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Old 03-07-2020, 05:18 PM
 
142 posts, read 64,372 times
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I've read a lot of debate on whether or not dropping the nukes on Japan was really justified. How could they not be? As they say don't start a fight but make sure to end it. After Pearl Harbor and all that happened in the Pacific, Japan very much deserved what they got, heck, they're lucky they only got nuked twice. Heck, the very fact that in their extreme obstinance the fact they didn't immediately surrender after the first bomb in and of itself meant they deserved another, and even after THAT they still waited awhile to surrender.

I know people may bring up the civilians killed due to them, but hey, they're the ones that started it, they have no one to blame but themselves for it. And honestly, were I in charge then I'd say just drop a nuke every day until they surrendered. Not to mention the alternative was a full on invasion of the home islands which would have caused tens of thousands of casualties on our side, we were really on a "us or them" mindset. And could you imagine how parents would have felt had we not used the nukes and went ahead with Operation Downfall and a year later it had come out we had a weapon we could have used to very likely end the war much earlier but didn't use it? Truman would have been thrown out of office fast!

Call me cold, but I don't feel the least bit bad for any Japanese that were killed during WWII, they have only themselves to blame for starting it. They never should have started the crap in the first place if they didn't want what they eventually got. Kind of like some small kid in school starting something with a much bigger and stronger guy then acts surprised when they get thoroughly beaten down. And it's so strange how anyone could have thought dropping the nukes wasn't 120% justified.
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Old 03-07-2020, 05:55 PM
 
Location: North America
3,552 posts, read 1,239,866 times
Reputation: 14733
Quote:
Originally Posted by Msgenerse View Post
I've read a lot of debate on whether or not dropping the nukes on Japan was really justified. How could they not be? As they say don't start a fight but make sure to end it. After Pearl Harbor and all that happened in the Pacific, Japan very much deserved what they got, heck, they're lucky they only got nuked twice. Heck, the very fact that in their extreme obstinance the fact they didn't immediately surrender after the first bomb in and of itself meant they deserved another, and even after THAT they still waited awhile to surrender.
I think the use of nuclear weapons was practical and reasonable. Was it horrific? Yes. I think that's obvious. But war is horrific.

I do think the notion that civilians 'deserved' it is, well, idiotic. Undoubtedly, there were many civilians killed who were ardent supporters of the Japanese war effort. I think it's safe to safe they accounted for an overwhelming majority of the Japanese population. But to state that they all deserved it - the apolitical ones, the silent opponents of the war, the children - is, as I said, idiotic.

I think this is a story people tell themselves to make themselves feel better, because they can't handle the ideal of innocents being killed by the 'good guys'. But... that's war. The 'good guys' kill innocents in every war. I just wish people would stop being so squeamish and romantic about history. Do I oppose the fact that the United States used nuclear weapons to kill people, some portion of which most certainly did not deserve it? No. Unequivocally, no. But I don't also tell myself 'they deserved it' fairy tales. I can handle the moral ambiguity without resorting to mental placebos.

Also, I'm not one of those who thinks it's politically incorrect to dispute the necessity or morality of the bomb. I disagree with those sentiments - and sometimes, they're made rather dubiously. But like I said, I'm not triggered by them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Msgenerse View Post
I know people may bring up the civilians killed due to them, but hey, they're the ones that started it, they have no one to blame but themselves for it. And honestly, were I in charge then I'd say just drop a nuke every day until they surrendered. Not to mention the alternative was a full on invasion of the home islands which would have caused tens of thousands of casualties on our side, we were really on a "us or them" mindset. And could you imagine how parents would have felt had we not used the nukes and went ahead with Operation Downfall and a year later it had come out we had a weapon we could have used to very likely end the war much earlier but didn't use it? Truman would have been thrown out of office fast!
I've also noticed the notion of collective guilt in the idea that they - ie, all Japanese - deserved it. Since the Japanese government launched a war, all Japanese nationals are morally guilty and deserved death. That's weird. It sounds exactly like a terrorist claiming that all the American victims of an attack deserved it because of American misdeeds in foreign lands. It's the same logic.

Oh - and, no, you wouldn't have dropped a nuke every day, because there weren't that many nukes to drop. After Nagasaki, there was going to be a third bomb ready for combat around August 20th, and then roughly one new Fat Man type bomb (the sorts used at Nagasaki and the Trinity test in New Mexico in July 1945) every ten days. And some portion of those were slated to be stockpiled for Downfall - they would be used on the beaches before Allied troops went ashore.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Msgenerse View Post
Call me cold, but I don't feel the least bit bad for any Japanese that were killed during WWII, they have only themselves to blame for starting it. They never should have started the crap in the first place if they didn't want what they eventually got. Kind of like some small kid in school starting something with a much bigger and stronger guy then acts surprised when they get thoroughly beaten down. And it's so strange how anyone could have thought dropping the nukes wasn't 120% justified.
I don't feel bad for the victims of the war, per se. It's history. But Truman was certainly bothered by the deaths - he specifically mentioned the children. I think it's pretty easy to smugly write in 2020 about how you'd do this or that without a care in the world, but in many cases those who did this and that - whether they were presidents issuing orders of bombardiers releasing their loads or just grunts with rifles - did feel a tremendous burden, and carried a certainly moral conflict within themselves for the rest of their lives. They, too, were victims of war. And I would never sneer at them by contemptuously berating those who question acts undertaking during war.
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Old 03-07-2020, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
48,571 posts, read 20,589,013 times
Reputation: 20992
War is legally sanctioned criminal behavior. Once you have crossed the line into believing that what your side wants and deserves, is worth murdering x number of opponents, destroying x amount of their property, creating x number of widows and orphans, what remains will be a matter of degree. However much cruelty is required to obtain victory, is how much cruelty you must employ.

If your side has developed the means to inflict a cruelty on the enemy sufficient to compel surrender, and it is far less risky to the lives on your side than available alternatives, logic dictates that you use those means.

While the above might represent the moral imperatives of war, it is nothing to celebrate, it is civilization gone awry. "Deserve" should never be the question, rather it should be "What is the least amount of cruelty we must inflict in order to obtain our goals?"
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Old 03-07-2020, 06:16 PM
 
Location: New Mexico
4,479 posts, read 2,052,152 times
Reputation: 4368
Default Climb Mount Niitaka

It is very dangerous to be part of a nation that functions from the top down, as was Imperial Japan @ the time. The war party - the junior officers of the Imperial Japanese Army & Navy - essentially ran a coup against the legitimate government - by terror, assassination, murder. They got what they thought they wanted - war against Korea, Manchuria, China. They bogged down in China, & then decided to launch against the West, including the US.

That war went extremely badly for IJ, because it turned into a long-distance marathon of manpower, industrial production, & logistics over the width of the Pacific Ocean. Admiral Yamamoto knew perfectly well what the outcome would be - he may have been grateful to have died while doing his duty.

IJ modernized its economy, military & industry. They failed to modernize their politics, & IJ as a whole paid the price. It was an extremely expensive price, & still reverberates in the World today.
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Old 03-08-2020, 12:14 AM
 
Location: Russia
922 posts, read 194,332 times
Reputation: 393
Quote:
Originally Posted by Msgenerse View Post
I've read a lot of debate on whether or not dropping the nukes on Japan was really justified. How could they not be? As they say don't start a fight but make sure to end it. After Pearl Harbor and all that happened in the Pacific, Japan very much deserved what they got, heck, they're lucky they only got nuked twice. Heck, the very fact that in their extreme obstinance the fact they didn't immediately surrender after the first bomb in and of itself meant they deserved another, and even after THAT they still waited awhile to surrender.

I know people may bring up the civilians killed due to them, but hey, they're the ones that started it, they have no one to blame but themselves for it. And honestly, were I in charge then I'd say just drop a nuke every day until they surrendered. Not to mention the alternative was a full on invasion of the home islands which would have caused tens of thousands of casualties on our side, we were really on a "us or them" mindset. And could you imagine how parents would have felt had we not used the nukes and went ahead with Operation Downfall and a year later it had come out we had a weapon we could have used to very likely end the war much earlier but didn't use it? Truman would have been thrown out of office fast!

Call me cold, but I don't feel the least bit bad for any Japanese that were killed during WWII, they have only themselves to blame for starting it. They never should have started the crap in the first place if they didn't want what they eventually got. Kind of like some small kid in school starting something with a much bigger and stronger guy then acts surprised when they get thoroughly beaten down. And it's so strange how anyone could have thought dropping the nukes wasn't 120% justified.
It is interesting that you would say now if it were the other way around Japan dropped atomic bombs on the USA, if they had them?
Of course, this would be an "unthinkable crime against humanity"

But in essence the question: from a military point of view, this was completely meaningless, because Japan practically capitulated, it was a matter of several months and everyone understood this. And it’s clear to the fool that it was just a signal for the USSR: ".. Look, we have a superweapon! You are on the line!".
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Old 03-08-2020, 09:02 AM
 
11,139 posts, read 10,695,547 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
War is legally sanctioned criminal behavior. Once you have crossed the line into believing that what your side wants and deserves, is worth murdering x number of opponents, destroying x amount of their property, creating x number of widows and orphans, what remains will be a matter of degree. However much cruelty is required to obtain victory, is how much cruelty you must employ.

If your side has developed the means to inflict a cruelty on the enemy sufficient to compel surrender, and it is far less risky to the lives on your side than available alternatives, logic dictates that you use those means.

While the above might represent the moral imperatives of war, it is nothing to celebrate, it is civilization gone awry. "Deserve" should never be the question, rather it should be "What is the least amount of cruelty we must inflict in order to obtain our goals?"
The term you may be looking for here is "proportionality". America's actions against another country should reflect proportionality based on what was done or at least could be done to us by the country we oppose.

Only a fool fails to realize that hundreds of thousands of innocent children were killed in the bombing raids we undertook against the enemy in World War II. Some people refer to this as "collateral damage". Such terms may be accurate, but they dehumanize people and what had to be done during the war. Our falling bombs incinerated thousands, suffocated others who were deprived of oxygen by the huge firestorms created, and left others crushed in the remains of buildings that collapsed. One story that got my attention was how a massive air raid on Hamburg created massive turbulence from firestorms that literally sucked people up in the air.

None of this negates the cold hard fact that such things had to be done to defeat the Germans and the Japanese in the war. Japan, in particular, preferred letting millions of its own people die to surrendering. I accept that it was necessary to undertake these air raids and the use of the atomic bomb because nothing else would have brought about the surrender of our enemies.

I am not proud of the fact that we had to use the atomic bombs on the Japanese people. I wish it could have been avoided. I accept that it was necessary.
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Old 03-08-2020, 10:17 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
4,479 posts, read 2,052,152 times
Reputation: 4368
Default IJ was in a hurry - & other factors

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zimogor View Post
It is interesting that you would say now if it were the other way around Japan dropped atomic bombs on the USA, if they had them?
Of course, this would be an "unthinkable crime against humanity"

But in essence the question: from a military point of view, this was completely meaningless, because Japan practically capitulated, it was a matter of several months and everyone understood this. And it’s clear to the fool that it was just a signal for the USSR: ".. Look, we have a superweapon! You are on the line!".
Could Imperial Japan have developed nuclear weapons? They looked into it, but it wasn't a serious effort. They didn't have the any spare industrial capacity, nor sufficient physicists, engineers, mathematicians & related to pull together to do the theoretical work, let alone the slogging needed to go from theory to a workable weapon.

Even if they'd come up with a workable weapon, they didn't have a heavy long-range bomber that could reach the US with a nuclear weapon, even if one-way. (IJ's war plans against the US always called for a short sharp victorious war, on IJ's part).

The War party that captured the IJ government wasn't interested in long-term research that might or might not pay off. They couldn't be bothered with logistics, nor protecting their civilian maritime fleet (vital to IJ's economy) - because that was mere trade, as opposed to the glory of the battlefield.

IJ fielded an excellent military in terms of personnel & Navy. Their aircraft were built for speed, not pilot/crew protection, & their aircraft were relatively fragile. Excellent training & experience, but they didn't have any system for veterans to train the next cohort - they simply used them up in the field, & the new officers had to learn on the job. A lot of the newbies died in the process.
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Old 03-08-2020, 10:28 AM
 
Location: WV and Eastport, ME
13,318 posts, read 12,335,193 times
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Today is the day in 1945 that the US bombed Tokyo, the biggest bombing run ever conducted. Obviously, it didn't cause Japan to consider ending the war, since the war went on for over 4 more months. If blowing up the capital city didn't do it, something else would have to be done. Invading Japan was estimated to take over 1 million American lives. Instead, 2 bombs did the trick.
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Old 03-08-2020, 11:55 AM
 
14,071 posts, read 20,311,888 times
Reputation: 23689
Quote:
Originally Posted by Msgenerse View Post
I've read a lot of debate on whether or not dropping the nukes on Japan was really justified. How could they not be? As they say don't start a fight but make sure to end it. After Pearl Harbor and all that happened in the Pacific, Japan very much deserved what they got, heck, they're lucky they only got nuked twice. Heck, the very fact that in their extreme obstinance the fact they didn't immediately surrender after the first bomb in and of itself meant they deserved another, and even after THAT they still waited awhile to surrender.

I know people may bring up the civilians killed due to them, but hey, they're the ones that started it, they have no one to blame but themselves for it. And honestly, were I in charge then I'd say just drop a nuke every day until they surrendered. Not to mention the alternative was a full on invasion of the home islands which would have caused tens of thousands of casualties on our side, we were really on a "us or them" mindset. And could you imagine how parents would have felt had we not used the nukes and went ahead with Operation Downfall and a year later it had come out we had a weapon we could have used to very likely end the war much earlier but didn't use it? Truman would have been thrown out of office fast!

Call me cold, but I don't feel the least bit bad for any Japanese that were killed during WWII, they have only themselves to blame for starting it. They never should have started the crap in the first place if they didn't want what they eventually got. Kind of like some small kid in school starting something with a much bigger and stronger guy then acts surprised when they get thoroughly beaten down. And it's so strange how anyone could have thought dropping the nukes wasn't 120% justified.
Simple one word answer to your topic title - IGNORANCE

Only slightly less simple answer: 1.) because most people do not understand the historical context, and 2.) people have been brainwashed to think "US bad, rest of world good".
You are preaching to the choir here. We've covered the topic many times in this forum with all the proper debates and historical discussions so I don't think we need to go over the details yet again (maybe a link to one of the prior discussions will do) and the overwhelming consensus by those that did understand the historical context is that it was, without a doubt, justified and resulted in both the end of a terrible war and the saving of innumerable lives (including Japanese civilian lives).
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Old 03-08-2020, 12:09 PM
 
39 posts, read 20,063 times
Reputation: 126
From a military standpoint we "won" the war. From a humanity stand point, blood on your hands doesn't wash off. We can justify what had to be done, but we don't have to like.
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