posted on Jan, 12 2013 @ 12:05 AM
Originally posted by Flatcoat
I've always wondered why they didn't just drop the bomb a short distance out to sea...maybe a deserted island where all could see. Surely that would
have given the Japanese reason to surrender?
That was considered. The questions raised about that from memory:
What if it didn't work? Although a "device" had been detonated in the New Mexico desert, an actual bomb had never been tested. Concerns that the
Japanese officials attending would think we were loopy to bring them out to the coast and watch... nothing. This might bolster their determination and
defiance against surrendering.
If it was dropped on a city and failed to detonate, then the consensus was,"Nothing ventured, nothing gained". The American side would be the only
ones to know about the failure and could "save face".
If it did work in a demonstration, the Japanese might not get the full effect of the bomb from a (safe) distance. There was concern that the threat of
other bombs would not make them then consider surrender. Besides, only the witnesses present would see it and they may have trouble convincing others
in the Japanese government to accept their tales of a new weapon capable of destroying an entire city.
In the end it was decided to drop it on a city (long in fact before the bombs were ever built) so that the ensuing destruction would remain and be a
testament to the power of the atomic bomb. Not only for the Japanese but for the Russians. It was feared at the time they would attempt an invasion
into some part of Japan themselves and the Americans wanted to send them a message. There were only two bombs at the time, so they thought they would
still have one back up if the first one failed.
As it turned out, they both worked, the Japanese saw the destruction and loss of life. They surrendered and the Russians stayed out of Japan and
stopped their advance elsewhere.
Not defending it by any means just recounting the process of target selection.