- The Soviet Union received word from high level Japanese sources that the Japanese would be willing to surrender on the condition that the
Emperor’s position was safeguarded.
- Nobel Laureate James Franck urged the government to consider dropping the new bomb on a deserted island. Some American leaders believed that if this
demonstration bomb did not detonate, the war would be lengthened, not shortened.
- The first defeat for the Japanese army came in Mongolia at the hands of the Soviets three days after the first bomb was dropped.
- From June to the beginning of August 1945 the Japanese cabinet was split 3:3 over unconditional surrender to the allies.
- Considerably more damage was done to Tokyo, Dresden and Hamburg in firestorms caused by traditional bombing than from the A-bomb raid on Hiroshima
- An invasion of the home islands would be incredibly costly in terms of the numbers killed and wounded. Estimates vary widely but the campaign to
retake the Philippines island of Luzon cost 31,000 American lives along with 156,000 Japanese casualties.
- It was unclear just when or if the Japanese would surrender. The Germans had fought to the end with defeat only coming when their capital Berlin was
taken and their leader Hitler was dead.
- The American public was overwhelmingly behind the atomic bombing of Japan: the bomb received an 85% approval rating.
- One reason in favour of dropping the bomb was to show the Soviets the extent of American power and that the Americans were willing to use it.
- Even though the American government insisted on unconditional surrender, and that included no safeguard of Emperor Hirohito's position after the
Japanese surrender, this position was soon forgotten and the Emperor was allowed to stay.
- There was a great depth of feeling in the US against the Japanese. This was partly because of the undeclared attack on Pearl Harbour but also
because of the well-known and brutal treatment of allied prisoners of war.
- The Japanese population was starving to death. The vast majority of Japan's merchant ships had been sunk and supplies were not entering the
- The Japanese surrendered soon after the bombs were dropped. The bombs may have made it easier for the politicians to make peace.
- The making of the atomic bombs was incredibly expensive. If the bombs were not used and Americans died, it would be politically damaging to
- The allies feared that the Soviets would move into the far east, just as they had moved into Eastern Europe.
There were those who considered that the atomic bomb should never have been used at all. I cannot associate myself with such ideas… I am surprised
that very worthy people—but people who in most cases had no intention of proceeding to the Japanese front themselves—should adopt a position that
rather than throw this bomb we should have sacrificed a million American and a quarter of a million British lives…
Winston Churchill, leader of the Opposition, in a speech to the British House of Commons, August 1945
The U.S. anticipated losing many soldiers in the planned invasion of Japan, although the number of expected fatalities and wounded is subject to
some debate. U.S. President Truman stated in 1953 he had been advised U.S. casualties could range from 250,000 to one million men.
Some historians see ancient Japanese warrior traditions as a major factor in the resistance in the Japanese military to the idea of surrender.
According to one Air Force account,
"The Japanese code of bushido—'the way of the warrior'—was deeply ingrained. The concept of Yamato-damashii equipped each soldier with a strict
code: never be captured, never break down, and never surrender. Surrender was dishonorable. Each soldier was trained to fight to the death and was
expected to die before suffering dishonor. Defeated Japanese leaders preferred to take their own lives in the painful samurai ritual of seppuku
(called hara kiri in the West). Warriors who surrendered were not deemed worthy of regard or respect."[21
Even though the devastation that was levied by the atomic bombs was great it is undeniable that by ending the war instead of dragging it out was far
more humane. Keep in mind the Japanese were starving and in many reports say they were prepared to fight to the last man woman and child. Japan up
until that point was a brutal warrior culture that would prefer death over defeat had we not used the atomic bomb there it is quite possible victory
over japan would have been at a cost on par with genocide. Calling the use of the atomic bomb demonstrates a great deal of ignorance on the part of
those making that accusation. After the Japans surrender the US helped rebuild Japan installing a peaceful government which is far better than what
they had before.
edit on 25-12-2012 by Grimpachi because: (no reason given)