posted on Jul, 10 2006 @ 04:12 AM
What your friend was likely referring to is not that the Japanese had surrendered prior to the bombings, but rather that the Japanese were doomed to
defeat before the bombings. The Russians had declared war on Japan and joined the fight in Asia right after Hiroshima and were pleged to do so before,
the Japanese Navy and Airforce were no longer able to keep the war off of Japanese soil, and the outcome was not particularly in doubt.
The problem is that during planning of an invasion of the mainland, it came up that the US should order several hundred thousand purple hearts to be
distributed to those who would certainly be wounded.
It also just so happened that the bombs had been completed earlier than expected. The agreement at Yalta, in which certain concessions were made in
order to bring the Soviets into the war in the Pacific after Germany fell, was made under the impression that the bomb would not be ready until at
least 1947. When the bomb suddenly came to be ready earlier, it presented an opportunity to save many American lives, prevent a Russian occupation of
Manchuria hopefully, and establish the US military as beyond challenge, as well as, of course, field testing the bombs against humans and realistic
So, we dropped them. That being said, I am under the impression (based on a show on the History Channel which I do not recall the name of nor sources
for) that we invited the Japanese to come observe a test, in hopes of procuring their surrender, but that the Japanese refused the offer, since it was
WWII and everyone had a "secret weapon" of some kind.
They refused to surrender even after Hiroshima though. The Russians immediately launched their attack, just 2 days after Hiroshima, hoping to get
Manchuria before Japan was beaten into submission.
They were talking about surrender when we hit Nagasaki, but even that didn't do the trick.
Between August 8th and August 18th, the 3 Red Army Groups destroyed the Japanese Army in Manchuria, which had consisted of over 1 million men.
It was in the midst of that relentless assualt that Japan actually surrendered on August 15th, 6 days after the second nuke was dropped. The prospect
of facing a joint Russian/US invasion, with the way being paved by nukes, was simply too much.
Frankly, the US didn't nuke Japan enough to completely fulfill all of its goals. The 9 days that passed between Hiroshima and the Japanese surrender
were enough for the Russians to get into Manchuria, and the Russians were able to occupy North Korea in the 3 days after the surrender, which laid the
foundation for the Korean War.
If we'd dropped 3 of them on the first day, then promised more, or "accidentally" hit the Russians during an attack on the Japanese Army in
Manchuria, we may have saved ourselves some headaches.