Bombing Japan Essay

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On the sixth of August 1945, the world's first atomic bomb was dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, by the United States. A flash, stronger than the sun itself, followed by a fiery explosion within two tenths of a second completely annihilated the city. Those in the center of the blast disintegrated instantly, while others were doused in flames, and their skin slowly burned away. What had started as a silent morning, ended in a red glare from the firestorms that burned through the night. A few days later another Japanese city, Nagasaki, was obliterated by a second atomic bomb. These attacks were in an effort to end World War II promptly. But were these horrific attacks necessary? Japan had already been shattered in the previous year, the military reports asserted that the war was coming to a conclusion, and Russia was on the verge of declaring war on Japan. Therefore, from a military standpoint, the use of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were unnecessary. Prior to the decision to drop the atomic bomb, Japan had already been defeated militarily by the United States. The United States military had advanced from island to island, crushing Japan. Not a thing was left of the once mighty Imperial Navy, and Japan's air force had been all but totally destroyed ("Was Hiroshima Necessary." www.ihr.org, June/May, 1997). Without this support the land forces could not fight back. All of Japan's military was dwindling away, and Japan was almost defenseless. Without any military defenses in the United States' way, Japan was the subject of numerous large-scale B-29 non-nuclear bombing raids (Hiroshima: Was It Necessary." www.doug-long.com, 1995). Japan was hit so hard by the air strikes that the Air Force bombers were "driving them [Japanese] back to the stone age" ("Was Hiroshima Necessary." www.ihr.org, June/May, 1997). The air strikes completely destroyed Tokyo

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