death at Nuremberg and hanged them."
Their use has been called barbaric as several hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed, and the choice of areas heavily populated by civilians. In the days just before their use, many scientists (including Edward Teller) argued that the destructive power of the bomb could have been demonstrated without the taking of lives.
It has been argued that the use of atomic weapons against civilian populations on a large scale is a crime against humanity and a war crime. The use of poisonous weapons (due to the effects of the radiation) were defined as war crimes by international law of the time. Some have argued that Americans should have done more research into the effects of the bomb, including radiation sickness and the terrible burns that followed the explosion.

The information I have posted comes from Wikipedia sources


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Lighter
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 08:22 PM

Truman had just two atom bombs, and he bet correctly that their use would end the war quickly. Shortly befroe Hiroshima, he promised publicly that Japan's failure to surrender would result in "a rain of ruin the like of which the world has never seen."

Even though Tokyo and sixty other Japanese cities had already been leveled by firebombing, Japan refused even to discuss surrender. As a "god" and the "father" of all Japanese, Emperor Hirohito could have ended the war at any time with just one decree. In fact, the war couldn't have started without his acquiescence and approval. A quiet, introverted man himself, Hirohito was strongly sympathetic to the militarists from the beginning. He also seemed to believe that as the direct divine descendant of the Rising Sun, crude meddling in "mere politics" was beneath him. After everything else, it still took two atom bombs to change his mind.

Compare and contrast. The Italian military threw in the towel in 1943 because they were sick of losing an aggressive war that meant nothing to them. Mussolini's Fascists were kicked out of southern Italy, and the new government joined with the Allies in fighting Hitler. If Hirohito had taken responsibility sooner as the ultimate leader of the Japanese nation, the bombs could not have been dropped.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: number 6
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 09:13 PM

As I have mentioned in other threads here at the Mudcat ... in the horror of war it's the innocent that pay the highest price ... did the great warlords of power ever give a humane thought to the housewifes and children of Dresden, Coventry, Nagasaki, Guernica, Shanghai and .....


sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 10:14 PM

Freda:

wikipedia is a continuously updated web encyclopedia, and as such its accuracy is a sort of "accuracy of the majority." As far as Einstein and Szilard are concerned, neither was directly involved in the bomb development and the decision to use it. Szilard has been credited with the basic conception of nuclear fission, and he wrote a letter for Einstein to sign to 'get the ball rolling' in 1939, I think, when it appeared that Germany might have a technical lead in bomb R & D. Neither of them actually participated in bomb development. That means that neither would be a part of the decision making process. There were, of course, many scientists who were in favor of using the bomb, including, at the critical moment, J. Robert Oppenheimer, the technical and scientific leader of bomb development at Los Alamos.

An important correction to the above post that Truman had two bombs. There was a third bomb released to the military. After the bombing of Nagasaki, the American leadership mandated the return of the bomb, a 'fat man' plutonium bomb identical to the Nagasaki bomb, back to civilian control. Obviously, it was never used.

The tempest over whether WWII was a nuclear war or not is moot. It is certainly spurious to maintain that there was a four day 'nuclear war' within the greater conflagration of World War II. At the time of first use, atomic weapons were merely considered new weapons, such as poison gas of WWI. It was from the people closest to the new developments that the argument came to consider these weapons of a new class altogether. These people knew something that no one else knew, that waiting in the wings was the potential development of a 'new' new bomb, 1000 times more powerful than the atomic bomb. When this concept was first tested, it eliminated the island it was mounted on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: number 6
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 10:37 PM

"The tempest over whether WWII was a nuclear war or not is moot. It is certainly spurious to maintain that there was a four day 'nuclear war' within the greater conflagration of World War II."

Very elequent robomatic ... I believe the only ones who really can provide a conlusive answer to all of this are the remaining survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 10:38 PM

freda, please explain to me the difference in killing 300,000 people in a 'moment' or the killing of a million over the space of a year.
The killing of civilians, no matter the methodology, is sad. But, it is an integral part of the insanity of war.

The bomb that destroyed the island was tested before any were used in Japan.

Peace, it would have been a nuclear war had both sides used the devices.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 11:02 PM

The dead do not care what brought them there. They know only that they are dead. They no longer care what the name of the war is, if they ever did.


The only thing for us to do is make the world a better place than the kind of place that could produce such a war.


"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them."
A. Einstein


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: number 6
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 11:04 PM

good post robomatic

sincerely,
sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: EBarnacle
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 11:09 PM

Although I am definitely not a fan of war and killing, I believe the bomb drops were necessary. My father was at the Port of Embarkation, San Diego. The word was out that all of the service members were going to be involved in the invasion of the main islands of Japan. When the bomb was dropped, my father got a short leave and, with my mother decided that he was likely to come home. They made me. My existence is very important to me, as temporary as it is likely to be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: NH Dave
Date: 04 Aug 05 - 11:27 PM

Checking the "facts" quoted from Wikipedia all I found were references to the people quoted, not that they had expressed informed opposition to dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima, and Nagasaki.   I am sorry it took so many deaths to convince the Japanese military and their emporer god that the war was unwinnable, but if it comes to a case of sacrificing a few bombers and their crews, the two B-29s that actually dropped the bombs were accompanied by a number of other bombers and other aircraft documenting the two explosion, or several hundred thousand soldiers and a much larger number of Japanese soldiers and civilians, I'll sent the bombers every time.

    It is increasingly popular to blame the overwhelming horror of one country killing a quarter of a million helpless people by dropping two atomic bombs while totally ignoring the casualties resulting from the previous firebombing of Tokyo and similar targets which killed far more people, and left few casualties other than would result from any house fire on a gigantic scale.

    During the Pacific Island campaign we saw that it wasn't enough to seize an area, we had to eliminate every able bodied soldier before we had anything approaching pacification of the area. The fact that over the years, even as late as 2000, the odd former Japanese soldiers are still coming out of the bush, apologizing for their inability to continue a war lost 55 years in the past, shows that an invasion of the Japanese home islands would have required complete devastation of every area captured, with the attendant loss of civilian lives and military lives on each side of the conflict.

    We had a quick one-two punch, a hasty accepted peace treaty, and our people, under General MacArthur, with his aims for the Japan of the future, began rebuilding Japan's infrastructure, society, and economic conditions so that they were rapidly available to take their place in the Pacific regions, and the world at large. We were able to accomplish this because we were not dealing with the Soviet influence in accomplishing this task, due to MacArthur's unwillingness to accept ANY Soviet presence in Japan, which was not the case in Germany, or any of the Warsaw Pact countries who have only just began to exist as autonomous countries again, 60 years after WWII was over in Europe.

    Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 05:00 AM

A reply to Guest 04:27 PM (although I do not particularly see why I should reply to an anonymous post)

mooman, what is YOUR point?

My point is that I have a legitimate point of view and will not be browbeaten by others with a different point of view.

How many were killed by the Japanese Empire prior to the dropping of the A-bomb? How many countries had Japan invaded? How many additional Bataan death marches would it have taken to possibly alter your outlook?

Several million were killed by the Japanese I would estimate, and I am certainly no apologist for their atrocities or agression against other counties. Neither am I an apologist for the atrocities carried out by the Germans or for British atrocities such as the firebombing of Dresden. Many, although not (interestingly) all of these have been classified as war crimes.

robomatic does an excellent job of making the situation understandable.

He argues his case well but it is his point of view. Others have other points of view.

But, perhaps, not to those to have a deep resentment for the US, be they citizen or not.

I do not, and never have had, a deep resentment for the US.

The fact remains that over 200 000 innocent civilians were instantly incinerated or poisoned by radiation in two essentially politically-motivated and unnecessary attacks. The attempts to justify this double atrocity, e.g. bushido, a long campaign to occupy Japan with hundreds of thousands of casualties, etc., are revisionist supposition. There is strong evidence to the contrary that Japan was in any case close to capitulation due to the destruction that had already been wrought on it (not just by the US but by other Allied forces as well).

Those are at least some of my points. To misquote Groucho Marx, if you don't like them I have others.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 07:58 AM

you said it, mooman.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 09:16 AM

mooman, thanks. (I could use "Sam" rather than "Guest" but what difference would that make?)

I don't mean to imply that you are wrong. I simply disagree with your views on the subject. I think all facts were considered prior to the use of the Atomic bomb and that Japan was nowhere close to capitulation. I have never seen proof to the contrary.

By thanks, I am refering to your reply that helps me see your point of view. Of course, I shall stick with my view that the use of the 'bomb' ultimately resulted in decreasing the overall total of dead.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 09:30 AM

Guest,

Polite difference of opinion noted and appreciated!

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 09:36 AM

I'm back - I am new here and after glancing at the front page of todays NY Times, I realize I am not concentrating on what "I" should be. I remember there was discussion on the pros and cons of the United Nations. The Iraq 'oil for food scandal' was one of the most recent.

On that front page was a story that 1 out of 5 babies are dying in Niger due to starvation. Additionally, over 26% do not reach the age of 5. I do not mean for this post to be a thread killer. Simply, I am guilty with regard to not focusing on what I considered a more important issue. I will have to look for the "UN thread" and focus my attention there. Besides, several of you here, even though reflecting some of my thoughts, are way too articulate for me.
Carry on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,peg
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 12:02 PM

I find it odd that no one has mentioned the bigger picture of what this nuclear exchange unleashed. Namely, the adverse effects of nuclear proliferation.

I don't even want to debate the justification of the use of these bombs on a civilian population. There isn't one. I agree that one main motivating factor was to engender a large-scale nuclear pissing contest between world powers. The United States, in its glorious, horrific and very short life on Earth has been an arrogant bully from the get-go, forsaking its abilities and resources that might have made them a model nation for the dubious satisfaction gained from upholding a culture and government ruled by greed, competition and tyranny. Fortunately they have plenty of company in this.

Countries like Russia, the United States, France, England, etc. still sit on their tidy piles of bombs (thanks to Presidents Carter and Clinton for at least making an attempt to decommission many of them).

This idea of tacit mutually-assured destruction may seem passe now, but the fact remains there is still enough firepower controlled by the world's most militarily-sophisticated nations to blow the planet to smithereens several dozen times over. The only comfort anyone has derived from this (apart from those who inexplicably think it is a good thing to have all these deathboms lying around) is the idea that none of these nations would use such weapons without careful deliberation. This is not to forget the possibility that security breaches or terroristic acts might penetrate the silos, or that some stroke of geological or meteorological bad luck might finish things off for us.

Rogue nations with highly volatile and unstable political infrastructures (like Libya, or Jordan for example) have only to steal enough nuclear material (easy enough to do if you follow the news and have read of the unsettling amounts of plutonium and uranium that go missing each year) to construct a bomb and explode it pretty much anywhere. Can you all imagine the fallout (no pun intended) from such an event?

I have not even begun to mention the ways in which the production and testing of nuclear weapons and the generation of nuclear power have compromised public health and safety over the years.

The most obvious demonstration of naivete in my humble opinion is a failure to look at all sides of the issue. Our most basic needs for human survival: clean water, pure air, untainted food, and a thriving, diverse ecosystem, have been annihilated in the race to have the most nuclear bombs. Even if we one day decide to get rid of them all (as we might if there are any survivors after the next nuclear exchange), the resultant toxic waste will be a threat to life on Earth for millions of years.

Humanity will not rise like a Phoenix from these ashes. It will most likely barely stir as the poison wind passes over the rubble of the Earth. Circle of life.

peg


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Tam the man
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 12:18 PM

I wonder if G W Bush will say sorry to the Japanese.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 01:59 PM

I wonder if the Japanese will apologize for Pearl Harbor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,PeteBoom at work - hey its Friday
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 05:05 PM

Ah yes - August. So, it is time for the annual America should feel guilty for bombing Hiroshima & Nagasaki.

I could not disagree more. The thread here from last year is kind of interesting. I recommend Raedwolf's post from 13 August (about the middle). I stated my blood-thirsty views in that thread. They have not changed.

Why did Japan attack Pearl Harbor, the Phillipines, Singapore and Burma? Why did the US cut off sale of materiel to Japan? Why did Japan invade China? Why did no one in Japan mount an effective way to stop the spiral of rampant militarism?

It was only a matter of time before the great secret of nuclear weapons were uncovered. Getting the genie back in the bloody bottle was always the issue, wasn't it?

Pete


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 05:23 PM

"There is a minority of intellectual pacifists whose real though unadmitted motive appears to be hatred of Western democracy and admiration of totalitarianism. Pacifist propaganda usually boils down to saying that one side is as bad as the other but if one looks closely at the writings of younger intellectual pacifists, one finds that they do not by any means express impartial disapproval but are directed almost entirely against Britain and the US. Moreover they do not as a rule condemn violence as such, but only violence used in defense of Western countries." - George Orwell (in 1945), quoted in a letter to The Spectator


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 07:14 PM

I resent it when the guilt brigade masquerades as liberal. Plenty of liberals were saved by the bomb, including my father, a Democrat all his life who was proud that his President didn't hesitate to defeat the enemy before he was moved to the Pacific to be a part of the invasion fleet.

If you want to address barbarism, take your anti American views to the tortured and raped at Nanking.

Using the bomb as it was defeated one of the most barbaric enemies of all time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: EBarnacle
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 09:42 PM

"Why did Japan attack..." Imagine you are sitting on an overpopulated island, trying to build an industrial economy, have minimal resources, have militaristic traditions up the wazoo and are being boycotted by other major colonial powers.

Add in the fact that your allies in Europe seem to be doing well and are encouraging you to make a move to divert the attention of the non-Axis powers. If you don't want to be treated as a minor ally by your guys and have too much self respect to ask people you despise to give you what you need, what would you do? Sieze it, perhaps?


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 09:52 PM

I imagine that Japan attacked for the same reasons the US attacked Iraq. As to whether the use of the weapons constituted a 'nuclear war', I will rephrase to say the US dropped nuclear weapons on the homeland of its enemy. The people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki died in/due to/because of nuclear explosions.

IMO, it was a nuclear war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 05 Aug 05 - 10:16 PM

Also, the US knew the destructive power of the bombs it dropped on Japan. They had tested one at Alamogordo, New Mexico. Here. Also, thsi is the first I have heard of there being a fourth bomb. My understanding is that there was the one used at the Trinity test and the two dropped on Japan. Thank you for the info.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: NH Dave
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 07:04 AM

Peace, it is my understanding that Japan attacked the US because America was making it difficult to obtain oil and other raw materials for manufacturing. They also thought that it they could finish the inevitable war, that stemmed from their attack, in a year or so they could wind up victorious, but if the war dragged on much past this period of time, the US could redirect its manufacturing might into building war materials, they would lose the war.

    Initially they enjoyed great success, with the fall of the Phillipines, and their capture of many of the Pacific islands, almost all the way to Australia. When we were able to supply and reinforce MacArthur with war materials and several divisions of Marines to spearhead the island hopping campaign, it spelled the beginning of the end for Japan, and some of their strategists had predicted this very situation. Each of these islands became a major battle, often lasting for weeks, and sometimes months, but we did prevail in the South Pacific, to the detriment of the Japanese dream of an entire mega-community stretching from Japan to Malaya. The loss of one of their key strategists when his aircraft was shot down by US aircraft deprived them of a rational approach to winning the war.

    We probably would not have been so hard on the Japanese forces had they declared war on us before they began the attack on Pearl Harbor, or treated our POWs in a humane manner, and routinely murdered prisoners because they were too much bother to feed and guard. This casual flaunting of the Geneva Conventions on Land Warfare, was a main reason why we held speedy trials for the worst of the offenders, and hanged those found guilty of war crimes as an example to others.

    By and large, our troops observed the standards of care for POWs mandated by the Geneva Convention, dealing with those who surrendered; although this observance slacked off markedly after the massacre of unarmed US soldiers in either Belgium or western France. In the Pacific campaign we would gladly taken prisoners, had the opportunity afforded itself, but the Japanese brainwashed their soldiers and the civilians under their rule that we would murder them out of hand, that many chose suicide rather that take their chances with the Americans.

       Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Tam the man
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 07:48 AM

There's quite a lot of things that America has done along with other countries in the world that we all should say sorry for but we don't.

So let's live in Peace, And as for Peral Harbor, it was never bombed by a Atomic Bomb.

Tam


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Tam the man
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 08:21 AM

If I have upset anyone, then I'm sorry.

please remeber this is my opinon, I respct you're views, well try to I hope that you can respect mine.

Tam


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 09:30 AM

Tam, although it happens, no one should be upset by another here. I am aware that Japan did not attack Pearl Harbor with an Atomic device.
Was that due to the lack of availability?

In 40 years, I have yet to be presented with any arguement that would even begin to justify Pear Harbor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 09:32 AM

..........or Pearl Harbor for that matter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 10:07 AM

About 20-25 years ago I was active in CND at Sussex University and I was as ready as anyone to condemn the USA, especially during the Reagan years. And I don't think anyone with any sense can regard the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki as anything other than horrific. But...

There's a lot of 20-20 hindsight being expressed here. I don't think I would have acted differently if I had been Truman. Yes, the attacks cost hundreds of thousands of innocent lives but by the end of the war millions of innocent lives had already been lost (including some 15 million in China under Japanese occupation).

I don't doubt that Truman would have been aware of the implications of his decision. How much he cared I can't say.

However, I do feel that by the time of the attacks Truman's chief responsibility was to end the war with as little loss of American and allied lives as possible. The Japanese government had chosen to take their country to war (initially against China, which is when World War 2 really began)and it is they, in my view, who bear the brunt of responsibility for the consequences for the Japanese people - not the Americans.

And while it's an awful thing to say, perhaps the attacks were a necessary lesson for the rest of the world in how destructive another world war would be. If the attacks hadn't taken place and at least been perceived to have been the blow that finally ended the war, it's quite likely in my view that either the US or the Soviet Union would have been tempted to use the bomb in a subsequent war, such as Korea- perhaps in the mistaken view that the bomb could have been used like any other weapon. The perception of the bomb as an ultimate weapon, whose use was to be avoided at all costs, stemmed from the evidence of Hiroshima and Nagasaki - in other words, what the bomb could really do to real people.

Much of the subsequent criticism of Truman's decision stems from the view that the attacks were intended as a lesson to Stalin and, as a result, they led to the Cold War. There may be an element of truth in that but I don't believe that Stalin's attitude to Poland and Eastern Europe (for instance) would have been significantly different if the bomb had not been used on Japan. The Cold War had much deeper roots than that.

There are, of course, lots of 'what if's. What if the bomb had not been used? Would Japan have surrendered or would elements in its armed forces have forced the country to fight to the death? This would have seemed an unacceptably high probability to the Americans at the time, especially after the experience of Okinawa, where civilians committed suicide in huge numbers because they had been indoctrinated to believe an American occupation would be worse.

If Japan had surrendered first, would the bomb have been used to end the war against Germany? Or would it have been considered less acceptable to use it against europeans (I personally think that is quite likely)?

If Truman had waited, or offered Japan terms sooner, would the war have ended without an invasion or the use of the bomb? Maybe, but by 1945 the one thing the allies were all united on was the demand for unconditional surrender. A negotiated peace on any other terms was never likely to be an option in the context of the time.

It should also not be forgotten that the use of the bomb was a huge gamble. It was by no means certain that the devices would both work (especially as they were both of different designs) and there had only been one solitary test of a live bomb before the attack on Hiroshima. These days it would be unthinkable for a revolutionary new weapon to be deployed strategically with so little testing. The fact is, no-one really would have known what was going to happen at the time. Apparently the US only had three bombs ready for use. If Japan had decided to fight on it would have been back to square one with the invasion.

Yes, the US has done plenty of things both before and since World War 2 that can and should be condemned and as I said at the beginning, no reasonable person can regard Hiroshima and Nagasaki with anything other that the most profound horror and sorrow. It was a cataclysmic end to a cataclysmic war, and one in which in a few short years saw mankinds ability to inflict suffering upon itself progress (if that's the right word) in ways that could not have been imagined before. But in the end, I doubt that I would have made a different decision: to launch a huge and costly invasion or to pin one's hopes on two more air raids at the end of a war that had already seen millions of people die as a result of aerial bombardment?

Hiroshima and Nagasaki must be remembered and never repeated and in my view, the case for nuclear disarmament is as strong now as it was 25 years ago. If we want to honour the memory of all the innocent people who died in World War 2, whether from Nazi atrocities, starvation and forced labour in Japanese prison camps, allied incendiary attacks or the atomic bomb, we need to remember the attacks as a lesson for all of us. To do anything less would be an atrocity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Halyburton
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 11:34 AM

The following quote comes from Brigadier General Paul W. Tibbits, which I find interesting...

"The Enola Gay has become a symbol to different groups for one reason or another. I suggest that she be preserved and given her place in the context of the times in which she flew. For decades she has been relegated to a storage facility. Her place in history has been dealt with unfairly by those who decry the inhumanity of her August 6th mission. Ladies and gentlemen, there is no humanity in warfare. The job of the combatants, the families, the diplomats, and factory workers is to win. All had a role in that "all out" fight."

"...there is no humanity in warfare" speaks volumes. His speech, quoted here suggests pretty much in summary, he had a job, the President made a decision, he carried it out and he believes it was the right decision. He also says look forward. What's done is done.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 12:19 PM

Halyburton,

When I spoke about remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki, preserving the aeroplane that dropped the first bomb as an exhibit for planespotters wasn't what I was talking about.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Halyburton
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 01:44 PM

Chris B, nor was I... Read the speech at the bottom. It gives an insite into the person who personally dropped the bomb on Hiroshima. Again, what he says, "...there is no humanity in warfare" is the quote I was wanting to point out. Not the actual plane that delivered the device of mass destruction.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 02:43 PM

I think I see the point you are trying to make, but I can't say I agree. War is certainly an inhuman business (or perhaps all too human a business), but if we accept that there is no humanity in it, or that humanitarian questions have no place, then we have no moral framework by which to judge the Nazis, the Khmer Rouge, or Lt. William Calley (to name but a few).

My point was not to suggest that the end always justifies the means in wartime but that in the case of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the decision to use the bomb needs to be understood in the context of the time. That is not to underestimate the awfulness of what happened or its consequences. Truman had a choice to make and I am not prepared to condemn him for it from the safe distance of 60 years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 02:52 PM

Here is one extract from President Trumans personal diary; it speaks volumes about the issue and makes nonsense of all the accusations written here. WWII bombing runs involved destroying factories, railways and the workers who produced or supported manufacturing military equipment.

7/25/45 Diary Entry:

"We met at 11 A.M. today. That is Stalin, Churchill and the U.S. President. But I had a most important session with Lord Mountbattan & General Marshall before than. We have discovered the most terrible bomb in the history of the world. It may be the fire destruction prophesied in the Euphrates Valley Era, after Noah and his fabulous Ark.

"Anyway we 'think' we have found the way to cause a disintegration of the atom. An experiment in the New Mexican desert was startling - to put it mildly. Thirteen pounds of the explosive caused the complete disintegration of a steel tower 60 feet high, created a crater 6 feet deep and 1,200 feet in diameter, knocked over a steel tower 1/2 mile away and knocked men down 10,000 yards away. The explosion was visible for more than 200 miles and audible for 40 miles and more.

"The weapon is to be used against Japan between now and August 10th. I have told the Sec. of War, Mr. Stimson, to use it so that military objectives and soldiers and sailors are the target and not women and children. Even if the Japs are savages, ruthless, merciless and fanatic, we as the leader of the world for the common welfare cannot drop this terrible bomb on the old capital or the new [Kyoto or Tokyo].

"He [Stimson] and I are in accord. The target will be a purely military one and we will issue a warning statement [known as the Potsdam Proclamation] asking the Japs to surrender and save lives. I'm sure they will not do that, but we will have given them the chance. It is certainly a good thing for the world that Hitler's crowd or Stalin's did not discover this atomic bomb. It seems to be the most terrible thing ever discovered, but it can be made the most useful."

[Privately, Truman later expressed misgivings about the mass killing of civilians in Hiroshima]


[7/26/45: The U.S., Great Britain, and China issued the Potsdam Proclamation, which called for Japan's "unconditional surrender". It made no reference to the future status of the Emperor, Russia's secret agreement to declare war on Japan, or the atomic bomb. It was rejected by Japan's Prime Minister Suzuki.]


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Raedwulf
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 03:17 PM

speculation, opinion, evidence. hot air, a huge blast of it.

How very true, Freda, how very true. The worrying thing is that you seem to regard your expressed opinion as something other than just another example of speculation, opinion, evidence. hot air, a huge blast of it.


This ground has been covered ere now on Mudcat. I'd rather point you all in the direction of this than rehash previously voiced arguments again.

When it comes down to it, Hiroshima & Nagasaki, for better or worse, happened. You can't unmake them. Were they necessary? Could they have been avoided?

The only question that really matters is can we make sure that this never need happen again?

I hope so. Sometimes I wonder about the rest of you...


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Halyburton
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 06:26 PM

Chris B, I have the impression that you think that I do not agree with the use of the atom bomb. That is far from the truth. The past is the past, we learn from what was done, try not to repeat mistakes and move forward. We learn from the past, but noone should dwell on it. There are thousands of "what-if's." Perhaps even thousands of millions. The atomic age was bound to spring forth, and as Truman wrote, he (as I) is thankful that we (America) discovered it first. Nazi Germany, devoid of moral backing, would have used no restraint. Nor would Stalinist Russia. A man that can kill 12 million of his own people wouldn't have hesitated to use the bomb first on Germany then on his allies.

There's an interesting thing about today, we think about nuclear weapons. Who owns them, who wants them, and who will not show restraint and use them. Is there any wonder we (Western nations) try to control them worldwide? Is there any wonder the U.S. still occupies Japan and probably will for another 40 years? Not to mention occupation in Germany. I'm sure the revisionist history the children of those countries speak not of their atrocities, but of the horrors of American occupation. I may not totally agree with current events in Iraq (I do favor Afghanistan), I do believe in occupation in Japan and Germany. Especially Japan. I fear one day, the U.S. will turn a blind eye to that island nation and will be sadly mistaken (ok, maybe I've read "Debt of Honor" too much).


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 07:08 PM

Halyburton

I haven't read 'Debt of Honor' so you have me at a disadvantage. I don't, however, lie awake at night worrying about Japan (or Germany) in the 21st century. And I don't necessarily 'agree with' the use of the bomb - I just don't see how it could have been avoided. That doesn't mean I have to like it. Hard choices in hard times.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 08:25 PM

The argument that the bombing of Hiroshima was justified on the grounds that it is claimed that on a balance of probabilities it caused less suffering than would otherwise have occurred in a continuing war does involve a certain logic.

But it is a logic that has some very disturbing implications. It is a logic that says that, in certain circumstances, it is justifiable to do anything, without any limits whatsoever. The only thing that matters, in the last analysis, is that the ultimate good effects envisaged will outweigh the present suffering caused. And the people who have to make that judgement are those who carry the actions involved.

Before we accept that logic we should recognise that it is a logic shared with the people who engineered the atrocities associated with Al Qaeda, and even with the architects of the Holocaust.

If we believe Hiroshima was justifiable on those grounds, our argument with those kinds of people is reduced to one about weighing good and evil effects in the balance; and while that is an important argument, underlying it is a shared understanding of ethics, which is, if the sums work out right, there is absolutely nothing which is ruled out.

..................
As for Nagasaki, that wasn't anything to do with ending the war, it was essentially just a way of testing a different type of atom bomb. Even on the kind of logic I mentioned just now, it was unjustifiable, and should be recognised as a war crime in every sense.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 06 Aug 05 - 08:57 PM

Is it not difficult some 60 years later to offer logical, fact based opinions on what was and what wasn't?

Most can only read the History books (Japans' books are very closely edited) Blogs, rumors, the writngs of those who have decided what the scenario was way after the fact and those who either like America or dislike America. There is something there for everybody and one only has to read that which he agrees with.

For me, to still be concerned about the World Trade Center, which was on our soil and was very recent, is the thing that we should all be thinking about. In this era of science and high tech, there are still 1100+ U.S. Citizens whose remains were never found, even with the miniscule requirement for DNA identification.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: CarolC
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 02:04 AM

I have told the Sec. of War, Mr. Stimson, to use it so that military objectives and soldiers and sailors are the target and not women and children.

He [Stimson] and I are in accord. The target will be a purely military one...


--from Dave (tam)'s Truman quote.

So if that was the plan, why did they drop the bombs on so many civilians?


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,JTS
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 02:54 AM

It seems that The USAF thinks the targets were chosen partly for military value but mostly because they has not been bombed yet. "For maximum psychological effect on the Japanese Government."

https://www.airforcehistory.hq.af.mil/PopTopics/abomb.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 05:48 AM

Guest G,

I think you're introducing a different subject here. Yes, 9/11 was awful, but it wasn't on 'our' soil, it was on yours. Of course, it has implications for all of us which we are all still living with but Hiroshima and Nagasaki had different implications for the entire world.

Even nowadays, there is less chance of terrorists using nuclear weapons than there is of national governments using them and if governments don't get serious about disarmament and preventing proliferation there is a continuing danger of the bomb being used again.

This is not to minimise the implications of other forms of terrorism, but the nuclear question doesn't go away just because other questions come up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 05:59 AM

CarolC you can read about the choice here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_bombings_of_Hiroshima_and_Nagasaki


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Tam the man
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 06:43 AM

I'm Sorry I can't Justify Pearl Harbor, But can the Americans Justify dropping bombs on Hirsima and Nikasaki

Tam


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 06:45 AM

"Is it not difficult some 60 years later to offer logical, fact based opinions on what was and what wasn't?"

Probably easier in fact 60 years after than it would have been at the time. And the passage of time in no way makes the issues irrelevant.

And the central issue as I see it is this: if Hiroshima can be accepted as a justifiable and moral act, on the grounds that on balance it caused less suffering than it prevented, that means that, on these same grounds, it would be possible to justify absolutely anything.

It may well be true that most people do believe that - but if that is so, they should accept that there is no fundamental moral gulf between them and those who would justify terrorism on any scale. Just a disagreement about a kind of arithmetical evaluation of consequences.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Tam the man
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 06:47 AM

I'm Sorry about that, I just want to get rid on Nuclear weapons from the world, but that is my opinon, and you don't have to agree with it.

Let's not argue, let's agree to disagree.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 06:53 AM

Gentlemen Just be gratefull that you are not speaking German or Japanese in 2005...


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Halyburton
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 10:56 AM

Tam,

One problem I have with a country to get rid of it's nuclear arsenal is one simple, yet somewhat funny belief I hold. What if aliens attack and we only have conventional weapons :) And eventually, I believe the fusion bombs we have will one day might start a fusion plant in space.

In more seriousness, if someone attacks my nation (the U.S.) with biological, chemical or radiological means, I believe since the use of WMDs were used, we have all right to retaliate to those countries that harbor those that used the weapons by using the WMDs we have (aka nukes). Yes, that might seem a bit Hammurabi of me, an eye for an eye, but when you use such weapons on a civilian populace, they must think long and hard about the consequences. And on this point, I'm not very moderate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 11:44 AM

Point well taken, Guest, Chris B., and what you go onto say is true.
We have more worry today regarding nuclear weapons than ever before.

To go on and on about the moral values of what happened 60 years ago is an exercise in futility. This is today and maybe we should be expending our efforts towards alerting everyone to write, perhaps protest. Would not a 30 million person march capture the attention of some?

With regards to 60 years ago, while not involved for many reasons, I firmly believe that dropping the 'bomb' was the correct thing to do at the time. I see where there are some who protest that are not really aware of the chain of events thalt led up to this. The bombing of Nagasaki was NOT a test. A second test had alread taken place on an Atoll in the Pacific ocean.

Hurl your barbs at me as opposed to a bunch of old dead men. And don't bother the pilot of the Enola Gay who is still living somewhere in Ohio. I am sad but I am not ashamed and I pray the 3rd device, no matter what its' size and scope, is never, ever used against humanity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: artbrooks
Date: 07 Aug 05 - 07:47 PM

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. I was born just about nine months after my father returned from the Pacific, and probably wouldn't have been if the bomb hadn't been dropped. Personally, I enjoy being here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: dianavan
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 12:41 AM

I'm glad you're here, too, art. Many of the children who were born after Hiroshima and Nagasaki were stillborn, including my older brother. Many of my friends that were born in '47 were actually the second child. The first child was often stillborn. My father was also in the Pacific. I've always wondered how far that radiation might have drifted.

I've tried to find the exact number of miscarriages following the bomb but have been unable to find exact statistics.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 06:34 AM

My mother was born in December of 1946. She was the first child of a man (my grandfather)who was in the Pacific until late 1945. I never heard from anyone that there was a stillborn child. Then again, knowing what I do working in a radiation area (fluroscope), male gametes respawn in about a month, therefore the radiation probably only really affected those who were there in August, went home in August and "got some." Those were probably the children who were stillborn.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 07:14 AM

Dianavan,

Sorry to hear about your brother. However, without knowing more, it seems a little far-fetched to suggest that every person who was in the pacific in late 1945 and who subsequently had a stillborn child was affected by the bombs. People in the armed forces would have handled toxic substances almost every day and, of course, stillbirths occur in nature. Not that that would have been any consolation to your poor parents.

I don't want to decry your family's experience but I wonder if it is really helpful to be seen to be claiming that one's family may have been victims when we already have such hard information on those who most definitely were.

Once again, sorry about your brother.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 09:24 AM

I took it that dianavan's point was that there were all kinds of consequences of a historical event like Hiroshima, and some people alive today wouldn't have been born if it hadn't happened and some people who weren't born would have been born, and would have been alive today.

For all artbrooks (for example) knows he or she wouldn't have been born if Hitler hadn't come to power, and the second world war hadn't taken place, since his or her parents would likely never have met each other. I don't think that'd be a good reason from thinking that on balance Hitler was a good thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 10:07 AM

Eerie thought, McGrath! I had never given it any consideration but I probably would not be here had not hitler came to power. (small 'h' intentional)
My Great Grandparents migrated to the US (or escaped) from Germany and met up with some fine English folks. Here I am.

Would I have not wanted to be if that would have changed the outcome for 8,000,000+ plus Jewish people. That is a no brainer but also ia a worthless afterthought now.

Radiation? Yes it is bad and was harmeful but we knew so little about its' after effects. Remember the Xray devices in the Childrens shoe departments as late as the mid '60s? Completely unshielded,
no lead protective vests for the child and no lead wall for the operator to duck behind. Many sterilazations came about as a result of that process. Too late to really ascertain how many deaths could be attributed to this, the same as with radiation deaths 60 years ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Not that guest, nor that one either
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 12:25 PM

"Cranes Over Hiroshima" by Fred Small


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 12:42 PM

Cranes Over Hiroshima
        By Fred Small


The baby blinks her eye, as the sun falls from the sky,

She feels the sting of a thousand fires, as the city around her dies.

Some sleep beneath the rubble, some wake to a different world,

From the crying babe will grow a laughing girl.

Ten summers fade to Autumn, ten winters' snows have passed,
She's a child of dreams and dances, she's a racer strong and fast.
But the headaches come ever more often, and the dizziness always returns,
And the word she hears is leukemia, and it burns.

chorus:

Cranes over Hiroshima, white and red and gold,

Flicker in the sunlight, like a million vanished souls.

I will fold the cranes of paper, to a thousand one by one.

And I'll fly away, when I am done.

Her ancestors knew the legend, if you make a thousand cranes.
From squares of colored paper, it will take away the pain.
With loving hands she folds them, 644
Till the morning her trembling hands can't fold anymore.

cho.

Her friend did not forget her, crane after crane they made,
Until they reached a thousand, and they laid them on her grave.
People from everywhere gathered, and together a prayer they said,
And they wrote the words in granite so none may forget.

This is our cry, this is our prayer, peace in the world.
This is our cry, this is our prayer, peace in the world.
This is our cry, this is our prayer, peace in the world.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Bunnahabhain
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 02:17 PM

Dropping Nuclear weapons on Japan saved lives on both sides.

Operation Downfall (The proposed invasion of Japan) was heavily studied, and the following casulty estimates were arrived at.

US Casulties.

Low estimate. 150,000
High estimate. 750,000+
Most likley. 450,000

Japanese Casulties, Civilian and Millitary.

Low estimate. 1,000,000
High estimate. 5,000,000+
Most likley. 2,500,000

Estimates for total casulties for both bombs range about 400-500,000.


The casulty figures for the invasion are the offical Pentagon figures, released when the invasion plans were declassified. The US millitary may not be a neutral source on this matter, but these figures are the best estimate available.

Bunnahabhain.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 02:59 PM

I think that some people in here are missing the point. WAR IS WRONG!
SOMETIMES IT IS NECESSARY........BUT STILL WRONG!!!
We obviously have not learned the lesson.
If you want to argue about relative morality then you must include everything in the arguement or it will be biassed.
Which is more wrong, Hitlers genocide of Jews/Gypsies/Disabled or America's treatment of Viet Nam, or China's invasion of Tibet, or.... do I realy have to continue
It's a small Planet why cant we work togeather more?????


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 04:33 PM

Bruce (Peace): You wrote:

Also, the US knew the destructive power of the bombs it dropped on Japan. They had tested one at Alamogordo, New Mexico. Here. Also, thsi is the first I have heard of there being a fourth bomb. My understanding is that there was the one used at the Trinity test and the two dropped on Japan. Thank you for the info.

The Trinity Test was of a "device" which means it's a proof of concept and not designed as a weapon per se. (A few years later the first hydrogen test device would weigh many many tons, notwithstanding since then specialists have been able to reduce it in size to about the size'n shape of a large dunce cap).
The 'device' at Trinity was a plutonium weapon because it requires a sophisticated system to get the plutonium to fission without coming apart first. They did not test the uranium weapon because by its nature they were sure it would work, and uranium was slightly harder to come by than plutonium, which they were beginning to produce via breeder reactor, and once you get it started, the plutonium keeps on comin'.

So: Hiroshima: Uranium Bomb
Nagasaki: Plutonium Bomb (Actually turned out to be almost the same thing as the Alamogordo device only without the instrumentation hookups and with heavy steel streamlining containing it).
Third Bomb: There was enough plutonium for the works to a third bomb, which according to the Rhodes Book: "The Making of the Atomic Bomb" was released and available to the military, but after the results of the first two over Japan, the US government had the materials returned to the US mainland and civilian 'control.'

The nuclear 'stockpile' remained at near zero levels for a flat period after the war during which a lot of back-and-forth between government, scientists, the military, and interested civilians took place. It's too complicated for me to go into without re-reading the Rhodes book, but it's interesting.

McG of Harlow, you wrote:

The argument that the bombing of Hiroshima was justified on the grounds that it is claimed that on a balance of probabilities it caused less suffering than would otherwise have occurred in a continuing war does involve a certain logic.

But it is a logic that has some very disturbing implications. It is a logic that says that, in certain circumstances, it is justifiable to do anything, without any limits whatsoever. The only thing that matters, in the last analysis, is that the ultimate good effects envisaged will outweigh the present suffering caused. And the people who have to make that judgement are those who carry the actions involved.

Before we accept that logic we should recognise that it is a logic shared with the people who engineered the atrocities associated with Al Qaeda, and even with the architects of the Holocaust.

If we believe Hiroshima was justifiable on those grounds, our argument with those kinds of people is reduced to one about weighing good and evil effects in the balance; and while that is an important argument, underlying it is a shared understanding of ethics, which is, if the sums work out right, there is absolutely nothing which is ruled out.

..................
As for Nagasaki, that wasn't anything to do with ending the war, it was essentially just a way of testing a different type of atom bomb. Even on the kind of logic I mentioned just now, it was unjustifiable, and should be recognised as a war crime in every sense.


You make an appeal to logic, then circumscribe your argument around your limited use of it, to wit:
The decision to use the bomb was made by many people, among them scientists, military leaders, and lastly, the elected civilian AND military leader of the United States, Harry Truman. It was de facto a legitimate decision, and a logical decision.

But it was not only a logical decision, nor was it made only on logic. Nor should it have been.

Your general and limited setpoint of decision which I paraphrase: "do the perceived good results outweigh the other" is not a workable generalization to make equivalent the Americans, El Qaeda, and the Nazis. You could sweep under your logical carpet the Disney Coporation, Doctors Without Borders, and the planners of the Anchorage Christmas Pageant.

As for your totally illogical comment about your perception of the cause for Nagasaki, as I've mentioned in the first secton of this response, the plutonium weapon had been tested. At the time of the Nagasaki bomb, Japan had received one nuclear strike, and had not surrendered.

Chris B, (Born Again Scouser) you wrote:

If Japan had surrendered first, would the bomb have been used to end the war against Germany? Or would it have been considered less acceptable to use it against europeans (I personally think that is quite likely)?

I really liked your post. If you get into the literature of the design of the first atomic weapons, you will learn that a lot of the seminal atomic research was done in Germany by German scientists. It was fear of Germany obtaining these weapons that called into being the magnitude of the Manhattan Project. While history isn't scientific, it's my opinion that if Germany hadn't surrendered before the weapon was ready, it would certainly have been used on Germany first. I don't think racism took a role in the decision. In fact, there are records that a cultural awareness of the Japanese was practised, in that Kyoto was taken off the target list.

dianavan, you wrote:

...Many of the children who were born after Hiroshima and Nagasaki were stillborn, including my older brother. Many of my friends that were born in '47 were actually the second child. The first child was often stillborn. My father was also in the Pacific. I've always wondered how far that radiation might have drifted.

I've tried to find the exact number of miscarriages following the bomb but have been unable to find exact statistics.


Your linkage of the use of nuclear weapons in Japan and the physical effects on allied personnel you mention is without foundation. You yourself have no statistics. The war exposed many people to many conditions, climates, and chemicals. Unless the women who delivered the stillborn were involved in the war, stillbirths are unlikely to be related. Maybe you should check out the statistics at Los Alamos, where the scientists and workers on the project experienced a baby boom that got the military authorities quite disturbed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 07:21 PM

No doubt that radiation leads to birth defects.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 08:02 PM

I'm afraid I can't quite understand what your points there are, robomatic, but I think you misunderstand what I was trying to say. I'm not primarily talking about the actual decision-making process involved in the bombing, and the subjective morality of those involved, but about the ethical judgement we make about what was done, which affects how we judge other things which haven't happened yet.

And my point was that only if we follow a rigorous utilitarian logic, that sees any action as justified if it's good consequences outweigh its bad consequences, can we see Hiroshima as justifiable - and that this kind of logic lands us in some very strange company. There is an alternative view, that there are some actions which can never be justified. In theory that is the the one which underlies the concept of war crimes.
.......................

It occurred to me that perhaps an expression that sums up the whole controversy about Hiroshima is "Needs must when the devil drives."


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 09:34 PM

"No doubt that radiation leads to birth defects".

No doubt, Peace, and totally agreed with.

Be it from environmental sources, X-ray treatments or even the Sun.
What is your plan to prevent it.

Why not research and explain to us why the Luekemia rate is higher today(per capita)tham it was 50 years ago. The rotation of the planet Earth is the same speed, the "tradewinds" are the same and the overall rainfall per decade has not change that much.

Could it be that space aliens plus the agressive Japanese economy have stirred things up? I really would like to know.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,AR282
Date: 08 Aug 05 - 10:13 PM

Yep, no doubt about it. It brought a quicker end to the war--about two whole months with or without an invasion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Have Heard It Said-
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 03:33 AM

Ignorance is Bliss. If so there is a lot of bliss in the above posts.

It is a well documented fact that both the Germans and Japanese
were working feverishly to develop the Atomic Bomb...

The Germans had already fired V1's & V2's at the English and the Japanese had plans just weeks before the Bomb was dropped to blow up
the Panama Canal and both had developed JET airplanes.

and we all know from their past histories that they

PROBABLY WOULD NOT HAVE USED THEM ON THE UNITED STATES OR ENGLAND

that in light of the fact they had both killed several million

innocent civilians. thru out Europe and Indo China and other
nations.

You are not concerned with the REAL TRUTHS, only your fantasies.


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Subject: RE: BS: Nagasaki 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 06:55 AM

Nagasaki marks 60th anniversary of atomic bombing
The Associated Press TUESDAY, AUGUST 9, 2005

NAGASAKI, Japan The second — and, so far, last — city ever attacked by an atomic bomb marked the 60th anniversary of its devastation Tuesday with a Catholic Mass, a moment of silence and an angry plea for a global ban on nuclear arms. About 6,000 people, including hundreds of aging bomb survivors, crowded into Nagasaki's Peace Memorial Park, just a few hundred meters (yards) from the center of the blast, for a solemn remembrance and moment of silence.

Nagasaki Mayor Iccho Itoh then had some angry words for the leaders of the nuclear powers, and especially the United States. ''We understand your anger and anxiety over the memories of the horror of the 9-11 terrorist attacks,'' he said. ''Yet, is your security enhanced by your government's policies of maintaining 10,000 nuclear weapons, of carrying out repeated sub-critical nuclear tests, and of pursuing the development of new `mini' nuclear weapons?'' Itoh also urged Japan to get out from under the U.S. ''nuclear umbrella.'' About 50,000 U.S. troops are deployed throughout Japan under a post World War II mutual security pact.

Three days after the Enola Gay dropped the ''Little Boy'' bomb on Hiroshima, killing at least 140,000 in the world's first atomic bomb attack, Bock's Car took off to deliver the second A-bomb — nicknamed ''Fat Man'' — to the city of Kokura. Kokura was hidden under a thick cover of haze. The plane circled three times, then changed course for Nagasaki, where it also encountered thick clouds.

With dwindling fuel, the pilot nearly turned around but then found a break in the clouds. Estimates of the death toll range from 60,000 to 80,000. Nagasaki officials on Tuesday used 74,000 as the death figure.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 07:22 AM

I can not do anything regarding what happened 60 tears ago.
I can, kowever, soften my approach and not reach an uneeded level of sarcasm with regard ro a post, case in point being Peace and my comments at Guest, G 08/9:34.
These are, after all, our opinions and comments with some being verified, others feelings with a level of passion that cannot be ignored.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,PeteBoom (still t work)
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 09:20 AM

Try this link

Yeah, I know its only "mass media pulp" or "left wing main stream media" but some of the viewpoints from those on the spot at the time are interesting...

Back to work now -

Pete


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,ar282
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 01:12 PM

>>I really liked your post. If you get into the literature of the design of the first atomic weapons, you will learn that a lot of the seminal atomic research was done in Germany by German scientists. It was fear of Germany obtaining these weapons that called into being the magnitude of the Manhattan Project. While history isn't scientific, it's my opinion that if Germany hadn't surrendered before the weapon was ready, it would certainly have been used on Germany first. I don't think racism took a role in the decision. In fact, there are records that a cultural awareness of the Japanese was practised, in that Kyoto was taken off the target list.<<

This is patently untrue. Memos have already been released that prove that the US never had any intention of dropping the bomb on Germany.

Here was the reason: Germany is essentially land-locked. If you drop a new type of bomb over Germany and it doesn't go off, you've just handed them your most devastating weapon. With Japan, if the bomb fails to go off, it falls in the water (the bombs were detonated over the ocea not over land). They can fish it out but that takes time and that gives you time to drop your second one.

The problem is, if the first one works you still have to drop the second one because that's what it was made for.

With that said, there was no justification. Sorry, but I refuse to believe a bunch of hungry woman and children were this big threat to us big, tough Americans. If Japanese military had died in the bomb that would be one thing. We're talking mostly women and children, folks. Women and children. No amount rationalizing and patriotic chest-beating and high-fiving erases that cold, hard fact.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 01:25 PM

guestar282,

Your statements are suspect. Hiroshima was a city, the bomb was deteonated over the city and would have been easily recovered if it did no go off.


The statement "The problem is, if the first one works you still have to drop the second one because that's what it was made for."
needs a lot of explaination to make sense.


There were both military and industrial targets in Hiroshima. The fact is, the selection of a city was to reduce the civilian casualties, by picking a minor city rather than Tokyo or a more significant poplation center.

Cold, hard fact.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,AR282
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 01:40 PM

>>Your statements are suspect. Hiroshima was a city, the bomb was deteonated over the city and would have been easily recovered if it did no go off.<<

No, sir. The bomb was detonated over the water next to the city.


>>The statement "The problem is, if the first one works you still have to drop the second one because that's what it was made for."
needs a lot of explaination to make sense.<<

The bombs were not deterrents since no one knew their power. They were made to be used and cost way too much not to use them. Two had to be made in case the first one did not detonate. But even if it does, the second must be used because it was not made for any other reason than to be used.

>>There were both military and industrial targets in Hiroshima. The fact is, the selection of a city was to reduce the civilian casualties, by picking a minor city rather than Tokyo or a more significant poplation center.<<

You could have picked any spot in japan if that was the case. It was dropped on a city because that was what it was made to do--to reduce cities to rubble in a flash. There is no way to know how well it works until you drop it on an unsuspecting city. There is no other way. Hiroshima wasn't even the original target so your reasoning leaves much to be desired.

>>Cold, hard fact.<<

The only cold, hard fact is the one I've pointed out. when all is said and done, we dropped the bomb on women and children. Nothing can erase that. We did it and we must own up to it like intelligent adults and not stupid kids with "Well, they were doing bad things too!!" As my mother would say, "That doesn't excuse your bad things!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 01:56 PM

AR282,So the building at ground zero was floating on the ocean?

"The bombs were not deterrents since no one knew their power. They were made to be used and cost way too much not to use them. Two had to be made in case the first one did not detonate. But even if it does, the second must be used because it was not made for any other reason than to be used."

Still makes no sense. "MUST"? NOT a valid statement. ALL weapons are made to be used- so obviously we have had 10,000 + nuclear bombs detonated? And every single bullet has been fired. Right.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 02:14 PM

http://www.atomicarchive.com/Maps/HiroshimaMap.shtml \


Why do you feel it needed to make false statements about the location of the bomb? It was an airburst over the ground zero point, shown in the map above.


And we had tested one device already- we had a pretty good idea of the power of the ones we dropped. BOTH atomic bombs killed far less people than a single night of firebombing of Tokyo or Dresden- BUT ended the war (IMO), saving at least 10 times as many casualties if the US had invaded.

Cold, hard fact.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 02:53 PM

from the link that PeteBoom gave...


"For the invasion of Japan, scheduled for the autumn of 1945 and spring of 1946, both sides loaded up. Gen. Curtis LeMay, the American Army Air Corps commander whose "burn jobs" had incinerated roughly a third of urban Japan and killed nearly a million people, had 5,000 B-29 bombers ready to go. To greet a half-million American invaders, the Japanese had at least 6,000 kamikaze planes and 2,350,000 regular troops, not to mention an enormous citizen militia of some 30 million. The women were given sharpened bamboo spears and were trained to use them (some of them practiced on dummies of Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill). On July 21, a U.S. Fifth Air Force intelligence circular declared: THE ENTIRE POPULATION OF JAPAN IS A PROPER MILITARY TARGET... THERE ARE NO CIVILIANS IN JAPAN."

...

"Some citizens, too, felt disbelief and anger. During the war, Kiyoko Kano, 79, had been a farmer's daughter in a small village not far from Hiroshima. She showed her diary from those days to NEWSWEEK. It records how she had faithfully arisen at dawn some mornings for "bamboo-spear fight training," and how she struggled to accept what the emperor was saying over the village radio on Aug. 15. "It sounded as though there was a truce situation. All of us felt disappointed," she wrote after hearing the emperor's declaration of surrender, bringing peace. "We could not help but feel frustrated."

....

On the island of Guam, Pete Beninato and his Marine Corps buddies in the Third Tank Battalion had been pre-paring to invade Japan. "We weren't too anxious to go in there. The Japanese would fight to the last man—no surrender." When Beninato's men heard that America had dropped atomic bombs (on Aug. 6 and Aug. 9), destroying two entire cities, the reaction was incredulity. "We just looked at each other," Beninato recalls, amazed that so much destructive power could be concentrated in a single bomb. "Now people say we shouldn't have done it. But they weren't over there," he says. "They weren't getting shot at. They weren't expecting 80 to 85 percent casualties. I could've kissed [President] Truman."


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 03:35 PM

A thought experiment. If taking a single child and torturing her or him to death publicly would have brought an end to the war, would it have been a justifiable thing to do? Or one hundred children? Or ten thousand?

Clearly who think that Hiroshioma and Nagasaki was justified think it would have been.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 03:45 PM

Clearly, McGrath, you do not feel that any death is justified in war. I envy you your certainty, but if someone tries to kill me, or my family, I will do my best to provide them with a Darwin award. Sorry if this offends your "morals"

If a country places legitement military objectives, such as industry, in an urban area, and the target is that industry, the fact that civilians are killed is the responsibility of the country placing that industry there without evacuating the civilians. Take a look at the Geneva Conventions.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 03:50 PM

SSDD


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Guy Who Thinks
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 04:02 PM

Simply for the sake of accuracy, fewer persons died in the bombing of Dresden than in either of the atomic attacks. The fire-bombing of Tokyo resulted in 80,000 - 100,000 civilian fatalities and perhaps double that number of injured.

Unlike the atomic attacks, that level of destruction required 300 bombing planes and half a million incendiary bombs.

During the Cold War, Soviet and East German sources circulated wildly inflated estimates of the number of casualties at Dresden. These are occasionally still encountered. But careful records compiled by the Dresden police in 1945 and analyzed by German historians show that about 35,000 died, somewhat less than the 40,000 who died in the fire-bombing of Hamburg, and far less than the numbers killed at Hiroshima or Nagasaki.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 04:07 PM

I stand corrected, Guy Who Thinks, unless I find other figures that I can trust.

But from the people who were there, it does seem that a far larger number would have died if the US had had to invade.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 04:15 PM

http://www.rense.com/general19/flame.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 04:20 PM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Tokyo_in_World_War_II

http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com/tokyo.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 04:30 PM

McGrath,

As can be seen by the links, those thousands of children were ALREADY being killed, WITHOUT stopping the war. So how can you object to the war being ended? Would you rather that the war had continued another six months, and many more children killed, so that we could say "But we didn't use the A-bomb."?


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 08:02 PM

I'm not disputing the logic, bruce. I just wanted to remind people where it led.

There are two fundamental positions when it comes to ethical judgements. One is that there are some things which can never be ,no matter what the consequences. The other is that in certain circumstances, anything whatsoever can be justified.

Anyone who believes Hiroshima was justified is coming down on the latter side. Why dispute it? After all, it's a pretty widely held ethical position... You might not like some of the people who share it, but that's another matter entirely.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 08:12 PM

So, you feel that the continued slaughter of innocent civilians would have been a better choice than the one made to use the bomb and try to end the war without an invasion of Japan? THAT is an ethical attitude I would not care to share.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 11:11 PM

Justification comes from a combination of fact, intelligent thought and prayerful thought.

I welcome anyone who shares my thoughts with regard to the dropping od the 'bomb'. I have yet to see proof that it was not justified.

Real proof, not feeling, not emotion, not the after thoughts that accompany everything from war to a Sunday full of NFL football.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 05:04 AM

General Dwight D. Eisenhower advised the Secretary of War, Henry L. Stimson, in July of 1945 that the Japanese were already essentially defeated, and therefore use of the bombs was unnecessary.

The same opinion was expressed by Fleet Admiral William Leahy (the Chief of Staff to the President), General Carl Spaatz (commander of the U.S. Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific), and Brigadier General Carter Clarke (the military intelligence officer who prepared intercepted Japanese cables for U.S. officials); Major General Curtis LeMay ; and Admiral Ernest King, U.S. Chief of Naval Operations, and Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet.

Eisenhower wrote in his memoir The White House Years, "in 1945 Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. ..I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment, was I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives"

The United States Strategic Bombing Survey, after interviewing hundreds of Japanese civilian and military leaders after Japan surrendered, reported:
"Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war, and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated."

This information is all sourced from various books in Wikipedia.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: mooman
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 05:06 AM

From "The Guardian" newspaper (UK) (and well-documented elsewhere):

Nagasaki might have escaped destruction had it not been for the weather. Bock's Car, the US plane that dropped the bomb, had headed for nearby Kokura on the morning of August 9, but did not release its payload because the city was shrouded in haze.

The crew flew on to Nagasaki only to find it was covered in thick cloud, and were on the verge of abandoning their mission when an opening appeared.


A clear case of careful military planning or vagaries of the weather?

From the last post:

I have yet to see proof that it was not justified.

All the "cold hard facts" quoted about what would have happened had the bombs not been dropped are, in fact, hypothetical as they did not happen. Therefore there will and can never be "proof" on this. We are therefore left with our beliefs and ethical positions about the rights or wrongs of the matter.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 05:09 AM

or for something a little more "emotional"..

Surviving Nagasaki: Akiko Seitelbach

Akiko Seitelbach gave first aid to the victims
Akiko Seitelbach was 22 years old, and working at Mitsubishi Electrical as a volunteer, when the atomic bomb fell on Nagasaki.

"On 9 August 1945, I was working in the supply office. I was a little tired, so I got up to stretch my legs and walked over to the end of the office where there was a big window looking over Nagasaki harbour. The scenery was beautiful, the sun was shining brightly and I was looking across the bay. Then suddenly I saw this flash of light, above the railway station, and my boss yelled at me: 'Get away from the window!'

So I turned and tried to walk back to my desk. Then suddenly the building was hit with such force it was like a small boat in a storm - it shook. The doctor pointed out one man... his body was covered in burns. So I put some ointment on him, but I thought 'This isn't going to help' And I threw myself face down on the floor to cover my head with my hands, something we were trained to do. A shockwave came and the air was filled with acrid dust. The building kept shaking, and things were falling on my body and head. My mother had died the year before and I prayed to her.

Then after a while it stopped, so I got up and looked around. The air was still filled with yellow dust and I ran downstairs towards the air raid shelter. I ran through the factory. I felt something was very wrong - it was so bright. When I got to the shelter it was dark, as the electricity had gone, but I could feel people moving around. My boss came and found me and said: 'Oh you are safe.' He said: 'They are calling for you - you volunteered to do first aid.'   Something was coming toward me. It was a man but he didn't look like a man


So I said, 'Oh heavens I did!' I got up and went to the other end of the air raid shelter. There was a doctor, and although he was wounded, he was also trying to help other people. People were sort of dazed, their clothes torn to shreds, their bodies burned and just standing there silently.

The doctor pointed out one man. All his clothes were torn and his body was covered in burns. He was shivering and said: 'I'm cold, I'm cold'. So I put some ointment on him, but I thought: 'This isn't going to help.' Then the doctor said: 'Go and stay with that young boy on the makeshift bed.' They used high school kids as volunteers in the factories. He must have been about 15. He had a big gash on his neck. He opened his eyes and said: 'You know I'm going to die.'

I said: 'Your mother's coming, you're not going to die.' He said: 'Can't you hear my blood dripping? I know I'm going to die.' Then he was gone.

Later on, at about 5pm, my boss suggested we try to get home. I didn't know it had been an atomic explosion. We walked out of the shelter, passed the destruction and onto the road in front of our building. I knew something was very wrong, something terrible had happened.
I looked out across the bay, and Nagasaki was a big bonfire, just burning, and then I thought about Hiroshima. I thought: 'Maybe it's one of the new bombs.' But I didn't have any feelings about that. When you're shocked you don't feel anything. I wasn't even scared. We couldn't get our bearings because all the familiar landmarks had disappeared. And when we ran through the roads between houses still burning on both sides, the scorching heat nearly overwhelmed us.

I didn't see any living creatures or green plants. We ran and ran through these empty spaces.

Then suddenly I stopped.

Something was coming toward me. It was a man but he didn't look like a man. He had no hair, his face was swollen to about twice the normal size, and loose skin hung down from his arms and legs like seaweed.

He was walking towards me and I was so scared I tried to avoid him.

I heard him saying 'Water, water' as he passed me. So I turned around to go to him but he had collapsed, dead.

The next day we tried to catch a train north, but train after train was filled with burns victims and wounded.

And they told us about their experiences - the blast and the incinerating heat, and the black rain that fell from the sky. It was weird and sort of supernatural.

This interview is from the series 'August 1945', from 3-14 August on BBC Radio 4, at 8.55 BST Mondays-Saturday, and at 9.55 BST on Sunday.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: freda underhill
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 05:13 AM

Surviving Hiroshima: Keiko Ogura

Keiko Ogura was eight years old when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. She still lives in the city.

I wanted to go to school, but my father said 'I have a very strange feeling today - you shouldn't go to school, stay with us'. That morning I was on the road near the house and all of a sudden I saw a flash of blueish white light - a magnesium-like flash and soon after a big sound with dust, and I was blown away and fell on the ground.

I found myself lying on the ground near the house. I thought the house was just in front of me but I couldn't see it because everything had become so dark and many pieces of wood and roof tiles and rubbish were falling on my head.

There was black rain falling... It smelled bad and there were many spots on my white blouse

And in the darkness there was a strong, strong wind like a typhoon. I couldn't open my eyes but tried to get back to my house and in the darkness I heard somebody was crying - my brother and sister.

I was 2.4km from the hypocentre but houses nearer the hypocentre had caught fire and were burning.

I saw long lines of refugees, just quiet, I don't know why they were so quiet. There were long lines, like ghosts.

Most of them were stretching out their arms because the skin was peeling off from the tips of their fingers. I could clearly see the hanging skin, peeling skin, and the wet red flesh and their hair was burned and smelled, the burnt hair smelled a lot.

And many people, just slowly passed by the front of my house.

All of a sudden a hand squeezed my ankle. I was so scared but they said 'get me water'. Almost all the people were just asking 'water', and 'help me'.

I rushed into my home where there was a well and brought them water. They thanked me but some of them were drinking water and vomiting blood and [then] died, stopped moving. They died in front of me. I felt regret and so scared. Maybe I killed them? Did I kill them?

And that night, 6 August, my father was so busy looking after the neighbours, but when he came back he said: 'Listen children - you shouldn't give water, some of the refugees died after drinking water. Please remember that.'

As a little girl I was so curious. I climbed up the hill, near our house... I was so astonished - all the city was flattened and demolished Then I felt so guilty, and I saw them many times in my nightmares. I thought I was a very bad girl - I didn't do what my father said - so I kept it a secret. I didn't tell anybody this story until my father died.

There was black rain falling, black rain mingling with ashes and rubbish and oil, something like that. It smelled bad and there were many spots on my white blouse - sticky, dirty rain. In the morning people were moving, brushing away flies from their skin. My house was full of injured people.

The next day some of the buildings were still burning, and the next day, and the next day, and for three or four days I climbed the hill to see what the city was like.

I have a brother-in-law. He was living almost at the centre of the city - his family was very close to the hypocentre. Until now his family members were missing and he didn't want to recognise they were all gone, so he refused to say and report the family's names to the officials and he didn't want to visit Hiroshima.

Right now, he is living far away in Tokyo, and only last year he decided to report to Hiroshima city that his family members - his mother and sister - had passed away.

And there were so many people [who saw] so many dead or dying, but actually, most of them made up their mind not to tell anyone about what they saw.


This interview is from the series 'August 1945', from 3-14 August on BBC Radio 4, at 8.55 BST Mondays-Saturday, and at 9.55 BST on Sunday.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Guy Who Thinks
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 09:24 AM

As a general observation, Wikipedia is often a less than reliable source. The more controversial a topic is, the less reliable it becomes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 12:40 PM

guest ar 282 was pretty much completely wrong in everything it said. I feel it has been successfully refuted by bearded bruce and will not address it unless further errors are promulgated by it.

McGrath of Harlow continues to play logical games which are essentially naval gazing as they are not related to the reality of total war waged by the great powers in 1945.

The comments about Germany and Japan working feverishly to develop atomic weapons are not really accurate. Reference the Rhodes Book (and many others). The Germans 'could' have had a head start in the late 30's, but due to the decision of certain scientists to reverse the whole psychology of their craft and NOT distribute information at the critical point of understanding fission, in 1938 or 1939, the German scientists did not have enough information without critical research on their own part, and many key scientists had emigrated. (A notable stayer on under the Nazis was Werner Heisenberg). But German research was directed from the top down, and there was not major push in atomic bomb research. The Allies were not aware of this until after the Normandy invasion and allied progress into occupied Europe and liberated Germany. A special force was sent out to gather intelligence and was titled "Operation Paperclip". It revealed in no uncertain terms that the Germans were nowhere near realistic development, for not only had they not got the idea of a the proper critical mass, they lacked moderators for the reactors they would need. A rather primitive early reactor was discovered, however. Just to be sure, the allies got several notably German scientists together, let them review documents on the allied bomb, and bugged their conversation.

As to Japan, there are records of at least one Japanese scientist with an excellent idea of what it would take to put such a bomb together, but the support he got from the government was almost worse than nothing.

The Soviets, however, WERE working on a bomb, becuase they had twigged on the 'wall of silence' that had been imposed from the allied side, and they were getting incredibly informative information from the Manhattan project itself from many inside sources. Just as the United States had been warned in 1939 but had not acted with alacrity until December 1941, Stalin was concerned that the bomb information might be a disinformation plot, and his scientists were forced to not only copy the design, but prove the experimental research as they went along. Towards the end of the war they kidnapped German scientists and engineers to speed the process.

Once again I'd like to repeat that Eisenhower's view of the situation in the Pacific is not terribly relevant. In 1945 Eisenhower was supreme commander Europe, and not privy to inside information from the tope of the US government (his boss was George Marshall whose boss was Harry Truman). Eisenhower's opinions even if accurately quoted, were third hand. Nevertheless, there were people in th e know who opposed using the bomb. The use of the bomb was determeined after a lot of discussion and debate and naturally not everyone was of one mind. That is the essence of Democratic action.

The United States was mobilizing for a land invasion of Japan, which became totally unnecessary because of the two atomic weapons.

As for the records of the Japnanese survivors, they are uniquely precious documents which deserve to be preserved and studied along with all the blissfully victorious maunderings of the triumphalists.

We must not forget what incredible destructive power lies at our fingertips. We must identify with the victims as well as the victors. We need to make sure that no one need ever write remotely similar survival epics again.

Those people were children of God just as much as we are.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 12:44 PM

The Mudcat USA haters sympathize with the German and Japanese War
Machines of the 39's 40s where LITERALLY MULTIPLE MILLIONS
of civilians, adults, children, babies were slaughtered

they probably clap and holler hoorah each time an american
service man/woman is killed in iraq or afghanistan...

what sick minded individuals...


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 01:46 PM

GUEST directly above, there are several people on this forum with whom I disagree, but I don't recognize any of them in your comment. I think you are here to stir the pot without putting anything in.

GET LOST.

I'm gonna ignore any cowardly comments such as the above from here on in. If they don't have the guts to have a name and don't have anything to say, they are a waste of space.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 01:56 PM

While still on the side of dropping the bombs 60 years ago, I see a disadvantage in reporting the experiences of individuals back then.

The enormity of the bombs should not be forgotten. As I said before, pray that the 3rd one is never used by anyone. However, Some of us reading and/or participating here have experienced first hand the effects of weapons that could duplicate, for the individual, what they went through back then. A thousand bomb exhibits the same concussive factor when you are "within range" The same can be said for a 500 pound bomb, such as those being used in Iraq. The use of Napalm in 'Nam also caused many to look as if they were within a mile or two of ground zero. The effects and lasting results are no different for todays victims than they were 60 years ago.

I don't mistake the effects back then. On an anecdotal basis, however, it takes away the severity of the Atom, Hydrogen and Plutonium bombs. It is a terrible method of waging war but one that was thought necessary at one time. Todays available weapons make those look mild. If you want to keep people aware of the enormous potential of WMD, keep them reminded of the big picture.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 02:10 PM

Guest, G:

With respect, I take your point, but the effects of atomic weapons are uniquely horrible on a personal level as well, and I think there is room to include this along with the big picture. Else you're open to the charge of denying the individual experience its own validity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 07:01 PM

I think there is a category of actions which are never justified, no matter what the consequences. And yes, I think that the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki fall into that category.

If that can be justified on a lesser evil basis (and I accept that many, perhaps most, people think that it can be), it seems to me that there can be no conceivable human action or atrocity which could not in principle be justified on that basis. I found that frightening, and in one way it is a new way of thinking for a society. In the past people have acted in accordance with this, but have tended to fight shy of claiming that such actions are ethically justifiable.

It occurs to me that the thought experiment I suggested about a situiation where peace was to be bought at the expense of publicly torturing a child to death was reminiscent of a short stoty by Ursula K. Le Guin - "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas". Well worth reading.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: beardedbruce
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 08:10 PM

McGrath,


So, you feel that the continued slaughter of far more innocent civilians would have been a better choice than the one made to use the bomb and try to end the war without an invasion of Japan? THAT is an ethical attitude I would not care to share.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: podman
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 09:08 PM

Didn't the sort of mental experiment McGrath is talking about date a bit earlier, to Balzac? I think it was structured around getting rich provided a mandarin on the other side of the world fell dead?


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 09:10 PM

As I said, I believe there are some actions which can never be justified under any circumstances, and no matter what the consequences. Fair enough, you do not, bruce - and a lot of people agree with you, including some with whom I am sure you would disagree with on most other issues.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST,G
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 10:54 PM

While it is possible that there are "some actioms which can never be justified under any circumstances", allow us to think that there were actions that would be even more unjustifird had they not been taken.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: robomatic
Date: 11 Aug 05 - 12:08 AM

McGrath if you are taking upon yourself the notion that there are things "that just aren't done" I think I can accept that is a valuable and respectable notion though in this case I do not agree with it as a valid approach to the end of a major war, in fact, the atom bomb ended all major war to date.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 11 Aug 05 - 12:52 AM

Maybe not. The hydrogen bomb--yes. So far, that is. However, the war in southeast Asia was major. The war between Nigeria and the attempted breakaway state of Biafra was major. Only millions of people, but major nevertheless. However, I would agree that MAD seemed to have served its purpose in terms of preventing a global war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Aug 05 - 01:38 PM

I'd bomb them little nippers three times over to save the lives that would have been lost in an invasion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Hiroshima 60th Anniversary
From: Peace
Date: 12 Aug 05 - 01:32 AM

Undoubtedly the students of people like Osama bin Laden are thinking just that about the US right now.


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