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Dropping the Atomic Bombs On Japan Was Justified!

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posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 07:57 AM
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Recent threads have questioned the legitimacy of the US in dropping the atomic bombs on Japan. Several people have expressed opinions but refused to debate the issue. This is not flame bait or a mud pit discussion….

IMHO, the US was entirely justified in its actions of dropping the atomic bombs on Japan during WWII. The United States was at war with Japan at the time. As I have put forth in other posts, the cost of taking the Home Islands would have at the very least generated millions of casualties on both sides. Given the fanatical resistance the US Pacific forces had encountered at Guadalcanal, Siapan, and Iwo Jima, its not surprising that this was a major concern. Not to mention having to be in close to the home islands and the threat of increasing kamikaze attacks that had the potential to cause great harm in the fleet. The decision to drop the bomb always seems to be taken out of context with the rest of the war as if it were a separate event unto itself.



Frank notes the report commissioned for Stimson by W. B. Shockley, who argued that defeating Japan by invasion would have cost five to ten million Japanese deaths and between 1.7 million and 4 million American casualties, including perhaps 400,000 to 800,000 fatalities. This report appeared precisely when Ultra information showed that Japan's defenses in Kyushu exceeded old estimates by three times in combat divisions and four times in aircraft, guaranteeing very high casualties
(Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire, Richard Frank)


Curtis Lemay’s Bomber force was prepared to burn all of the cities of Japan to the ground with firebomb attacks. By dropping the bombs, the Japanese surrendered making an invasion and further wholesale destruction of its cities unnecessary. The approach of destroying cities was an accepted practice of the time. All the major powers practiced it. Germany with its Blitz and Wonder Weapons, to the US Airforce over Germany, to the Russians in Berlin.


Truman's Secretary of State, James F. Byrnes, was one among many who has argued that while there were many casualties from the atomic bombs, these were "not nearly so many as there would have been had our air force continued to drop incendiary bombs on Japan's cities."


I am not suggesting that this was correct, but to retrospectively evaluate actions under current moralities and ethics and hold them to current standards is not a fair comparison. For a case in point, look to the GWII in Iraq. Rather than level whole towns in the Sunni Triangle, a different tactic are being used instead (So far its not working but that’s another discussion)

Recent research has revealed that the shock of the bomb allowed elements in Japans own government the impetus to pressure the Emperor to override the diehard Generals who were advocating a fight to the last man stance.



Sadao Asada offered his own thoroughly researched answer in his seminal article, "The Shock of the Atomic Bomb and Japan's Decision to Surrender--A Reconsideration." His article reveals that the bomb and only the bomb galvanized Japan's peace party to take actions necessary to terminate the Pacific War. What he accomplishes in a virtual tour de force is to correlate the day by day decisions of the Japanese government from August 6th through the 14th in the context of how the use of the A-bomb worked to produce acceptance of the Potsdam terms of surrender. His criticism, that to the Japanese historians, "the sense of victimization takes precedence over historical analysis," may be extended as well to Mr. Nobile, for whom the desire to brand those who saw a need to use the bomb as a group of war criminals equally takes precedence over the task of the historian.
What Asado shows is that Prime Minister Suzuki, before being informed of Soviet entry into the Pacific War, had decided that because of the A-bomb, war between Japan and the USA could no longer be carried on. And Foreign Minister Togo added that "since the atomic bomb had made its appearance, continuation of the war had become utterly impossible." With the news of the second atomic bomb dropped at Nagasaki, Suzuki feared that rather than stage an invasion--for which Japan was prepared---the U.S. would keep on dropping atomic bombs. In other words, both bombs had the effect of jolting the peace party to move toward surrender. Asado describes what he calls the "shock effect" of the Nagasaki bomb on Japan's military and political leaders


Other have pointed that Japan was ready to surrender after the first bomb blast and the second was unnecessary.


Like Asadao, Frank writes that after the Hiroshima bomb was dropped, it was still the case that even if the Emperor now wanted to terminate the war quickly, he still balked at accepting the Potsdam Declaration and doubted whether the Imperial Japanese Army would comply with a command to end the war. That result was not to occur until the second bomb was dropped at Nagasaki.
(Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire, Richard Frank)


The actions of the United States brought about the conclusion of the second World War. I am in no way downplaying the deaths of the Japanese in these cities, nor any other deaths. However, the revisionist historians among us have portrayed the dropping of the Atomic Bombs on Japan as unnecessary show of power which simply is not the case when the historical data is analyzed.

Thanks For Reading

Fred




posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:09 AM
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This can and always will be hotly debated. There is no right or wrong answer here. Only what could have been. There are tons of ways to show where you are wrong and where you are right as well. These rights and wrongs can be documented by people on both sides of the fence and in both main locations. It is like beating a dead horse.......
Just let it go man........ The world has changed and moved on. The thing that should be debated is ... Did anyone learn anything from it? Did anyone learn about what happens when this much power is released on HUMANS? Did anyone learn that aggression is not the answer? Did anyone learn that peaceful solutions should be sought at all costs? The Japanese have sure done a uturn in their direction. Read the Article 9 of the Japanese constitution. Think anyone else learned?
Read this article.... I love Armitages response....... www.japantimes.co.jp...

[edit on 9-8-2004 by JCMinJapan]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:11 AM
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Will you put as much effort into "un-justifying" a nuke dropped on the US or will there be valid reasons for that too?



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:18 AM
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No, it is not justify,

If US wanted to scare, the Japan government into surrender they could have drop that bomb in a least populated are of that country.

But no, they wanted as much damage as they could get and not only one bomb but two, and into the two heavy populated cities, that is a shame anyway to put it and anyway you paint it.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:19 AM
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Originally posted by Corinthas
Will you put as much effort into "un-justifying" a nuke dropped on the US or will there be valid reasons for that too?


Are we in a declared war with a nuclear power at this time? No, this really is a historical discussion relating to several posts related to the topic of this thread. However, that would have to be analyzed for its specifics before I could answer the question.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:31 AM
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Originally posted by Corinthas
Will you put as much effort into "un-justifying" a nuke dropped on the US or will there be valid reasons for that too?


Thats a great point. Bush makes a big point of telling us that the US is at WAR, not just in Iraq but against all terrorist.

Many would argue that you do whatever you have to to win a war. By this logic it would be justified that those opposing the US use nukes.


Originally posted by marg6043
No, it is not justify,

If US wanted to scare, the Japan government into surrender they could have drop that bomb in a least populated are of that country.

But no, they wanted as much damage as they could get and not only one bomb but two, and into the two heavy populated cities, that is a shame anyway to put it and anyway you paint it.


The bombs weren't about scaring the japanese into surrendering. They were about crippling the Japanese war machine. Hiroshima was a major industrial city making munition and supplies for the Japanese. Even the bombing of Hiroshima including the damage to infrastructure and the civilian deaths didn't scare the Japanese into surrender. Three days later Nagasaki was bombed, also for its contribution to the Japanese military. At this point, with manufaturing crippled, hundreds of thousands dead, and the fear of yet more nukes, Japan surrendered.

Had the US dropped the bomb on a low population area it would have done nothing but kill people, having no effect on industry.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:37 AM
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Originally posted by FredT
Are we in a declared war with a nuclear power at this time?


Well, we have a war on terror now..... Is it justified if the terrorists drop a nuclear bomb in New York? Is it ok for the US to drop a nuclear bomb on Baghdad? It is OK for Israel to drop a nuclear bomb on Iran? Is it justified if North Korea Drops a nuclear bomb on Japan or South Korea? Is it justified if China drops one on Taiwan? Is it justified if Russia drops one on Chechnya? These are just a few of the real potentials in todays world.

The Japanese have come to accept the bomb being dropped. I never hear them complain about it too much. They say that it happened. Why is it that us Americans are the only ones to carry these things on forever and try to prove that we are always right.

Did you read my post about learning from mistakes? It happened, can`t change it and it is way past time to blame either way. Everything here is up to debate. Would Japan have surrendered? hmm... proof on both sides of the fence. You can believe whomever you want. Answer my questions above and you will see what is right and wrong. What happened .. happened.

Of course, the answers to the aobve questions are probably relative to what side of the fence you are on..... Personally, I say no to ALL of them.....
If you want to get a real feeling, then I suggest you jump on a plane and I will personally give you a tour of the A-BOMB museum in Hiroshima. You will not leave there the same person... I guarantee it. WAR is regrettable in any way shape or form no matter if one or ten million die. Japan has learned from the past and has changed alot. They no longer seek war. The US is forcing them to change their constitution. Read the article above and you will know why Japan is pressured to do so. Armitage said... Article 9 of the Japan Constitution is straining US-Japanese relations. Article 9 is the PEACE article that forbids Japan to arm against any international conflict they may have. If requires them to find a peaceful solution. PEACE now strains relations.

LEARN from the past, then learn to let it go.

Sorry, but I am just tired of these kind of posts, usually I try to ignore them, but sometimes I just have to say what I feel.


[edit on 9-8-2004 by JCMinJapan]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:43 AM
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Originally posted by marg6043
No, it is not justify,
If US wanted to scare, the Japan government into surrender they could have drop that bomb in a least populated are of that country.


This possibility was considered but ultimetly decided against. One posibility considered was that the Japanese would more POW's into suspected target areas as Human SHields


But even J.Robert Oppenheimer retorted that no display would be impressive enough to shock the Japanese into surrender, assuming that the two available bombs would have worked---and even if it had, that would have left but one to use.


Would the diehard military leaders have honestly passed on the potential of the threat to the Emperor knowing he must surrender at that point?


Maddox offers another argument against a demonstration (p. 148): U.S. officials "assumed Japanese hardliners would try to minimize the first explosion or to explain it away as some sort of natural event such as an earthquake or a huge meteor.'That was one of the reasons for rejecting a demonstration."



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 08:57 AM
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Originally posted by JCMinJapan
Well, we have a war on terror now..... Is it justified if the terrorists drop a nuclear bomb in New York? Is it ok for the US to drop a nuclear bomb on Baghdad? It is OK for Israel to drop a nuclear bomb on Iran?


No, as I pointed out in my origional post, one has to really evaluate decsions in the contect of the times. At that time the large scale destruction of cities was an acceptable practice during a declared war. It sure would have made the war in IRaq easier to airbust a bunch of W-88's over Bhagdad and the Sunni Triangle, turning it into the worlds biggest radioactive parking lot, but that is not what we do or believe in these days
You are taking historical events out of contect and applying them to realities that did not exist in 1945


The Japanese have come to accept the bomb being dropped. I never hear them complain about it too much. They say that it happened. Why is it that us Americans are the only ones to carry these things on forever and try to prove that we are always right.

This post was in no way ment to disparage Japan and her people. Multiple posters on various threads have taken to posting thier revisionist perspectives on the events. Its no different on both sides. The whole point of this board is to promote discussion and debate.


Did you read my post about learning from mistakes? It happened, can`t change it and it is way past time to blame either way. Answer my questions above and you will see what is right and wrong.


I have answered your questions above. Yes we have learned from mistakes. Was the A Bomb a mistake? No, however we still learned something. As the cold war proved, none of the nuclear powers wanted to unleash atomic weapons because thier terrible destructive power was well known.


Of course, the answers to the aobve questions are probably relative to what side of the fence you are on..... Personally, I say no to ALL of them.....

As are yours. Our opinions are just that. We are influenced by our life experience, education, and upbringing.


If you want to get a real feeling, then I suggest you jump on a plane and I will personally give you a tour of the A-BOMB museum in Hiroshima. You will not leave there the same person


I have no doubt. Just visiting the trinity site had a profound effect. You could say the same thing from the Arizona Memorial, Or listen to a survivor of the Bataan Death March, Or My Grandfathers stories about what it was like to parachute into Normandy the night before D-Day.....


Sorry, but I am just tired of these kind of posts, usually I try to ignore them, but sometimes I just have to say what I feel.


We all do. Just like I felt compelled to defend the A Bomb use. The number of post with attacks on the decision have increased as of late. It can be a two way street for both of us.....



[edit on 9-8-2004 by FredT]

[edit on 9-8-2004 by FredT]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 09:11 AM
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US played god that day and didn't even though of the consequences and they results of the A-Bomb can be felt even into this day.

My grandfather died in world war ll also.

The A-Bom is a shame that this nation has to live with for the rest of its life.



[edit on 9-8-2004 by marg6043]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 09:24 AM
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Originally posted by marg6043
The A-Bom is a shame that this nation has to live with for the rest of its life.


We seem to be holding up well with that burden. the only shame is the revisionist historians trying to attach motives to this event based on thier world views now. How would your relative that died in the war viewed the bomb?



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 09:46 AM
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I love reading people "justifications" for the use of the two atomic bombs in Japan.

While you very well may have an informed opinion about these atrocities, I prefer to take the words of some of those IN POWER in the USA at the time, and see what they think, looking back.

www.doug-long.com...


"...in [July] 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 was one of those who felt that there were a number of cogent reasons to question the wisdom of such an act. ...the Secretary, upon giving me the news of the successful bomb test in New Mexico, and of the plan for using it, asked for my reaction, apparently expecting a vigorous assent.

"During his recitation of the relevant facts, I had been conscious of a feeling of depression and so 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. It was my belief that Japan was, at that very moment, seeking some way to surrender with a minimum loss of 'face'. The Secretary was deeply perturbed by my attitude..."

- Dwight Eisenhower, Mandate For Change, pg. 380

....

"It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons.

"The lethal possibilities of atomic warfare in the future are frightening. My own feeling was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make war in that fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children."

- William Leahy, I Was There, pg. 441 (Chief of Staff to Presidents Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman)

...

"...the Japanese were prepared to negotiate all the way from February 1945...up to and before the time the atomic bombs were dropped; ...if such leads had been followed up, there would have been no occasion to drop the [atomic] bombs."

- quoted by Barton Bernstein in Philip Nobile, ed., Judgment at the Smithsonian, pg. 142

....

Hoover biographer Richard Norton Smith has written: "Use of the bomb had besmirched America's reputation, he [Hoover] told friends. It ought to have been described in graphic terms before being flung out into the sky over Japan."

....

"The plan I devised was essentially this: Japan was already isolated from the standpoint of ocean shipping. The only remaining means of transportation were the rail network and intercoastal shipping, though our submarines and mines were rapidly eliminating the latter as well. A concentrated air attack on the essential lines of transportation, including railroads and (through the use of the earliest accurately targetable glide bombs, then emerging from development) the Kammon tunnels which connected Honshu with Kyushu, would isolate the Japanese home islands from one another and fragment the enemy's base of operations. I believed that interdiction of the lines of transportation would be sufficiently effective so that additional bombing of urban industrial areas would not be necessary.

"While I was working on the new plan of air attack... [I] concluded that even without the atomic bomb, Japan was likely to surrender in a matter of months. My own view was that Japan would capitulate by November 1945."

Paul Nitze, From Hiroshima to Glasnost, pg. 36-37 (Vice Chairman, U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey)



MANY of those who were in charge of the decision to drop the two bombs later expressed how it was unneccessary (probably after they saw some pictures of what the blast did to people).

It's usually best to trust the opinions of the people who were THERE, than people from 50 years after the fact who might have no clue whatsoever what they're talking about, and definitely have no firsthand experience with the issue.

I tend to think of it as a terrorist attack that killed more than 140,000 civilians.

Read Webster's definition of TERROR.

www.webster.com...


4 : violence (as bombing) committed by groups in order to intimidate a population or government into granting their demands


Well, DANG!




[edit on 9-8-2004 by Jakomo]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 09:55 AM
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Originally posted by Jakomo

4 : violence (as bombing) committed by groups in order to intimidate a population or government into granting their demands

Well, DANG!


Well Dang, it was neitehr a innsurection nor was it revolution as stated above. In fact it was a WAR!. This is a classic revisionist tactic to equate this event to terrorism. It simply does not fit the bill. It was a war plane and simple. By that logic, it was a terroist act to attack Germany or Japan by atomic weapons or conventional.

Dolittles raid on Tokyo would also be classified as a terroist attack.

Yes, there were people opposed to use of the weapons. It was by no means had universal consent. However, as I pointed out it was justified.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 10:05 AM
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FredT:

I wrote"Terror : violence (as bombing) committed by groups in order to intimidate a population or government into granting their demands nsurrection and revolutionary terror

Well Dang!

You replied: Well Dang, it was neitehr a innsurection nor was it revolution as stated above. In fact it was a WAR!. This is a classic revisionist tactic to equate this event to terrorism. It simply does not fit the bill. It was a war plane and simple. By that logic, it was a terroist act to attack Germany or Japan by atomic weapons or conventional.


Um, YES. Dresden was a state-sponsored terrorist attack, the Bombing of Britain by the Nazis (targetting civilian populations) was a state-sponsored terrorist attack.

So Hiroshima and Nagasaki, being civilian targets, were terrorist attacks by the United States.

An act committed by groups (the USA) in order to intimidate a population (the Japanese people) or government (the Japanese government, and emperor)into granting their demands (full capitulation). The stuff in 's is an EXAMPLE of the word used in a phrase. Terror AS IN revolutionary terror.



Yes, there were people opposed to use of the weapons. It was by no means had universal consent. However, as I pointed out it was justified.


However, as I pointed out, you were not there. You saying it was justified is not much compared to Eisenhower and Undersecretaries of State and Admirals at the TIME of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. What's your qualification? History Major? Ex-Air Force?


From YOUR link:

With the news of the second atomic bomb dropped at Nagasaki, Suzuki feared that rather than stage an invasion--for which Japan was prepared---the U.S. would keep on dropping atomic bombs. In other words, both bombs had the effect of jolting the peace party to move toward surrender. Asado describes what he calls the "shock effect" of the Nagasaki bomb on Japan's military and political leaders


"Shock effect" equates with "terror effect".



[edit on 9-8-2004 by Jakomo]

[edit on 9-8-2004 by Jakomo]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 10:37 AM
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Stephen Ambrose, former University of New Orleans history professor and prolific writer, once related this story in one of his classes. He was having lunch with a Japanese man during which he related that he had, in his research, uncovered documents indicating that before the atomic bomb had been perfected, the plan by the allies was to allow the Soviets to occupy Japan after a joint invasion by both the Soviets and the US. The Japanese man thought for a few moments and looking Ambrose in the eyes, said "Thank God you dropped the bomb."

When you stop and think about it, that's pretty profound. Regardless of how terrible and devastating the atomic bombs were, the thought that the Soviets might have occupied Japan after the war, was unthinkable to this Japanese.

After the war, Douglas MacArthur and the US rebuilt Japan and in doing so helped to pave the way to this nation becoming one of the great economic powers in the world. Compare their fate to that of the East Germans.

The Japanese revered Douglas MacArthur for his extraordinary leadership and sensitivity to the culture of the Japanese. No one was more outraged by the removal of MacArthur from command during the Korean War than the Japanese.

No matter how you stack it, the United States is the best thing that ever happened to Japan. Think about that while your driving down the road in your Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, or Subaru listening to your Sony stereo driving your Pioneer speakers while checking your Seiko watch and talking on your Kyocera cell phone.

[edit on 04/8/9 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 10:39 AM
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At the beginning of World War II, the bombing of civilians was regarded as a barbaric act. As the war continued, however, all sides abandoned previous restraints.

All the Major powers where trying to get their hands on the A-bomb. Had Germany or Japan got it first they would have nuked England or the US .



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 11:23 AM
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Originally posted by ShadowXIX
At the beginning of World War II, the bombing of civilians was regarded as a barbaric act.


You obviously haven't heard of Sherman's march through Georgia.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 11:46 AM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott

Originally posted by ShadowXIX
At the beginning of World War II, the bombing of civilians was regarded as a barbaric act.


You obviously haven't heard of Sherman's march through Georgia.



From source
World War II began on September 1, 1939, in Poland when the German Luftwaffe began to bomb military targets. When Warsaw continued to fight, German leader Adolf Hitler approved the dropping of five tons of bombs on the city, hastening Poland’s surrender. As German tanks rolled through the rest of continental Europe, Hitler used the example of the bombing of Warsaw to encourage submission. But with minor exceptions, there were no more bombings of civilian targets on either side. Hitler even released War Directive #2 that forbade bombing attacks on France or England except as reprisals.


Air Power WW II essay and source for quote.

The idea that civilian populations are off-limits in war is a constraint abandoned at first opportunity, or necessity depending on which side your on. The continued bleating (yes, the noise sheep make) of "war must be fair" demonstrates a lack of understanding of human basic instinct for survival. As I have said before, war must be the most horrific man made plague that can assail this squalid rock we call home, anything less would make it a palatable option.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 11:57 AM
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In the absence of dropping the bombs, the Army Air Corp would have continued LeMay's campaing of firebombing cities. That proved to be the most effective way of destroying Japan's ability to make war.

Had they continued along that route, the devastation would have been unimagineable. Not to mention the proposed invasion, where casualty estimates were in the order of 1 million.



posted on Aug, 9 2004 @ 12:11 PM
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Originally posted by COOL HAND
In the absence of dropping the bombs, the Army Air Corp would have continued LeMay's campaing of firebombing cities. That proved to be the most effective way of destroying Japan's ability to make war.

Had they continued along that route, the devastation would have been unimagineable. Not to mention the proposed invasion, where casualty estimates were in the order of 1 million.


August 8th, Russia declares war on Japan. You forgot that little equation. (For those who don't know, we dropped the bomb the next day). The Germans surrendered in May. The Japanese knew they the American and British would concetrate solely on them, that's why they were trying to surrender.

A good article about what really was going on is HERE.



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